updated 06:05 pm EST, Mon January 21, 2008
PhotoAcute Studio 2.7
Almalence has released PhotoAcute Studio 2.7, an update to the software for enhancing digital photo quality that provides focus stacking functionality. The application processes different images of the same scene taken at different focal lengths and automatically produces a new image with a greater depth of field than any one of the single source images, and can merge misaligned images while compensating for scene movement as well as rotation and scaling. The application is priced from $50 for consumer cameras to $120 for DSLR cameras with support for the RAW format and 16-bit color, requiring Mac OS X 10.4.8 or later.
PhotoAcute Studio supports variety of image formats -- including RAW, DNG and TIFF. The software runs under Mac OS X, Linux, and Microsoft Windows with a user interface designed around simplicity.
"The classic way to extend depth of field is to take images using a narrow lens aperture," Almalence said. "Small apertures bring more light diffraction, degrading the image resolution and they reduce the light transmission, forcing the use of longer exposures, which leads to motion blur in the pictures."
"The alternative way is to take several frames of the same scene with different focal lengths. Each of these images has its own depth of field and they can be merged together, combining focused areas of each image and producing a resulting image with cumulative depth of field. This technique is known as 'focus stacking'."