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If you set your camera to a high ISO, you have the advantage of being able to shoot in dim light without a flash, either outdoors or indoors. But the downside of shooting with a high ISO is that you'll often capture more digital noise than you want. In this movie, I am going to show you how to reduce digital noise using the Reduce Noise filter in the Expert Edit workspace. You really can't judge the digital noise in an image unless you're viewing the image at a 100%. So I'm going to double click the Zoom tool, and when I do, you can see these little specks of color and some specks of grayscale as well.
Those are digital noise, and that's what I want to reduce. If I take the Hand tool and I click and drag around the image, I can see that there are specks of color and black and white noise throughout the image. So I'm going to go ahead and open the Reduce Noise filter by going to the Filter menu and I'll go down to Noise, and I'll choose Reduce Noise. That opens the large Reduce Noise dialog box. Over on the left is a large preview of part of the image, it's set to 100% view, which is what I want when I'm trying to see the digital noise in the image.
I'm going to click and drag in that preview to take it over to another part of the image. Now you can see that some of the digital noise has been reduced already, and that's because of the default settings of these sliders. I'm going to take each slider and move it over to 0 to start, and I'll uncheck Remove JPEG Artifact. So that's the original amount of noise in the image, which you can see here in the dialog box as well is out here in the image. I'll start by moving the Reduce Color Noise slider over to the right.
And I'm going to move it until I no longer see those colored specks in the preview or add a new document window. But all of the digital noise isn't gone yet. Especially over here, you can see that there are still some black and white specks. To reduce those, I'll take the Strength slider and I'll drag that over to the right. Notice that as I drag this slider the image is getting softer, kind of blurry. So at that point I'll take the Preserve Details slider and move that over to the right to try to bring some detail back into the image.
Now this is always a compromise, because as I drag Preserve Details to the right, I'm bringing back some luminance noise. So I'll take it to about there and I'll also check Remove JPEG Artifact. The JPEG compression algorithm creates squares of color, and you can sometimes see those in an image, and sometimes checking Remove JPEG Artifact can minimize those. When I'm satisfied with the result I'll click OK and it takes me back out to the document window and applies the filter. And here in the document window I'll drag around to make sure that I've reduce the noise in all the areas about which I'm most concerned in this photo.
So that's how you can reduce both color and luminance noise using the Reduce Noise filter in the Expert Edit workspace.
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