Easy-to-follow video tutorials help you learn software, creative, and business skills.Become a member

Understanding how the Camera Raw Detail controls work

From: Photoshop CC for Photographers: Sharpening

Video: Understanding how the Camera Raw Detail controls work

The majority of the time when we work in Camera So now that we've seen how all of this works, one of the

Understanding how the Camera Raw Detail controls work

The majority of the time when we work in Camera Raw, what we're doing is applying what's called input sharpening. It's a sharpening that we apply early in our workflow in order to get the photograph to a good place. And often what we're doing in Camera Raw is we're working on our images in the basic panel as we saw in the previous movie, and then next, we're jumping over to the Details panel. To access that panel click on the third tab located right here, and here you'll notice that we have two different groups of controls.

First we have controls which allow us to add sharpening. Then we have a second group, or set of controls which allow us to reduce different types of noise. Down at the base of the dialog it gives us a warning message which says, for a more accurate preview, you need to zoom the image to 100% or larger when adjusting the controls in this panel. And that little warning is crazy important. It's so important because if we make an adjustment here, we can't even really tell what it's doing to the photograph. Rather, what we need to do, is to double-click the Zoom tool, which is a quick way to zoom in to 100%.

Here you can see our zoom rate is now 100%. Then press the Space Bar key, and click and drag to reposition the image so that we can actually evaluate how each of these sliders will affect the photograph. We need to get close to determine the appropriate amount of sharpening or noise reduction. Alright, well now that we've zoomed in, the warning message has disappeared and we can begin our work. And let's begin with sharpening. Here I want to just deconstruct how these sliders work. Rather than worrying about accomplishing great results, which we'll do later, let's really try to understand what each of these four controls do.

Well, here's the first one, it's Amount. It's pretty straightforward. Drag to the right, and it increases the intensity or the amount of the sharpening effect. Now, if you want a better preview, what you can do with all of these sliders is hold down the Option key if you're on a Mac, that's Alt on Windows, and then click on these sliders. Each will give you a different view. The Amount slider gives us a grayscale view, so that we can really just focus in on how this is changing the image in this view.

Sometimes this is a helpful perspective to try to find the sweet spot or just the right amount of sharpening. Again it's just a preview. It isn't changing the image. It's just giving insight into how the slider works. So Amount, think of as intensity and lets crank that all the way up, and let's do that for demo purposes. You know, often in Camera Raw or Photoshop if you exaggerate a slider you can teach yourself how it works. And that's what we're going to do here. Next we have Radius.

You'll notice that the Radius slider, it only goes from 0.5 up to 3. Why is that? Why have they limited it to such a low range. Well, they've limited it because typically you want a really low radius for lower resolution files. Maybe a little bit higher radius for higher resolution, or those files where you want a lot of edge definition, which we'll talk about later. To truly understand the slider though press Option on a Mac, Alt on Windows and then drag it to the left.

Here you can see the edges are pretty clean. As I drag it to the right it's almost like they're glowing and becoming more pronounced. And what Radius does is it, it, it radiates that sharpening effect out from the edge so, for certain effects you'll have higher radius' but most scenarios it actually will be pretty low. That's why the default setting is one. Alright what about Detail. Detail, drag to the left which you want to do for portraits and the small details aren't sharpened, drag to the right and you can bring out a lot of interesting texture.

Well now here at this setting you can see that the photograph isn't looking very good, but we can really start to see how the Detail slider is helping us to either protect, in this case the small details, or to apply the sharpening effect to that part of the photograph. Yet let's say that what we want to do is have a higher detail value but not sharpen everything. Well, that is where the Masking slider saves the day. And I mean that. Most images need a certain amount of masking, not all but most.

If you drag this to the right it's hard to even tell what's even going on. Yet, hold down Option on Mac, Alt on Windows and then drag to the right and all of the sudden you kind of have this interesting view of the image. What's going on here? Well, if you know a thing or two about masking in Photoshop, you may have heard someone say that in masking, black conceals and white reveals. In other words, the areas that are black will not be affected. They will not be sharpened. The areas that are white, will.

Let go of the Option or Alt key and that will take you back to the view of the image, and here you can see the sharping effect is primarily affecting the edges. So now that we've seen how all of this works, one of the things that we've started to see perhaps, is that how we work with these sliders and how we sharpen the image, whatever that is, sometimes what that can do is it can actually bring out some noise in the photograph. Well, that's one of the reasons why the sharpening and the noise sliders are grouped together.

Sharpening tends to exaggerate or bring out noise. Noise reduction tends to reduce noise obviously, but also soften the image. These two groups or sets of sliders work incredibly well together. So again, let's deconstruct how the next group works. Leave this image open, and we'll continue to talk about those sliders in the next movie.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Photoshop CC for Photographers: Sharpening
Photoshop CC for Photographers: Sharpening

67 video lessons · 4798 viewers

Chris Orwig
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 5m 59s
    1. Welcome
      1m 23s
    2. Raw sharpening in Lightroom or Camera Raw?
      3m 56s
    3. Using the exercise files
      40s
  2. 44m 15s
    1. Lighroom sharpening workflow first steps
      5m 35s
    2. Understanding how the Lightroom Detail controls work
      5m 36s
    3. Reducing luminance and color noise
      5m 47s
    4. Improving details in a portrait
      9m 13s
    5. Improving details in an outdoor photograph
      7m 12s
    6. Sharpening in order to emphasize small textures
      3m 49s
    7. Improving sky details and edge sharpening
      7m 3s
  3. 53m 3s
    1. Selective sharpening with the Adjustment Brush
      10m 19s
    2. Learning Adjustment Brush shortcuts
      4m 15s
    3. Reviewing Adjustment Brush techniques and shortcuts
      7m 36s
    4. Sharpening eyes in a portrait
      6m 44s
    5. Sharpening large areas with the Radial filter
      6m 50s
    6. Improving details with the Graduated filter
      7m 35s
    7. Creating custom presets
      6m 2s
    8. Sharing and installing presets
      3m 42s
  4. 40m 40s
    1. Camera Raw sharpening workflow: First steps
      3m 28s
    2. Understanding how the Camera Raw Detail controls work
      5m 46s
    3. Reducing luminance and color noise
      4m 40s
    4. Improving details in a portrait
      7m 28s
    5. Improving details in an outdoor photograph
      6m 6s
    6. Sharpening in order to emphasize small textures
      3m 48s
    7. Improving sky details and edge sharpening
      9m 24s
  5. 53m 40s
    1. Selective sharpening with the Adjustment Brush
      7m 16s
    2. Working with the Auto Mask option in the Adjustment Brush
      5m 6s
    3. Learning Adjustment Brush shortcuts
      8m 30s
    4. Reviewing Adjustment Brush techniques and shortcuts
      5m 45s
    5. Sharpening eyes in a portrait
      5m 15s
    6. Sharpening large areas with the Radial filter
      7m 4s
    7. Improving details with the Graduated filter
      4m 34s
    8. Further refinements with the Graduated filter
      4m 30s
    9. Creating custom presets
      5m 40s
  6. 49m 5s
    1. Resizing before you sharpen
      4m 37s
    2. Using Unsharp Mask
      8m 21s
    3. Using Smart Sharpen
      6m 5s
    4. Demonstrating how Smart Sharpen works
      4m 23s
    5. Fine-tuning Smart Sharpen with advanced controls
      5m 39s
    6. Applying blending modes to avoid color problems
      5m 9s
    7. Putting it all together: Workflow part one
      5m 57s
    8. Putting it all together: Workflow part two
      6m 42s
    9. A conversation about sharpening controls
      2m 12s
  7. 49m 34s
    1. Applying Camera Raw sharpening as a filter
      4m 41s
    2. Using smart filtering for increased flexibility
      5m 50s
    3. Smart filtering and masking
      4m 54s
    4. Selective sharpening with a hand-painted mask
      6m 0s
    5. Selective sharpening: Advanced shortcut tips
      6m 31s
    6. Using Quick Select and masking to sharpen selectively
      8m 20s
    7. How to sharpen a layered document
      3m 41s
    8. Fixing a blurry photograph with Shake Reduction
      4m 40s
    9. Shake Reduction: Advanced controls
      4m 57s
  8. 32m 47s
    1. High-pass sharpening essentials
      5m 55s
    2. Smart filter high-pass sharpening
      4m 2s
    3. Smart filter high-pass sharpening continued
      5m 50s
    4. Edge sharpening: Building an alpha channel
      4m 52s
    5. Edge sharpening: Creating the mask
      5m 3s
    6. Using Smart Sharpen in an unlikely way for midtone contrast
      7m 5s
  9. 10m 59s
    1. Recording a sharpening action
      6m 11s
    2. Playing the action for a single file
      2m 18s
    3. Batch sharpening multiple files
      2m 30s
  10. 28m 48s
    1. Sharpening and saving from Camera Raw
      6m 51s
    2. Sharpening and exporting from Camera Raw
      3m 44s
    3. Output sharpening from Lightroom
      5m 26s
    4. Final output sharpening from Photoshop for print
      7m 17s
    5. Photoshop sharpening for web, mobile, and displays
      5m 30s
  11. 31s
    1. Next steps
      31s

Start learning today

Get unlimited access to all courses for just $25/month.

Become a member
Sometimes @lynda teaches me how to use a program and sometimes Lynda.com changes my life forever. @JosefShutter
@lynda lynda.com is an absolute life saver when it comes to learning todays software. Definitely recommend it! #higherlearning @Michael_Caraway
@lynda The best thing online! Your database of courses is great! To the mark and very helpful. Thanks! @ru22more
Got to create something yesterday I never thought I could do. #thanks @lynda @Ngventurella
I really do love @lynda as a learning platform. Never stop learning and developing, it’s probably our greatest gift as a species! @soundslikedavid
@lynda just subscribed to lynda.com all I can say its brilliant join now trust me @ButchSamurai
@lynda is an awesome resource. The membership is priceless if you take advantage of it. @diabetic_techie
One of the best decision I made this year. Buy a 1yr subscription to @lynda @cybercaptive
guys lynda.com (@lynda) is the best. So far I’ve learned Java, principles of OO programming, and now learning about MS project @lucasmitchell
Signed back up to @lynda dot com. I’ve missed it!! Proper geeking out right now! #timetolearn #geek @JayGodbold
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.


Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ .

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

Join now Already a member? Log in

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.


Mark all as unwatched Cancel

Congratulations

You have completed Photoshop CC for Photographers: Sharpening.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


OK
Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member ?

Become a member to like this course.

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses.

Get started

Already a member?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferences from the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Learn more, save more. Upgrade today!

Get our Annual Premium Membership at our best savings yet.

Upgrade to our Annual Premium Membership today and get even more value from your lynda.com subscription:

“In a way, I feel like you are rooting for me. Like you are really invested in my experience, and want me to get as much out of these courses as possible this is the best place to start on your journey to learning new material.”— Nadine H.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.


Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

   
submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.