Topaz has a new toy: Detail

Richard Charpentier Notes from Rich, Photography, Photoshop, Tech Reviews 2 Comments

Yesterday I received an e-mail offer from the makers of Topaz.  A new filter is available.  Detail.

So, without trying it at all I decided to jump on the new offer code.  Popped over to the Topaz site and downloaded “Detail.”  Why grab it up without a demo?  Pretty simple.  I’ve been wowed by the Topaz suite, and at this point I trust the company as a business that provides photographers with some pretty amazing plugins.

Today I decided to toy with Detail.  I’ve not fully delved into all the possibilities with it, but at the outset it seems to be another good filter plugin from Topaz.  Not a shocker there!

Below are a couple of shots from Lake Powell, check the captions on each in order to know what’s going on.


An original 0EV shot from Lake Powell

2 minutes worth of toying with Topaz Detail

Two minutes of toying with Topaz Detail. I like the enhancements!


3 exposure HDR from Lake Powell. Yes, I took 3 shots 0, -2, +2 EV from a boat!

We all know I like HDRs, and other such fun photographic manipulations.  I am however, not a fan of the haloing you find in some HDRs.  As a matter of fact, I’m working on several presets in Photomatix of my own making for certain shooting styles.  Hopefully I’ll get to a point where I can get the enhancements I like while creating a more realistic HDR.

What I’m finding with the Topaz Suite, and now with Detail as well, is that I might be able to get the detail that I want out of images and not have to fight with haloing.  Maybe single shots can get me to where I want to be.  Only time and work will tell.

The middle shot above was a quick test with Detail.  While I like what it’s bought me in the foreground and rocks, more work would need to occur in the sky.  Love the effects you can get in clouds with HDR.  I’ve got a feeling with some fine tuning I might get some interesting effects out of Detail as well!

This afternoon I decided to take a bike ride along the Peavine Trail.  You know, get out, smell the flowers, take a few photos, almost get run over by a cow…..that type of stuff.  Oh, and yes, a cow was hiding behind some brush along the trail’s edge and we gave each other a scare.  No, not a single photo of the cow……

On the ride I took a few photos with “Detail” in mind.  Below are two sets.  Original and then modifications with Detail.  Each alteration took less than 5 minutes.  I have a lot more experimentation ahead of me.


My mountain bike at rest along the Peavine Trail


The same image after Detail. I decided to try out the "Blue Sky" setting and then modify the detail level as well. That blue sky could hurt someone!


A tree along the Peavine Trail.


Created my own setting with Detail. Pushed the medium details, played with color sliders, and bumped saturation ever so slightly.

Since this isn’t a tutorial post, I’m not going to get into all the nooks and crannies of settings today.  I literally got Topaz Detail yesterday after receiving e-mail from Topaz with a good discount.  I’m not one to pass up a good price on a new utility from a company like Topaz.

So far, I’m thinking Detail has some potential.  It’s a pretty “slow” plugin on my old Macbook Pro, so when I select it I step away for a few moments and putter around the Airstream.  It’s much faster on my IMac at the gallery.  Clearly the Macbook Pro will need a replacement in the next year (when it’s 4 years old).

At this point I won’t recommend Detail as I haven’t used it too much.  What I can tell you is that I highly recommend the Suite of plugins offered by Topaz.  Detail is now part of that suite.  $149 for Adjust, DeNoise, Simplify (really cool for portraits), Detail, Clean, and DeJpeg.  I haven’t tried DeJpeg yet….have to go reading again!

Adjust, Denoise, and Simplify justify the price of the suite without anything else added.  They’re extremely useful tools.  The rest of the plugins are bonuses in my opinion.  So, check out their trials and see for yourself.

I will do a tutorial on Detail within the next few weeks, and I’ll tell you my full impression then.  Initial reaction…..I think Topaz has offered another cool toy for me to play with!


As a side note, I have to say something about the tree photo in today’s post.  For 2 years I’ve been trying to get an interesting photo of that tree.  Recently Josh G and I talked about the tree.  It’s plaguing him too.  As you make your way up the Peavine the tree cries out, “I’d make a really great image, don’t you think?”  Of course, we’ve both believed that the tree would make a stunning image.  However, in my case I have failed to make a stunning image of that tree.  It taunts me, and makes me feel photographically inept.  It’s a very cruel tree to be sure.

So, to anyone reading this who lives in the area…..Josh and I have failed to capture the oh so cool image we know is there.  I’m figuring somebody else should give it a whirl…….just to see if someone can get what we’ve failed to so far!  🙂

Comments 2

  1. On the strength of your recommendation, I picked up a copy of Topaz Detail last night and played around for a couple of hours. Nice results for a real Photoshop novice like me. Thanks! So many fun things to do… so little time…

  2. Post

    Glad you like it Craig! After using it for a while now I have one big wish……that it isn’t such a slow plugin. Wow, it does take some time. I like the results and it has a lot of potential, but it is super slow. I’ll look forward to the upgraded version of it in the near future! 🙂

Leave a Reply