Five versions of Kunsthall Oslo

My friend said that he always used Photomatix Pro for his HDR-photos, so I decided to try it out. Normally I use Photoshop for all my image editing and occasionally Adobe Lightroom. I decided to make 4 different versions of the same 3 bracketed photos and post one of the original photos, so that you (and I) can compare. 

I’m new to Photomarix Pro, so the result probably looks different from it would if I were familiar with the software. First the original photo and at the end there’s a gallery for easy maneuvering:

Original photo. I've only done some small adjustments to the raw file.

Original photo. I’ve only done some small adjustments to the raw file.

HDR made with Photoshop.

HDR made with Photoshop.

HDR made with Photoshop, plus adjustments on mid-tones and vibrance in Lightroom.

HDR made with Photoshop, plus adjustments on mid-tones and vibrance in Lightroom.

HDR made with Photomatrix.

HDR made with Photomatix.

HDR made with Photomatrix, plus adjustments on mid-tones and vibrance in Lightroom.

HDR made with Photomatix, plus adjustments on mid-tones and vibrance in Lightroom.


Which version do you prefer, why and what software is your first choice when processing images?


14 thoughts on “Five versions of Kunsthall Oslo

  1. This is a tough one, CG. Your original photo is great as it is :D, and I love all the others as well…. I don’t use PS, just lightroom and I have never heard of Photomatix… Which one is your favourite?

    • My favorite software or photo? My favorite software is Photoshop, but Lightroom is very good for organizing and tagging photos. There’s also a couple of other features that I like to play with in Lightroom.
      These two combined make up an unbeatable team and that’s why my favorite photo from these edited versions, is the one were I’ve combined the two.

  2. I like the Photoshop and Photoshop with Lightroom because the editing is sharper without losing the details. The other software appears to almost wipe out the clouds. I love clouds. I just starting using Photoshop, so I have a lot to learn.


    • Thanks Francine, I appreciate your well reasoned opinion. I’ve been using Photoshop for many years and I still have a lot to learn. There’s always some new trricks to pick up.

  3. I love working with Photomarix Pro, although I don’t shot many images for HDR purposes. It does have its place and you can use it on a single image you’ve already have taken. However, there’s mixed success vs using a tripod and taking 3-5 varying exposure setting of your subject matter.

    • I didn’t know that you can use Photomatix on a single image, but I will try this later. You can do the same thing with Photoshop, but I never use it, just tried it once or twice.

      You don’t always need a tripod to shoot bracketed exposures. The shots you see here is from 3 exposures which are all shot handheld, because I was to lazy to set up the tripod. It helps that the exposures are short, which reduces the risk of camera shake.
      I tried to pull the same trick, on the same day, just a few minutes later, but in a darker alleyway that demanded longer exposures and it failed.

  4. I like the one with photoshop plus some adjustments! The color is more vibrant and the reflection just pops. I’m a newbie to photo editing so I just use Photoshop Elements. When I get the moolah, I’ll invest in something more substantial 🙂

    • hands down, the photoshop version with the adjustments. pops out more and creates more dimension within the structure. a great comparison using different photo editing tools.

  5. Such a fine line to tread when everyone sees colour differently! I think it really comes down to what we as editor/photographer/artist want as a final result – that which most closely approximates the vision that we had in our heads of the thing in front of the camera and perhaps not so much an exact replication of reality… or not. Sometimes the technically better picture in terms of light, colour and sharpness is not really what strikes us on a deeper emotional level and sometimes a picture is just a picture – depends what you are going for…. I use those nifty iphone apps, photoshop, lightroom, iPhoto and whatever else is at hand depending on how much time I have and what I want to achieve, other times the first shot is golden as is – must say I do like #3 because it resonates cold, clear, crisp oslo.

  6. I like the original as well as the second HDR version… It’s been over a year I got into photography but for the life of me, I can’t get the hang of editing softwares. Any suggestions?

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