Best exposure for Topaz S2

I understand that Topaz S2 is not a raw processor.
My normal process currently is to export from Lightroom.
Which has got me thinking.

Is it better to send a lighter, or darker version to S2?

As S2 does not have any noticable highlight retrieval, I’ve mostly been sending a slightly ‘underexposed’ sort of version. Just drop the Exposure or Brightness a few points.

Wondering what is going to give me the best balance of sharpness, noise reduction and detail.
Any ideas appreciated.


I would do all your processing in Lightroom sending a version with shadows and highlights properly balanced and recovered. Make sure it is sent as an uncompressed TIF with ProPhotoRGB as the ICC Profile.

Hi Don, thanks for the quick response.
That is pretty much my workflow presently. The masking features of S2 are a sweet thing, and I was pondering how much shadow, highlight recovery there might be, if a ‘sweet spot’ file was used.

What does seem fixed is the very small amount of highlight recovery I can do in S2 either from an nef or tiff file.

The majority of my current work is wildlife, birds inflight in particular.
Like the Stabilise in Ai Sharpen, its rescued me a couple of time.
All good.

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Hi, I just purchased the AI Sharpen for use in bird images along with Denoise, any tips you could put forward on how,when,what order you would use them. Many Thanks, Russ.

Hi, my preference would be to use DeNoise first, if needed after Lightroom, then AI Sharpen as the last.


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