Some comments and questions on Sharpen AI Masking

Hi. Not sure of the correct format for these things as I am new Topaz products in general. I have been going through the Masking feature of Sharpen AI and have the following comments. I always use the product with Auto Update off.

  1. Is there any documentation to describe what the controls do ?
    • I think I understand Radius.
    • Softness – Adds a circle outside Radius – presumably to taper off the amount of sharpening performed. This is replaced by Threshold if Edge Aware is active
    • Edge Aware has a tooltip that describes its use and that of threshold but the slider for Threshold seems to allow too much movement towards the Radius and not enough to increase the gap.
    If my interpretation of the Threshold tooltip is correct you need to mask with the edge of the subject in the area between the inner and outer circles and the inner circle over the color of the subject. You would need a very steady hand to do this with a small threshold.
    • Opacity – seems to just affect the intensity of the mask color overlaid on the picture .
    i. Is there any effect on the result ?
    ii. Also just affects the masking performed after the opacity change. I could see its use if it affected all masking applied.
    iii. You can see its effect on the mask thumbnail
    iv. Mask color intensity seems to be increased by the number of passes you make over an area. Does this affect the result ?
    v. Seems to have no effect on mask color intensity when EdgeAware is active
    • Show and Hide buttons appear to be a way to change the mask operation from add area to mask (Show) to remove area from mask (Hide) These are extremely poor names and it took me a long time to understand what this did.
  2. If for example you have a picture of a bird to sharpen it seems that the first thing you need to do is to get the outline of the mask defined using edge aware and then you need a simple way to fill in the area inside the mask boundary. Having to color in the whole of the rest of the area is somewhat tedious. I understand that if there is not a joined up area this can’t work but usually this will be the case. I thought that Fill might do this but all that does is mask the whole picture.
    • If I use Edge Aware to mask the outline of the bird, should I then disable Edge Aware to fill in the body ?
  3. Using the mouse wheel to increase or decrease the size of the mask radius would be a big improvement
  4. The radius slider is WAY too sensitive on the lower end. Impossible to use to make a small circle.
  5. Sometimes moving the preview area white rectangle outline slightly results in a black mask screen
  6. Sometimes a previous mask slider is left displayed after the mouse is moved to another (see attach)
  7. I see no reason for there to be just 4 choices for the zoom, 50 – 400
  8. I don’t really see why we need Fill as a mask option as it just masks 100% of the image. Invert on an unmasked image would have the same effect( which it does as long as you have used Fill first). This doesn’t work on a newly loaded image.
  9. The mask thumbnail shows up as all white (all masked) when first starting a mask operation. All black would be more logical.
  10. I don’t see any difference in operation between the Delete in Mask Options and the Cancel Mask button in the main panel
  11. When the Zoom dropdown is displayed 50% is always highlighted as that is where the cursor is. Should indicate the current selection somehow especially as the dropdown obscures the zoom box text. Several times I thought nothing had happened as I reselected the current zoom amount!

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Slider|850x371 .

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