Using Nik plugins with Lightroom and Photoshop

paddler4paddler4 Major grinsPosts: 976Registered Users Major grins
edited May 28, 2013 in Finishing School
I've just started playing with the Nik plugins, and I am still a bit uncertain about the details of using them with LR and Photoshop. Here is what I have come to so far. I'd appreciate any corrections from folks who know the plugins better.

1. Ironically, PS seems to offer a non-destructive way to use these plugins, and LR doesn't. When I used a Nik plugin in LR and saved the results, I ended up with a TIF that had the Nik edits baked in. In contrast, if you open the image as a smart object in PS, each Nik plugin shows up as a smart filter in that layer, and you can return to the filter and change it at any time.

2. PS seems to make it much tidier to use multiple plug-ins. In PS, it seems easy to use different Nik plugins to add additional smart filters to a single smart object layer. I tried this with Viveza and Color Efex, and it seemed to work fine. In contrast, the only way I found to use multiple plugins with LR was to chain them. I would call up one plug-in, save the Nik edits, then call up the resulting TIF file to add edits from a second Nik plug-in, etc.


Am I missing something?

thanks

Comments

  • basfltbasflt Major grins Posts: 1,882Registered Users Major grins
    edited May 27, 2013
    that happens only when you edit the RAW
    after the first edit , it is saved as TIFF ( default )
    now when you want to use the plugin ( or other plugin ) , you are asked if you want to edit original , a copy , or a copy with LR-adjustments
    if you choose that last option , the new copy holds your previous adjustments
    you can repeat this for the next plugin

    in PS you can delete the layers / in LR you can delete individual TIFFs from the stack

    both methods are non-destructive although it works a bit different

    PS
    when you right-click in LR :> edit in : you can choose to open in PS as a smart object
    when saving in PS ( not save as , but just save ) it will add to the LR-stack
  • arodneyarodney Major grins Posts: 2,005Registered Users Major grins
    edited May 27, 2013
    Both are equally 'destructive' since as you've observed, LR has to render a TIFF to apply the 'filter' just as one would have to do in Photoshop (albeit on a layer). The usefulness of such a plug-in within LR are for people who don't own Photoshop. If you own both, there's no advantage and maybe a disadvantage in terms of workflow to use the product in Lightroom. Do all the parametric editing there, render out to Photoshop then use the plug-in there on a layer.

    NO third party plug-in's have access to the Adobe Camera Raw engine. They always have to ask LR to render a TIFF or some pixel data to begin working on that data.
    Andrew Rodney
    Author "Color Management for Photographers"
    http://www.digitaldog.net/
  • basfltbasflt Major grins Posts: 1,882Registered Users Major grins
    edited May 27, 2013
    +1 on that
    i never use plugins like that
    they render the image different then LR or PS
  • paddler4paddler4 Major grins Posts: 976Registered Users Major grins
    edited May 27, 2013
    Andrew,

    Thanks. I realized that no plugins can access the ACR engine and that in that sense, all of this is destructive. What I meant was to compare these two scenarios:

    1. LR: Use Nik plugin #1. Save. Edit resulting TIF to apply plugni #2. Now, decide that with plugin 2 as well, plugin 1 was applied in a not optimal way. If I am right, you have to go back to the raw, edit it in plugin 1 again, save the TIF again, and then edit that TIF with plug in 2, hoping you replicate what you did with plug-in 1.

    2. PS: Open the file with LR edits as a smart object in PS. Apply plugin 1 as a smart filter. then apply plugin2. If you decide to change what you did in plugin 1, it's still modifiable--as long as you have kept the layer as a smart object. In this sense, it seems non-destructive: none of the plugin 1 edits are yet baked in.

    Right?

    Dan
  • arodneyarodney Major grins Posts: 2,005Registered Users Major grins
    edited May 27, 2013
    paddler4 wrote: »
    as long as you have kept the layer as a smart object. In this sense, it seems non-destructive: none of the plugin 1 edits are yet baked in.
    Right?

    Right. Now just be sure you are fine sticking with an Adobe proprietary processing and all is fine <g>. If you decide to move to CC, work with Smart Objects, any new functionality can't be accessed if you go back a version or decide you're done with Adobe software. You are also working with much larger documents. But this is the more flexible editing workflow.
    Andrew Rodney
    Author "Color Management for Photographers"
    http://www.digitaldog.net/
  • divamumdivamum Major grins Posts: 9,021Registered Users Major grins
    edited May 27, 2013
    I went ahead and bought this, mainly for Silver Efex.

    However, I now have a weird problem, which I didn't have wtih the trial version: I'm ok using Silver Efex (which was the last setup I had in LR external editing dialog before the trial ran out), but I'd like to use the other products. But I can't find them to point LR to them to use! I've looked in every folder I can think of, but nada; even in the Google/Nik Collection folders, there's no exe to use. Yet Sliver Efex runs just fine...

    Totally confused. Any ideas?

    Windoze 7, LR4.
  • divamumdivamum Major grins Posts: 9,021Registered Users Major grins
    edited May 27, 2013
    Screenshot showing what I mean. And yes, I reinstalled the full version after the trial ran out. ne_nau.gif I've done a disk search for the programs and this is the only place they seem to turn up. I have "show hidden and system files" selected, so I'm baffled (especially since the one program DOES work).

    Any thoughts?
  • basfltbasflt Major grins Posts: 1,882Registered Users Major grins
    edited May 28, 2013
  • divamumdivamum Major grins Posts: 9,021Registered Users Major grins
    edited May 28, 2013
    Thanks! thumb.gif Looks like I have some un- and re-installing to do..............
  • HathingtheHathingthe UkrainePosts: 19Registered Users Big grins

    I heard about Aurora HDR (https://aurorahdr.com) as an alternative to Nik's Efex Pro (https://google.com/nikcollection/products/hdr-efex-pro/). Does anybody know if it's "destructive" too if used as LR Plugin?

    @basflt, you've got a fancy signature. How it's possible to turn letters upside down? :o

  • denisegoldbergdenisegoldberg Major grins North Andover, MAPosts: 12,351Super Moderators moderator

    @Hathingthe said:
    ...How it's possible to turn letters upside down?

    Try this site - http://www.upsidedowntext.com/. It generates code you can use to place upside down text in HTML.

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