On1 Photo RAW 2019 released, with focus stacking

With the headlining feature out of the way, let me just mention that immediately after its release, I already reviewed the new software as part of my massive 23 RAW converters’ review. My executive summary thus far would be that it’s a decent option, but takes a fair amount of disk space and memory.

On1 now supports HEIC files and has a Lightroom import that it claims to be powered by artificial intelligence. The examples offered in the following demo video are fairly basic in my opinion, and do not show whether changes other than white balance and exposure would actually be transferred.

There’s another unconvincing example here:

The software itself probably isn’t bad, but I personally dislike when companies make claims that are more than they can deliver, and I’m unlikely to give such a company my money. At least they’re one of the companies that give a 30 day trial, and they provide plenty of teaching/marketing material through YouTube. Their introductory offer included additional teaching material, and some forum dwellers are already chafing at the notion of having to learn yet another different interface, teaching material be damned, so selling this as a bonus is probably over the top as well. On the other hand, I do like things to be consistently priced so I can be sure there’s no benefit to delaying my purchase. And let’s not forget, On1 have taken a pretty clear stance against the subscription model. Were they ever to change this, it would be hard to take them seriously. But if the teaching material is worth having or even necessary to properly get started with the software, as is almost implied by the marketing blurb, then perhaps it should be included by default rather than as an occasional add-on.

And I say that while fully understanding that some sort of incentive should be provided to early adopters as they may be hit with bugs that escaped testing. Stability issues with the 2019 version have been reported that posters claimed did not exist with 2018.5.

The other improvements include a GUI overhaul, a “non-destructive workflow for layers”, which simply means you can continue to treat your RAW file as a RAW file even though you’ve applied layers to it (not being able to do this was previously sort of a bug in the software). Then there were improvements made to local adjustments and portrait editing, again shown in videos.


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