In a world of colour, OnOne Software have produced a plug in application to get the best, most balanced results from your work.
OnOne PhotoTune 2 System requirements
Mac OS X
- Mac OS X 10.4.8 or higher
- Universal Binary - Supports PowerPC & Intel Processors
- Windows XP SP2, Vista or higher
- Photoshop CS2 (9.0.2) or CS3
- Photoshop Elements 4 or higher
- 512 MB RAM
- 150 MB disk space
- Adobe Flash Player 9
- Internet connection for update checking & tutorials
OnOne PhotoTune 2 Installation
Installing the program first pops up on a small, attractive window asking you what you wish to install on the computer.
The whole process is straightforward, clearing the License details and registering, although when I applied to register online, the connection failed.
Once the system has installed onto the computer, a Read Me file and short video tutorial can be opened or the entire installation closed down and Photoshop restarted to show Phototune in the OnOne filters tab.
OnOne PhotoTune 2 In use
Phototune is a cast correction tool for any type of photograph, but it comes with two separate features for Skin and Colour. This is especially useful for if you're a wedding or portrait photographer as the skin is the most important colour to get right.
Launching the program will automatically pop up a tutorial window with some basics to get you started if you've never used it before. This can be disabled by unticking the box in the bottom left corner.
A wide, squat window will load with your original image to the left and the modified image to the right. The program tells you to just follow the on screen instructions and in six steps, the photograph will be the colour you want it to be. To the bottom right is a zoom tool with a simple slider. The six steps are indicated with light up numbers in the bottom left and a button to enter the fine tuning panel sat next to them. Entering into this area allows you to make fine adjustments to the colours by adjusting individual hues such as Cyan, Magenta and Yellow along with Brightness, Contrast and Saturation.
Now, the weird bit about the program is that if you go into the Fine tune panel, it effectively cancels your "six easy steps" and everything is done in that one box. This isn't explained and when I first went into the panel, I clicked Cancel to go back to the easy steps and the application ended taking me back to Photoshop.
Another oddity is the absence of a Back button so if you make the wrong decision at any time, this means you have to exit the application and start all over again or wait until you get to the end, click reset and start from the beginning. This is a recurring problem throughout the program. It seems that OnOne haven't left any room for error in this tool, which is a shame.
The original image, taken with a bright yellow cast to test the program.
The same image with the correct white balance setting.
The adjusted image using the fine tune system. The parameters work on a slider, but a little "one step click" button wouldn't go amiss.
The image converted using the quick steps. After the quick steps have finished, the fine tune will come up allowing for more precise modification.
Skintune is specifically designed for portrait shooting as it aims at correcting skin tones. Launching this system will bring up a similar quick guide that the Colourtune brings up which can also be disabled if need be.
The picture will load into the left side staying uniform with Colourtune and the blank right panel will give the instructions needed to continue which is to click on a medium skin tone. Once clicked, a box will appear asking to determine the skin type. The corrected image will then show on the right. OnOne say this should be the correct image and not need any more manipulation, but if you do, then a bar at the bottom will give warmer or cooler skin with 31 separate levels. The skin tone can always be altered if the incorrect one is originally entered as well as Brightness, Contrast and Saturation as well as the option to change the colour and Highlight/Shadow areas.
I found that the Saturation is generally defaulted to a higher than average setting and if the image was too off colour, just bringing the saturation in line with Brightness and Contrast solves the issue.
The balanced image using the White balance setting in camera.
The same shot but with the white balance severely distorted to test the program.
The adjusted image looks more balanced than the result from the camera. I can also add a bit of contrast, saturation and boost the highlight/shadow areas if I want.
OneOne PhotoTune 2 Verdict
Whilst their are a few bugs in the system that can be fixed easily enough, they are still annoying. I don't like the fact I can't go back a step if I go wrong. I also don't like it taking me right out of the system if I press cancel to an action in the Fine tune panel.
A portrait or wedding photographer will find this handy and at £80, it won't break the bank. If you just like to mess about, you can get the same results in Photoshop or PSP, but it'll take longer. You just have to decide if that's a good thing or not.
One thing I like about OnOne is the customer care. Tutorials and Help are available in the program and on the website along with professionals sharing information and a forum.
OnOne PhotoTune 2 Plus points
Takes the pain out of colour balancing
Easy to use
User can take control if need be
OneOne PhotoTune 2 Minus points
No back button
Pressing cancel actually exits the program
Default settings are a lttle too high
OnOne PhotoTune 2 costs around £129 and is available from Warehouse Express:
OnOne PhotoTune 2.