Digital Image Noise Filter Software
I like taking digital pictures and spend a lot of time trying to
correct image problems in the computer. I often use noise
filtering software to make my pictures look better. I recently
saw a posting on an on-line forum asking about noise filtering
software. This person used Noise Ninja, and I have used two other
programs, so I asked him to send me his original and the Noise Ninja
version. I filtered the original using Helicon and Neat Image and
present the results below.
I used the following software packages:
- Neat Image 2.1 from http://www.neatimage.com.
The free version does the noise filtering but is cumbersome to use
because it only works on one file at a time.
- Helicon Noise Filter from http://www.helicon.com.ua has a
similar free version to Neat Image. The free version produces
complete images but is cumbersome to use.
- Noise Ninja goes a step further with the free version
by water marking the image. This makes the free version
unsuitable for all but evaluation use.
The following is a 320 x 200 pixel crop from the image processed by
each of the three programs:
|The original image is from a Minolta A1 at 400
ISO. The noise is especially evident on the dark jacket.
|Noise Ninja looks like the least amount of
filtering. The jacket is much clearer though there is still some
|Helicon does both filtering and sharpening.
I used the default amounts of each to produce this image. The
image is notably cleaner than the Noise Ninja version.
|Neat images seems to do the most filtering.
However, it seems to go way overboard on this image. The full
picture looks almost surreal - more like a painting than a photo.
I only used the default settings in the software. There are many
ways to tweak all these programs to produce different results.
Helicon seems to be fairly simple, offering only an amount of filtering
and sharpening. Neat Image offers far more options, from loading
a pre-made camera profile to measusiring the actual noise level within
Ultimately, the decision on which software to use is subjective, but it
seems that all three do reduce noise and can be used to improve