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Mintsauce's picture
1000 pencils

Genuine Fractals PrintPro 4.1 plugin

comparison image

Two weeks ago I downloaded a trial version of OnOne's Genuine Fractals PrintPro 4.1 plugin for Photoshop and tried it on a photo I needed to enlarge from 1024px x 768px to a cool 850mm x 637.5mm x 300dpi (that's 10039px x 7529px!!! or a 980% resample.)

I was rather (haha) impressed by the result. Having grown used to the grainy and blurry resampling in PhotoShop but desperately needing to enlarge a photo I could only get at such a low resolution I was amazed by the result. Obviously it isn't a perfect blow-up but it's miles from where I was an hour before.

It's not a fast process though. I run a G4 PowerBook 1.67 with 1.5G of RAM and resampling took me a cool 50 minutes of calculations and processing. Thanks to OSX's "Dynamic Memory Allocation" I could let this process run in the background and continue working in other apps. I did this on the second image and it took 90 minutes to finish the job.

Two weeks later and the banners (2000mm x 830mm) we had made with these images have come back from the printer. At relatively close inspection you couldn't really pick-up that the original image was 1024px x 768px.

What can I say, as soon as I have the cash, I'm bying the full version. In my book, it's definitely worth it.

The standard Genuine Fractals retails for $159.95 (It supports Grayscale and RGB resizing).
The Genuine Fractals PrintPro retails for $299.95 and supports CMYK scaling as well. There are many other features regarding workflow etc as well.

The Construct Agency
Building Creative Brands for People

Commenting on this Blog entry is closed.

j truitt's picture
33 pencils

i have been using GF for years...i only have need for it maybe once or twice a year, but it is a serioous life saver.

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www.truitt25.com
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Twist's picture
9 pencils

Just so others don't waste a bunch of time looking for a piece of software that doesn't exist the plug-in is Genuine Fractals Print Pro not Photo Pro ;)

Mintsauce's picture
1000 pencils

That was a big oops.

The Construct Agency
Building Creative Brands for People

Ivan's picture

I've modified the title. tx!

cbrophy78's picture
177 pencils

i never saw anything like this, and my at my company we have a lot of small images of interiors, that we did (insert explicitive). A lot of my time is cleaning up photos, enlarging them, and designing brochures and posters around the limitations of their sizes, and quaility, just looking to get the best so we never have a problem again. plus i wanted know if anyone used the bundled items together such as mask pro, intellihance, and photo frame pro. is it worth spending the extra 100 bucks to get the 4 of them together or just the geniune fractals.
What does this button d.... CRAP!

Chris Brophy
Iklectek Designs
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Mintsauce's picture
1000 pencils

I've uploaded larger images to:

http://lightbulb.co.za/gf/image1.jpg
http://lightbulb.co.za/gf/image2.jpg

It would give you a better idea of whether or not it's worth it. I've not tried any of the bundled products myself, so sorry, no help there.

The Construct Agency
Building Creative Brands for People

LadyFelis's picture
1 pencil

Have you tried it on your interior photos? I have the same problem at my real estate company. How small are the images you are trying to enlarge? Does anyone know if the image has to be a certain size to be able to use Fractuals (10MB)?

cbrophy78's picture
177 pencils

I got the bundle... and i was impressed with the quality of the photos, but after seeing what it did to really bad ones - a lot of JPG artifacts -the program blew up the problems. However, the intellehance 4 that comes with bundle is real nice. I havent experimented with mask pro, but it is like the exclude photoshop filter on steriods, and it comes with frames and such....

What does this button d.... CRAP!

Chris Brophy
Iklectek Designs
twitter

Apfhex's picture
324 pencils

I tried it on a photo of mine and compared it to Phototoshop's Bicubic resampling and IMO Bicubic looked almost identical (it was a little sharper). Does this plugin shine when resampling to MUCH larger sizes with the intention of printing at a high DPI? I imagine it works better of specific types of imagery too.

Mintsauce's picture
1000 pencils

I ran this on skin close up, and the difference was negligible. I think the outcome largely depends on the level of detail in the photo. {Correct me if I'm wrong} but as far as I know Photoshop's bicubic uses 16px x 16px squares to calculate resampling. In other words if you have 256sq'px of relatively high detail I think Photoshop might actually do a good job of it. With the GF using fractals they seem to be able to resample angles between the pixels as well, which ends up giving you a "seemingly" higher quality resample, as you'll see from the screen on top. GF claims that resizing is up to 800%, and then you'll get quality loss. Maybe J Truitt would like to share his experience, 'cause I've only discovered it now, and he's been using it for years.

The Construct Agency
Building Creative Brands for People

Twist's picture
9 pencils

I did some tests of my own and wrote up a review with some sample images on my site. I found that unless you are enlarging by about 800% or greater that you might as well stick with Photoshop's built-in resizing. For banner making this would be a great asset but if you just need to enlarge stuff slightly I don't see it being worth the price.

Twist's picture
9 pencils

DPI doesn't really matter here. If you have an image that is 300 pixels x 300 pixels you only have 90,000 pixels total in the image no matter if it is 72 DPI or 300 DPI or 3000 DPI. DPI affects the size and quality of a print but not the size and quality of a digital image. A digital image that is 3000x3000 pixels at 1 DPI is still a very high quality image it just won't print out very well. And of course it would be tough to find a printer capable of printing a 3000x3000 inch image ;)

I believe that this plug-in will work better on images with little detail than images with a high level of detail because in my tests it really loses fine detail at higher levels of enlargement.

Apfhex's picture
324 pencils

I meant that perhaps results would be better by looking at a high resolution print rather than the original pixel size on screen. But you're right, it makes perfect sense that it would work better on lower detail images (unfortunately most of time it's highly detailed images that I want to enlarge).

azeotropic's picture
1 pencil

Thank you Twist for the nice test comparison. However, I'm wondering about one potential issue. Not sure it's a problem, but throwing it out there for thought. What if, in your comparison, the image detail was lost in your initial size reduction. Detail can't be recovered once lost. The issue then becomes, how much detail is maintained during enlargement. The slight improvements you noted in GF vs bicubic might've been only slight because there wasn't that much detail to maintain after the initial reduction. In other words, what if we started with a highly detailed image and went up from there? Thoughts?

sifnt's picture
1 pencil

Just wanted to add that theres an alternative called "Alien Skin Blow Up" which has given me some very impressive results. At least to me they looked better than the quality offered by fractals but I guess that depends on the image.

Might be worth giving a shot :) (just google them)

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