HDR feature

For me, the main interest in HDR is the dynamic range I can’t get sometimes in photography.
I don’t want DXO waste time in developping HDR artistic functions like HDR after effect does :
My need like many photographer is very, very simple and essential. Like in Lighroom :

  • In Photolabs 4, I select all the raws I want to merge with only the deghosting level setting with preview in option
  • I get a new dng file with all the Dynamic range I want and I apply my settings like any other raws

that’s all

Have you tried the built-in, single-shot HDR preset in DPL already?


easyHDR3 costs about $30 and will do exactly what you want with the PhotoLab exports, in a very naturalistic way, very quickly and without much fuss or muss. I believe there’s a free demo. I compared many tools, including Photoshop, Affinity Photo, Aurora HDR and Nik HDR to discover that easyHDR does the best job with deghosting.

There’s an example full resolution photo with windmills on this old post of mine.

full size image at link above

Only easyHDR got this really right.

I’d rather DxO continued to focus on their main business of providing a high quality RAW development tool with good colour tools. HDR and panorama can easily be created in other tools from masters made in PhotoLab. I’m not sure about focus stacking as I haven’t been doing it. There’s probably some very nice dedicated tools for that kind of work. It seems to me the first step to effective photostacking is the same as with HDR and panorama: high quality finished masters to merge.


Yes I’ve tried the single shit HDR preset but It doesn’t respond to my need to have a high dynamic range raw. When the gap is to important between hightlights and shadows whatever the product you use, it’s impossible to recover range without different exposures merge and result are noisy.

I disagree. Raw merging is the basis of raw development tools and DXO is the only one not doing it. I hope DXO will meet the needs of professional photographers that use photo HDR merging (all professionals I know do HDR). The reason why Lighroom is so popular is because professionals don’t want to use 6 differents tools to do the job with a chaotic workflow and wasted time. Sorry Easy Hdr is just a poor amateur tool that can’t compete with a professional Lighroom / Photoshop or HDR After effect.

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That’s funny. I tested all of those applications on that windmill photo set and only easyHDR managed to do the deghosting properly. I guess high quality HDR is not really all that important to you in comparison to convenience.

Have you tried easyHDR?


I fully disagree to this. HDR for me has nothing to do with raw convertion.
As much as i like Affinity photo and On1 Photo Raw etc. the HDR inclusion here is just a bonus which i don`t use.

ive never heard that "professional photographers" all use hdr, i think it is more the oposit. Im just a hobby photographer but i belive a “professional photographer” will use professional dedicated HDR software.

I also must admit that you will get much better results with easyHDR than with any “pseudo integrated” hdr function. only when the name includes the word easy it does not mean that it is sh*t.

for hdr i mainly use Photomatix, easyHDR and HDRefex. i also own Skylum Aurora which is totally crap.

@ c091296133b09a2a3e8f - could you please post a link to your work, so we can imagine on which professional level we are talking here?


I can certainly get behind decent HDR, it would certainly be preferable to futzing with exporting/importing to/from yet another tool.

I think PL would benefit from an ability to do several related things:

  • HDR (as discussed above)
  • Exposure stacking - This is not the same as HDR, but a way to do the equivalent of neutral density filter long exposures using multiple individual exposures. This thread, https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/63547067, although in a forum for a particular camera is much broader and is applicable to any camera.
  • Focus stacking - As new cameras make this easier to do, it’s a tool that’s increasingly useful.

All three of these require several common steps (multiple image alignment and combining/blending images, etc.). Currently, it’s necessary to use other programs to do these tasks (e.g., Lightroom/Photoshop or competitors). Being able to stay in PL would be a great workflow improvement, as root.lifted notes.


I’d rather like to see 1= image stacking then 2= focus stacking over 3= HDR, there’s plenty of HDR software out there for free or cheap.
focus stacking is a bit of lot of work and so far specialized software does it best like Zerene stacker or Helicon software, you can try other but they are not perfect or won’t give you as good as those 2. of course those are my choices.
I use Zerene stacker and cannot achieve that result with AP or ON1.

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I don’t disagree with your priorities. I listed HDR first just because this thread is '‘HDR Feature’, but I agree with your assessment about HDR software.

One other item mentioned by uncoy earlier in this thread is panorama capability, which has some commonality with the other features. But again, there are plenty of available alternatives that work pretty well (incl. the free Microsoft ICE).

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This thread is a bit misleading. The titles is only about HDR, but focus stacking and pano are discussed as well.

I would love and need these blending abilities. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a pro or not. Really.

  1. Focus stacking (or bracketin) is really important in macro, but also in landscape photography. Suggesting to use other programs is not good at all, because this requires to create a TIFF file that you transfer from DxO to another program and vice versa. You then loose all the flexibility of DxO RAW processing. And processing the images before exporting them to another program is poor workaround. I want my focus stacking to be done before I do my exposure adjustments, conversion to B&W, so on and so forth.

  2. Same for panorama. I don’t want to break the RAW processing chain by exporting TIFF files.

  3. And same for HDR, I want to remain in my RAW workflow at all times.

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As I mentioned in a reply to your other thread on panoramas, as soon as you go beyond one image, you are no longer processing a RAW file but several bitmaps. Even Photoshop doesn’t perform these manipulations at a RAW level - it converts them to bitmap first.


I see some logic in your point about HDR but as far as panoramas go, it’s really pick the photo you like out of the panorama (probably one of the center ones but not necessarily), grade it, apply that grade to all the photos in the panorama, export and then stitch.

I’ve been shooting a lot more panoramas since I acquired an iPhone 11 Pro. The camera does all the hard work, including incorporating HDR in the panorama.

I can hardly imagine how much trouble it would be to create HDR panoramas of this quality by hand.

These are close to in-camera versions. I have used DxO PhotoLab (of course) to slightly improve tonality (general direction, higher contrast) and apply FilmPack’s Color Negative Film profile, Agfa Vista 200. I also removed some lens flare.

The originals are 16382 pixels across. For uploading, I’ve resized them to 6000px. To get rid of the phone sensor effect, it would be necessary to resize down to no more than 12000px. I’m not a printing expert so I don’t know how big a high quality print would be possible.

There is one very serious flaw in one of the panoramas. If I planned to more with that image, I’d have to do some very serious work, using another image.

I’m no fan of iPhone photography for RAW work and/or portrait, but for HDR panoramas it’s an extraordinary tool. Panoramas are taken with the main 26mm lens in vertical so the base model iPhone 11 or the new iPhone SE could take exactly the same shots.

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Can’t help but thinking of that thread after reading today’s DPReview test of PL4. This topic was mentioned several times throughout the review.

Straight at the beginning:

Key Takeaways:

  • No support for multi-shot imaging or Fujifilm X-Trans images

During the review:

So what’s missing when compared to Adobe Photoshop Lightroom? […] Multi-shot editing functions like panoramas, focus stacking, resolution enhancement or HDR are not supported.

In conclusion:

What we don’t:

  • No support for multi-shot imaging

DPReview is a fairly good website as regards photography reviews imho. Their point of view on this specific topic should be accounted for as well as ours.

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A foot forward in this direction would be to incorporate DNG support into the NIK Collection. I prefer to export RAW files to DNG via the “Export with optical corrections and NR only” export feature before performing the HDR merge rather than performing the merge directly on the RAW files. DXO’s excellent body/lens corrections and Deep Prime NR are not available for use on the already merged HDR RGB file.

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I think what we need here is a multi-shot support. For many users it’s not limited to HDR. It’s about HDR, yes, but panorama and focus stacking as well. All these features are basically based on the same requirement: merging multiple shots and this can’t be solved only by incorporating DNG to Nik Collection.


I would be nice to have a tool where we could merge some photos to an HDR Image.
Please add it with an future upgrade.


Hi Lonstar - - Check out the HDR Efex Pro tool, in the DxO Nik Collection
… that will be a lot quicker than waiting for it to be a feature of PL.

Regards, John M

PS. Also, see here.


Or check out easyHDR3. It works great with jpegs or TIFFs prepared in PhotoLab. I tested easyHDR against Aurora 2019, Photoshop CS6, Nik HDR and Affinity Photo for you last year (sample image at the link). It’s the only HDR tool who could handle the deghosting of windmills well.