Photolab and Topaz Plugins workflow and quirks

Hello, I had some questions about the workflow of Photolab 3 and topaz plugins together. I was wondering if anyone had experience with this, as I’ve noticed a few quirks. So what I normally do for example is develop my raw files in photolab, then use the export to application option to export a 16bit .tif to, for instance, topaz sharpen ai. The tif exports and then opens up in topaz sharpen ai. I make my edits and click apply and am sent back to photolab. Finally, I go to export the edited tif to a jpg for consumption.

At this point I have kind of a mess of files. DXO creates the tif to export to application but doesn’t allow me to remove the dxo suffix when exporting to application, so I have a file_DxO.tif. When I make my edits in topaz and return to dxo another tif is created (instead of replacing the first one) so now I also have a file_DxO-TMP.tif. So this “tmp” tif is the one I need to export to jpg that has my edits. Afterwards I’m left with a _dxo.tif that is only 8 bytes in size and for some reason doesn’t get removed as well as a _DxO-tmp.tif and its dop file. So in the end I need to go and remove these 8byte blank tif files and then rename my exported jpg because it has had both DxO and TMP appended to its filename. All of this really slows down the workflow, especially if I’m trying to work in batches.

So I guess my question really is, is this how it’s supposed to work or am I missing something. Is there some way to keep Photolab or Topaz from creating a blank 8byte tif file or to have them automatically update the initial exported tif instead of creating another? Also is there some way to keep dxo from appending _DxO to files that are exported to application? (I don’t see that option, unlike export to disk). Sorry for the wall of text and thanks for any input.


Many years ago, I published some information about how Topaz Labs plugins had to be launched from an host application. At the beginning there was the “Fusion” thing that worked as a hub and was itself calling the requested plugin. Launching the plugin .exe directly from the host application didn’t work. Why ? Because an additional parameter was needed on the command line : a “-i” parameter had to be inserted between the executable name and the filename. This was probably a trick to inform the plugin that it was launched from the Fusion hub and not directly.

I don’t know how things are working nowadays with the new generation of Topaz Labs plugins. However, I made a test from DPL3. I sent an image to Topaz Adjust AI (I don’t have Topaz Sharpen AI) as a 16-bit TIFF file which was named xxxxxx_DxO. I did some edits, clicked on Apply and I was back to DPL with that very same xxxxxx_DxO TIFF that had the edits applied in Topaz Adjust AI. No tmp file in the middle and the TIFF file was still 16-bit.

Hmm, I wonder why I’m getting a tmp file then. Nothing else is accessing that file as far as I’m aware.
Even if I get the tmp file situation cleared up though I still would have to manually rename my files. I’m hoping there’s a way to stop appending dxo to the filename and just keep the original name. It might not seem like a big deal to some but when you are working with a lot of files it can become tedious. I’m aware of batch renaming programs but the thought of further adding to and complicating my workflow isn’t very appealing.

I considered simply exporting a tif and then opening topaz sharpen ai standalone and exporting my jpeg straight from topaz to avoid having to rename my files but unfortunately it seems that topaz discards some metadata that is important to me (specifically gps coordinates) so I can’t go that route.

It is possible to change or remove the _DxO suffix when exporting but not when exporting to an application. It’s by design but I’m wondering why. If you want this option back in “Export to an application”, you’ll have to submit a request (other users also have requested this recently).

Thank you for confirming that. I’ll submit a request and hopefully that’s something they can change relatively soon. It seems like it would be relatively simple to implement.

You should try with another Topaz plugin. Maybe the problem is specific to Sharpen AI.

@treben I export a file to Topaz AI Sharpen and the tif file I get back is named _DXO-TMP. Is this the same for you?

Topaz is the only application this happens with???


Yes, I reported this to topaz because ultimately after some tests it appeared to be an issue on their end. I received word back from their developers that they are working on a fix and it should be implemented soon.

@treben Just to clarify. I am getting the 8 byte blank file, and 2 tif files one correctly named and one with -TMP added. Weird.