WYSIWYG... not

i’ve been using PL for a good while now and overall am very happy i switched from LR

am finally getting used to highlight recovery (though it’s so much quicker and simpler in LR) but one thing i struggle with is the fact that when a RAW image is fitted to screen, it doesn’t display at full resolution (it’s blurred and not sharp)

if i display at 100%, then full resolution is revealed, but it’s not easy to understand how the image looks overall at this scale

if i export to jpeg/tiff that image looks as expected, even when fitted to screen

is this something that is only an issue with the RAWs i use (Olympus/OMSystem .ORF files)?

is it fixed in PL7 (i’m currently on 6)?

am i missing something or doing something wrong?

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You’re doing nothing wrong. PL7 works the same exact way, and PL8 will behave the same exact way too.

It’s the same topic we were talking about here:

In short: we have been asking DXO to rewrite and improve the viewer for FOUR years, as it’s clearly unacceptable and misleading at zoom levels below 75%.

And yet, DXO chooses to ignore this simple request.

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That is a presumption not a fact. They might not be ignoring it, it could be that it is a very complex task.

Lest that sounds like I’m a blind DxO fan boy, let me offer an alternative speculative explanation. Fixing this failing, and it is a failing, is not going to be something that DxO can laud as a stunning new feature, i.e. fixing this severe limitation is not going make new customers part with their cash. That means tackling it will always get a lower priority than working on stuff that can be trumpeted as the next best thing since sliced bread when a version of PL is released.

If it’s so complex, then why have all other RAW editors been managing to do it correctly for the past 10 years?

PL is the only one with such a glaring limitation that sometimes makes the program un-useable. And in 2024 it’s unexcusable.

I perfectly understand your second explanation, though: they favour new features that nobody cares for, to actually making what’s already there work as intended.


Just curious which features you put in that category.


All the Viewpoint related stuff, for example. No normal photographer needs such extreme geometric corrections, unless doing architectural work.

For sure, ANY feature is less important than having a viewer that actually shows accurately the rendering of the RAW file, since this is meant to be a RAW developer and not a photographic editor/retouching tool.

If the viewer is broken/inaccurate, then all the rest takes second place. A RAW editor MUST show the final result accurately in the editor, first and foremost.

Lightroom does that. Capture One does that. Even the humble Nikon NX does that (has been doing it for ages). Mustn’t be that hard.

It probably shouldn’t be but consider this…

The architecture of the code base on which PL is built upon probably dates from PL’s predecessor OpticsPro, since it too had this limitation. Waaaay back then, the speed of processors meant it was a sensible choice to prioritise rendering speed over rendering accuracy. Now of course that choice just makes PL look silly. However, if the only way to change that choice is to change the fundamental design of PL, then that will not just a hard thing to do, it will be a very time consuming thing to do.

I’ll speculate further…

If DxO’s business model involves private equity then the company will be carrying a lot of debt. Servicing that debt will require constant growth in sales. Add in the rise in interest rates of the last few years, and the need for ever more sales each is even more pressing. Hence, each new version of PL must have headline grabbing new features (even if you or I think those new features are less than exciting) to drive new sales. That financial / business requirement means there is no time to rewrite PL from the bottom up.


I agree.

But, since that 75% limit is “hardcoded” for performance reasons, couldn’t they just make it “user selectable” while leaving all the rest intact? As a “beta feature” for experienced users, maybe, with a huge warning “don’t touch this unless you are prepared for a performance hit during refresh”. It would almost come for “free”.

That would be at least a temporary and VERY easy fix until they do a complete and proper complete reworking and optimization (=rewriting from scratch) of the viewer code. Which, of course, would require a lot of effort (but still is needed sooner or later).

@stuck but it might help with getting the current users to part with their upgrade fees!?

To be honest there is little excuse for the current state of certain elements of DxPL.

As I stated in the Topic you indicated the 75% feature needs to continue to exist if performance is the driving factor but I am not totally convinced that is actually true!?

So provide both for users to choose, it is important to have the ability to view the whole image in as near WSIWYG form as possible, occasionally if the CPU is not up to the job and continuously if it is.

However, in typical DxO behaviour, instead of consulting the userbase they retire to their ivory tower, bar the windows and doors, put their fingers in their ears and whistle and we are supposed to go whistle at the same time!


You may be right but I’m far more inclined to think the problem is what I’ve already set out. That is, I think that their business model does not allow them to listen to users because selling stuff to existing users doesn’t give them the growth their business model requires. They have to keep producing new features that they can shout about in order bring in new users / grow sales.


thanks for the replies all

have to say i agree with Luca. why is possible to see the corrected image at 75% but not at smaller sizes? if it’s that taxing on performance make the % viewer definable and have a warning on there

or add a button to see the image temporarily at full quality?

i might just understand that CA correction can’t be displayed in certain circumstances, but the actual image, together with colour corrections surely should be properly displayed?

Yeah, but they should also aim at convincing the older users to upgrade.

Personally, the last upgrade I have paid for is PL6. I then got PL7 for free as a beta tester.

For sure, I will not buy PL8, or 9 or 10 unless they fix this old issue that’s gone unsolved for already too much time.

With resoect to the need for Viewpoint features like Perspective and Volume Deformation I guess it depends what you shoot and your expectations for the results.

Many people do not even realize how badly objects lean in their images, or recognize the edge distortion caused by many wide angle lens, probably because they’re so used to seeing those types of distortion in photographs. While I certainly can’t argue with your particular preferences, I disagree with you regarding the value of Viewpoint.



Just to add a review:
I just did a little visual comparison between PhotoLab and Lightroom Classic for display.
Up to around 50% zoom, I don’t see much (if any) difference in “sharpness”.
Then from 50 to 70%, the Lightroom display becomes slightly (slightly…) more defined.
From 75%, PhotoLab displays a more defined image than Lightroom.
It’s a basic comparison, but it gives an idea.

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It’s not much a matter of sharpness per se. It’s a matter of the color alterations that come with that unsharpness. And Lightroom definitely does not alter the colours of the preview at 70%, or 50%, or any other zoom level (and I am definitely NOT a Lightroom fan!)

i can’t remember what LR was like displaying RAW files, but i don’t remember the display being anything other than WYSIWYG for the most part

on my 4k 32" monitor, the RAW file display in PL when the image is fitted to display (which results in approx 45% zoom with 20mp .ORF files) the image is visibly unsharp. it looks like a ~2k image which has been enlarged to fit

i was hoping 50% would give better results but there’s no difference

You have to zoom to 75% to see the effects of Chromatic aberration, Lens softness, and Unsharp mask corrections.


i get this - thank you

the discussion is about why we can’t see a full quality image preview at zooms below 75%

Umm, we’re more speculating than discussing are we not?

Here’s an example of what a “normal” photographer is able to achieve with the incredibly powerful (and easy to use) ViewPoint features;

The image I captured;

The end result I achieved (using ViewPoint features embedded in PL):

NOTE: I am NOT claiming this to be a good quality image - It’s a record of the detail in other images that I captured on this outing.

John M