In the past I've used stitching software to produce an image when my widest angle lens could not encompass the scene. I worked with tiff files produced by scanning 4 x 5 negatives.
I would like to try something similar with my Nikon d800. I have the 24-70 mm lens, but 24 mm is not wide enough for some building facades taken from across a city street.
What software is available to do this, and does it work with NEF files, or do I need to shoot tiff images?
In the past I've use the program hugin under Linux, but if necessary I can work under Windows 7.
Professor Emeritus, Department of Mathematics, Northwestern University
#3. "RE: Stitiching software?" | In response to Reply # 0
PTGui Pro is considered by many to be the finest stitching software. With the Pro version you can stitch HDR images. There is a 30-Day Trial Version:
The Pro version has more features and is well worth the additional cost.
It is also best to use a tripod and a panoramic tripod head to capture the images with the proper overlap, from 20 percent to 25 percent overlap.
Here are two brief tutorial on shooting the panoramic images. You need to shoot the images in Manual Mode with a constant shutter speed and a fixed f/stop, a fixed ISO, and a fixed White Balance setting. If shooting HDR images for the panorama you would change the shutter speed, not the f/stop.
My panorama workflow starts with RAW files, and I then apply distortion correction with DxO Optics Pro, and then convert the RAW files to 16 bit TIFF files. This is done with a batch command and takes very little time. The result is high quality TIFF images to stitch with PTGui Pro.
It is also best to find the entrance pupil of the lens (optical center) and use the panoramic head to turn the lens on the entrance pupil to eliminate parallax distortion.
Note: the entrance pupil changes on a zoom depending upon the lens position. At 24mm the entrance pupil will be different than at 70mm.
PTGui Pro can process RAW images, but I prefer to develop the RAW files in DxO Optics Pro or Capture NX2 and export them as TIFF files for the stitching. I believe the RAW converter in DxO Optics Pro is one of the best, better than the DNG converter in PTGui Pro.
I like the products from Fanotec, the makers of the Nodal Ninja. I have an M2 system with a RD16 rotator.
I shot the following panorama at 3:00 a.m. using a D600 with a 50mm f/1.4G lens. I shot 2 rows of 12 images with 3 HDR brckets, 2 EV steps under exposed, proper exposure, and 2 EV steps over exposed. I stitched the 72 images using PTGui Pro.
Attachment#1 (jpg file)
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#4. "RE: Stitiching software?" | In response to Reply # 0
>What software is available to do this, and does it work with NEF files, or do I need to shoot tiff images?
I read that your software questions were well taken care of, but not so those referring to the file format.
I will try just that:
In any case, I recommend that you shoot RAW files since this is the closest thing to an original negative.
There are several strategies to chose from:
1. Shoot Raw files to transfer later to your machine (No back-ups).
2. Shoot RAW files on one card and a TIFF image or JPEG image simultaneously on the other card.
3. Shoot RAW files on one card and back-up Raw files copies simultaneously on the other card. My favourite.
So far, you noticed that I talk about RAW files and TIFF or JPEG images very distinctively! RAW files are not
images but a digital recording, just data, of all the info collected by the sensor and readable ("pre-viewable")
via a RAW Converter. These files are the raw and original files to be kept preciously. It is not known as a good
practice to stitch RAW files.
The TIFF images, a better choice for image formats when tackling post-production, they render the best
interpretation of your RAW files. This quality comes with a "very large size" price tag attached to it! On my
D3X, RAW files are +/- 36MB a piece. A TIFF image at 14 bit-depth my reach easily more then 90MB!
Here I will explain why my preference goes to strategy #3:
While shooting, I find annoying to have to wait for the camera to relief the buffer or finish writing images files.
The D3X is a great shooting machine and impairing its readiness to take the next shot would not be wise. So
I leave any conversion work to be done to my mac. From there, post-production may follow its course.
Backing-up everything to the second card does not slow down the camera and, as I said, RAW files ARE your
photos (if you need any back-ups, it's here!) Once your shooting session has been safely transferred to your
computer (and backed-up) you're clear to reformat your cards within the camera (very good practice).
Working with in Raw gives the possibility to always come back to the "as shot" state. The ultimate flexibility!
Working with TIFF may be a non-destructive approach since it is workflow dependant -make the right
decisions at the right time and you'll be just fine. But be aware of file size!!! Working with JPEG is the most
destructive and irreversible approach (if any goofing should happened, you still have the RAW not far -great
feeling!). It has the advantage of fine workflow dependant quality at a comparably low file size and is a more
digestible for stitchers. Remember that the stitcher will have to run over a fairly large number of files in given
I hope I succeeded what I tried to do, thinking in French, writing in English!
#5. "RE: Stitiching software?" | In response to Reply # 0
I would completely agree with Mark. I've used PTgui Pro with good success, less distortion than stitching with PS6. I usually just stitch the .NEF files straight from the camera or the .RW2 RAW files produced by my Lumix mirrorless camera PTgui handles them well and does allow some simple exposure/contrast adjustments within the program. I also use PS6 to convert the RAW files to .TIFFs if more post processing is needed before stitching, such as removing some object that intruded into my picture. If you want to make 360X180 degree panoramas, then you need PTgui or a similar program and cannot use PS...In doing vertical stitches, say you are looking up at a giant pipe organ in a cathedral, your position on the ground necessarily produces distortion in the images; I think PTgui Pro handles that distortion better that PS6.
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#6. "RE: Stitiching software?" | In response to Reply # 0
>In the past I've used stitching software to produce an image
>when my widest angle lens could not encompass the scene. I
>worked with tiff files produced by scanning 4 x 5 negatives.
I think this is a question where you will get a number of favourites and need to try some in the end.
I for my case love to use
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#7. "RE: Stitiching software?" | In response to Reply # 0
#8. "RE: Stitching software?" | In response to Reply # 0
I would also recommend ICE. Microsoft ICE is free, small and fast but also very good.
I have also used Autostitch which is free and Photoshop.
Photoshop 6 is the best stitcher of the photoshop series, it was a real improvement, but I would say ICE is as good
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