Last Updated on December 7, 2022 by Peter Wood
Even if you get an HDR camera, you still need HDR software to merge photos with different exposures to a stunning HDR photograph. Just imagine when you are inside Vatican Cathedral, you can take advantage of the HDR software to enhance the color range, brightness, sharpness, and shadow of a standard photo and adds more dynamic ranges.
When you take a series of images with different exposures, what should be the best HDR software for Mac and Windows? The article explains the 10 best high-dynamic photo editor reviews in 2023 and illuminates the assets and liabilities of each HDR program. Just learn more details from the article now and choose the right one according to your requirements.
WidsMob HDR is an all-in-one HDR editor, which enables you to merge a series of bracketed images into standard HDR and apply HDR filters to a single photo. There are some gorgeous HDR effects and advanced parameters. It is one of the best HDR software with advanced tone mapping, ghost suppression, and auto-align algorithms. Moreover, you can always explore more HDR effects with brightness, saturation, tint, and contrast.
Step 1. Download and install WidsMob HDR, you can launch the program on your computer and click the Add Photos button to import the series of bracketed images. Of course, you can simply drag-n-drop the desired photos into the program with different file formats.
Step 2. Select the desired HDR mode, for aligning a series of bracketed images, you can choose the Bracketing mode and select the related photos. As for applying HDR filters for a single photo, you can simply choose the Single Photo mode in the best HDR software.
Step 3. It will automatically merge photos into an HDR photo and present the optimal effect. Just turn on the Before/After mode from the top-right corner. Click the Effect menu to select the desired HDR effect from the 10 stunning presets. Simply switch to the Advanced menu for advanced settings.
Step 4. Go to the Advanced menu, you can simply choose different settings for Color Enhancement, Color Correction, Contrast Enhancement, Image Radiance, Color Filter, Vignetting, Smart Tone, and HDR Denoise. Once you get the optimal effect before clicking the Save As button.
Picturenaut is another free HDR software that creates HDRIs from multiple exposures. It is donationware. If you are satisfied with the HDR software or use it in a commercial project, you should support the development with a donation.
And the free HDR program can get stunning HDR result from DNG, CRW, CR2, 3FR, DCR, KDC, K25, PXN, MEF, MOS, RAF, MRW, NEF, ORF, RAW, PEF, X3F, SRF, SR2, ARW, TGA, VDA, ICB, VST, JPEG, PNG, TIFF, and PPM files. And save to TIFF, EXR, HDR, PIC, or PFM formats.
But the major problem should be hard to make any further edit, especially the alignment of handhold images problems. It is impossible to de-ghost the semi-transparent HDR photograph. Another issue should be impossible to enhance the filter of the HDR photo after the combination. As for the case, you have to edit the photo after try the HDR software free.
Luminance HDR is an open-source HDR software developed by Source Forge. The program can add multiple images of the same frame to merge and then change different properties. The program lets you make HDR images using HDR Creation Wizard. Just learn more detail about the features of the free HDR software.
The HDR freeware can handle the following formats for HDR photographs. JPEG, TIFF, KDC, DCR, PEF, NEF, DNG, VDN, MRW, OFF, CLF, ANV, RAF, REFV, PTX, RAW, SR2, RW2, SRW, TKV, CR2, 3FR, MEF, MEFV, MCR, MCS, EIF, NRVV, etc. And then process to EXR, HDR, PIC, TIFF, or PFS.
It is difficult and slow to use auto-align the HDR images with Luminance. The initial controls are a little awkward but should be easy enough after getting used to them. Just download the free HDR software to create the one desired file.
When you need to make HDR images out of a single image file, Machinery HDR is the right HDR software to handle the HDR filters. The program adds HDR effects by varying the range of saturation, RGB color, color scheme, etc. It also lets you batch edit HDR images.
Machinery HDR supports various image formats, like JPG, BMP, TIFF, PNG, DNG, CRW, CR2, RAW, NEF, and other RAW formats. If you are satisfied with the result, you can also purchase the full version to export HDR with a large size.
FDRTools Basic is the HDR software to create high-quality tone-mapped images for free. If you are a newbie to HDR photographs, you can use the Basic version first. Of course, you can also upgrade to FDRTools Advanced version to create desired files as well.
You can create HDR images from JPEG, TIFF, HDR, RGBE, EXR, and DCRAW (3FR, ARW, CRW, CR2, CS1, DCR, DNG, ERF, IIQ, K25, KDC, MEF, MRW, NEF, NRW, ORF, PEF, RAF, RAW, RW2, RWL, SRF, SR2, SRW) files.
If you have already purchased Canon cameras, you can use the default HDR camera free. Canon HDR cameras should be another option for the beginner. You can find the CD bundled with Canon cameras.
The free HDR program can load three images with different exposures for creating HDR images. And there are some limited parameter settings for the free HDR program to make a stunning result. If you are serious about HDR photographs, you might need another program instead.
When you need to yield a good result with the best HDR software, you can try Fusion. You can obtain the HDR photographs by using the SUM operator rather than the HDR operator. Another splendid feature of the free HDR software should be an automatic alignment of photos.
Fusion HDR free version is a restricted version, the latest version of free HDR software is from Fusion 2.8.8. There is only one processing mode in summation operation, one tone-mapping mode in HDR operator, no processing tool or batch processing operator. And you can only save the result in JPEG in 32-bit with the free HDR program.
Photomatix has been the top HDR software for most people as it has four different tone mapping methods. It is easier to use and has more presets for you to select. It includes automatic working modes for those who don’t want to be bothered tweaking a dozen different values. And it is also a manual mode for picky photographers who prefer controlling every single detail.
As there are two versions for Photomatix: Pro and Essentials, you may need to learn its differences according to their features. Photomatix Essentials focuses on simplicity and ease of use, While Photomatix Pro offers more options and includes advanced features such as batch processing and selective deghosting. Besides, Photomatix Pro has a Plugin for Lightroom. And Photomatix Essentials includes a Plugin for Photoshop Elements.
Aurora 2019 is the newest HDR software and full of options with many different features to make it easy to produce good HDR images. It is supposed to be all-in-one software with pretty close. There are many changes in the 2019 version that bring significant improvements. The program has been rewritten from the ground up to focus on speed improvements, better RAW image handling, and a more user-friendly interface.
Aurora HDR 2019 supports JPG, JPEG, PNG, TIFF, RAW (NEF, CR2, RAF, ARW, etc.). With the export function, you can create an image file and save it in the following formats: JPEG, PNG, GIF, JPEG-2000, TIF, PSD (Mac only). It also can be used as a plug-in for Lightroom, Photoshop Element, Apple Aperture, and Adobe Photoshop.
EasyHDR is one of the best and easiest software to use for producing beautiful HDR images. It has been around since 2006. The software is quick and easy to install with a straightforward operation user interface. EasyHDR is capable of tone mapping single photographs, which is especially useful in developing raw images.
EasyHDR can let you get neat results even if the photos take in difficult lighting conditions. The program can import various file formats: JPEG, TIFF, FITS (used in astrophotography cameras), Radiance RGBE (HDR image), and nearly all digital camera RAW formats, by all vendors.