A few months ago, I was in a hangout with Matt Kloskowski and Richard Harrington discussing some of the new features of onOne’s Perfect Photo Suite 9 (click here to watch the replay). During the live broadcast, we had quite a few questions rolling in from the viewers, but we didn’t have the time to answer all of them. So I thought I would put together some of those questions here for you on the blog!

BTW, onOne has a free 30-day trial of their software … click here to download it!


What makes onOne’s Perfect Photo Suite 9 better than LR?

The Perfect Photo Suite, in my opinion, is not created to replace Lightroom. Lightroom works primarily as an organizational tool and database, a way to sort through your entire library of photographs and have them cataloged all in one place. Not to mention the fact that it also serves as a very powerful RAW processor.

The Perfect Photo Suite is great for stylizing and enhancing images, but it is not a RAW processor. You can access and view RAW files, but it is limited. Because most photographs shoot in RAW, then we need some way to process these photos accurately (adjust white-balance, non-destructively enhance the tones, lens profiles, camera calibration, etc.).

My answer is to use both. When I process my images, I use both Lightroom and the Perfect Photo Suite. If anything, I would say that onOne is replacing the need for Photoshop (when it comes to processing photographs). Photoshop still has its place, and I still use it from time to time, but onOne has become my preferred image-enhancer for my photography.


Can I use the Perfect Photo Suite without Lightroom on RAW files? I mean to develop them from the very beginning (exposure, w. balance etc.)?

The Perfect Photo Suite will read RAW files, but it does NOT have a RAW processor. You can edit directly from a RAW photo, but in my opinion the quality may be worse than if you were to edit directly from a JPEG file, depending on the type of camera you are editing from.

If you shoot RAW, I would highly suggest using a dedicated RAW processor, such as Adobe Lightroom, Adobe Camera Raw, or the processing software that comes with your camera (almost all cameras come equipped with their own editing software). Edit the basics, such as white balance, exposure, etc, and then take that file (a PSD, preferably) to onOne’s Perfect Photo Suite to continue with your edits.


Does the plugin work with video files this release ?

No. The Perfect Photo suite does not have the ability to edit video files.


If you have presets you saved in Suite 8, will they work the same in 9 or will they need to be adjusted?

The presets from Suite 8 should work just fine in Suite 9.

Want some free textures? Get ours here.


Is there a preview in PPS like in Lightroom for masking? Like you could hit the checkmark and see the Red overlay where you’re painting.

Yes! You can switch between different masking previews using the toggle on the bottom-left of the preview window.


Can you do textures easily in PPS9?

Yes! That’s one of my favorite parts of onOne Software. You can use the “Manage Extras” feature to easily import your own textures, and then they will be available in both Perfect Layers and Perfect Effects. Watch the video below to learn how to import your own textures into onOne Software (this video shows Suite88, but it works the same in Suite 9):

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bMcfJC1S_Uw]


I understand PPS 9 has a noise reduction capability. I’ve been looking around and have had trouble finding it in the software. Can you help point out where that is?

The Noise Reduction feature is inside of Perfect Enhance, as well as in Perfect Effects:


I struggle with knowing how far to go with plug-ins and processing so that the photo doesn’t look over-processed. Any advice?

My advice is when adding effects, reduce the Layer Opacity to zero, and then increase the Layer Opacity until you like what the effect is doing to your image. I tend to add almost all of my

onOne also has a “Master Opacity” setting in Perfect Effects where you can scale back everything you have applied. It’s good practice to play with both the Layer and Master Opacity sliders before committing to your final image.


Is the Perfect Photo Suite destructive, or non-destructive?

The Perfect Photo Suite is technically destructive, since it is not a RAW processing software. However with the new “Smart Photos” feature in Suite 9, you can go back to your image and make changes to your existing effects. The effects are also applied on a separate layer in Perfect Layers, so you are able to delete the layer and start over with your original image in place.


Would you explain how the Perfect Photo Suite works as part of the Creative Cloud?

When you install onOne Software, it adds plugin files to Lightroom, Photoshop, and Photoshop Elements. You can move your image into the Perfect Photo Suite in the following ways:

  • Lightroom:
    1. First, select an image.
    2. Then, in the menu, select File > Plugin Extras and choose the software where you would like to open your file.
    3. Your image will open into the Perfect Photo Suite. When you are finished editing, save the file and it will appear back inside of Lightroom alongside your original file.
  • Photoshop CC:
    1. In the menu, go to Window > Extensions > onOne.
    2. Then, click on the software you want to open it in, such as “Perfect Effects 9”.
    3. Then, double-click where it says “Open Perfect Effects 9 Suite”.
    4. When you are finished in Perfect Effects, click “Apply” and your effect will appear as a new layer in the Layers panel.
  • Photoshop Elements:
    1. In the menu, go to File > Automation tools, and then select the software you want to use.
    2. When you are finished editing in the Perfect Photo Suite, apply your changes and they will appear on your image in PSE.


Do you keep the original RAW and the PSD both in the Lightroom catalog? The PSD/TIFF file created by PPS so much larger than the original RAW file.

I personally keep ALL of my images in my Lightroom catalog. I never delete anything, and because I use a Drobo I’m not worried about running out of hard-drive space.

If you are concerned with file-sizes in onOne Software, you can do the following to trim down the space:

  • Edit your files in 8-bit (instead of 16-bit). You can set this in the Preferences in onOne Software.
  • Don’t use the Smart Photos feature (it will create smaller files). OR, even better, use the Smart Photos feature and once you have your final image exported (a JPEG, for example), simplify or flatten the document so that it is not longer retaining all of that data.


Does Version 9 have a method for stitching panos?

No, you will need to use other software do to that. Click Here to learn how to stitch a panorama using Adobe Photoshop.