I recently got the chance to check out the new ACDSee Photo Studio Ultimate 2019, which features a wide array of upgrades over the previous version. One of those is with the program’s Color EQ pane.
Being used to Adobe Lightroom, adjusting things like Saturation, Brightness and Hue were all familiar to me. But adjusting the color contrast? That’s something that sets ACDSee apart.
Edit the contrast of specific colors with Color EQ
Color EQ is familiar if you’re coming from a program like Lightroom. But the ability to increase and decrease the contrast in each color is something unique to ACDSee’s program. This allows you to target exact colors and brightness ranges to bring out contrast details in your photograph. Here’s how it works.
You get started in the Develop module. Here you’ll see your typical adjustment panes — General, White Balance, Light EQ, Color EQ, etc. When you select High Quality from the Mode drop-down in Color EQ, you’ll see four tabs — Saturation, Brightness, Hue and Contrast.
I took a photograph I shot last weekend during a football game, and did my normal edits, increasing things like exposure, highlight enhancement, fill light, contrast and more. It was headed in the right direction, but I felt like certain areas of the image were flat. Two areas in particular — the turf and player’s jersey looked really flat.
Once my basic edits were complete, I went to the Contrast tab in Color EQ. To add some contrast to the player’s jersey, I bumped up the Red slider. To add some contrast to the turf, I increased the Green slider. I made a few other tweaks to get it exactly how I wanted. Here’s the before and after:
Brush in Color EQ
While you’re able to edit Color EQ settings straight from the Develop module, you have even more control over it in the Edit module. This allows you to selectively brush over areas of the image where you’d like to see the Color EQ settings take place.
For me, I wanted to add a bit more contrast to the player’s jersey, but didn’t want to affect the rest of the photograph. I was able to brush in Color EQ and then apply my contrast settings to just the jersey part of the photograph.
You have ultimate control here, controlling the size of the brush, feathering, pressure and tolerance. It works really well, and is very precise.
Taking contrast to the next level
I always like to add some contrast to my photographs. And with the new Color EQ Contrast tool, I can easily affect either my entire image or just specific portions of it with ACDSee Photo Studio Ultimate 2019.