How Well Does Topaz Labs’ New Photo AI Sharpen Blurry Photos?

Topaz Labs Photo AI has been officially released, so take a look here to see what it is, how to use it, and how well it sharpens a blurry photograph.

The days are coming, my friends, when photography will be little more than software manipulation of data. Believe me, I am not a convert who's jumped on early and is screaming my lungs out from the heavens that you must all follow suit or perish. I hate that software platforms are eliminating so many skills piece by piece and leaving many of us to ponder if we actually belong in the future. But make no mistake, the future is AI. It's simply a matter of how far AI goes and how far you're willing to let it infiltrate your own world. All that being said, some of the developments coming out now are quite remarkable, and you can't help but marvel at them.

And that brings us to this great video by Anthony Morganti, in which he introduces you to Topaz Labs' newly released Photo AI. Before I go any further, it's important to point out that if you already own Topaz Labs' Image Quality bundle, you can get the new Photo AI for free. It's also important to note that it works as a Photoshop/Lightroom plugin or as a standalone platform. So, what makes the new Photo AI different from the software in the existing bundle, and how does it all work? Morganti uses a blurry image of a bird as his example, but I'll let you watch so you can be the judge. However, it's safe to say that I'll be getting it and trying it out pronto. Let me know your thoughts below.

Iain Stanley's picture

Iain Stanley is an Associate Professor teaching photography and composition in Japan. Fstoppers is where he writes about photography, but he's also a 5x Top Writer on Medium, where he writes about his expat (mis)adventures in Japan and other things not related to photography. To view his writing, click the link above.

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I tried it out on two different images. One a scanned image from a photographic print from the 1970’s, the other from a digital still captured in 2001. The captured image output was incredible. So good I have ordered a 36 x 48 metal print of it. The scanned image was a different story. It was a headshot of a woman that had been restored in DXO labs tools to correct colon cast, overall white balance and artifact removal. Ended up being a 100mb jpeg. Photo AI choked on it. Used over 100 GB of memory and swap space and hung my Mac. Bottom line - it does incredible work, but watch the image size of the input image. Haven’t tried it on RAW images yet. That will be my next test.
Overall, an awesome product that I really needed. Can’t wait to see what they bring next.

Quite a different story for me; I've thrown in massive 300MB TIFF panoramas and it handled it no problem, even on my laptop (where it just took forever to export).
It might be mac-specific, or maybe it just screws up with giant JPEG files, but that part IS something I can try out today so I definitely will

Best Typo of the Week: "Colon Cast" hehehe - DEFINITELY need to correct for that ;)

TLDW...Why don't you give us a hint of what you as the reviewer/writer photoguy tell us what your results were with the product!

I own the Topaz suite of products and find Sharpen AI to be my favorite and a complete game changer when it comes to saving images where focus is off. It blows native Lightroom sharpening out of the water and the masking is quite good too. I haven't convinced myself that I need to purchase this new Topaz software though I do like the idea of having an all-in-one solution. All in all, I consider Topaz products the gold standard for what they do.

Photo AI is not only a plugin for Photoshop/Lightroom, bul also for Capture One.
I think it's correct to say that. Great software.