Faststone query

I’m pretty rubbish at post-processing, so bear with me… I often use Faststone’s auto-adjust colours feature. Sometimes this works really well, sometimes it’s a complete disaster, and often, it does a good job but just goes a little too far, leaving me thinking ‘Yes, like that, but not quite as much’. I have no idea if I need not quite as much lighting, contrast, saturation… and also wonder whether it ever does a bit of sharpening.

Is it possible to use auto-adjust colours and then view what adjustments Faststone has made, so I can just dial them back a bit?

More generally, once I’ve saved a photo, can I view what tweaks I (or Faststone) made?

At the moment I’m just shooting jpeg - possibly the answers to the above are different for raw files.

Indeed in the end you’re better off shooting raw and using a decent raw editor.
AFAIK Faststone does not show you the details of what auto-colours does.
But you could start making a copy of the original jpeg, and then use that for auto-colors in Faststone and save it. If you like it, all’s well. If not, you could make another copy and learn using adjust lighting and colours (Ctrl+T and Ctrl+E), and edit that second copy to taste.

Thanks Jappie52 :slight_smile: Learning to edit well enough that it’s worth taking raw is something I know I should do… it’s finding the time and brain space that is the problem!

My experience with FastStone is with their no-cost Image Viewer, which has those image adjustment features. It a very basic processor and doesn’t really have some way to determine what ‘adjustments’ it’s made in ‘auto adjust’.
There really is no ‘std scale’ for things like saturation, brightness, contrast, etc. - different from Light Color Temperature or the amount of Light a sensor (like your eyes) receives at the point of its ‘exposure’. Most more extensive programs have a ‘history’ which allows you to step backward after adjustments - beyond more than just one ‘undo’.
It’s hard to really become consistent in using ‘post process’, if one doesn’t educate a bit on what each adjustment does and how it affects images.
You can do actual coursework, or experiment on an image or some combination of both…
I think experimenting on your own images works very well in (in a non-destructive manner - copy and rename an image, work on a copy and keep an ‘original’ to fall back on and also compare results…). Experimenting, by exaggerating one adjustment and then working backward, gives a good sense to what it does to an image. Many adjustments go in both a ‘negative/subtractive’ as well as ‘additive/positive’ manner.
It fun and often you find something which one might think was not possible.
Have Fun!

Thank you Yuri :slight_smile: Yes, all stuff I should play with. Trouble is that my the time I’ve identified all the bugs I’ve photographed, selected the best photos, tweaked them a little, updated my spreadsheet & reported where appropriate, my brain has given up for the day! Maybe one for when I retire…

Normally when you buy a digital camera, there should be a free image editing software for both RAW or usual JPG editing.

Have you ever try it? FastStone is free and comes with a few very basic primitive editing tools. I use it very often but for simple editing only, e.g. resizing, cropping, adding text, adding arrows, do highlight on text, to simple lightness adjustment etc.

For more in depth editing, I would prefer my favour editors. Usually the free one with your camera should be the best match for your particular model, especially on RAW. They should also be far more sophisticated than FastStone.

Back to the FastStone, IIRC before you save the changes, you might hold a key to see the image before editing…

Thanks Albert - I did use OMWorkspace and liked what it had to offer, but it is ridiculously slow unless you have a powerful graphics card - or at least it is on my laptop - to the extent that it was unuseable. Most editors aren’t (yet) compatible with the OM5, which is a pain. I did have a free trial of Photoshop and again, I liked it (though there was something that didn’t work well with my camera/laptop), but realistically, I’m not likely to get heavily into editing so only need basic tools. My aim is really just to make the best of the tools I have.

Yes, I’m able to easily view the ‘before’ image in Faststone, which is very useful. Though sometimes I still struggle to decide which I prefer.

I shoot JPG only having tried RAW on a number of occasions and coming to the conclusion that it’s not worth the additional editing time it takes.

FastStone is my go-to editing software, but I never use auto-adjust colors. Instead I use adjust lighting, levels and curves; cropping, resizing and cloning are also done with FastStone. Later I use Topaz DeNoise AI to reduce noise and sharpen the image.


Sometimes if we can get it right on SOOC, RAW might give little improvement. Under the current improved live view, better sensor, improved JPG engine etc I could do right (almost) setting on shooting thousands times easier than beforere.

In fact JPG can take quite heavy editing in PP.

No local editing is the shortage of FastStone. The layer and mask are very useful tool, so Photoshop is still my best friend.

I’ve used Faststone for years and frequently have used the auto-adjust color feature. After you’ve looked at the results on the screen you can use the “undo” option if you don’t like the results. Or, you can simply use the “adjust colors” or “adjust lighting” options to add to or subtract from the impact to your image. As far as I know, the “auto-colors” option does not add any sharpening to the image.

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