Nikon Capture NX2 Ships

June 3, 2008
David Schloss, Technology Editor

Nikon system photographers will be happy to hear that the company has just released Nikon Capture NX 2, a major upgrade to the company's raw processing, creative editing tool.

Featuring U Point technology, which makes it incredibly easy to select regions of an image to adjust, the new version of Nikon Capture NX adds a ton of features, all of which are available to Nikon shooters. (Some of which are also available to non-Nikon shooters, if you're using non-raw images.)

The new version has added an interesting "Auto Retouch Brush" that allows instant retouching and improvements to raw images. Nikon Capture NX has always been a nice tool for Nikon system owners, although in many areas the program has fallen short of programs like Photoshop, the U Point technology has really taken great strides in making the program a better image editing tool.

The new version looks to increase that with even more new features, including:

· Selection Control Points: Now users can selectively edit photographs without the need to manually outline or mask the area for editing. Simply place a selection control point anywhere on the photograph then choose from almost any adjustment such as D-lighting, unsharp mask or noise reduction, while limiting the “reach” of that adjustment to just the selected area.

· Auto Retouch Brush: Capture NX 2 adds an automatic retouch tool to its image editing toolbox, allowing users to seamlessly remove blemishes, dust and other distracting elements from photographs while still maintaining the integrity of the image.

· Shadow/Highlight Adjustment: With just a simple slider adjustment, users can easily open up shadows or recover blown out highlights.**

· Redesigned GUI with Customizable Workspaces: As part of an interface redesign, the new Capture NX 2 includes a workspace feature that maximizes the tool and palette layout for the task at hand. Users can create unique custom workspaces ideal for working with single or multiple monitors. All palettes and windows within can be docked, undocked or hidden as needed. Predefined workspaces include: browser, metadata, edit or an optimized combination of each. In addition, users can access their most used folders with the new “Favorite Folder” feature.

· Improved Edit List: Nikon’s Capture NX 2 also incorporates an improved edit list that allows users to apply common enhancements to images with ease. Common tools like tone curves, exposure compensation, contrast, highlight and shadow protection are just a click away via the quick fix menu. The improved edit list allows for camera and lens corrections like color moiré reduction, dust off, auto color aberration, auto red-eye correction, vignette control and fisheye lens correction.***Simultaneous Use of Tools: Users can now complete image editing faster than ever before with the use of simultaneous tools. For example, users can adjust the brightness and contrast of an image while boosting the color of the image at the same time.

· Filters, Ratings and Sorting Toolbar: Capture NX 2 offers an advanced filtering system in its tool bar, affording users an efficient way to filter through hundreds of images by user-defined labels, ratings, file types and file attributes. What’s more, these new filters, ratings and sorting tools are integrated into the metadata palette, allowing users the ability to easily edit and view XMP/IPTC information.

The program costs $179, however there is a $109 upgrade price for existing Nikon Capture users.

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