It was only with the release of DT4.0 that I noticed the mention of Diffuse or Sharpen as ‘preferred’ to Local Contrast module and ‘preferred’ to Sharpen module, so I decided to make the shift, having a scene-referred workflow for a couple of years now.
2 big issues that arose are speed, and effect.
Speed. Unusable on my Mac Mini M1 Silicon with MacOS Monterey 12.4. Yes, I read the manual, it is “highly resource intensive”, and “OpenCL is therefore strongly recommended”. And yes, I noticed the OpenCL option is greyed out on my preferences panel. But gee, that is not a dog-slouch computer, and also it is supported for Metal GPUFamily, so you would think the DT developers would be able to get the action to happen in at least barely-usable levels. For example the preset for Add Local Contrast takes 20 to 40 seconds to implement. Even the Fast Local Contrast preset takes at least 10 seconds (for all the good it does: see issue 2).
And any action in ‘D or S’ module incurs the full delay, not just changing the sliders, but reset to default, or zooming the view, or changing to Colour Assessment view: full delay each time. Not only is it slow to implement an action, but any subsequent actions suffer the full delay. Close the ‘D or S’ module: full delay. Open another module eg crop: full delay. Apply crop: full delay. Close the image and then open it again: full delay.
Nowhere near to workable, IMHO.
Effect. Puny, almost invisible effect compared to the old modules Local Contrast, and Sharpen.
I thought I would be able to get similar effects to the old modules, with a bit more ‘scene-referred purity’. The default setting for the old Local Contrast module, is clearly evident and in many cases beneficial for my photos, and has become something of a go-to for my workflow. But the ‘D or S’ presets, both the single-iteration ‘Fast Local Contrast’ and the 10-iteration ‘Add Local Contrast’ presets, are so subtle that I would be challenged to tell if they were on or off, without a quick A/B/A comparison, and even then it is an eye-squinter. Same for Sharpen Demosaicing preset.
Who knows, maybe I can get a Local Contrast effect similar to the old module at Detail =125%, and at 180%, with heavy use of the sliders in the ‘D or S’ module, but the process of learning to tweak the module is so painful due to the slow operation, that it would take as many hours as it used to take minutes, and every subsequent operation with the image is slowed to a crawl too. So I can’t even play with its settings: the process is too painful!
I’m not even sure what I’m asking here:
-Do I just dump the module and go back to the old equivalents? (what if they get deprecated?)
-Is there a way to use ‘D or S’ that minimises the delays?
-Is anyone working on presets that more closely deliver a magnitude of effect similar to the old modules? (and will they be even more unworkably slow eg more iterations?)
-Is there the slightest chance that a developer might use the M1 Silicon Metal support to access more GPU speed, for modern computers like mine that have fully deprecated OpenCL? Any time soon?
As you can tell, I am as disappointed at the moment as I was excited a couple of days ago, when I first decided to adopt ‘D or S’.