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Largest image that I have created with Affinity - Photoshop can't handle it!

Barney Meyer

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https://www.hiddenmelbourne.com.au/melbourne-from-heidelberg-town-hall-4gpx/ is a 557,000px wide 4 Gigapixel 360degree panoramic view from the tower of Heidelberg Town hall. The file is 11.61GB in size. Photoshop can't open it. It was captured as a series of 42Mpx frames with Sony A7R2 + 400mm lens and stitched with PTGUI Pro. Final editing in Affinity then saved as a .PSB image file, before converting into a zoomable view with Pano2VR, allowing the viewer to zoom in to buildings 10km distant. image.png.f67fbfb0ac362e9158c8193aaee8cc24.png

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Nice.  That takes a lot of commitment in both shooting and editing.  Did you have an automated pano/camera control rig?  What were you using for the raw processing stage? The noise reduction looks a little excessive, along with the HDR tone mapping effect with all the halos.  Maybe next time you can do the tonemapping manually with creating a mask of bright areas of sky and bringing them down in brightness then adding contrast globally?  Really easy to do in Affinity Photo with auto-refine selection. Of course, the fact that you got such a massive undertaking done is an achievement all unto it's own.

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Thanks for the detailed comment Waveluke! 😀

This was one of my first attempts at an extreme panorama from a tower and was captured with a 400mm lens, manually stepped a small angle to overlap the previous frame. I had some "wobblies" with vibration in two frames, but as I had to wait several weeks for suitable weather conditions, the final result will have to do!😁

The viewing distance to the city and Malvern Town Hall is about 10km and focus was sharp, but you'll notice that some distant objects are wavy, due to the intervening layers of air over 10km on a day with moderate wind.

The "halos" are a problem, I was going to cut out that section but decided to leave it. With a 400mm lens it's impossible to achieve sharpness in close objects, therefore I captured some extra frames with a short lens, but seamlessly blending those in was an impossible task, hence the halos and ghosts.👻

It seems quite simple to "cut out" the close objects that have been captured with a wider lens and then paste them over as a new layer, but the reality is that I was working under pressure (the council worker standing on the level below the access ladder kept on asking "are you done yet"?). placing the short lens in exactly the same position as the long lens isn't precise, and of course the long lens had large out of focus "ghosts" around the close objects, which concealed the distant view. What we do now is to capture a long view with a long lens from a tall pole to reach above the close objects, and use a fisheye panorama of the towertop to shows the close objects.

Distant Bridge.jpg

Edited by Barney Meyer
Explanation of why there are ghosts in the image
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Fantastic. Quick question though, and in no way am I supporting or defending adobe: Can photoshop not handle it due to insufficient memory (As in maybe your computer might need more in order for the Godzilla of editing programs to deal with the file size)? Haven't touched photoshop or any adobe product in over 3 years. Your post proves a point about Photo's abilities and photoshop's lack thereof. My guess is you'd have to second mortgage the house to afford the gobs of memory photoshop would require to attempt the tasks that Affinity Photo handles with ease.


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Sounds like a tough situation, only having limited windows of time given weather and the city employee pressuring you further.  Kind of curious why you tried to composite in in focus shots of the cell tower you shot through, given that it wasn't part of the subject, the cityscape.  In my opinion, ghosts from out of focus foreground junk elements aren't as distracting as trying to add them back in.  Also, the halos I was referring to was the halos from brightening the land relative to the sky with hdr software or shadows/ highlights, rather than an edge fitting mask, visible in the crop you put in the original post, and more prominent elsewhere in the pano.

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dannyg9 Good question and I spent some time puzzling this out. The Photoshop link  https://helpx.adobe.com/photoshop/using/image-size-resolution.html  says: Photoshop supports a maximum pixel dimension of 300,000 by 300,000 pixels per image. This restriction places limits on the print size and resolution available to an image.

That's a whopping 90Gpx image size, but PS can't handle any image of wider or taller dimensions. My hardware can support very large images (using Affinity Photo) but Photoshop has this absolute dimensional limitation. To edit in Photoshop I would have to use a separate app to slice the image in two 300kpx wide frames, edit each then join them again. This is not feasible for edits like tonemapping as it's difficult to achieve that crossing a boundary.

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WavelukeI agree with you 100%. Capturing these huge panoramic views is also a difficult physical feat as all the gear has to be carried in packs, access is via steep ladders and small hatches, so the gear must be hauled up with a rope in separate stages, then unpacked and assembled. I now use a 3m to 9m extensible pole to be able to hoist the camera above any objects on the tower. But a 400mm lens presents a major problem with depth of field.
It is very rare to get viewing conditions suitable for such a long lens and I find that a 50mm lens gives me a 3Gpx full 360x180deg panorama and has "acceptable" depth of field so that the near objects have a slight but acceptable blur.
Hotham Town Hall is on the NW edge of the CBD and I captured a 3Gpx 360x180deg panorama with a 50mm lens. The blur and halos of close objects is acceptable and the resolution is good enough to reveal all the old city towers. The View and Visit flags allow the viewer to travel through time and space. I am crouching down at the foot of the flagpole😀



Hotham Town Hall.jpg

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