How to Fix Low Resolution Photos and Improve Image Quality with PaintShop Pro


In this video we’ll look at several tools you can use in PaintShop Pro to improve the quality of your photos. In particular we’ll look at correcting fade, brightness and fill light, color saturation, noise removal, sharpness and vibrancy. Before we get started, if you’re watching this video on YouTube you’ll find the link in the description below that will take you to our tutorial page on Corel’s Discovery Center. Here you can also download a written copy of this tutorial along with the sample images you can download to try out the steps yourself. Down in my Organizer I have a collection of images with various issues: poor lighting, dark shadows, color or light imbalances. I’ll bring a few of these into PaintShop Pro’s Edit workspace to see what can be done to get them looking better. I’ll start by dragging up this one then I’ll click the pushpin to minimize the Organizer. This image shows a relatively bright and balanced sunset but the foreground shadows are extremely dark. If I look in the Adjust menu at Brightness and Contrast I can try the Brightness/Contrast tool. But this lightens the image as a whole, not differentiating between light and dark areas, so I’ll click Cancel. A better choice here is Fill Light/Clarity. I have Preview on Image checked so that I can see real-time results. As I increase the Fill light, more light comes into the dark areas and the areas that were already bright are left alone. I can also bring up the Clarity to reduce the haziness along the waterline. I can check and uncheck the preview to compare results with the original image and then click OK. If I zoom into this dark area the trees and rocks have a speckled or dappled effect so I’ll choose Adjust>One Step Noise Removal. This makes the rocks smoother, though a little blurry and when I zoom out the overall photo has a smoother look. I can undo this and for a tool that gives me more control I’ll choose Adjust>Digital Noise Removal. This gives me a side-by-side before and after comparison and I can adjust the Noise Correction values. A high correction blend smoothes and blurs the speckled areas. I’ll click OK to see the results on the entire image. To save the improved image I would use File>Save As and use a different file name so as not to replace the original. I can perform similar steps on this image. I can use Fill Light/Clarity to bring in more fill light to better see the boats. Then I can try Adjust>White Balance. I’ll make the temperature a little cooler to temper down the bright sky then click Advanced Options and adjust the white balance sliders at the bottom. For the next example I’ll bring in this waterfall image. the lower half is too dark, though the sky at the top looks about right. A good place to start with images like this is Adjust>One Step Photo Fix which brightens the entire image including the sky. For greater control, I’ll first undo then I’ll try Adjust>Smart Photo Fix. This is another side-by-side tool where I have lots of parameters to play with. I’ll click Suggest Settings for a starting point then I’ll increase the overall brightness, add some highlights and increase saturation to bring more green into the landscape. Then I’ll click OK. Next I’ll work on this photo. Much of the original color can be brought back with Adjust>Color>Fade Correction. One Step Noise Removal gets rid of the speckling though now the image is a little blurry so I’ll go to Adjust>Sharpness>High Pass Sharpen. I like the result of a Soft Light blend with these radius and strength values. For a similar example I’ll use this photo. Here’s how it looks after Fade Correction, and now after One Step Noise Removal. In this case I think sharpening isn’t needed. The picture already has a soft light, slightly fuzzy effect. Finally I’ll work on this archeology photo which is a little monochromatic. I’ve used File>Save A Copy As to make a copy and I’m opening the copy as well, placing the two side-by-side. On this image I’ll use Adjust>Hue and Saturation>Hue/Saturation/Lightness. I can increase the saturation to bring out more color but this saturates all colors, producing an exaggerated effect in some spots on the grass and foreground. On the other image I’ll try Adjust>Hue and Saturation>Vibrancy. Increasing the strength brings out more color in the grassy areas but leaves the more neutral areas as they are. This brings us to the end of this tutorial on improving image quality. If you’ve been watching this video on YouTube, please follow the link in the description below which will take you to this tutorial page on Corel’s Discovery Center. Here you’ll find a written version of this tutorial along with the sample images you can download and follow along.

9 Replies to “How to Fix Low Resolution Photos and Improve Image Quality with PaintShop Pro

  1. Might need to play this several times but this is a great help. The ohers need to stop crying or add their own video. Thanks for posting

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