Focus stacking software

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Terry Herndon
Terry Herndon's picture
Focus stacking software

I would like to start employing focus stacking to my skill set. I am not extremely tech savy, so the easier the focus stacking software the better. What software are you using and why.
Thanks in advance.

Anton Largiader
Anton Largiader's picture

Options depend somewhat on what system you use. I shoot Canon, and my two bodies (R3 and R7) both offer in-camera stacking. Additionally, I can stack in the Canon DPP app.

Just to get terminology straight, there are two parts to this which Canon refers to as bracketing and compositing.

Focus bracketing is the creation of a set of incrementally focused images. Canon offers in-camera bracketing, where the camera is stationary and the focus changes with every shot. You can also do this manually with the focus ring or with a macro focus rail.

Depth compositing is the assembling of all of those images into one which has sharp focus from first to last. The cameras I mentioned both will do this internally with a set of images created with the focus bracketing tool (which I have to say is freakin' magic) or I can import the set of images into DPP and composite them there. Lightroom I think does this, Helicon is an app which did this back when it wasn't so common, and there are others. But you might be able to start with whatever your system manufacturer offers. For me, the in-camera bracketing and compositing are all I need. I'd be happy to demonstrate them if you'd like.