Bring Out Detail and Add Contrast to Your Images

Intensify Pro, a standalone app from Macphun Software, intensifies your images by bringing out details and structure. Using a brush and gradient tool to control the areas you want to improve, it offers total control over contrast and sharpness. (You can also run Intensify Pro as a plug-in for Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom, Elements, and Apple Aperture, and it's available as a free trial.)

When you start the app, you'll have immediate access to a large range of presets, including monochrome and faux HDR. The real fun starts, though, when you adjust the presets to your liking.

You can layer the adjustments so you only affect parts of your image and, because you control the size of the brush, it allows for granular adjustments. It's easy to go overboard, but subtle improvements in contrast and detail are possible, too. (The only criticism I have with regard to the layer system is that the option for making layer masks visible should be a button instead of being buried in a menu.)

Almost every tool allows you to tune parameters in the shadows, highlights, and midtones separately, resulting in dramatically different-looking images. The Details panel lets you reveal smaller details by turning on micro-contrast, while Micro Sharpness will sharpen your image without introducing artifacts. There's also a Masking slider that allows you to block the effect in areas that need to stay blurry or soft.

A nice touch is that you can save your edits to an Intensify file format so that you can work on an image later. The exporting functionality is great, too. In addition to direct export to SmugMug, Intensify Pro also integrates with Macphun Print Lab, which is powered by MILK Books.

Company: Macphun Software
Price: $59.99
Rating: 5
Hot: Presets; granular adjustments; layer masks