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Is Brilliance AI Setup Well For Your RAW Images In ON1 Photo RAW 2024?

Since the release of ON1 Photo Raw 2024, Brilliance AI has been a tool many people struggle to get updated properly. Sometimes it overcooks the image and sometimes it just does not do anything worth using.

In this post I hope to share my settings for Brilliance AI and why I made that decision. The settings I share in this post are the ones I currently use on all of my RAW images in ON1 Photo RAW 2024.

Now for those of you who just want the settings to test them out, you can copy the screenshot below.

Now, before we dive into my reasons for selecting the numbers/settings that I did, it is important to note that I do my best to achieve correct exposure in the camera. Please do not think Brilliance AI is going to save poor capturing techniques. All of my settings are based on being +/- 1/3 of a stop from what I would consider proper exposure for the scene. This becomes more important as we get into ISO settings. If I am trying to do something more creative and I purposely underexpose or overexpose in camera, I usually don't use Brilliance AI to achieve the tone. I manually edit that image.

With all of that out of the way, let's take a look at the settings.

  1. White Balance: I like to leave this option to "As Shot" because I usually get the correct white balance in the Camera. Most modern cameras are really good at getting the correct White balance so not much to discuss here. I will note however that if you would like Brilliance AI to make color corrections, you will need to set this to "Auto". See the Image below.

2. Apply NoNoise AI to RAW Photos Above: I set this to "1600" because on my cameras this is where I think Noise needs to be managed. I find on most of my cameras (Canon EOS R6II, Sony A7RIV, and Sony a6700) that at 1600 and beyond is the point where I need some noise reduction applied. It would be nice to have controls over how much NoNoise AI kicks in when Brilliance AI is activated, but we got what we have on that for now.

3. Apply Portrait AI to Prominent Faces: I leave this to "On" because many of my photos have people in them. Portrait AI works well enough for me to keep active so I get slightly edited portraits in one click. I usually need to go and update that information later, but this is a great starting point.

4. Customize Brilliance AI: Now we are getting into the meat and potatoes of the settings. Everything I change in this section is based on my shooting style, but it works well on other RAW images shot by various photographers.

Amount: I set this to "70" because that seems to be the sweet spot for the exposures that I make. This number can be increased on an image where I really missed exposure, but most of the time 70 gets me right where I need to be.

Midtones: I don't move this slider are all in the settings because I usually like to adjust that myself. This is the one slider that allows me to push the middle greys in the direction I prefer, and I don't want the AI making too many decisions for me.

Contrast: I push this to about 3 because it adds a small amount of contrast to my images. I really enjoy having punchy images and most RAW images are flat, so adding contrast is great in my opinion.

Temperature: Since I am not doing anything with the white balance, I leave this alone and modify as needed.

Vibrance: This slider seems to always give me the most natural color adjustments. Since RAW files are mostly flat, and I use two cameras with different sensors I opt to keep this number low and make adjustments on individual images as needed. No matter what though, all of my RAW files require some vibrance. If you only have one camera, then you should be able to tune this for your specific camera.

5. Apply Local Adjustments Automatically: I leave this off because the AI masking has not been my friend with these adjustments. At the time of writing this article, ON1 is preparing to release a newer version of the AI masking, so this may become more useful with that release.

Well, that is everything when it comes to Brilliance AI from my workstation. Test out these settings and make tweaks to it for your own needs, but I would love to hear how this works out for you.

Until the next time,

Stay Inspired and Keep Creating!

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1 Comment

Great article Chris, thanks!

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