Fixel ALCE 2 AE

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Quick Overview

Fixel ALCE 2 AE is an Advanced Local Contrast Enhancer.

Fixel ALCE features novel algorithm, to effectively improve and finely tune the Local Contrast of the image by applying local "Auto Level" 'S' curve on the pixels.
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Overview

Fixel ALCE 2 AE is an Local Contrast Enhancer filter.

Fixel ALCE 2 AE applies advanced Local "Auto Levels" on the image, Yes, it does apply the 'S' curve locally.
ALCE benefits from an innovative algorithm which allows it to apply "Auto Level" locally while standard algorithms can only apply "Auto Levels" on the image globally.
By its local nature Fixel ALCE 2 AE avoids the dull and unoptimized look of global operators while it doesn't leave any trace of the artifact which are characteristics of the conventional Shadows / Highlights filters.

Fixel ALCE 2 AE is Multi CPU accelerated and compatible with Adobe After Effects CS5, CS6, CC, CC 2014 & CC 2015 64 Bit on Windows and OS X.

What is Local Contrast

"Local Contrast", this tricky term everybody uses and no one really catches is.
Local Contrast is exactly what ALCE is all about.
Everyone knows the "Auto Level" function which, sometimes, makes wonders in photos if contrast is missing by stretching the image Tonal Range.
Yet, While the whole image looks OK, looking carefully at the details something is clearly missing, something which applies the same operation on the local group of the pixels.
There are pure "White" and "Black" in the image globally, but they are missing locally.
This is what ALCE does, while other "Local Contrast Enhancers" applies "Sharpening" operations, ALCE deals with the tonality of the local group of the pixels.

What Is Local Contrast? | Introducing ALCE by Marco Olivotto is a video that explains ALCE in further detail

This effect does wonders to images with distinct and locally optimized look no other filter can imitate.

ALCE Look

ALCE look is mostly determined by one parameter - Radius.
This parameters sets the size of the group of pixels the "Local Auto Levels" will be applied upon.

Local Contrast Styles

Selection of different radius and intensity yields different looks to the taste of the user.
The classic looks of "High Radius Low Amount" (HiRaLoAm) and "Low Radius High Amount" (LoRaHiAm) are easily achievable

Fixel ALCE 2 AE - Local Contrast Styles
Fixel ALCE 2 AE - Local Contrast Styles - Click for Full Size View

While Low Radius emphasizes local tones and crispiness, High radius works on large surfaces.
One should be noted that by enlarging the radius the effect approaches the "Global Auto Levels" effect.

3D Look

One of ALCE distinct looks is its 3D look which really sets it apart from other products.

Fixel ALCE 2 AE 3D Look
Fixel ALCE 2 AE 3D Look - Click for Full Size View

How is this different than "Unsharp Mask"?

Fixel ALCE 2 AE is different from "Unsharp Mask" since it deals with the tonal range of the local group of the pixels while USM deals with the local structure of the pixels.

ALCE Vs. USM
ALCE Vs. USM - Click for Full Size View

As can be seen, while USM deals with the structure , ALCE optimizes the tonal range by applying 'S' curve locally.
While the USM result is aggressive with "Halos" and over saturation which ruins the tonal range, ALCE result is spot on.
Both filters were applied with Radius 5 and Intensity / Amount of 85.

Features

  • 1 Parameter focused tool for Advanced Local Contrast Enhancement
    The user can set the Radius of the local group of pixels to apply "Auto Levels" on.
  • Advanced Local Algorithm
    Applying 'S' curve locally with minimum artifacts and tonal range abruption / corruption.
  • Many Contrast Styles
    "HiRaLoAm", "LoRaHiAM" or any other combination are 1 slider away.
  • Intuitive & User Friendly
    Full integration with Adobe After Effects using Native Code API.
  • Fixel ALCE 2 AE User Manual.

Fixel Algorithms Features

Fixel ALCE 2 AE Resources

Fixel ALCE 2 AE is an adaptation of the ALCE Filter for Photoshop (by Know How Transfer), as such there are a lot of resources for the applications of ALCE in the post processing phase:

Upgrade Policy

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  • Fixel ALCE 2 AE - Feature Image
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Demo

After Effects CC 2015, CC 2014, CC, CS6, CS5.5, CS5