Things to take note of before, during and after the shoot
So many CPUs, but which one to pick?
Before the shoot Make the set a comfortable environment
Having a set that is conducive and comfortable is always a good thing. Your subject may not always be a professional model, so setting the right environment and mood will help put them at ease. Music is a great way to set the mood very quickly. Prepare a playlist that best reflects the mood of the pictures you want to create.
The temperature of the studio or location is also a very important aspect of putting people at ease, as body temperature greatly affects your subject’s mood and ability to relax. Take proper care of them so they feel relaxed and present in the moment. You’ll have a better of chance of getting pictures that will look effortless.
Before a shoot, always sit where your subjects are going to be seated to get a sense of what they may be experiencing during the shoot. Put yourself in their shoes - is the air-con blowing into their face? Is the light too hot where they stand? Is there something in their line-of-sight to the camera that may distract them? Feel what they feel and your models will love you for the effort. And it will show in the pictures too.
During the shoot Establish good communication from the start
Clear, clean communication between you and the model is crucial. Make sure he/she can understand and hear you clearly, as a confused model will often activate all the wrong muscle groups on his/her face, resulting in unrelaxed facial expressions or an awkward image. Direct your subjects in their direction, not yours. For example, getting them to look left should be towards their left and not yours.
Always project your voice. Remember that you are behind a camera and your voice may sound muffled, so it’s a good idea to keep yourself clear from other objects and direct the models with clear, audible instructions.
Always keep the subject informed of your moves. If you are simply adjusting focus, let them know; don’t keep them guessing whether a picture is going to be taken or not.
After the shoot Retouching
When editing my pictures in Adobe Photoshop CC, I always start with color grading to get the mood and feel going, and to establish the right tone for the image. I generally use the curves tool, and the hue and saturation for this.
I also work in a non-destructive manner and always have my main image as the background layer, retouching on a layer above it.
Unfortunately, there is just no easy way around retouching skin. So zoom in real close, work on it at the pore level and zoom out often to check the blend. I like to use the healing brush at a size that’s just a little bit bigger than the flaw, and then use the stamp tool at a low opacity of 10 percent to smooth out the edges.
My key is to always strive for perfection but afterwards bringing back skin texture and grain to give the picture a more natural look, and end off with an overall layer of grain to achieve that film-like finish. My setup is a double screen with all the tools on my right screen as I am right-handed and the image itself on my left screen. I also work on a large Wacom tablet for precision.
AMD’s Ryzen CPUs have earned high praise since they were first rolled out. But with a total of seven processors across the Ryzen 5 and 7 line-ups, it can be quite a challenge picking out the right CPU, especially if you’re considering Intel’s own Kaby Lake processors as well.
Ultimately, Ryzen is technologically advanced, but isn’t the fastest. It loses out to the Intel Core i7-7700K in gaming, and doesn’t quite match up to the 10-core Core i7-6950X. But sometimes ‛good enough’ is enough for most folks, and Ryzen is generally very price competitive while offering excellent multi-threaded performance compared to Intel.
If you’re looking to build a new PC, you’re probably having a hard time deciding between AMD and Intel, which given the years-long lack of competition, is saying quite a lot.
But in a nutshell, each Ryzen chip has its own unique proposition. Here’s what you should care about.
Most bang for your buck
The Ryzen 5 1600X is particularly attractive because it is difficult to turn down six cores and 12 threads for its RM1,199 price tag. What’s more, at that price, the closest Intel offering is the Core i5-7600K with just four cores and four threads. It also offers roughly 90 percent of the performance of a Core i7-7700K while costing around two-thirds of the price, which means you’re getting a lot more performance per dollar.
In addition, it has the same base and boost clocks as the RM2,599 Ryzen 7 1800X, which means its gaming performance isn’t even that far behind the flagship Ryzen chip.
But if you want Ryzen 7 1800X performance but don’t want to pay the full price, the RM1,599 Ryzen 7 1700 will plug the gap quite nicely. Boasting over a 20 percent performance boost after overclocking to around 3.95GHz, the 1700 even manages to outdo the stock performance of the 1800X in Cinebench R15.
The seemingly large overclocking headroom is due to the low 3.0GHz base clock, and overclocking helps unlock the full potential of the 8-core/16-thread chip.
Flagship performance on a budget
Like the Ryzen 7 1700, the 1700X is arguably a better deal than the top-end 1800X processor. It offers very similar performance to the latter, while costing RM700 less. The 1700 requires overclocking to be a serious contender, but the 1700X is perfectly fine at stock settings.
That said, it does exceed the default Cinebench score of the 1800X when overclocked to 4.0GHz as well. However, if the best possible performance in CPU-intensive tasks is not a top priority, the 1700X will do just fine for your computing and gaming needs.