In this Gigapixel AI review, we’ll look at version 6.1 of Topaz Labs’ superb AI image upscaling application. As with previous versions, Topaz Gigapixel v6.1 doesn’t just enlarge your photos by blindly turning one pixel into many. Instead, it uses artificial intelligence to assess your Image and add detail where none was before.
As a result, images upscaled with Topaz Gigapixel AI can look more detailed than the smaller original. Of course, Gigapixel is not fool-proof, and there are alternatives to consider, such as ON1 Resize AI. Nevertheless, Gigapixel-AI remains my favorite application for enlarging photos. But is Gigapixel AI worth it for you? Well, there’s only one way to find out. Jump to Conclusion.
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Table of Contents
- What is Gigapixel AI
- How to Use Gigapixel AI and Video Tutorial
- Is Gigapixel AI any good?
- Speed and Performance
- Gigapixel AI Alternatives
- Recent Posts
What is Gigapixel AI
Topaz Gigapixel AI is a standalone AI image upscaler for enlarging photos. But unlike other image upscalers, which stretch your photo’s detail over a larger canvas, Gigapixel-AI applies artificial intelligence to anticipate and insert additional detail into your upscaled Image. For this reason, photos enlarged with Gigapixel AI can appear more detailed than the smaller original you began with.
Using Gigapixel AI as a Photoshop Plugin
You can use Topaz Gigapixel AI as a plugin for Adobe Lightroom Classic and Photoshop. Alternatively, you can use Gigapixel as a standalone application for PC and Mac.
How much does Gigapixel AI cost?
Now and again, Gigapixel AI is on sale. You can buy Gigapixel AI outright for US$99 and save an additional 15% using the promo code FRIEND15. If you’d like to be notified of deals and discounts, sign up for my weekly email.
Topaz Image Quality Bundle
Another option is to buy Gigapixel AI as part of the Topaz Image Quality Bundle. In addition to Gigapixel, you get the magnificent Sharpen AI which can correct motion blur and poor focus, and Denoise AI, a sublime noise reduction application that removes noise while improving detail. Please find out more in my Topaz Image Quality Bundle Review.
Gigapixel AI Free Download and Trial limitations
If you’re not ready to take the plunge, you can download Gigapixel AI for free. Not only is it free, but you don’t need a credit card, and the trial is unlimited. However, all the enlarged versions of your photos will be watermarked until you become a paying customer. Click Here to download your free Gigapixel AI trial.
Gigapixel AI Promo Code
Latest Version of Gigapixel AI
Gigapixel AI version 6.1
How to Use Gigapixel AI and Video Tutorial
When it comes to using Topaz Gigapixel, things could hardly be more simple. Assuming you are sober and facing the right way, you’ll master Gigapixel AI in about 20 minutes.
1. Resizing your Photo
To begin, select one or more photos you wish to enlarge. After which, you can choose how much you want to upscale your Image using one of the Preset sizes. Alternatively, you can key in the exact dimensions you require.
At this point, Gigapixel AI will upscale your Image using its preferred AI resizing model. If you are happy with the results, you can export your enlarged photo and move on to the next. However, it is possible to get better results with a little fine-tuning.
2. Making your adjustments
While Gigapixel AI does a great job in automatic mode – a few manual adjustments can go a long way.
Fortunately, making manual adjustments is easy and a case of cycling through each of Gigapixel’s AI five upscaling models to see which looks best. You also have the opportunity to adjust the amount of detail and noise reduction. New to Gigapixel version 6.1 is the Face Recovery Mode and Reduce color bleed modes.
3. Exporting your upscaled Image
Once you’re happy with your upscaled image, there’s nothing left to do but to export your resized photo. As you might expect, you can export your Image in multiple formats, including JPEG, TIFF, PNG, and DNG, using variable compression and bit rates (where applicable).
Is Gigapixel AI any good?
Yes. Gigapixel AI is one of the best Image resizing applications on the market today. Furthermore, it’s affordable and straightforward to use.
But seeing is believing. So, I ran some tests to find out if Gigapixel AI is any good. Below, you will find several photos with differing levels of detail and resolution. Overall, it’s apparent that Gigapixel AI will do a great job of upscaling pictures of all sizes, so long as there’s enough detail, to begin with.
Gigapixel AI Before and After Examples
This is a photo of a New Zealand Fur Seal that was taken with a good camera and a sharp lens. As a result, it is a highly detailed 24-megapixel photo and a best-case scenario for Gigapixel AI.
As you might expect, Gigapixel AI had no problem upscaling this high-quality 24-megapixel photo. But 600%!. Yep, this detailed 24-megapixel photo is now a clear 144-megapixel image. Therefore, if you want to turn your best shots into giant prints – try Gigapixel AI.
So, we know Gigapixel AI is fantastic for upscaling high-resolution photos. But what about smaller images? This photo of a Lion was taken with a 6-megapixel Nikon D40 using a cheap AF-S 55-200mm VR lens.
Despite only having 6 megapixels to work with, Gigapixel AI was able to resize the photo to 600% with ease. This is not as surprising as it sounds since the Image is incredibly detailed despite its low pixel count. So how does Gigapixel AI handle low-detail photos?
This 8-megapixel photo was taken with an old Samsung Galaxy S3. As with most photos taken with smartphones, the detail has been compromised by heavy noise reduction leading to posterization (also known as the oil painting look). As a result, there’s far less detail than its 8-megapixel resolution suggests.
Ultimately, it’s not the megapixels that count but the detail. Due to the detail-sapping noise reduction, there is not enough detail left for Gigapixel AI to enlarge the photo with significant effect. That said, a more modest upscale such as 200% is still advantageous. So how well can Gigapixel AI enlarge older photos?
If you’re like me, you have an archive stuffed with photos taken with much older cameras. This photo of Notre Dame Catherdral was taken in 2004 with an old Sony 3-megapixel point-and-shoot. Yet despite its low resolution, the Image is reasonably well detailed and not overly affected by noise reduction.
At this stage, it’s clear that 3-megapixels aren’t sufficient for 600% upscale. But if you want to make large prints of older low-fi photos – you may still be able to enlarge your photos up to 300% with good results.
So, how does Gigapixel AI handle upscaling photos of people? Very well, as a matter of fact. Once again, I enlarged this portrait to 600% without compromising the subject’s features and skin tones.
Speed and Performance
Every photo editor has its cons, and for Gigapixel AI, it’s speed. Each time you adjust the AI model, the Image must be rerendered. This might take between 1 and 10 seconds, depending on the photo.
Furthermore, when you use Gigapixel AI for the first time, it will frequently pause to download an ‘Optimized Model File.’ Thankfully, Gigapixel AI version 6.1 now gives you an option to download all AI models upfront.
But context is important when speed is concerned. After all, upscaling an image to 600% is quite a task. Therefore, in my opinion, the delay feels entirely reasonable. Nevertheless, if you have to work through hundreds of photos, you better get comfortable.
Gigapixel AI Alternatives
The most immediate alternative to Gigapixel AI is ON1 Resize AI. Overall, both are effective at upscaling images.
Gigapixel AI’s multiple AI resizing modes and simple user interface makes it a friendlier option. However, ON1 Resize AI’s multiple Presets, Tiling, and Gallery Wrap modes make it a complete choice for preparing your photos for print.
Overall, Gigapixel AI and ON1 Resize AI offer two different approaches to the same thing. I believe that Gigapixel AI is slightly more effective, and Resize AI is a little faster. But in terms of Image upscaling, you can’t go wrong with either. Read my ON1 Resize AI Review.
Gigapixel AI is a hugely effective image upscaler that happens to be easy to use and affordable. So if that sounds like your thing – it probably is.
Effective Image upscaling
Gigapixels’ sole purpose is to enlarge your Image. And unlike other photo resizing apps that stretch your photo’s detail over a larger canvas – Gigapixel’s AI upscaling algorithm assesses your photo’s detail and adds more. Therefore, a picture upscaled with Gigapixel often looks sharper and more detailed than the smaller image from which it was derived.
This is particularly true of highly detailed photos – regardless of the number of megapixels. For instance, I could upscale 24 and 6-megapixel images to 600% with printable results.
Resizing low-detailed images
Gigapixel AI needs detail much more than it needs megapixels. This is particularly apparent when I tried to resize images taken with my iPhone’s 16-megapixel camera. Due to excessive noise reduction, fine detail was blurred into colored blotches, thus leaving Gigapixel AI less to work with. You can still enlarge low-detailed images, but certainly not to 600%.
Easy to Use
Despite all the clever things under the hood, Gigapixel AI is straightforward to use. If you’re looking for a hands-off approach, you can leave Gigapixel in automatic, and it will choose the best resize settings for you.
But sometimes, you’ll be able to do better still, and it’s well worth cycling through each of Gigapixel’s 5 AI resizing models to see which looks best. And even making fine adjustments to noise and detail is only a matter of dragging a slider with your mouse.
Of course, the more you adjust the Image, the more Gigapixel needs to rerender the result. This delay can take many seconds, and progress can be slow. In my opinion, a little wait is a price worth paying for admission, but ON1’s Resize AI is a little quicker if you’re the impatient type.
Is Gigapixel AI worth it
Gigapixel AI exceeded my expectations. I remember processing my first Image and being blown away by the results. After a lot more testing, I came to realize it does have its limits. At its best, Gigapixel AI can work miracles, and at its worst, it still offers an improvement of some degree.
So if you’re looking for an affordable, easy-to-use, and supremely effective way to enlarge your photos – give Gigapixel AI a go.
Have you used Gigapixel AI or another photo enlargement application – share your experiences in the comments below.
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