OnOne Software FocalPoint 2 review

Recreate depth of field effects to focus your viewers' attention

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OnOne Software FocalPoint 2 is very easy to use. It's based around a Focus Bug, an on-screen gadget that displays the size and position of the area you want to keep sharply focused. It's called a 'bug' because a series of controls radiating outwards gives it an insect-like appearance.

You drag this Focus Bug from the centre to position it, then drag four white control handles to adjust its size.

A further two diagonal control handles at the top ('antennae') are used to adjust an optional vignette effect and to change the degree of background blur and the amount of feathering - how smoothly the sharp and blurred areas are blended.

OnOne software focalpoint 2

The standard Focus Bug is elliptical, but you can also create planar Focus Bugs to simulate the depth of field of a receding plane. This is how the popular miniature effect is achieved.

We're conditioned to associate shallow depth of field with close-ups, so that if you shoot a real-life scene from a high angle, looking downwards, it can be made to look like a model.

Once you've created your Focus Bug, you can then simulate the characteristic look of certain lenses, adjust the brightness and creaminess of the highlights and even the shape of the lens aperture and the number of blades - this effect is especially noticeable in out-of-focus highlights, and key properties of that elusive quality of bokeh.

OnOne software focalpoint 2

You're not confined to a single Focus Bug. For example, if you're trying to create a convincing depth of field effect in a city scene, where you've got a receding horizontal plane in the road surface and receding vertical planes in the sides of buildings alongside it, you could use additional Focus Bugs to make the effect look more realistic.

You can also create a selection in Photoshop before you start, and OnOne Software FocalPoint 2 will then use that as a mask to keep the selected area sharp.

Finally, there's a freehand Focus Brush for touching up areas that haven't quite worked, where large-scale Focus Bug adjustments would be ineffective or just too time consuming.

Tech Specs

Product TypeSoftware
Software Main TypeGraphics/Multimedia
Brand Nameon1
Language SupportedEnglish
Software Sub TypeImage Editing
Distribution Media/MethodDVD-ROM
Licence PricingStandard
Licence TypeComplete Product
Platform SupportedPC, Intel-based Mac
Operating System SupportedMac OS, Windows

Add Multiple Points of Focus:

  • By popular demand, FocalPoint 2 now allows you to use multiple Focus Bugs to define the area you want to keep in focus. You can combine them to create complex shapes or to highlight multiple subjects.

Works as a Standalone Application:

  • Photoshop. Lightroom. Aperture. All are great applications and we hear every day that your photo editing workflow isn't just in Photoshop anymore. To allow you to get perfect enlargements no matter what your workflow may be, Perfect Resize now works with Photoshop, Lightroom, Aperture and as a standalone application.

Easy to Use Controls:

  • The Focus Bug puts the most commonly used options in a single, easy-to-use control. Simply click and drag to position the blur. Then use the Bug's legs to set the size and shape of the blur. Next, adjust the antennae to control the type and amount of blur and the hardness of the blur edge. Using the Focus Bug is a fluid, real-time experience, just like using a lens but inside Photoshop. You can even tilt Focus Bugs in 3D, creating swing and tilt movements just like a tilt-shift lens.

Highlight Bloom, Brightness and Contrast Controls:

  • Along with the existing film grain controls, FocalPoint 2 adds a new highlight bloom tool which controls how strong highlights are in the bokeh, or blurred area. There are also new brightness and contrast controls for the blurred area of the image, opening a whole new range of creative controls.

Fast Glass Presets & Lens Simulator:

  • The updated blur algorithm used in FocalPoint 2 closely matches actual lens blur to create an authentic out-of-focus look including aperture-shaped highlights. The new blur algorithm is so accurate that realistic depth-of-field changes can be created that look just like they were taken in the camera.
  • Users can now use the new lens presets that are built into FocalPoint 2. These presets simulate highly desired, expensive lenses that produce a bokeh, or out of focus region with a specific look.

Focus Brush:

  • The new Focus Brush lets you paint focus or blur right where you want. You can use it to touch-up the shape of a Focus Bug or you can manually paint anywhere you want. Now in FocalPoint 2 combining the Focus Brush, Focus Bugs and the ability to use selections from Photoshop it's easy to create realistic depth-of-field with even difficult foreground subjects.

Works as a Smart Filter:

  • FocalPoint 2 can now be used as a Smart Filter in Photoshop CS3 and CS4 allowing you to make non-destructive, re-editable blurs and vignettes on Smart Objects like Raw files.

Improved Presets:

  • Presets have been improved to include embedded previews. This makes it easier to select the correct preset, whether inside of FocalPoint 2 or from the integrated Lightroom and Aperture palettes. FocalPoint 2 now also automatically saves your last six used settings as recently used presets so you can easily reproduce settings.

Improved Vignette:

  • Adding a vignette is a time-tested way to reduce distractions and focus the viewer's eye. The vignette controls in FocalPoint 2 have been improved to allow for a more natural, edge-only vignette as well as the option to overlay the vignette to preserve detail.

Application Integration:

  • Photoshop CS4, CS5, CS6
  • Photoshop Elements 9 or 10
  • Photoshop Lightroom 2, 3, or 4
  • Apple Aperture 2.1 or 3 for Mac
ManufactureronOne Software, Inc
Product NameFocalPoint v.2.0
Package TypeRetail
Software NameFocalPoint v.2.0
Manufacturer Part NumberFPNT20201
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.ononesoftware.com
Marketing Information

Put the focus where you want

FocalPoint 2 is an amazing new application that allows you to simulate the blur and depth of field you would think could only be done in camera. But what if you can't shoot a f/1.2 or even f/2.8 and you want that soft, creamy background? That's where FocalPoint 2 comes in to save the day.

FocalPoint 2 lets you create realistic selective focus, depth-of-field and vignette effects that tell your viewers exactly where to look. The intuitive FocusBug controller is just like using a tilt-shift or selective focus lens right inside of Adobe Photoshop.