Visible Results Plugin for Pictures


After I was first requested if I wished to overview Boris FX Optics, I imagined I’d simply be taking a look at one other spiffed up presets bundle. At greatest, one thing á la Topaz or Nik Filters (each of which I exploit sometimes).

At worst, one thing alongside the strains of Luminar’s “Appears to be like” (in my view, one of many weaker of Skylum’s choices). Boy was I unsuitable!

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Boris FX Optics

Add Hollywood-level visible results in a snap, with hundreds of inventive presets and glorious layer and masking performance for max management over each element.

Use coupon code SHOTKIT-2022 to avoid wasting 15%.

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Boris FX Optics isn’t simply peddling some elegant appears to be like – their particular results are actually distinctive, particularly in that many are rendered in real-time. You get management over nearly each single facet of every impact.

Let’s check out what this spectacular piece of software program has to supply and whether or not it’s best for you.

What’s Boris FX Optics?



  • Beautiful visible results
  • Superior layer performance
  • A number of masking choices
  • Correct EZ masking
  • Layer masks are transferrable between PS and Optics
  • Contains 75 Sapphire results filters
  • Unbelievable stage of management over parameters
  • Tutorial movies obtainable
  • Standalone + PS/LR plugin
  • Cheap Worth

  • Excessive studying curve
  • May be resource-heavy on some computer systems
  • Overwhelming quantity of selections

On the most elementary stage, Boris FX Optics is an picture enhancing software with filters that vary from fundamental picture changes to Hollywood-level particular results.

It really works as each a standalone program and as a plugin for Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom.

Boris FX as an organization is greatest recognized for film results used on movies reminiscent of Star Wars, Recreation of Thrones, The Mandalorian, Avatar, and so many extra. Optics, nonetheless, was designed particularly with nonetheless images in thoughts.

This system consists of a lot of their best-loved cinematic results, in addition to a formidable array of true-to-life movie shares, specialised lens results, and nearly each lighting impact you possibly can think about.

There are ten filter classes: Shade, Diffusion/Blurs, Movie Lab, Grades/Tints, Picture, Lens/Distort, Gentle, Particle Phantasm, Render and Stylize. Inside every filter class, yow will discover a ton of presets – virtually all with an intensive set of customizable parameters.

Mixed with this system’s layer and masking skills, the inventive choices actually appear to have no restrict.


  • Skilled Cinema-High quality FX

Cinema-quality FX

Picture courtesy of Boris FX

What actually units Boris FX Optics aside is the pure genius of its cinematic results. When you get the hold of how this system works, including exact, top-level eye sweet is extremely straightforward. The largest hindrance is the sheer quantity of results to select from.

Within the 2022 model, there are 160 filters and actually hundreds of presets. As I discussed earlier than, these vary from fundamental picture changes to the particular results you may see in an action-adventure film.

Explosions, lightning bolts, mists… If you happen to’ve seen it on display, it’s doubtless Boris FX Optics has it.

In reality, this latest replace consists of a variety of the cinematic particular results beforehand obtainable solely of their movie and video choices – the Sapphire filters. These embody the fanciest of the lighting results and when used properly, they’re merely beautiful.

Lighting Special Effects

This picture was created utilizing a number of of the superb Sapphire filters – Lens Flare, Sparkles, Aurora, and Vignette.

The Boris FX Optics lighting filters vary from merely helpful to utterly wonderful.

It’s straightforward to yield to the temptation to stay with the extra spectacular results – at the very least for some time – however as soon as I began taking part in round with their subtler results I used to be amazed at what a optimistic distinction they made. Their “ambient mild” filter alone has made an enormous distinction to a number of pictures.

Apart from Ambient Gentle, you too can add Auroras, Edge Rays, Glints, Glows, Glow Rings, Gobos (over 800 of them!), Gentle Leaks, Gentle Rays, and a lot extra.

Understand that most of those classes have a variety of presets inside them. (There are 150 lens flares alone – all of them glorious!)

In reality, there are such a lot of of them that it’s straightforward to get misplaced and/or neglect the place a sure impact is. Fortunately the search capabilities work properly (for those who keep in mind what the impact is named). You can too favourite your most-used filters.

Optics Particle Illusion

This was initially only a boring candid shot I took of somebody photographing the ocean. I cropped down to simply her arms and digital camera, added in some Ambient Gentle and adjusted the colour tone, after which selected some particles from the Sci-fi sequence. It went from a lacklustre picture to this in about 20 minutes. Had I taken extra time with it, I may have gotten the power and route of the particles good, as every thing with particles is infinitely adjustable.

Probably the most thrilling addition to Optics 2022 (apart from the extra Sapphire filters) is the brand new Particle Phantasm class. With it, you possibly can add the phantasm of nearly any type of 3D particles, from smoke and steam to water, fireworks, and fireballs.

There’s even a Particle Phantasm engine that lets you dial in each element, together with the dimensions of the particles, spin, power, angle, and even the place within the timeline of their motion you need to freeze the motion. (You are able to do this outdoors the engine as properly.)

Optics Particle Illusion Generator

The Particle Phantasm Generator has a steeper studying curve than the primary Optics interface, nevertheless it permits you to management actually each factor of how the particles current.

It takes some time to get the hold of it (even with the academic movies), however the prospects are actually infinite – it’s about as 3D as you will get in a 2D picture.

Movie Color Grading - Bladerunner 2049

Bladerunner 2049

Whereas it’s change into frequent for enhancing packages to supply units of LUTs, I’ve by no means seen such a full assortment of colour grades obtainable in a single place for no further value. Included in these are 89 color-grade presets from well-known motion pictures.

You could find these underneath their Movie Lab tab, together with the opposite historic movie shares obtainable (over 600).

Movie Film Stocks - Children of Men

Youngsters of Males

Youngsters of Males has a decidedly cooler colour grade than both Blade Runner 2049 (which appears to be like just like the world is on fireplace) or Jurassic Park (under).

Movie Film Stocks - Jurassic Park

Jurassic Park

As a lot as I’m a fan of making my very own colour grades, I did discover it fascinating to check out the completely different appears to be like from a few of my favourite movies.

Layer Functionality in Boris FX Optics

One of many extra essential elements of how Optics works is its layer panels. They’re particularly necessary because it doesn’t appear to be you possibly can add a couple of impact to a single layer (besides with the Particle Phantasm Generator). Every new impact wants its personal new layer.

Fortunately the layer panels function kind of as one would count on them to. The order is drag-able, as are the masks. There are many mixing modes, in addition to an opacity grasp for every layer.

Optics Layer Masking

Utilizing EZ Masks to pick the background. (Often, you’d use inexperienced for the topic, however generally I do the reverse if all I’m wanting to alter is the background. In the long run it doesn’t actually matter, as you possibly can simply invert the masks.)

I used to be stunned by how properly the masking choices in Optics truly work – particularly the EZ Masks possibility (seen above).

Along with EZ Masks, you too can create masks by way of the paint, gradient, spot, path, snap, and choice choices.

You should use a number of masks on a single layer, use the mixing modes on the masks, and even import masks from Photoshop by way of the alpha channel. There’s even Wacom pill assist.

What I discovered difficult, nonetheless, is that when I selected a way for making a masks, I used to be caught with which means for making any additional changes until I wished so as to add one other masks to the identical layer. For instance, if I wished to first make the masks with EZ masks after which use a brush for fine-tuning, I’d have to make use of two separate masks.

That being stated, the EZ masks is surprisingly correct. In fact, for those who want very good masking accuracy and/otherwise you favor Photoshop’s superior masking instruments, you possibly can at all times create your masks in Photoshop after which import them into Optics.

General Efficiency

Whereas many opinions report that Optics is fairly draining on their {hardware}, I had no issues on my 2017 iMac till I used as much as six or seven layers. At that time, I began having a number of delays – particularly when shifting components round inside an impact.

This truly isn’t that shocking, provided that the consequences are literally being rendered, not simply overlayed. In reality, I used to be truly stunned at how properly my laptop did with all of it. The delays weren’t too overwhelming till I actually piled the layers on.

I did have a number of different issues, essentially the most persistent being having this system freeze once I went to render a Particle Phantasm.

In any other case, every thing was snappy – much more so than with Luminar 4, Luminar AI, or On1 2022 on my laptop.

Worth for Cash

Boris FX Choices is obtainable each as a subscription ($9 month-to-month/$99 yearly) and as a one-time buy ($149 together with one yr of upgrades). With that, you get the standalone program and plugins for each Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom.

Whether or not it’s price it to you actually relies on what you love to do together with your pictures.

If you happen to steadily must design customized graphics, then that is an unimaginable piece of software program at an awesome value.

Along with its specialty results, the sheer variety of optical digital camera filter presets, colour grades, and movie shares far exceeds most different packages – with no hidden prices or additional purchases wanted.

Alternatively, for those who’re extra into picture realism and simply need to make commonplace edits to your pictures, Optics most likely wouldn’t be price your time or cash.

In fact, you should utilize Optics as a regular picture editor for normal edits, however that’s probably not the place it shines. It’s actually for these seeking to create incredible unique paintings.

Personally, I wouldn’t have been tempted with out having tried it out first.

(And sure, there’s a free trial obtainable.)

Boris FX Optics Coupon Code

Get a 15% low cost on Boris FX Optics through the use of the coupon code SHOTKIT-2022 at checkout.

Options to Boris FX Optics

Whereas there are loads of picture editors on the market providing intensive presets, I can’t say I’ve run throughout something fairly like what Optics provides – neither when it comes to variety nor when it comes to the intimate management you’re given over the parameters.

Nik Filters by DXO – a long-time photographer staple – is similar value ($149) and provides incredible filters with loads of fine-tuning choices, nevertheless it’s virtually like apples and oranges with regards to the varieties of results they’re providing.

The identical is true of Topaz Studio II ($99). It has lots of of appears to be like, however nothing even remotely much like what Boris FX Optics provides when it comes to its high-end film results.

ON1 and Luminar each have plenty of presets, however once more, nothing that compares to, say, the Sapphire assortment of filters Optics provides.

In addition they don’t come near providing the identical stage of management that Optics does – particularly now that Luminar AI and Neo don’t have layer performance.

In fact, each On1 and Luminar supply much better workflows for normal picture enhancing, however as talked about earlier than, that’s probably not what Optics is for. I wouldn’t suggest utilizing it as your sole picture editor.

Boris FX Optics Evaluation | Conclusion

I went into trialling Boris FX Optics considerably bemused at having to look via one other big set of results filters. After simply a few hours of taking part in round with it, I got here out completely loving it.

Whereas I’m extra of a photo-realistic photographer, I’ve dabbled on occasion in digital artwork (particularly once I was an online designer) and Optics has actually whetted my edge for getting again into it.

It takes a job that may take numerous hours in Photoshop and actually turns it out in moments. It nonetheless takes loads of experimenting to get the proper look, however nearly anybody can do it.

If you happen to’re a photographer who doubles as a digital artist or a graphic designer, you’ll merely LOVE this program.

It’ll most likely be slightly overwhelming to start with till you get used to the place every thing is, however when you get the hold of it, it’s nothing in need of enjoyable… and infinitely helpful for those who’re frequently required to supply progressive, inventive imagery.

(Consider, the entire above pictures – apart from the one from Boris FX – have been created whereas having the software program solely per week and taking part in round with it in my spare time. I’m under no circumstances a particular results professional and whereas I’ve accomplished a good quantity of compositing and graphic artwork, it’s been a very long time since I’ve targeted on it.)

Nonetheless on the fence?

You’ll be able to obtain the free trial by clicking under and take Optics for a check run.

Unique Low cost

Boris FX Optics

Boris FX Optics

Add Hollywood-level visible results in a snap, with hundreds of inventive presets and glorious layer and masking performance for max management over each element.

Use coupon code SHOTKIT-2022 to avoid wasting 15%.

Get Low cost