As with most modules in StarTools, the HDR module comes with a number of presets;
Going beyond the presets, very detailed adjustments can be made, starting with the 'Glow Threshold' parameter. This parameter is determines how bright a pixel needs to be before it is considered for diffraction by the Airy disk diffraction model.
To view just the model that Life is using to enhance the image, the 'Output Glow Only' parameter can be set to 'Yes'. Optionally this output can be used to manipulate the image later using the Layer module, or in a separate application.
The 'Strength' parameter governs the overall strength of the effect.
The 'Inherit Brightness, Color' parameter determines whether brightness or color information is inherited (and thus unchanged) from the source image.
The 'Saturation' parameter controls the colour saturation of the output model (viewable by setting 'Output Glow Only' to 'Yes'), before it is applied to the source image to generate the final output. This parameter can be quite effective for enhancing the color of nebulosity.
The 'Detail Preservation' parameter selects the detail preservation algorithm the Life module should use to merge the model with the source image to produce the output image;
The 'Detail Preservation Radius' sets a filter radius that is used for smoothly blending processed and non-processed pixels, according to the algorithm specified by the 'Detail Preservation' parameter.
The 'Compositing Algorithm' parameter defines how the calculated diffraction model is to be generally combined with the original image:
The 'Airy Disk Sampling' parameter controls the accuracy of the point spread function (PSF) that describes the diffraction model (an Airy disk).
The 'Airy Disk Radius' parameter sets the radius of the Airy disk point spread function (PSF) that is used to diffract the light. Just like in nature, you may spot some (very) subtle rings around the stars after processing. The way this looks can be adjusted using this setting.
Finally, as with most modules in StarTools that employ masks, a 'Mask Fuzz' parameter is available to smoothly blend the transition between masked and non-masked pixels.
As of the 1.4. beta versions, StarTools stores the masks you used in the StarTools.log file.
The 'New Darker Than Old' parameter sets whether newly created pixels should always be darker than the old pixels.
Now consider that every pixel's noise component goes through many other transformations and changes as you process your image.
Current image processing routines and filters are still as 'dumb' as they were in the early 90s.
A very popular, comprehensive tutorial titled "Processing a (noisy) DSLR image stack with StarTools" by Astro Blog Delta.
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