Other way up, I think: DMap on the top, PMax on the bottom.robirdman wrote:The previous 2 images were the same stack, just p& D methods in Zerene.
The bold contour lines are a direct result of extreme variation in brightness across frames. What "depth map" methods do is to simply select pixel values from input frames based on their estimate of which image is in best focus. The map is always continuous, so if the software estimates frame 7 in one place and frame 12 in another, then between the two, pixels will be selected from frames 8, 9, 10, and 11 also. If frames 8 and 11 happen to be unusually bright, then the collection of pixels chosen from those frames will result in two bright "contour lines".Here are 2 area crops of the better, first image.
PMax works in a completely different way that is far too complicated to explain here. Suffice to say that it works mainly with local differences in pixel values, so it's intrinsically much more resistant to variations in overall brightness from one frame to another.
Zerene Stacker is programmed to correct for minor differences in brightness between frames, but it can't handle the extreme variation shown for this collection of photos.
I strongly recommend turning off exposure metering (TTL). Even if everything is running perfectly, you can still get random variation in the chosen exposure if you're unlucky. (2.5 with small noise sometimes rounds to 2 and sometimes to 3.) Just run your flashes in manual mode.
The fact that you're getting an occasional bright frame instead of an occasional dark one suggests to me that something is going wrong in the metering. That could still be caused by the amount of charge on the flash; if the metering pulse ends up being dim, then the exposure pulse will end up being bright.
Yeah, that's one of a sizable collection of "detect bad input" features that's on the to-do list but never seems to make it all the way to the top.Helicon warned about the bightness differences, but Zerene didn't.