Article By Jimmy McIntyre

This week’s tutorial is a superb technique for removing a great deal of noise from your image in Photoshop, without losing any details.

If we are forced to shoot at a high ISO due to low light, we will probably end up with a lot of noise. Using noise removal software like Topaz DeNoise (one of the best in my opinion) will certainly do a good job of cleaning up the noise, but the stronger the noise removal, the more detail we stand to lose in other areas.

To remove noise and preserve details at the same time, we can use the technique in this video (Smart Object>Stack>Mean). But to do so requires us to take 5, 6, 7 exposures of the same scene shot in quick succession. It would be easier if there were no moving objects in the frame, like people walking around, but the more exposures you use the less this becomes an issue.

Since noise isn’t static (doesn’t stay in one place) between exposures, we can combine all of our exposures as a Smart Object and take the mean for each pixel, which will typically leave us with noise-free images that have plenty of lovely detail.

If that sounds confusing, don’t worry about it. The video will show you how easy it is.