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Thread: Stitching Images

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    Moderator Enterprise User Bhikkhu Pesala's Avatar
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    Default Stitching Images

    Several users have asked for IrfanView to stitch images together — not just butt join them, but stitch overlapping areas properly.

    I found Microsoft's Image Composite Editor with a Google search, and in my opinion, it works very well.

    It is simple to use, and works quickly. Drag a bunch of images into its window, and leave it to finish the job while you get on with something else. Export the result in numerous file formats: PNG, JPG, HD Photo, etc.

    Give it a whirl and let me know your results.

  2. #2
    Professional User Mij's Avatar
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    Very impressive. I tried a 5x7MP image stitch that had caused problems for Photostitch (came bundled with my Canon camera).
    Image Composite Editor stitched perfectly in just a few seconds - far faster than Photostitch.

    I have appended a picture showing a comparison of one of the joins - Photostitch, left ; ICE, right
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Stitch comparison.jpg 
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Size:	70.5 KB 
ID:	1628  

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    Professional User Skippybox's Avatar
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    The stitch does look better with ICE, but it seems to have lossed much detail to blur compared to Photostitch.

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    Moderator Enterprise User Bhikkhu Pesala's Avatar
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    Here's an improved version. Thirty-two PNG screen shots from my mapping program. I cropped off the scroll bars with a batch operation, and Microsoft ICE stitched them all in a couple of minutes to show a preview. I exported the result as an 18 Mbyte PNG, and saved that from IrfanView as JPG using a save quality of 50 to make it small enough to attach here.

    The image is 3234 x 5834 pixels. The export process took about eight minutes, so I think the apparent speed of preview is because its only stitching a low resolution preview image. That's good program design — don't spend time processing something that may well be discarded.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	UK Map ICE Low Quality.jpg 
Views:	933 
Size:	1.51 MB 
ID:	1630  
    Last edited by Bhikkhu Pesala; 10.07.2009 at 10:31 PM.

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    Professional User Skippybox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bhikkhu Pesala View Post
    I think FastStone Capture is distorting the screen shots when it saves them to file automatically so I squashed the stitched image vertically by 85% to correct the aspect ratio to what I think it should be.
    I've never noticed that with 5.3. Does that only happen with the latest shareware version(s)?

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    Moderator Enterprise User Bhikkhu Pesala's Avatar
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    I recreated the source files, doing it a bit more slowly this time and the result seems to be fine. I updated the attachment to my previous post.

    I attach a detail from the PNG to show the quality. The PNG is 12 Mbytes when saved from IrfanView with better comrpession than from the Microsoft Image Composite Editor
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IOW ICE.png 
Views:	307 
Size:	31.9 KB 
ID:	1631  
    Last edited by Bhikkhu Pesala; 10.07.2009 at 10:35 PM.

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    Professional User Mij's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skippybox View Post
    The stitch does look better with ICE, but it seems to have lossed much detail to blur compared to Photostitch.
    The resolution of the ICE image was considerably lower. It was really just intended to show the quality of the stitch.
    When I compare like with like ICE appears slightly better quality actually. Here is a blow up of the rock that was along that stitch. Interesting what Photostitch has done with that horizontal crack. Looks quite convincing until you compare it with ICE which shows it like the original.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Rock Comparison.jpg 
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    Default Freeware Stitching Program

    I use AutoStitch V2.2 - Demo Version. I have stitched 40 to 50 images together and I have been very happy with the results. The only downside is you do not have any control. It does its own thing, but it does it well.

    Do not change the memory setting or the program runs out of memory.

    Some examples of my work are at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/hoot_owls/

    hootowls

  9. #9
    Moderator Enterprise User Bhikkhu Pesala's Avatar
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    The Image Composite Editor was updated recently. There is now no limit on the size of images it can stitch. It claims to be able to create Gigapixel images — though IrfanView probably won't be able to load the image unless you have loads of memory.

    I successfully stitched sixty screen shots from Google Earth to produce an image of 13544 x 2387 Pixels (32.33 MPixels). It did not take many minutes and the results are excellent.

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    There are some other stitching tools, which you can try:
    http://hugin.sourceforge.net/ is also free, but a little bit slow

    I use http://www.ptgui.com/ which is not free but good enough for my needs.

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