Nik Color Efex Pro 3 is a suite of plugins for Lightroom, Aperture, Photoshop and Nikon’s Capture NX 2. There are 52 filters available, each having extensive tweaking and customizing capabilities.
I’ve heard a lot of good things about the software, so I downloaded the 15 day trial of the Mac version from Nik Software to see for myself. It’s a fully functional version, but expires after 15 days. I used it extensively during the 15 days and enjoyed it. It worked seamlessly with Lightroom 3 and Photoshop CS4 and was easy to learn. I was able to get great results quickly, and the large variety of filters was a lot of fun to explore! I especially liked the dynamic skin softener, which was fast and gave very natural results. I also like the bicolor and lighten/darken center filters.
Here are a couple photos that I edited with the help of Nik Efex (in conjunction with Lighrooom and Photoshop).
I used the dynamic skin softener, bicolor and vignette filters for this sugar skull photo:
I used the custom bicolor filter on this image:
I’m considering buying the full version, but will wait to see if a new version will be coming out soon, since the current version has been out for a few years now. I find the price to be a little high ($299) for the complete set of 52 filters mainly because I’m able to get similar results with Lightroom and Photoshop – although not always a quickly.
Do you use Nik Color Efex Pro 3? Let me know what you think! Is it worth the price tag?
Here are some reviews:
Using Nik Color Efex Pro 3 to draw the viewer into your image by using the Vignette and Darken/Lighten Center filters