DxO and their completely ridiculous licensing

I’m using Previously I used DxO Optics pro to adjust and correct some of my images. But because of their stupid licensing system I’ve been forced to use other solutions lately.

And my conclusion is that you probably don’t need DxO.

The licensing

I’m using several professional software packages. Adobe Lightroom, Photoshop, Final Cut Pro, iStopMotion Pro. Elgato Turbo HD, Apple Keynote etc. Pretty expensive and professional software.

I’m working on several different computers. But my main workstations are:
1. My MacBook Pro (on the road)
2. My 24″ iMac (at home)
3. My MacMini (for time consuming batch jobs)

I would guess that laptop + desktop machine is pretty usual. But because I’m working on huge amounts of large files I also use my MacMini from time to time. Simply because that’s the computer that is running 24/7.

And all my professional software is installed on all these computers. I use the same license key on all of them because I never use the computers at the same time.

But this won’t work for DxO. When you buy their 299 Euro Elite license you’re only allowed to install the software on two computers.

I’ve run into trouble several times because of this.

Here is one scenario: installed on iMac and MacBook pro. Then my MacBook pro died. I get a new machine and get a message that I’m not allowed to install on an extra computer. My two installs are already used.

The result is that I have to send an email to DxO and wait for an answer and then after explaining the problem I’m granted access to another install.

Currently I’m running DxO on my laptop and my iMac. A couple of days ago I returned from a holliday and wanted to start a huge batch job of DxO processing on my MacMini. When I tried to install it I got the usual message: not allowed.

I email DxO and explain the problem. I’ve paid for the license. I don’t want to run it on several computers at the same time, but I want to be able to run it on the computer in my house that is running 24/7 so it can do the processing while I’m sleeping. Yes, I could set my iMac to run all night, but that wouldn’t be very environmentally friendly, and it is the MacMini that is placed in our home in a way where it can run all night without disturbing us with noise etc.

In total I had to wait for more than a week for this answer from DxO.:

“Hello Eirik,
Thank you. The license agreement limits installation and activation to two systems at the same time. If you do need a third activation, that will require the purchase of an additional license.

DxO Support Team
DxO Labs”

Well, I don’t have to buy several licenses of Lightroom, Photoshop, Keynote, iStopMotion and all the other packages I use just because I want to install them on the three computers I use.

Fortunately the latest version of Lightroom have included lens correction. And my quick tests show that for me, I really don’t need DxO anymore. This is not a scientific test and I really, really hope that the DxO correction is way better than the Lightroom correction. Or, at least 299 Euro worth of pure quality… But for me, the benefits of using Lightroom exceeds the extra hassle and probably slightly better quality of DxO:

– Lightroom doesn’t have that stupid licensing system
– Lightroom is much faster
– Keeping all my work inside of Lightroom gives a much simpler workflow
– For me, the quality is good enough

Here is my quick test. Using a fisheye image shot with my Canon 5D Mark II and my Canon 15mm f2.8 fisheye:

Original image:

Defished with Lightroom:

Defished with DxO:

Comparison from a corner of the image. No defish but all lens corrections (click the image for full size):

DxO and their completely ridiculous licensing

Two very strange coincidents


I am at the phone with my friend Asbjørn Følstad of SINTEF in Norway (The Foundation for Scientific and Industrial Research). He asks about my recent trip to Ljubljana. I answer and also directs him to my blog where I have published my presentation and some images from my trip. He looks up eirikso.com while we’re still on the phone. Suddenly he says somethink like:

“But, what!? That’s me!”
My immediate answer is “what are you talking about?”.
“I am talking about that boat that is about to be run over by the large ferry”
“That’s me and my friend out sailing last sunday”

Now that’s a bit of a coincidence! Mr. Følstad is an experienced sailor and could tell me that the situation was not too dramatic. He knows the water and the course of that ferry very well. Still, there wasn’t a lot of wind and the Crown of Scandinavia was closer than usual.

But the fact that I shoot that image from several hundred meters away totally at random and then we learn that it is a friend of mine on board. Improbabilities…

Then this happens:


Some minutes ago I recieve this comment on my post from Ljubljana:

Ana Says:
June 15th, 2007 at 1:27 pm e
Oh, by the way, the guy on a bicycle with a blue T-shirt is my schoolmate from grammar school, his name is Matjaz.

What should I say? There are about 300 000 people living in Ljubljana. And one of my readers know the person in this image. I was busy shooting something else when this nice combination of colour and people and motion struck the corner of my eye. Strange stuff.

And by the way. I do a bit of street photography. A lot of the images are not published on public sites like Flickr because I don’t like to publish images of people that I have photographed without asking. When the images are as nice as this one I use my right to publish images photographed on public places. If you find yourself in any of the images in my Flickr stream or here on eirikso.com and want to be removed please drop me a line.

Two very strange coincidents