Nik Collection sees an upgrade with ClearView and U Point technologies (2024)

  • Software
  • ByBob Coates
Nik Collection sees an upgrade with ClearView and U Point technologies (2)

Share with
your friends:

Leave a comment

I have always been a fan of the Nik filters suite. I bought it in the beginning when it was pretty darn expensive. Then I watched as Google gave it away for free, but didn’t support updates. And finally, I cheered when DxO took over and added ongoing support.

Now I am even more excited, as DxO has released Nik Collection 5 with a number of improvements.

While most of us know Nik as a plugin for Photoshop and Lightroom, Nik Collection 5 is able to work as a standalone program. It can also be used as a plug-in for the DxO PhotoLab 5. As a bonus, when you get the Nik plugin collection you also get DxO PhotoLab 5 Essentials at no additional charge.


  • The collection has been upgraded to work with current computer operating systems
  • Interfaces in several plugins have been modernized and improved
  • DxO ClearView technology has been added within individual plugins for handling haze, fog and smoke in the image
  • U Point Technology has been added to individual plugins and simplified
  • Includes DxO PhotoLab 5 Essentials at no additional charge


  • The collection is not fully upgraded for Mac M1 machines as standalone software (although it’s in the pipeline to be completed soon)
  • U Point masking is not quite where I would like it, although it has been improved

Major upgrades

In addition to supporting new versions of software and operating systems a number of the individual plugins have had a pretty serious makeover.

Tops on my list was making the U-Point technology much easier to use. I always had a hard time bending the selections to my will. So much so that I didn’t use the U Point tech at all. Instead, I put the layer with Nik changes into my Photoshop file and used the masking there.

I may still use the Photoshop masking but the easier to use U Point selections will make that necessary less often.

Same filter set, better interface

My favorite plugins are still Color Efex Pro and Silver Efex Pro. Both have had improvements in the new version that make me like them even more than before. Color Efex Pro 5 and Analog Efex received the same interface makeover as with a recent upgrade to Silver Efex Pro 3. If Nik Collection 5 only had these three plugins I would buy it. But, there’s plenty more for you to explore and use as well.

Included in Nik Collection 5

  • Color Efex Pro 5 with over 55 filters for creatively enhancing your image color, tone, contrast and more.
  • Nik Silver Efex Pro 3 is one of the most versatile black and white conversion tools out there. From starting point presets through many options for dialing in tone, contrast and localized structure. Ansel would have been proud!
  • Analog Color Efex for adding Classic Camera and film stocks.
  • Dfine 2 for Noise reduction.
  • HDR Efex 2 for blending High Dynamic Range images.
  • Sharpener Pro 3 for before work on your images and after for output in printing.
  • Perspective Efex. Just as it sounds for cleaning up the leaning camera images.
  • Viveza 3 for adjusting color and tone

Pricing and availability

Here’s the really good news as far as I’m concerned. When I saw the improvements, I pictured the price being much higher. Turns out DxO is keeping the new user price at $149. Those who are upgrading from Nik Collection 4, it’s only $79.

I’ve always said when asked if you should invest in software plug-ins, “Do you have time and expertise to do the changes by hand? Or, should you invest money to save time?” The answer here is a no-brainer for me. This collection gets two thumbs-up from me … cause I don’t have any more thumbs.

If you aren’t familiar with the Nik Collection 5 lineup of filters and want to be sure it’s for you before buying the set you can download and put them though your paces for 30 days before making the commitment.

Creatives and techies will like this collection

This collection is a must have if you are like me. I want to be creative but I also want many of my images to be technically correct. The plugins help you do all of that faster and with more accuracy than trying to figure it out by yourself. Who doesn’t like WYSIWYG type technology?

Yours in Creative Photography, Bob

Tell your story with the second annual Visual Storytelling Conference!

Experience four days of interactive, online training sessions featuring a range of educational content with experienced photographers and content creators. This free event kicks off with a series of technical boot camps to build essential skills, followed by live, online sessions on photography, video, business and social media. Join live from March 10-13, 2022!

By shopping with our partners and affiliates, you help keep content on Photofocus free. Click here to learn more.

Nik Collection sees an upgrade with ClearView and U Point technologies (7)

Bob Coates

Bob is a lens-based artist and has had the honor and privilege to author books and articles on photography and has presented seminars and programs from Hawaii to the Caribbean. As a former Panasonic Lumix Ambassador, he has been able to stay up with the latest technology in the micro four-thirds cameras and now uses Olympus cameras as well. Coates is a successful commercial and fine art photographer based in Sedona, AZ with his wonderful wife who makes it possible for him to do all he does in the photography industry. Need a speaker? Get in touch.

Art website | Photography blog | Commercial website

Related topics

June 20, 2022

  • DXOnik collectionnik collection 5

Leave a comment

Thanks to our partners who make Photofocus possible

Tamron – Need lightweight, compact mirrorless lenses? Tamron has you covered, with superior optics perfect for any situation. With weather sealing and advanced image stabilization, you’ll open up your creative possibilities.

AfterShoot – AfterShoot helps photographers cull their photos faster, leaving them more time to spend on creative tasks. Save $10 with the code PHOTOFOCUS10.

Capture One – Capture One creates powerful photo editing software for all kinds of photographers. Its authentic true-to-life color processing, seamless editing experience, and fastest tethering in the industry gives you total creative control.

Mylio – Access your photos from anywhere, without the cloud! Easily showcase your photos on-the-go, resolve duplicates, find faces and look for those stunning locations.

Skylum – Your photos, more beautiful in minutes. Makers of Luminar and Aurora HDR, Skylum adapts to your style and skill level. Check out Luminar Neo’s unique sky replacement and portrait editing tools, now available.

B&H – B&H is a world renowned supplier of all the gear photographers, videographers, and cinematographers need and want to create their very best work.

You might also like

DxO PureRAW 1.5 update expands on options

Correcting distortion easily with Nik Collection’s Perspective Efex

A first look at Nik Collection 3

Processing an Olympus Live ND image with Nik Silver Efex Pro 2

Step back in time with DxO FilmPack 6

Creating black and white images with Silver Efex Pro

You might also like

Three simple ways to improve your photos

A first look at Nik Collection 3

Software grab bag: Six post-processing apps that can help you now

Get more in your inbox

Sign up for our newsletter to get the latest from Photofocus delivered each week.

Nik Collection sees an upgrade with ClearView and U Point technologies (2024)


Is Nik Collection 4 upgrade worth it? ›

Though the programs have always had their own personality, the Nik 4 upgrade feels incomplete and premature. Don't get me wrong. The upgrade to Silver Efex Pro is worth it for fans of the plugin. The Meta-presets hint at a future move towards a more integrated user experience.

Is it still possible to get the free Nik Collection? ›

The simple answer to this is yes you can still get a free download of the Nik Collection download.

What is the latest version of the Nik Collection? ›

Nik Collection 5 is the latest version of DxO's photo editing software suite. This is a powerful editing tool to enhance your photos in an intuitive and easy manner. Nik Collection Version 5 is equipped with 8 different tools that will improve your photos in a unique way.

What is included in Nik Collection? ›

The Nik Collection also includes some tools for technical, rather than artistic, work. You get Dfine 2 for noise reduction and Sharpener Pro 3 for detail enhancement. These functions aren't exclusive to Nik, however. Lightroom and Capture One both have them and don't require you to render out a TIF.

Can I use Nik collection without Photoshop? ›

You can't execute a Nik Plugin file other than inside a host application like Photoshop. These files won't help us to run the Nik Collection standalone. We need to use the Nik Collection application files for that.

How many computers can you install Nik Collection on? ›

Nik Collection can be activated on a total of three personal computers, as long as it is never run on more than one computer at a time. You may install on both Mac and PC with the same license.

How do I upgrade my Nik Collection? ›

First, log in to your customer account, and then please choose "My Software" in order to see all your current software along with the respective upgrade options on the right-hand side.

Does Nik collection work with Photoshop 2021? ›

Nik Collection 3 by DxO is not yet compatible with Photoshop 2021 /// Hot fix is planned. General online Support is available only to customers who have purchased the paid version of the Nik Collection by DxO available since June 2018.

Who owns Nik Collection? ›

In September 2012, Nik Software was acquired by Google for an undisclosed amount. After acquiring Nik, Google dropped the price of the software from $500 to $150. On March 24, 2016, Google announced that they would make Nik Collection free.

How do I install Google Nik Collection in Photoshop 2022? ›

When I found the Nik folder, I right-clicked on it and selected copy (I found mine in the Adobe Photoshop 2021 folder), and then I went to the Adobe Photoshop 2022 folder, clicked on the folder to open it, and then pasted it it in and the Nik folder was now copied into the new Photoshop 2022 version.

Does Nik collection work with raw files? ›

If you work with RAW files, you'll either need a compatible host software such as DxO PhotoLab, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Lightroom Classic CC, or Affinity Photo in order to use Nik Collection as a plug-in or another RAW converter to convert your RAW files to JPEG or TIFF before processing.

What is included in Nik Collection 5? ›

The full list of plug-ins found in the Nik Collection 5 is:
  • Analog Efex Pro.
  • Color Efex Pro.
  • Dfine.
  • HDR Efex Pro.
  • Perspective Efex.
  • Silver Efex Pro.
  • Sharpener Pro.
  • Viveza.

How do I use Nik Software in Photoshop? ›

To open a Nik plugin from the Filter menu, click on Filter. At the bottom of the menu, you will see the Nik Collection. Here you can select any of the plug-ins in the Nik Collection. When you click one, it will launch that plug-in, loading the current image you are editing.

Is Silver Efex Pro free? ›

Silver Efex Pro is a free plug-in available from the Google Nik Collection. This easy-to-use program offers photographers the opportunity to mimic dark room treatments digitally.

Is Nik Collection 4 stand alone? ›

DxO recently announced that it has acquired the Nik Collection suite of popular photo tools after Google abandoned development in May. The Collection is still available as a free download and can be run as standalone programs independent of Photoshop and Lightroom. Here's how.

Can I install Nik collection on more than one computer? ›

You can activate Nik 2 on up to three devices.

What is the NIK creative bundle? ›

The Creative Efex Collection Software Bundle from Nik Software is a collection of popular software plug-ins for use in Photoshop, Lightroom, or Aperture. It is compatible with Mac and Windows operating systems. The bundle includes HDR Efex Pro, Silver Efex Pro 2, and Color Efex Pro 4.0.

What is Nik Collection by DxO? ›

Endless possibilities. From within Photoshop, Lightroom, or as standalone software, Nik Collection 5 is a suite that gives you vast photographic potential. Learn more.

How do I use Nik Software? ›

Everything You Need To Know To Get Started with the Nik Collection 3 by ...

Does Nik collection work with Affinity Photo? ›

2020 Update

In February 2020, DXO released the Nik Collection 2.5. This included changes to ensure the Nik Collection is fully compatible with Affinity Photo.

How do I use Nik collection in Lightroom? ›

On the face of it, using the Nik Collection in Lightroom appears simple. You find the photo you want to edit. Right-click with your mouse. Select “Edit in” from the popup menu and pick the Nik plugin you want to use.

Does Nik collection work with Lightroom CC? ›

Without any maintenance and development, Nik Collection withered on the vine and the plugins ended up no longer working with newer versions of Adobe's image editing like Photoshop CC and Lightroom CC. Thankfully, Nik Collection was eventually rescued by DxO, a developer of imaging software.

How do I remove Nik Collection from Photoshop? ›

Look in Preferences at the External Editing tab. You can delete Nik entries. Also in Plugin Manager, there may be a reference to HDREfex. In the Status section, you can go to where the plugin is stored - usually a Modules folder - and delete that file.

How do I install Photoshop plugins 2022? ›

Here's a simple way to install Photoshop plugins:
  1. Open Photoshop.
  2. Select Edit from the dropdown menu, and select Preferences > Plugins.
  3. Check the “Additional Plugins Folder” box to accept new files.
  4. Download a plugin or filter to your desktop.
  5. Open your Program Files folder and select your Photoshop folder.
Jun 23, 2022

How do I install Google Nik Collection in Photoshop? ›

Installing the Google Nik Collection

Click the Download button to download the plug-in for Windows or MacOS. Installation is easy: Simply execute and install the downloaded file. During the installation process, Google Nik Collection will link with Photoshop and with Lightroom and Aperture (if installed).

How do I activate Nik Collection? ›

We recommend activating Nik Collection in standalone mode, rather than as a plug-in: please double click on any Nik application icon to launch them this way. Enter your activation code in the white bar and then click the button "Activate" once entered.

How do I use Google Nik Collection? ›

Using the Nik Collection Standalone - YouTube

Does DxO PhotoLab 4 include Nik? ›

Re: Does DXO PhotoLab include the Nik Collection? No, it does not include Nik collection. You have U points for local adjustments, like capture NX.

Does Nik collection work on raw files? ›

If you work with RAW files, you'll either need a compatible host software such as DxO PhotoLab, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Lightroom Classic CC, or Affinity Photo in order to use Nik Collection as a plug-in or another RAW converter to convert your RAW files to JPEG or TIFF before processing.

What is the NIK creative bundle? ›

The Creative Efex Collection Software Bundle from Nik Software is a collection of popular software plug-ins for use in Photoshop, Lightroom, or Aperture. It is compatible with Mac and Windows operating systems. The bundle includes HDR Efex Pro, Silver Efex Pro 2, and Color Efex Pro 4.0.

Does DxO PhotoLab 5 include Nik? ›

The lite version of DxO's PhotoLab software, the ESSENTIAL Edition, has become part of the Nik Collection and is included for all to experience. DxO PhotoLab 5 ESSENTIAL is a powerful photo editing software that deploys DxO's highly acclaimed Optics Modules and U Point technology for precise local adjustments.

Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Barbera Armstrong

Last Updated:

Views: 5640

Rating: 4.9 / 5 (59 voted)

Reviews: 90% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Barbera Armstrong

Birthday: 1992-09-12

Address: Suite 993 99852 Daugherty Causeway, Ritchiehaven, VT 49630

Phone: +5026838435397

Job: National Engineer

Hobby: Listening to music, Board games, Photography, Ice skating, LARPing, Kite flying, Rugby

Introduction: My name is Barbera Armstrong, I am a lovely, delightful, cooperative, funny, enchanting, vivacious, tender person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.