Google Nik Collection, a powerful set of six Photoshop plugins, is now available for free.
That’s probably not good news if you paid the full $149 for it, but Google has announced that anyone who bought the package this year will receive a full refund.
If you’ve not seen the Nik Collection before, this is what it includes.
Analog Efex Pro enables creating stylised effects exploring “the look and feel of classic cameras, films and lenses”.
Color Efex Pro provides 50+ filters for correcting colours, retouching and applying creative effects.
Silver Efex Pro is all about creating stylish and black shots, with an advanced grain engine, emulation of approaching 20 popular film types, even options like toners and borders.
HDR Efex Pro allows exploring the potential of HDR photography, with one-click presets for beginners and plenty of fine-tuning options for the more experienced.
Sharpener Pro provides advanced control over how your image is sharpened, and can be customised depending on what you’re aiming to do with the results (display, inkjet, continuous tone, halftone…).
Dfine lets you adjust contrast and reduce colour noise separately, in some or all or the image, optionally with control points to avoid the need for masks.
The package is intended for use with Photoshop, Lightroom and Aperture, but it can also be used – slightly less conveniently – in other ways.
Run the installer and you’ll be prompted to enter a host folder. Point the program at a safe location and allow setup to complete.
You’ll then find the plugin executables under your Program Files\Google\Nik Collection folder.
If your image editor supports Photoshop plugins then it may be able to import them from the host folder you created earlier. We had some success with IrfanView, for example.
Google Nik Collection is available now for Windows and Mac.