April 6, 2023 | 16948 Views | By Dan Harlacher

Coming Soon to ON1 – Face Recovery Technology

The human face is one of the most identifiable patterns in the world. As infants, it’s the first pattern we learn to recognize and remains the key to communication and social interaction throughout our lives. We can even discern facial landmarks in natural objects that do not resemble faces. Our ability to perceive the nuances of facial features is unparalleled, and we are highly attuned to even minor details, even in low-quality photographs. We might even be willing to overlook other imperfections in an image if the facial features are realistic. However, if the face is not convincing, it can ultimately detract from the overall quality of the photo, regardless of how well other elements render.

This is something we currently battle when resizing or upscaling photos. Broad-based super-resolution (upscaling) AI models, like the ones in ON1 Resize AI, are trained on millions of tiles of photos that represent all of the details and textures we find in everyday life. That’s how it can recognize small, compressed trees and reproduce them as bigger, sharper, and cleaner trees, for example. But when it comes to faces, you need a different kind of AI to reproduce them faithfully.

We have been developing a new AI model, coming very soon in a future free update for ON1 Resize AI 2023 and Photo RAW 2023, especially for enhancing faces. It can detect small faces that lack the native detail to be scaled traditionally, and then generate a new high-quality face that matches the original subject’s morphology, hue, and structure from the underlying photo. It’s nothing short of amazing! But seeing is believing, so look at these samples of our progress. Stay tuned to our updates by signing up for our newsletter as well!

Keep in mind these are preliminary results. We are still continuing to train the AI models that make the magic happen. You will see this technology in the field first in a future release of ON1 Resize AI, but I can imagine it being useful in other places as well.

51 comments on “Coming Soon to ON1 – Face Recovery Technology”

  1. On April 6, 2023 at 8:52 am gunther geeraerts wrote:

    gunther geeraerts

    Nice and useful improvement!Good to see ON1 is getting better and better.

  2. On April 6, 2023 at 9:40 am Peter Pikulin wrote:

    Peter Pikulin

    I always look fwd to what else will be possible as time & progress continues on… Glad I did not junk what I thought were bad images. Don’t ya just love technology! Can’t wait to see how this will work…thx for the sneak peak.

  3. On April 6, 2023 at 10:50 am Tony Sutton wrote:

    Tony Sutton

    Looks good. To be fair, the latest Resize is crap (and almost unusable) on faces . . .

  4. On April 6, 2023 at 10:52 am Steven Shapse, Ph.D wrote:

    Steven Shapse, Ph.D

    Another great improvement! Though I’m basically a landscape photographer, this will come in handy. Can’t wait to try it out.

  5. On April 6, 2023 at 10:53 am Stephen Morley wrote:

    Stephen Morley

    Looks interesting and promising but still looking for ON1 to fulfill their promise of integrating video editing into their product.

    This was to be introduced several years ago. Still nothing.

    Who dropped the ball ??

    1. On April 6, 2023 at 12:19 pm Bill Ferreira replied:

      Bill Ferreira

      NO NO NO. This is how Adobe is ruining Lightroom. If you want to edit video then use a proper video editing tool.

      1. On April 6, 2023 at 2:14 pm john perrone replied:

        john perrone

        Agree! This is photo editing not video. Look elsewhere.

      2. On April 10, 2023 at 10:53 am Diederik De replied:

        Diederik De

        Agree. This is photo editing not video. Look elsewhere.

    2. On April 6, 2023 at 12:51 pm Richard F Randolph replied:

      Richard F Randolph

      I could not agree more. I’m a videographer and these promised enhancements would surely help.

    3. On April 6, 2023 at 2:36 pm Carmen K replied:

      Carmen K

      I agree with Bill. I work with both images and video and I say NO to adding video to Photo Raw.

    4. On April 6, 2023 at 3:56 pm Geoff Swan replied:

      Geoff Swan

      The clue is in the name of the product. Photo RAW.

    5. On April 6, 2023 at 4:41 pm Mike Miller replied:

      Mike Miller

      Hmmm. Primarily a videographer and, while I’d like to be able to use PhotoRaw to assist in tagging clips I don’t really want to see it try to become a video editor. Those are quite different disciplines.

    6. On April 9, 2023 at 12:28 pm vartkes replied:


      NO VIDEO EDITING embedded in ON1 RAW please. Use a proper editing tool.

      1. On April 10, 2023 at 10:54 am Diederik De replied:

        Diederik De

        Agree.This is photo editing not video. Look elsewhere.

  6. On April 6, 2023 at 11:01 am Brian Marriott wrote:

    Brian Marriott

    Thanks for the progress report, Dan.

    It is great to see ON1 PR being continuously improved and in my opinion these “minor” releases add a huge amount of value.

    I don’t often photograph people but I can foresee this being an extremely useful tool for when I do and the image needs to be upsized during processing.

  7. On April 6, 2023 at 11:01 am Paul Pierlott wrote:

    Paul Pierlott

    Fantastic. I’m working on a project right now. I’m using On1 Raw 2023 using
    NoNoise AI. The results are very impressive but not as awesome as your coming soon examples. Can’t Wait 🙂

  8. On April 6, 2023 at 11:13 am Rashmideva Veldhuizen wrote:

    Rashmideva Veldhuizen

    Een hele verbetering in face detection en bewerking.
    Geeft de nieuwe AI ook verbetering op andere onderwerpen/objecten ?

  9. On April 6, 2023 at 11:13 am Gabriele Meoli wrote:

    Gabriele Meoli

    Nice job, but I would have preferred an optimization of the algorithm for image resizing, and above all I would have preferred a strong implementation of the potential of no-Noise especially for tac-sharp tac functionality.

  10. On April 6, 2023 at 11:15 am Kenneth Naylor wrote:

    Kenneth Naylor

    This looks like a great enhancement to Resize and, as others have said, I love the continuous improvement. One other area I find Resize struggles with from time to time is text (on signs, buildings, etc.) Often smaller text gets distorted beyond recognition. I wonder if improvements to the AI model to better deal with text could be developed in the future. Regardless, thanks for the coming update.

  11. On April 6, 2023 at 11:39 am Günter Klaus wrote:

    Günter Klaus

    Es ist schon unglaublich,welch tolle Arbeit ihr mit diesen Programm leistet,bin immer begeistert,wenn was Neues rauskommt :))

  12. On April 6, 2023 at 11:43 am Gunni Grahn wrote:

    Gunni Grahn

    Again you guys amaze!

    This is the only part of on1 photo raw i feel is lagging a bit. The portrait part.

    I hope it results in general ai recognition og eyes, nose and mouth so one doesnt have to fiddle with the vector tools anymore.

    Looking forward to this “brave new world” – ON1 PHoto Raw really keeps on getting a better and truer upgrade from its predecessor

  13. On April 6, 2023 at 11:55 am Stefan Schug wrote:

    Stefan Schug

    It certainly does an excellent job.
    Question is if this AI update is only working with an internet connection or will it also work without.
    I run a separate computer for all my digital workflow off line and prefer it that way, even though different programs including ON1 Photo Raw prompt quite often for such a connection.

  14. On April 6, 2023 at 12:07 pm Pat Sanders wrote:

    Pat Sanders

    Whoa this looks great! Bet it does a fantastic job with birds and animals too?

  15. On April 6, 2023 at 12:18 pm Richard Berke wrote:

    Richard Berke

    I’m very glad to hear about this feature coming in ON1. I have been pre-processing many old photos at picwish.com to get benefit from their facial improvement features. That of course involves uploading, processing, downloading, then opening with ON1 for other updates. They have helped a lot with faces.

    In the sample of the model in the burgundy sweater I particularly liked seeing the improvement after the upscaling with Resize. Resize too often for me (with my tight crops) winds up with weird artifacts that are especially undesirable with faces. The example final result looked great!

    Something I’d like the ON1 team to watch out for is when a face isn’t full frontal. Partial sideways faces stump the Portrait module of ON1 2022 and 2023. For manually marked faces it can’t find eyes and mouths, nor does it handle skin nearly as well as if it succeeded on its own.

  16. On April 6, 2023 at 12:21 pm Bill Ferreira wrote:

    Bill Ferreira

    While a nice improvement for many and a friend who is trialing Photo RAW will be pleased, I still want to see a Topaz level of sharpening in On1.

  17. On April 6, 2023 at 12:28 pm Ray Alstrom wrote:

    Ray Alstrom

    I do quite a lot of people photography and spend quite a bit of time enhancing the human face. This will be an extraordinary useful feature. I’m really looking forward to it’s release. The fact that ON1 is going to offer it as a free enhancement to existing users is outstanding. I’m really glad I switched my photo processing to ON1 a while back.

  18. On April 6, 2023 at 2:24 pm Jonathan Goodpasture wrote:

    Jonathan Goodpasture

    I’ve just started using ON1 and I love everything I’ve seen so far. I hope soon to maybe have just one photo editor (and not 10 LOL) or at least have one editor I use ninety-nine percent of the time. This will help me learn it better the more I use it.

  19. On April 6, 2023 at 3:02 pm Andrew Butterfield wrote:

    Andrew Butterfield

    Great idea, BUT I upscaled the original shots 4X (using the scaling feature in the Vivaldi browser) and the result was equal or better (less pixelated) than the 400% samples provided. So I’m not too impressed yet.

  20. On April 6, 2023 at 3:24 pm Albert Fernandez wrote:

    Albert Fernandez

    LOVE IT!!! This program gets better and better every time Keep up the good job. You guys have made Masking a breeze for me TXS!!!!!

  21. On April 6, 2023 at 3:26 pm peter.n.eaton wrote:


    That looks really nice, a really clever improvement.
    Loving the software but have not been as impressed since leaving Nikon for Fujifilm. The Ai sharpening and resize etc leaves some awful artefacts on my fuji RAW files (x-t5) that makes it unusable. Meanwhile the de-noise is brilliant.
    Otherwise, love the whole integrated package.

  22. On April 6, 2023 at 5:31 pm Cameron Fetty wrote:

    Cameron Fetty

    It will be interesting to see how this compares with the competition. Glad to see it will be included with 2023.

  23. On April 6, 2023 at 8:12 pm Sandra Chung wrote:

    Sandra Chung

    That is amazing. I have some photos of family members that were taken on older digital cameras (I mean MUCH older, as in Kodak DC) that when resized, the faces were either pixelated, or had “Comic Book” outlining of lips, and Star Trek alien eyes. I can’t wait to run them through On1 with Face protection.

  24. On April 6, 2023 at 9:01 pm Petr Krenzelok wrote:

    Petr Krenzelok

    Nice examples, except for the last photo. Her lips are changed to the completly different measures, like being taken from a different photo …

  25. On April 6, 2023 at 11:38 pm Ted Sadler wrote:

    Ted Sadler

    This will be very useful for wedding photographers who only have one chance on the day for a successful photo shoot. I recently did a wedding and I wish I had this in my tool kit.

    I use ON1 for most of my editing.

  26. On April 7, 2023 at 12:02 am David Price wrote:

    David Price

    I continue to be astonished at just how fast Photo Raw is moving forwards, and at just how far it has come since the first version. The recent AI powered advances continue to be impressive, especialy when it comes to masking.

    Bravo ON1.

  27. On April 7, 2023 at 2:11 am Ray Wilson wrote:

    Ray Wilson

    Might be useful and looks good, BUT I would like to see the Face Recognition feature speeded up and able to better detect faces. (It doesn’t always work especially with sunglasses)

  28. On April 7, 2023 at 3:09 am Martial Fournier wrote:

    Martial Fournier

    Bravo ! J’espère que la faune en profitera

  29. On April 7, 2023 at 6:39 am Chris Taylor wrote:

    Chris Taylor

    Is it just me or is the first example really horrible? The nose in particular, but also the white to the inside of her right eye, the crinkles to the left of her mouth, her lips…

    I tried taking the “original upscaled at 400%” and processed it at Replicate (https://replicate.com/xinntao/gfpgan) which uses the open-source GFP-GAN (https://github.com/TencentARC/GFPGAN), and the results were a lot more natural.

    1. On April 7, 2023 at 6:42 am Chris Taylor replied:

      Chris Taylor

      Oops, I didn’t click often enough. The “UPSCALED AT 400% WITH NEW RESIZE W/FACE PROTECTION” is a lot better.

  30. On April 7, 2023 at 8:28 am John Scott wrote:

    John Scott

    This looks to be a good step forward. Once these AI’s are completed (realizing that you have attempted to compartmentalize each function and improve on models down the road), I would think that video editing would be a good move. I can only imagine what opportunities there are to include these tools for video. I too have kept looking for video options to be offered. Even noise is still a problem for me in the current version. High noise seems to be a weakness of the current RAW version.

  31. On April 7, 2023 at 3:03 pm Danny Fyffe wrote:

    Danny Fyffe

    My 4 year old granddaughter jumps around like a wild rabbit so this may solve some of those, OH, I almost got her that time, moments. Looking forward to trying this out.

  32. On April 7, 2023 at 6:02 pm Sudarin Unn wrote:

    Sudarin Unn

    i’m looking forward to this one as at present it’s unable to handle the low res images after heavily cropped, i had to purchase gigapixel ai. it gave me a superb result from their trial version.
    on1 rescale was kinda obsolete to me as i keep ended up using gigapixel, hopefully this will lure me back to it.

  33. On April 8, 2023 at 7:52 am Jack Gardner wrote:

    Jack Gardner

    Great Addition to an already fantastic ON1 program! Thank you for listening to people’s comments. Will this also be used in No Noise AI and Tack Sharp? I remember my friend showing me that the Micro Adjustments Slider when dealing with faces needed to typically be adjusted from 100% to 50%. At 100% it created flaws that were very noticeable with human faces. That affected the whole picture, when actually the adjustment only needed to be lowered (or modified) on the face.

  34. On April 8, 2023 at 2:19 pm Charles Putnam wrote:

    Charles Putnam

    My one (continuous) request – please move the installer to Apple’s Universal so that Apple Silicon (M1/M2) Macs don’t need Rosetta 2.

  35. On April 9, 2023 at 8:07 am John McAtee wrote:

    John McAtee

    I continue to be impressed with ON1 Photo Raw, which has become my go-to photo editor. Continual improvements like this are what makes this program such a great value. I do hope any video editing capabilities will be a separate app.

  36. On April 10, 2023 at 10:43 am Ray Wilson wrote:

    Ray Wilson

    Might be useful, but ON1 need to really improve their face recognition function. Takes ages and struggles with small faces and sunglasses wearers. Likewise, sharpening lags behind Topaz Sharpen AI.

  37. On April 10, 2023 at 10:39 pm Michael Pless wrote:

    Michael Pless

    On these initial views, this enhancement looks like a very impressive, valuable addition to Photo RAW. That said, I agree with Ray Wilson: the Topaz products are still ahead of ON1 generally, and these are areas where the ON1 development crew could add significant value to their user base as well as greatly attract new customers. The subject selection/auto masking tools are also in need of a *lot* of attention, and some easy refinement tools for them would be very welcome. Just check Robin Whalley’s YT clip:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0qfnG0-SAM8

  38. On April 19, 2023 at 9:33 am Henri Lombaerts wrote:

    Henri Lombaerts

    NO video editing please. Use all resources to make the photo editing better. There is already enough software to edit video’s.

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