We've all gotten a little used to Google's never-ending quest to provide free, useful tools to users everywhere. Google's announcement of the Nik Collection availability for download at no cost, is no exception.
What is Nik?
Acquired by Google as part of a package deal including Snapseed, Nik has been a collection of image enhancement tools and filter plugins for Apple Aperture, Lightroom, Photoshop and Elements. Prior to acquisition the suite could be purchased at a sticker cost of $500. However, shortly after Google's takeover, a drastic price drop to $150 preceded the March 24th free availability.
What are the collections?
There are seven components to the collection:
- Analog Efex Pro - Applies the look and feel of classic cameras, films and lenses.
- Color Efex Pro - A comprehensive set of filters for color correction, retouching and creative effects.
- Silver Efex Pro - Master the art of black-and-white photography with darkroom-inspired controls.
- HDR Efex Pro - From natural to artistic, explore the full potential of HDR photography.
- Dfine - Improves images with noise reduction tailored to your camera.
- Viveza - Selectively adjusts the color and tonality of your images with complicated masks or selections.
- Sharpener Pro - Brings out hidden details consistently with the professional's choice for image sharpening.
How do I install?
If you're the proud owner of one of compatible programs listed above, you can install Nik by:
- Visit Google's Nik Collection website
- Make sure your compatible program is not running
- Select 'Download Now' from the Google Nik website
- Locate the downloaded installation file and double-click on it to start
- The installer will then automatically locate the correct location
If you need more help, here's some helpful videos:
Are you kidding me? I purchased Nik earlier this year!
In the normal Google fashion, anyone who purchased Nik in 2016 will receive a full refund on their purchase.
The Future of Nik
While the news of the new free installation is great for photographers who haven't purchased Nik before or for those just coming into photography, it does mean the end of Nik. While Google promises to continue updating the software for new platforms, we are anticipating batches of improvements adding new features anytime soon.