Luminar NEO: How to use Upscale AI

Jul 05, 2023

Luminar NEO offers the highly sought-after Upscale AI extension. With this tool, you can upscale your photos up to six times their original size while maintaining a natural look with the help of AI technology. This extension caters to various photography styles such as landscape, macro, wildlife, and even photo restoration. It's perfect for improving the quality of your cropped images, enhancing old photos, or preparing images for large-scale printing.

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In this article:



What is Upscale AI

The Upscale AI is an impressive addition to Luminar NEO, designed to help you enhance your images by up to six times their original size while maintaining a natural look. Thanks to advanced AI technology, this professional extension is perfect for photographers seeking to upscale and enhance their photos. Introduced in November 2022 as part of Luminar NEO's 2022 Extension Pack, this extension offers many solutions for a variety of photography styles. Whether you want to zoom in on faraway subjects, restore old photos, or prepare them for large print, the upscaling features provide excellent results. With recent updates, you can now also use the AI in the extension to enhance facial features when upscaling, making it an ideal tool for portrait photographers.



How to get Upscale AI

The Upscale AI is a professional paid extension for Luminar NEO. Currently, there are three ways to get it:

  • Purchase it as an individual extension here.
  • Purchase it as part of the Extensions Pack 2022 here.
  • Subscribe to the PRO Luminar NEO Subscription plan here. 

TIP 👍: Are you planning to purchase the extension or subscribe to Luminar NEO? Use our discount code CPNEO10 and get an additional 10% off your purchase.



How to get install Upscale AI

To access the Upscale AI extension, simply find it on the right toolbar in the Catalog Module. Once you've obtained the extension, add it to your system through the extension panel.

TIP 👍: In order to install the extension into your software, it is necessary to have an active internet connection. It is important to ensure that you have the latest version of the extension by verifying that you are using the most up-to-date version of Luminar NEO.

  1. Open Luminar NEO and make sure you log in with the same profile you used for obtaining the extension.
  2. Click on the "Extras" orange button in the top right corner of the application. 
  3. Once the new window opens, select the "Extensions" tab at the top.
  4. Locate the Upscale AI extension in the available list and click the "Install" button on it to add it to the application.



Introducing Upscale AI controls


Upscaling Options - 2x, 4x, 6x

To access the upscaling options for Upscale AI extensions, simply navigate to the image preview section. Here, you can choose from 2, 4, or 6 upscaling options. However, please note that certain options may not be available for larger images exceeding 32,000 pixels on the long side.

Settings Panel

The Settings panel can be accessed by clicking on the circle icon with three dots in the top right corner of the extension. To close it, click anywhere outside the setting panel.

Upscale Type - Universal

The Universal upscale type was trained with generative layers. It is ideal for upscaling images with lower details and sharpness.

Upscale Type - Experimental

The Experimental upscale type was trained without the generative layers. It offers a good solution for images with good sharpness and details.

Face Enhancer AI

By clicking on this feature, you can enhance faces and make them appear clearer and sharper in blurry photos. This feature uses AI technology and learnings from millions of other portraits to apply it during the upscaling process.



Getting started with Upscale AI

The Upscale AI extension is compatible with both the standalone and Lightroom Plug-in versions of Luminar NEO. The workflow for each performance is slightly different, but in general, you simply add your image to the extension and apply the necessary adjustments. Next, select your desired upscaling option (2x, 4x, or 6x) and click on the Upscale button. The extension will upscale your image and generate a new version of it in high-quality TIFF format.


Upscale AI in the stand-alone version of Luminar NEO:

To access the extension, head to the Catalog module and locate it in the right-hand toolbar. In case the toolbar is hidden, tap the square screen button at the top-right corner to reveal it. If the extension appears truncated, click on its heading in the right toolbar to expand it.

TIP 👍: Before making any edits, it's best to scale your image first. Otherwise, the extension will remove all edits when attempting to upscale.

  1. Select the image you want to upscale and drag and drop it into the preview area on the extension.
  2. The image is added when it appears in the preview area of the extension.
  3. Once the image is added, you can apply additional settings in the setting panel. (Circle with three dots in the top-right corner of the extension)
  4. Select the upscaling option - 2x, 4x, or 6x.
  5. Click on the "Upscale" button at the bottom of the extension.
  6. After the upscaling process is complete, the newly upscaled image will be generated in the TIFF format and added to the "Upscale" folder, which will be visible in the left toolbar's folders area (Catalog Module).
  7. The image that has been enlarged can be modified using either the presets or the tools that are accessible in the Edit section.


Upscale AI in the Lightroom Classic plug-in version of Luminar NEO:

The Upscale AI extension and Luminar NEO can function as a plug-in with Lightroom Classic. To utilize it, please follow the instructions below or see our video tutorial here.

  1. Select the image you want to upscale and happy simple development to it in the Develop panel of Luminar NEO. Pay special attention to Lens Corrections, Camera Profiles and White Balance options, as this will be limited with the upscale file.
  2. Once the development is applied, right-click anywhere on the image and select "Export" and "Upscale Photo in Luminar NEO".
  3. Luminar NEO will open with the Upscale AI extension ready to be used on the selected image.
  4. Use the circle button to adjust the upscale settings.
  5. Select the upscaling option - 2x, 4x, or 6x.
  6. Click on the blue "Upscale" button to upscale the image.
  7. Once the image is upscaled, it will open in the Preset Module of Luminar NEO.
  8. Select a desired preset or use the editing options in the Edit Module.
  9. Once you are satisfied with the outcome, select "Apply" in the upper right-hand corner of the application to return to Lightroom Classic.
  10. The new image will appear next to the original file at the bottom of the screen.

TIP 👍: If the new image appears wrong, you can reset its appearance by clicking on the "Reset" button located at the bottom of the Editing toolbar in the Develop module.



Upscale AI video tutorial

Watch the full video tutorial covering all controls in this tool.


Luminar NEO

Luminar Neo is the latest editing software from Skylum. It was announced back in September 2021 and has been highly anticipated.

Luminar Neo is an AI-powered photo editing software. Skylum has said that Neo isn’t replacing their previous release—Luminar AI. But Neo sets out to fix some of the issues users faced with Luminar AI.

We were impressed with the AI tools in Luminar AI. But like many others, we encountered performance issues. Luminar Neo uses the same AI tools, but the new high-speed core engine improves speed and performance.

Luminar Neo isn’t just more of the same. We’re happy to see Skylum has taken Neo in a different direction, adding layer and mask AI tools to the program. This broadens Neo’s appeal, taking it in an Adobe Photoshop direction.

Learn more about Luminar NEO here.

Use one of our discount codes: CPNEO10 will give you a 10% discount - CP10 will give you a $10 discount.


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