The range of software tools for stitching together images for panorama photography is never ending. From hand held, automated, nodal point and then on top of all this, the possibilities of using HDR too. However using a stable tripod and panorama head resolves a lot of problem of aligning images together. This relieves the need for adding in control points into complicate stitching software. There are many hobbyist who don’t wish to use a tripod to create panoramic images, of course they are free to do this and but this comes with the cost of quality and detail in the final output. If you are serious about making fine art images you are certainly going to make use every method available to deliver the best that is possible.
The software that is open source is fine to use but is complex in some of the areas. If you are using a tripod with pano head then Adobe Photoshop’s Auto Merge is excellent to use. The list is not an extensive list as I believe you need to do a much a possible in the field with the camera to achieve the best results before ahead to software to resolve exposure and alignment issues.
Free / Open Source
- Hugin very similar and shares alot from PTGUI available for Mac,Windows,Linux : Hugin handles HDR images. Not the most user friendly.
- Microsoft Image Composite Editor and HDView with a plugin for Photoshop but it’s Windows Only!
- Canon Software which came with your camera, it’s limited and basic.
Inexpensive & Simple
While some of the free/open source is comprehensive they aren’t too user friendly.
- Pano Edit for Mac – Handles PSD, RAW and TIFF. Simple to use.
- Panorama Maker * Purchase it from the Apple App Store where it’s much cheaper.