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Oh I totally agree. I didn’t mean a high res image would be superior to your solution, only that I might have noticed the difference if I was comparing to a high res image.

Oh no, I know. You can just slightly tell that the gradients are a tad smoother. It’s weird, on the photo they have some pixelated “grit” to them that doesn’t necessarily look nice… but it looks realistic… the way light shines off aluminum. I think that’s what people are accustomed to seeing in photos. Little touches of reality that let them know they’re looking at something real, not a facsimile.

That being said, the real photo is INSANELY touched up. But… the artist(s) knew to keep enough reality intact that it still looks like a photo. Does that make sense?

At any rate, I’m getting damn close to “good enough.”