A viewer recently requested a tutorial discussing how to fix noisy HDR clouds without rendering them destroyed using noise reduction software. The tone mapping process can wreak havoc on the clouds in any beautiful landscape scene. The trouble comes when you have the perfect tone map settings for your foreground, but it is not so perfect for the noise in the clouds in your background.
There are several ways you could go about fixing this problem. Many have suggested taking the clouds from the original exposure and masking it out onto the tone mapped image. That method works great in many cases, but what happens when you took the exposures by hand without a tripod and aligned them by matching features in Photomatix? The original exposure never quite matches up right.
My best solution for this problem is a dual tone mapping method. One photo tone mapped for the foreground and one tone mapped for the background. The following tutorial will explain it all in great detail!