Java Image Filters

I have a large number of Java Image filters which are freely available for download from this site. The filters are all standard Java BufferedImageOps and can be plugged directly into existing programs. All the filters are available in the Java Image Editor and most have dialogs to allow you to play with their settings. If you want to try out any of these filters, I recommend downloading the editor and using the dialogs, which is generally much easier than writing code to try them.

Many of these filters are useful in applications such as games where images need to be generated on the fly, or where it's quicker to generate them rather than downloading them. For instance, it's quicker to download one image and rotate it several times than to download several separate images.

Another use for the filters is in animation. For example animating the Water Ripple filter can produce a nice rippling effect. Some of the filters have a time parameter for this purpose.

You can download the filters as a JAR file for your own use.

Philosophy and General Points

None of these filters are finely-tuned for speed, or even coarsely-tuned. Think of them as sample code for writing your own filters. I've preferred floating-point math over integer or fixed-point pretty well everywhere. By making the appropriate changes you'll probably be able to get these to go quite a bit faster.

All of the filters are designed to work with TYPE_INT_ARGB images. Some may work with other image types, but I make no guarantees.

All the filters are Java beans in the sense that they have default constructors and a set of properties. None of them have BeanInfo classes. This is for three reasons: firstly, the original versions predate the introduction of JavaBeans, and secondly, a BeanInfo class doesn't provide enough information to do a good UI for the properties, and thirdly, writing BeanInfo classes is really boring.

For the UI, we need all sorts of extra information that a BeanInfo doesn't provide: permitted ranges for values, usage (is this float a distance or an angle? what are its units?), grouping of properties and so on. Some of this could be overcome by providing more classes, e.g. having an Angle class, but this would just complicate usage and not provide any obvious benefit beyond a sort of warm object-oriented glow. To do this, I've provided an XML file with each filter which specifies the UI. The format of this file will probably change as the Image Editor UI evolves.

The filters don't support serialization. XMLEncoder does a much better job of handling this and I encourage you to use that instead.

Some of the filters have position parameters, e.g. for specifying the centre of the effect. These are generally expressed as a proportion of the width or height of the image in the range 0 to 1 rather than being measured in pixels. This allows the same filter settings to be applied to different size images.

Some filters, such as the transitions, take more than one source image. Where this happens, there are often two ways to call the filter. The first way is to call setXXX() methods on the filter for the extra images and then call the normal filter() method. The second way is to call a new filter() method which takes an array of images as its first parameter. The reasoning behind this is to allow the use of the filters anywhere a BufferedImageOp is allowed, but also to make it more convenient to use filters which require more than one source image.

The Filters

Color Adjustment Filters

Distortion and Warping Filters

Effects Filters

Texturing Filters

Blurring and Sharpening Filters

Edge Detection


Alpha Channel Filters

Other Filters