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I'm trying to restore an old photo, but it has a lot of dots from the texture of the paper. I'd like to know if there's a way I can solve this without losing the quality.

I thought about using the restore tool, but it would take a lot of time and wouldn't be natural.

Thank you all :)

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This can be got by applying a general purpose noise reduction program (here Neat Image) which can be guided by selecting a noise sample from otherwise flat area:

enter image description here

There's set zero color noise, maximum luminance noise, sharpen and the noise sample was taken from the dark area.

G'mic filter collection has detail splitting filters which try to separate different patterns to different layers. Here's one result. The layers which seemed to contain unwanted patterns are closed. This remained.

enter image description here

I guess this is quite the same as what's presented in another answer, but this is only a guess. I haven't modern image processing math knowledge.

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If you can scan the photo, and have a decent scanner, you scan the photo in to opposite directions, load the two pictures in Gimp, flip one, and blend them using "Lighten only". But you need a good scanner, those of all-in-one printers are usually not accurate enough and slightly distort the image.

With a single picture, my suggestion:

  • Filters>Enhance>Wavelet decompose and decompose to the maximum levels (7)
  • In the resulting decomposition, hide the layer(s) that correspond to the pattern frequency (Scale 2 and Scale 3 on the picture you provided). You can also make them partially transparent instead.

enter image description here

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