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08-26-2013, 04:54 AM   #1
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Viewing Images

Hi

Having just got back from hols, I put about 750 RAW images onto the PC and found that upon viewing them, they appear very dark on the PC screen. I am having to lighten the vast majority Camera Raw by quite a lot.
They all looked ok an the camear screen though, so I am wondering if I am increasing the exposure too much and if they were on someone elses PC screen they would now be too light!
I am sure I have not had this problem before, although my K-r does tend to underexpose anyway, but some of these images are way too dark.

Any pointers here?

I was shooting mostly with my Tamron 18-200 which has always given good but not outstanding results obviously, but I was wondering if the lens had gone faulty in some way? It has started having trouble with auto focus at wide angles on distant objects.

any advice appreciated!

dave

08-26-2013, 04:59 AM   #2
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Post a few pics and we'll see what it looks like on our side, perhaps you need to calibrate your monitor...
08-26-2013, 06:46 AM   #3
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Hi,

Check the histograms. If they are always leaning to the left, the images are underexposed (and if to the right, overexposed). That should give you an idea whether the problem is in the camera or in your monitor. You can not fully trust differences in displays (camera's LCD vs monitor) since those are highly adjustable and variable in brightness and other parameters.

Thanks,
08-26-2013, 08:32 AM   #4
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Yes, the problem is that monitors are not calibrated when you buy them. So they will be slightly wrong in colours and brightness. The other problem is that a lot of modern monitors look very different based on the angle at which you look at the photos (from the side, from above).
The best advice was already given: look at those photos on other screens. Calibrate your monitor (you can buy hardware that does that. You can also buy a professional monitor which might be perfectly calibrated out of the factory, but it will probably be very expensive). Learn how to read the histogram - it will tell you the most important info.
And lastly, dont worry about it too much. If you try to print the photos, that will alter their look, too. Its just part of using multimedia devices - things won't look (or sound) the same everywhere. Try to find a spot that works for you

08-26-2013, 11:29 AM   #5
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I like to use iPad or Smartphone to double check the photo color and brightness. I found the IPS LCD on iPad gives me a very good idea without any calibration.
08-26-2013, 11:54 AM   #6
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Thanks for the replies.
Sorry for the tardy response I have been out this afternoon to see if the results were any different with the kit 18-55 lens.
I have attached one that was taken with the Tamron.
As I cannot attach a PEF here I have converted to a JPEG, and in doing so the background looks a lot better.
It is almost black viewing the PEF in the Mocrosoft photo viewer.
It loooks better in camera raw and when converted to JPEG.
The histogram is all to the left, but probably because of the dark background.
I will have a look at some of the ones I did this afternoon..
I gusess the problem is with the Microsoft Photo Viewer?
Attached Images
 
08-26-2013, 12:09 PM   #7
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Here's one from this afternoon with the kit lens.
Attached Images
 
08-26-2013, 12:13 PM   #8
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This one was taken with a Tamron 70-300mm in Macro.
Again the conversion from PEF to JPEG makes it look much better.
Any way I can attach a .PEF?

Attached Images
 
08-26-2013, 12:15 PM   #9
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Strangeley, looking at the images in 'large icon' in Windows Explorer, the PEFs look a lot better, almost as I would expect, AND brighter than the converted JPEGs!
Puzzled.
08-26-2013, 12:32 PM   #10
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Microsoft viewer might not be the best choice. Try a real raw editor. FastStone (I think there is a free version, and a lot of people like it), Aperture, Aftershot Pro, Lightroom (very popular, easy to use, but costs a bit).. or even the Pentax Silkypix software that comes with the camera (I find it a little hard to use, but it works well and it comes with the camera).

Also, raw files need some touching up before they look as good as they should. Most raw editors have an automatic option, which makes the photos look a little better than the out-of-camera jpegs. And if you touch up photos yourself, you can make them look even better.
08-26-2013, 06:04 PM   #11
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Sounds like the problem is in the MS Photo viewer. I didn't know you can view PEF file using MS Photo Viewer.
If you can generate nice JPEG without any adj. from PEF using the viewer you have, then unable to view the PEF file in that viewer is the software problem with that Viewer. Can you have any RAW to JPEG settings in the viewer? e.g. Faststone allows you to view the PEF or based on the JPEG tag in the PEF to show you the JPEG look. You can choose either way. If you select no JPEG tag, then it will faithfully load the RAW data from the PEF file and it takes long time to load. If you choose to use the JPEG tag, it will apply the JPEG mode (you set it in your camera) and convert the RAW data into a viewable image using the computer JPEG table.

Well it is a conjecture and I may have confused you even more. I use WinXP so I am out-dated with the MS photo viewer.
08-27-2013, 01:44 AM   #12
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Hi dmnf

I am using Windows 7 and an add-on is available for viewing RAW images in the MS viewer.
I have also tried to find a RAW viewer for my iPad, but cannot find one (yet) that will import the images from an SD card plugged into the SD card adaptor.
Could just be my monitor is out of sorts, it always used to be OK.
I will try out my monitor at work, and also my laptop to compare results, as has been suggested.
I will try FastStone also as you suggest!

Thanks all for your advice!

dave
08-27-2013, 01:51 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Na Horuk Quote
Microsoft viewer might not be the best choice. Try a real raw editor. FastStone (I think there is a free version, and a lot of people like it), Aperture, Aftershot Pro, Lightroom (very popular, easy to use, but costs a bit).. or even the Pentax Silkypix software that comes with the camera (I find it a little hard to use, but it works well and it comes with the camera).

Also, raw files need some touching up before they look as good as they should. Most raw editors have an automatic option, which makes the photos look a little better than the out-of-camera jpegs. And if you touch up photos yourself, you can make them look even better.
Hi thanks for the reply.

Yes indeed, I fully intend to process the RAW images properly, but I wanted to quickly scan through them to discard any I was not happy with, hoping to speed up processing.
Particularly as I somehow managed to get a fair amount of dust on the sensor and they will need a lot of touching up.
Not sure how that happened, only 2 lens changes all trip, and both indoors....
With the images being so dark they have been hard to evaluate.
FastStone hasbeen mentioned a couple of time so I will give this ago. It would be nice to know that what I am looking at is at least a reasonable representation of the image to avoid 'over processing' the final JPEG, which may then look rubbish if viewed elsewhere, such as via Flickr (not that I am very keen on Flickr anymore )

Last edited by davea66; 08-27-2013 at 01:52 AM. Reason: addition
08-27-2013, 04:35 AM   #14
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Aren't the images in the default Windows viewer simply embedded preview Jpegs, Dave?

Try downloading Picasa as a free and basic RAW library and editor.
08-27-2013, 06:19 AM   #15
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Another +1 for FastStone for viewing and sorting. From FastStone you can open any file in your favorite editing software...
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