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11-19-2007, 08:09 PM   #1
Ed in GA

RAW, New Computer, PSE5 & 3.7 RAW Plug in.

OK, I got my new K10D a few weeks back. And, about a week ago, got my new computer. I still use XP pro as a operating system.

So, here a my questions and pleas for help.

With the new camera, I've decided that it's time to get rid of the fear and start shooting in RAW.

I've loaded PSE5 on my new computer and downloaded the 3.7 plug in for RAW.

Here's where I need help and what I have in mind. Any suggestions or guidance will be most helpful.

Since I do not have an outboard hard drive, I plan to set up a RAW folder under My pictures and load my shots to that folder.
I will have the camera set to DNG so will not need to convert from .pef.

After processing the raw data, I plan to save to another subfolder and save as .jpg. I will then get the photos using the PSE photo loaded and save them to file labeled in a manner to be determined. Probably by date of shot.

The, do what ever PP comes to mind.

Now, do I have this process right? Am I missing anything? Am I making it more complicated than neccessary?

Any comments and/or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance,


11-20-2007, 04:16 AM   #2
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You're making it all more complicated than necessary.

Yes, you have the process fundamentally correct. Of course, you can convert the raw files to JPEG, TIFF, or whatever file format supported by your graphics program. You can also set the JPEG compression level, or even save in lossless JPEG. Many also keep the original raw files to allow changes in editing afterwards (to start over, so to speak), but this is entirely your choice. You can save the raw files anywhere you choose. After PS and ACR are installed, you should be able to double-click on any raw file and have PS open with the file itself opening in ACR within PS.

By the way, raw is a word instead of an acronym (refering to the raw data from the camera), treated just like any other word - all lower case when discussing raw in general and first letter capitalized only when discussing a specific raw format, utility, in a title, or whatever (such as Adobe Camera Raw or your thread title). No big deal, but just a pet peeve of mine at the moment.

11-20-2007, 04:49 AM   #3
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Adding to Stewart's post, and a caveat for you...

Please, please, do not rely on a single hard drive for your images if you feel they cannot be replaced. It's not worth it. Burn to DVD as a temp solution, get an external USB drive if funds are limited.

I had to go through the agony of recovering 180GB last month. I recovered 175GB before the drive started going south permanently. Luckily I only lost a folder with finished files, not the PEF files. It means work, but it's time I'd rather avoid redoing. I had free access to a $1500 software recovery program.

11-20-2007, 06:59 AM   #4
Ed in GA

QuoteOriginally posted by stewart_photo Quote
You're making it all more complicated than necessary.
Unfortunately, It's all fairly complicated to me.

But, I thought that might be the process for adjusting and converting the files.


11-20-2007, 07:01 AM   #5
Ed in GA

QuoteOriginally posted by 35mmfilm_user Quote
Adding to Stewart's post, and a caveat for you...

I've been quite diligent about backing my files up. I typically back up to CDs. My new computer will also write to DVDs so I may switch.

Or, I also may pick up and external hard drive for back up.


11-20-2007, 09:47 AM   #6
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As far as backups, I have one set of USB hard drives for working files, a firewire drive for backup, and a set of DVDs as second backup. All of these are cheap compared to the pain of losing personal memories.

I don't use Elements, but doesn't it have a library function? The single most important thing for you right now ( after a backup strategy ) is a workflow. I use Lightroom and CS3, but this should be adaptable to any application.

1. Import images from the card to their permanent home (external hard drive). I use the Adobe DNG converter, but that is not necessary. It does save space since the DNG converter uses a better compression while still lossless.

2. Make backup copies of the images.

3. Import the images into a library application. This is not necessary, but very handy when your stockpile of images grows. I have over 20,000 images. They are organized on the hard drive by folders according to date so I can find a photo fairly easy if I know what date it was shot. If not, that catalog app really comes in handy. Most will let you search by keyword, some will let you search by lens and more. If Elements does not have it, Picasa is free and does a nice job.

4. Rate and process the images. Rating is recommended when you have a lot of photos. It cuts down the number of images to be edited when there may be a series of several similar photos and you only need the best one. It does require a catalog/library app.

5. Output the images. I don't make jpeg copies of my photos until I have to send them somewhere, like the web or to a print service. In you library you can view the edited image right from the raw files. No need to make copies until you are going to do something with them.

This process if fairly quick. Making the backup copies is the longest part. Editing goes fairly quick once you get into a rhythm.
11-20-2007, 04:43 PM   #7
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here's my method

Eddy, I've got PSE5 as well, and a very similar setup. (though I did get a USB hard drive - can't be beat on their prices there - unless you find a *very* good sale at Best Buy)

here's what I do for my RAW workflow in PSE5:

download images using the Adobe photo loader, I have it make new folders by date.
Once the Organizer loads all the thumbnails of the "new photos" I put them in my "incoming" collection group, inside which I've got "RAW to process" "converted" and "to reprocess" (in case I want to mess with something and don't want to move it yet).

I try to go through and rate all the photos first, 1's get deleted permanently (focus errors, exposure blunders, bad decision to press the shutter, etc...) 2's through 5's all have some meaning in my head which sometimes shifts - the important being the #1's which get trashed.
It would be wise to add keywords around the same time you rate them - so you don't have to go back and sort through a few thousand pictures to find what you want.

Then I go and open the ones I really want to work on in the editor, tweak them and save as .jpgs. The RAW's then get dropped into the "converted" folder, or "to reprocess" and every so often I use the "move" command in the Organizer to move the processed PEF's to a folder I've named "PEF" which *isn't* one of my watched folders in PSE... Then I delete all of those converted PEF's from the catalog (not from the hard drive)

This is where my backup happens. I burn the PEF's to a DVD and normally I delete them from the hard drive - (before I had the USB backup) but now I just mark the start/end file numbers/dates on the DVD's so I've still got them on the hard disk but backed up on DVD's as well.

Oh, I honestly wouldn't put the photos in your "My Pictures" folder - do a new folder on the hard disk somewhere, either right off the C:/ (or whatever letter yours is) or even a picture folder in the "Program Files" folder. Reason being if your computer dies, you think you can just put the drive in another computer and collect your files - but if you have the stuff in a "My Documents" folder (which are stored by user) and happen to have passwords on your logins, windows will give you a real pain in the butt trying to retrieve the stuff from what it sees as "someone else's" folder with a password that it won't want to take.

can't think of anything else right now and my cat is blocking the view...

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