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View Poll Results: which is the Raw and which do you like best
1 is the raw file. 3561.40%
1 is the jpeg file 1628.07%
I like one best 4884.21%
I like two best 610.53%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 57. You may not vote on this poll

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11-20-2018, 11:26 PM - 1 Like   #31
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
You guys do know that white balanced shadows are actually unnatural don't you?
Yes, though our vision does something quite similar, when viewing shadows, to the correction we apply to the digital capture during processing.


Steve


Last edited by stevebrot; 11-20-2018 at 11:34 PM. Reason: grammar
11-21-2018, 02:51 AM   #32
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QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
To be honest, the blue tint of shadowed snow doesn't both me at all - because from many years of photographing snow {and we have lots of opportunity to do that} I repeatedly saw that effect from slide film - perhaps less dramatically, but it was there. I believe it is real - our brains are wonderful things, and are able to do a form of "white balance" to make us see what we know must be there - but shadowed / shaded / overcast light really is bluish. Since I know that snow normally is really white, I could live with the first variant also.

edit: I wrote this before reading Norm's explanation - I didn't remember there was a second page to this thread
Hehe, well it turns out I was wrong anyway!

I sometimes do leave a bit of blue in the shadow in snow photos myself as well, and I agree that this can render the real feeling of a snowy landscape better than a totally "neutral" WB. After all we do refer to the blue side of the colour range as "cold colours", so what you say makes a lot of sense.

I guess it comes down to a matter of taste - number two was a bit over the top relative to my own preferences, and it ressembles what often happens when I try to pp my husband's jpgs. But then that's the beauty of raw I guess - you get to pick your own preferred level of enhancement of shadows and saturation and white balance.

Fun game, Norm, and sorry if I sounded arrogant or something - I didn't intend to, but I was just really proud of my own ability to tell the difference. Which, as it turns out, didn't actually exist!
11-21-2018, 03:06 AM   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
I asked four simple questions. Thanks to all who answered. Carry on.

Number one is the jpeg.

There is more detail in the raw, look at the fir tree.
Looking at the bare tree branches, the raw has more detail, the branches and leaves look reduced in size especially how skinny the tree branches look in the jpeg., likely a jpeg artifact. We tend to focus more on branches that are silhouetted against the sky first. But the raw image just lacked contrast.

Looking at the colours between especially the yellows and reds, the raw is accurate, the colour in the jpeg are artifacts. In fact the bands closest to the trees as far as i can tell are jpeg artifacts, except for the yellow.. There was none of that in the sky. But if you look at the gradations of colour in the raw, the jpeg representation is vastly superior, and that to me is probably the most important part of the image.
Using the red cabin to the left to determine exposure they are pretty much equal, the differences are in the post processing applied in camera to the jpeg image.
Sorry most don't get the blue, but, I prefer colour to black and grey. And for those who don't know, shadows have a much higher concentration of blue light. Having white balanced snow in the shadows would actually be the incorrect rendering in this case if reality has any thing to do with it.. In any case white balance was done on the metallic grey of yjr foremost dock.

I realize many put what is in my opinion an over emphasis on white balance, but this has been quite the eye opener. You guys do know that white balanced shadows are actually unnatural don't you? It amaze me when people use separate white balance on different parts of image, then consider their image true to life.

"I don't shoot how it looks,. I shoot how it feels." Colours can express that. Blue for cold almost always works.


The one thing that the jpeg was better at IMHO was the dock, bottom right. There was nothing I could do to match the metallic grey in the raw, and as noted there was nothing I could do to improve the definition of the tree. But bottom line, I could have made the raw look like the jpeg, I couldn't make the jpeg look like the raw.

It seems to be the consensus here that my processing faked everyone out, that being said, the points I make are clearly visible and I could easily highlight them with a circled image. But for me, the tip offs which one was raw were all there. Richer more nuanced colour, better shadow detail, much of the branches in the raw are just black blotches. on the jpeg.

As for so many preferring the grey image, that's a hard one to wrap my head around. We put so much emphasis on reflection colour, the reflections in the raw in terms of colour are just a whole different class than the jpeg. You don't really get colour contrast from grey. Interesting that so many focussed on the willow tree as opposed to the sunset where I was at a complete loss to both match my selected cabins and also produce any semblance of accurate colour in the jpeg. Nor was I able to darken the jpeg to closer match the raw image, without increasing the size of the black blotches of black shadow among the fir tree branches.

I was quite interested to know how many could actually pick up the signs of raw vs jpeg or understood what kinds of things you can do with raws you can't do with jpeg, and when you might as well shoot jpeg

Thanks again for your participation. It's been informative.
Thanks! I voted for #2 as the raw. Interestingly, the colours in #1 looked a bit more natural for me, except for the sky which I feel lacked the detail of the raw in #2.
11-21-2018, 06:02 AM   #34
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What no one has commented on, so I will, is what a good job the Pentax in-camera software did in creating the JPEG file.

11-21-2018, 06:50 AM - 2 Likes   #35
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QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
What no one has commented on, so I will, is what a good job the Pentax in-camera software did in creating the JPEG file.
The original is OK, I probably wouldn't post it but it's clearly good enough for some. In PP I like to take something I wouldn't post and make it into something I'm happy with. But this has been the most one sided poll I've ever run, I'm clearly not the one people should be paying attention to when it comes to these issues.

Given that it turned into a vote on my processing style, 91% would actually prefer if i just left it alone. And 60% can't tell the difference between a RAW and a jpeg. That's a good reason, to just stop doing this kind of comparison. Or as Tess said, if you set yourself up, people will shoot you down. But, everything is data.

Again thanks to all who participated, it's been an eye opener.

But from my perspective, never again.

It does make me wonder, how many "likes" I'd have if I conformed to the "norm" as defined by this thread. (Multiply my likes by 9.) Apparently, "I could have been a contenda."

But I wouldn't have been happy, oh well. You can't win them all. Happiness or approval.
I always choose happiness.

And here I thought we'd be talking about the differences between working with raw files and jpeg files. Silly me.

Last edited by normhead; 11-21-2018 at 08:02 AM.
11-21-2018, 08:09 AM   #36
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
But from my perspective, never again.
@normhead, I appreciate you doing this. It takes your valuable time and from my perspective, it is educational. Please do not quit. The heck with the naysayers. Let them take their valuable time and create something that stirs up discussion and dare I say controversy. For my money, I learned by observing and participating. Yes. I did vote without judgment. BTW, for as long as you have been at this, I am sure your PP skills are just fine.
11-21-2018, 08:12 AM   #37
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QuoteOriginally posted by MarkJerling Quote
Thanks! I voted for #2 as the raw. Interestingly, the colours in #1 looked a bit more natural for me, except for the sky which I feel lacked the detail of the raw in #2.
The whole detail in the red tree branches further down in the frame is certainly interesting. A fair bit of time was invested in trying to duplicate the detail in the jpeg, never really successfully. It's like the jpeg engine did some spot lightening and contrasting my software wasn't able to duplicate. although I could probably get the raw better if that was to be a point of focus. In my mind the willow was going to detract from the image no matter what I did, so I chose to concentrate on parts of the image that had more potential.The big surprise was how that spot contrast darkened the red cabin. To use the cabin as reference, the jpeg ended up a lot lighter than the raw. The original contrast was changed by the jpeg engine, and, if you wanted the same values as the raw, I could find no way to undo the change made by the jpeg engine. The jpeg engine guessed wrong on what my focus would be, and having made the changes and reduced the image from 14 to 8 bit, there just wasn't enough latitude left to change it back.

The willow was going to be a problem with this image no matter how it was shot. The three elements I chose to give preference to were in my mind more important. I'd love to have had a print worthy image to work on with no such weaknesses. Maybe then folks could have focused on the raw conversion vs jpeg, and not become distracted by the tree or other elements of the PP. However, I don't ordinarily keep jpegs from my files. This image was shot for the occasion with the jpeg recorded on the second card.

But my style being so unpopular with thread participants means the raw files are going to be at serious disadvantage no matter how good my starting image is. 90% said, they prefer the in camera processing. Making me a really poor candidate to run this test. If you can't show people something they want to do, you aren't the guy. And what they want to do, I find unappealing. Terms for a mutually agreed upon divorce.

Its really kind of humorous. I said "look what you can do with raw instead of jpeg" and everyone said "we don't want to do that."

Bottom line for me, anyone can post a OOC image. And if everyone on the craft show circuit does the same, then there's no incentive for them to buy your work, not the guy in the next booth's. You need to develop a style that differentiate yourself based on your preferences, and stick to it, so the people who buy from you will find something the next time they look at your work. But, I also get it, not many here come from that kind of experience. Many are looking for cheap and dirty, (and apparently colourless.)

Last edited by normhead; 11-21-2018 at 08:55 AM.
11-21-2018, 11:14 AM   #38
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Many are looking for cheap and dirty, (and apparently colourless.)
That's not the reason why I voted #1 to look better. I voted it because it has much better 3D feeling and fresher look. Colors in it look cleaner and over all image is brighter. I voted it despite the poor sky and processing artifacts around the trees there.

11-21-2018, 11:16 AM   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Bottom line for me, anyone can post a OOC image. And if everyone on the craft show circuit does the same, then there's no incentive for them to buy your work, not the guy in the next booth's. You need to develop a style that differentiate yourself based on your preferences, and stick to it, so the people who buy from you will find something the next time they look at your work. But, I also get it, not many here come from that kind of experience. Many are looking for cheap and dirty, (and apparently colourless.)
I chuckled a little when you mentioned the craft show circuit. In my region, there is a numbing similarity between booths. All have alarmingly vivid landscapes (greens to make a leprechaun blush) with the more extravagant offerings printed on polished aluminum panels using dye transfer. Amazing things to hang above the fireplace back home.

Actually, it is not that bad, but even venues such as Portland Saturday Market (the original, they say) tend to shiny commercial tastes.


Steve
11-21-2018, 11:30 AM   #40
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
The whole detail in the red tree branches further down in the frame is certainly interesting. A fair bit of time was invested in trying to duplicate the detail in the jpeg, never really successfully. It's like the jpeg engine did some spot lightening and contrasting my software wasn't able to duplicate. although I could probably get the raw better if that was to be a point of focus. In my mind the willow was going to detract from the image no matter what I did, so I chose to concentrate on parts of the image that had more potential.The big surprise was how that spot contrast darkened the red cabin. To use the cabin as reference, the jpeg ended up a lot lighter than the raw. The original contrast was changed by the jpeg engine, and, if you wanted the same values as the raw, I could find no way to undo the change made by the jpeg engine. The jpeg engine guessed wrong on what my focus would be, and having made the changes and reduced the image from 14 to 8 bit, there just wasn't enough latitude left to change it back.

The willow was going to be a problem with this image no matter how it was shot. The three elements I chose to give preference to were in my mind more important. I'd love to have had a print worthy image to work on with no such weaknesses. Maybe then folks could have focused on the raw conversion vs jpeg, and not become distracted by the tree or other elements of the PP. However, I don't ordinarily keep jpegs from my files. This image was shot for the occasion with the jpeg recorded on the second card.

But my style being so unpopular with thread participants means the raw files are going to be at serious disadvantage no matter how good my starting image is. 90% said, they prefer the in camera processing. Making me a really poor candidate to run this test. If you can't show people something they want to do, you aren't the guy. And what they want to do, I find unappealing. Terms for a mutually agreed upon divorce.

Its really kind of humorous. I said "look what you can do with raw instead of jpeg" and everyone said "we don't want to do that."

Bottom line for me, anyone can post a OOC image. And if everyone on the craft show circuit does the same, then there's no incentive for them to buy your work, not the guy in the next booth's. You need to develop a style that differentiate yourself based on your preferences, and stick to it, so the people who buy from you will find something the next time they look at your work. But, I also get it, not many here come from that kind of experience. Many are looking for cheap and dirty, (and apparently colourless.)
The main value of your photos is in what you do before you ever put them into the computer; maybe everyone can post an OOC image, but your's are more worth posting than others are {including mine}.
QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
I like both - the photographer did a good job, which is Job One.

Last edited by reh321; 11-21-2018 at 11:38 AM. Reason: add quote of myself
11-21-2018, 12:12 PM   #41
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QuoteOriginally posted by iheiramo Quote
That's not the reason why I voted #1 to look better. I voted it because it has much better 3D feeling and fresher look. Colors in it look cleaner and over all image is brighter. I voted it despite the poor sky and processing artifacts around the trees there.
Cool, this is one image, in the future I'll run a few more when I get decent opportunities. I tend to look more at, "what do i want to hang on my wall", and matching the colour scheme is a large part of that, so for me a huge grey sky is a no go. I do have some that are both colourful and have 3D pop in raw, but this just wasn't one of them. Luck of the draw I guess.

In any case, that's somrhing particular to this set of images, but not normally a raw vs jpeg consideration.

---------- Post added 11-21-18 at 02:17 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
I chuckled a little when you mentioned the craft show circuit. In my region, there is a numbing similarity between booths. All have alarmingly vivid landscapes (greens to make a leprechaun blush) with the more extravagant offerings printed on polished aluminum panels using dye transfer. Amazing things to hang above the fireplace back home.

Actually, it is not that bad, but even venues such as Portland Saturday Market (the original, they say) tend to shiny commercial tastes.


Steve
Interesting how what people like to hang on their walls is not what the guys here on the forum for the most part think is the right way to do it. I guess I'm lucky in that my personal preference seems to sell, even when I go for a more pastel "old masters" kind of look.

Is owning your own DSLR a reaction to not being able to find what you want in the galleries? While I understand the "commercial" label, it's little unfair. Most cannot produce that type of work. So we really don't know, is it taste or lack of ability? If anyone else wants to take arak at this. feel free. (Although prepare yourself for the shock, and maybe post the next day when you're not tired from a coupe hours of post processing.)

Last edited by normhead; 11-21-2018 at 01:57 PM.
11-21-2018, 12:20 PM   #42
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I refrained because until now I had only looked on my phone. I had GUESSED right based on the banding of the sky and thinking it should be more subtle. I looked other places and my phone wasn't helping. Now I have looked on a monitor and of the 3 points I looked at closely I was mixed. I looked at the central bottom branches of the willow and was wrong based on branches I could see. I looked at the bare branches sticking up way right past the pine tree and was right based on the more nuanced glow in the branches.
So now I know and I looked at the overlap of the pine and willow branches. The jpg is very distinct and the raw is very nuanced. This would have thrown me into guessing on style. One seems too distinct and one not enough. That also has to do with my monitor and eyes.
It was interesting and as all good tests brings more questions than answers. The one thing it clarified most for me was what subtleties matter most to me. Thanks for posting.
11-21-2018, 12:33 PM - 1 Like   #43
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QuoteOriginally posted by swanlefitte Quote
It was interesting and as all good tests brings more questions than answers. The one thing it clarified most for me was what subtleties matter most to me. Thanks for posting.
Isn't it interesting how the works. You try and figure something out, you get more questions than answers. The big one for me here is why are willow leaves are so much clearer on the jpeg?

We often assume that something is just better. Finding out that better for one thing doesn't mean better for everything is probably not what I was going for. You always hope for a knock out punch where you say "i'm never doing that one thing again.? I've left thinking, well if there's tree like that in the image, maybe I better switch to jpeg. IN this one, I liked everything about the raw, except the trees. The jpeg tress were more realistic, as was that dock, bottom left.
11-21-2018, 12:55 PM   #44
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Is owning your own DSLR a reaction to not being able to find what you want in the galleries? While I understand the "commercial" label, it's little unfair. Most cannot produce that type of work. So we really don't know, is it taste or lack of ability?
I hang my own work because it appeals to my taste and my taste is...ummm...eclectic. That being said, I have considered doing booth sales, but have no desire to emulate Velvia just to make the sale. The question of sufficient skill to rock that look is a good question. I don't shoot with that look in mind except perhaps in the urban setting.


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11-21-2018, 01:42 PM   #45
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
Interesting how what people like to hang on their walls is not what the guys here on the forum for the most part think is the right way to do it. I guess I'm lucky in that my personal preference seems to sell, even when I go for a more pastel "old masters" kind of look.

Is owning your own DSLR a reaction to not being able to find what you want in the galleries? While I understand the "commercial" label, it's little unfair. Most cannot produce that type of work. So we really don't know, is it taste or lack of ability? If anyone else wants to take arak at this. feel free. (Although prepare yourself for the shock, and maybe post the next day when you're not tired from a coupe hours of post processing.)
Is the assumption here that the primary reason for photography with a "good" camera is to create a picture hanging from the wall, or is that merely the focus of this discussion?
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