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12-10-2011, 09:44 PM   #1
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Editing PEF RAW files on a Mac

I'm new to Pentax and now have a K5. I would like to shoot in Pentax RAW but when I attempt to open PEF RAW files in either Silkypix Developer Studio or Pentax Camera Utility 4. the file will not open, greyed out and not even recognized. Is it because I have the Mac versions do you think? Hope one of you RAW shooters can help me out. Cheers - Ken

12-10-2011, 10:01 PM   #2
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I don't use macs, so I can't help you specifically, but have you tried shooting DNG instead of PEF? There is no advantage I'm aware of to using PEF, and DNG isn't proprietary, it's an open standard, so more software supports it, generally.
12-10-2011, 10:44 PM   #3
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I've tried both RAW formats and neither appear to be really editable in the software that came with my K5. I have been used to Nikon RAW and those files are truly RAW in that when loaded into the NX2 software that comes with Nikon cameras. You can adjust and change all parameters of the file. White Balance, Colour Mode etc.
I'll keep trying and thanks for your response. It may well be that the software prefers a pc to a Mac.
How much are you able to manipulate RAW files using the Pentax software?
12-10-2011, 11:06 PM   #4
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Do you have the most recent versions of the software? Check the Pentax support site to make sure. I use Photoshop without issue so I can't help you with the actual software, but if neither one will open a DNG file then I think you need to ugdate the software.

12-10-2011, 11:09 PM   #5
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Pentax Camera Utility 4 worked fine for me on my PBG4 OS X 10.4.11 the last time I tried it. I don't know why it wouldn't work on your Mac.
12-11-2011, 12:03 AM   #6
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It works in that I can open JPEGS and do some basic editing but I would like to be able to take a RAW file and make adjustments throughout the range of those possible. e.g. White Balance, Colour Mode, Levels, Dynamic Range, Shadows and Highlights etc. Adobe Lightroom was suggested and it seems to be the best option so far. I had hoped that the Pentax software provided would be able to do the most with Pentax RAW files. Anyway, I'll keep looking for the best software to fully manipulate PEF files.
Thanks
12-11-2011, 12:05 AM   #7
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I'm a Mac user, and when I used the bundled Pentax software that came with my K20D for a time, I experienced no problems with the PEF files I shot, so I'm quite sure it's not a Mac problem.

It might be wise to consider investing in a program like Lightroom (I much prefer it over Aperture; I used it before I "saw the Light(room)). I shoot PEF on my K-5 and as I import into Lightroom, I have them converted to DNG (smaller file size than PEF files on my computer) and placed on my hard drive plus I have a backup copy of the PEF files sent to my external backup drive.

Anyhow, the main point is that I felt limited by the Pentax software that I was provided with, and not only will you not have to deal with the PEF issues you're having, but you'll also have some incredibly powerful tools with which to edit and process your RAW files.
12-11-2011, 12:06 AM   #8
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By the way what is the purpose of Silkypix Developer Studio if its not a program for editing Pentax RAW files? Does it have some other purpose?

12-11-2011, 12:08 AM   #9
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Thanks enoxatnep. I think I have been expecting too much from the bundled software. Lightroom seems to be doing the trick. It's a little different but like you say very powerful. How do you convert from PEF to DNG?
12-11-2011, 12:17 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kennuck Quote
I've tried both RAW formats and neither appear to be really editable in the software that came with my K5. I have been used to Nikon RAW and those files are truly RAW in that when loaded into the NX2 software that comes with Nikon cameras. You can adjust and change all parameters of the file. White Balance, Colour Mode etc.
I'll keep trying and thanks for your response. It may well be that the software prefers a pc to a Mac.
How much are you able to manipulate RAW files using the Pentax software?
Last point first, you can edit either PEF or DNG as much as any other raw format. The Pentax utility has a lot of features, but it's got a horrid UI (imho) and is very clunky, and glitchy on a lot of systems.

Nikon's raw format is proprietary to Nikon, but otherwise not all that different from any other. An analogy that might help: Zip files, rar files made with Winrar, 7z files made with 7zip, they're all archives that do pretty much the same thing. Raw formats are like that, too. They're essentially just a container for the data of various types (image data, metadata like EXIF, a thumbnail, etc). What you can do with these various formats depends more on the editor you use, as all raw files contain pretty much the same thing, perhaps stored a bit differently.

I seem to remember another post much like yours, but I didn't pay all that much attention, because I'll never use a mac. Maybe a permissions or file association problem? There's definitely something amiss with how your OS is handling these files when you try to open them in DCU.
12-11-2011, 03:12 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kennuck Quote
Thanks enoxatnep. I think I have been expecting too much from the bundled software. Lightroom seems to be doing the trick. It's a little different but like you say very powerful. How do you convert from PEF to DNG?
Copy as DNG is an option in the top center of Lightroom's import window.

Import photos into a catalog
12-11-2011, 06:12 AM   #12
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My first question would be, what version of the OS are you using? My second question would be, what version of Digital Camera RAW are you using?

To use a K5 you need at least Mac OS 10.6.7
12-11-2011, 03:20 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
To use a K5 you need at least Mac OS 10.6.7
That's not entirely true. Look at my post above, #5.
12-17-2011, 12:13 AM   #14
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I also have a mac and have problems with Pentax digital camera utility 4 software. I can view & manipulate them but it takes about a miniute for each adjustment. Arrg.
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