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12-25-2011, 10:22 PM   #1
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RAW format turning pictures blue?

I just got a K-r this morning for Christmas and, of course, started shooting right away! I uploaded the pictures to my computer and the .JPEG turned out just fine, but the .PEF, for some reason, is all tinted blue. I don't know enough RAW formatting and what goes into it, but what I did find is that a RAW picture does not undergo certain compressions used to convert from either PEF or DNG into JPEG and they can be applied manually. I'm using Picasa as my photo editor at the moment (Not able to get Photoshop right now, unfortunately) and don't know how to do this editing on my own. Any insight into this?

12-25-2011, 10:35 PM   #2
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I was surprised when so many RAW images from my K20D seemed too blue. I found that Auto White Balance works no better there than with any other digicam. Blue skies leave a blue color cast. When shooting JPGs, I use my editor's (PaintShopPro) REMOVE COLOR CAST tool to fix such. With RAW images, I must change the Color Balance from Auto to Shade or Cloudy in the RAW developer (PentaxPhotoLab).

To prevent having to change WB in every image, you can learn to judge color temperature. Under blue skies, set WB to Cloudy. Indoors with hot lights, change it to Tungsten. Or just leave it at AWB and manually change the WB so it looks right. Oh bother.
12-25-2011, 10:42 PM   #3
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RAW processing has a learning curve. If you would like a friendly suggestion, let the RAW alone for a bit and learn to use the camera. You do not have to use RAW, but it does allow you to do things beyond just saving to jpeg but that comes with extra work. The jpeg is the result of the camera's internal RAW processor. All pictures are taken as RAW and if you have jpeg selected then the camera will produce the best jpeg it can from the image and save the jpeg discarding the RAW.

A RAW processor on the computer, (Picasa, Lightroom, Photoshop, whatever,) does the same thing but allows you to tweak the RAW before it gets 'baked' as a jpeg. You will need to learn the details of using the RAW processor and get in some practice before you will be able to do any better than the camera processor.

No idea why your RAW is coming out blue in Picasa but the RAW processor being used does make a difference. But one of the big pluses of using RAW is that the white balance is not set as it is in a jpeg. So in the RAW editor just adjust your white balance so the colors are correct. Most editors allow you to set up scripts or presets that you can apply to all photos which makes it faster.

Are you shooting in PEF or DNG as your RAW format? If PEF try DNG as Picasa may understand that format better. PEF is Pentax proprietary format, DNG is a little more standardized so can have better support sometimes.
12-27-2011, 12:58 AM   #4
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I've been using PEF. I'll try DNG when I go for a drive tomorrow and see what happens. How can I use the RAW editor in Picasa? I can't seem to find it.

*EDIT* I loaded the images up in Pentax Digital Utility and the .PEFs aren't coming out tinted blue. Now I'm really confused as to why in Picasa they are!

12-27-2011, 02:47 AM   #5
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The Pentax desktop program let's you apply the same exact "custom image" settings as those available in-camera, so you can quickly get the same jpegs out of your raw files. Normally, however, there's a fair amount of work involved in developing raw files and making them look good.
12-27-2011, 02:34 PM   #6
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Sounds like Picasa doesn't support your camera very well - this would be an issue for them to answer.
12-27-2011, 11:38 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
Sounds like Picasa doesn't support your camera very well
There was an earlier thread here about Picasa and PEF files not working well. Cannot find it right now. Do try the DNG format and see if Picasa handles that any better. If not then you could use the Pentax software to convert to TIFF and then use Picasa if that is what you want to do.
12-28-2011, 08:57 AM   #8
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There is an insignificant amount of additional routine work needed with raw processing vs jpg tweeking. However, editors can interpret the raw files differently, so once you figure out the adjustment, it is no longer a real issue.

12-28-2011, 09:19 AM   #9
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Is there anywhere I could find a mini-tutorial or guide on how to start with a RAW (either PEF or DNG) and start to convert it to a JPG and edit it from the very beginning? I had used photoshop exclusively a few years ago, so photo editing isn't an entirely new concept to me. I just don't have a copy of photoshop at the moment!
12-28-2011, 12:49 PM   #10
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Here is one RAW tutorial that I found with a quick google search. But really you need to settle on what software you are going to use and study how that works. Not saying generic learning is not worth while but each software package is different and you might as well spend your time learning what you are going to use.

If you are not in a position to use Photoshop or Lightroom, (I highly recommend Lightroom) then take a look at RAWTherapy which is a free or donationware program. I have not used it but I know many on this forum do.

You should consider first what is your goal for your photographs? What are you going to do with them? Where and how are you going to store and catalog them? Only after you have considered those points should you be looking at different software. We used to keep our slides in organized metal boxes with labels. Now if you need a particular photo how are you going to find it? If it is not cataloged and keyworded properly it is as good as lost.
12-28-2011, 12:53 PM   #11
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Alright thanks! Currently I have a photobucket for storing my pictures in various albums, as well as on my own hard drive in labelled folders. I'm hoping to pick up an external hard drive in the next few weeks and I will be keeping all my pictures on that hard drive. Currently my photography is just a hobby but I'd love to be an on-the-side photographer when I get more accustomed with my camera and acquire a good array of lenses.
12-28-2011, 01:03 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by jbuck92 Quote
Is there anywhere I could find a mini-tutorial or guide on how to start with a RAW (either PEF or DNG) and start to convert it to a JPG and edit it from the very beginning? I had used photoshop exclusively a few years ago, so photo editing isn't an entirely new concept to me. I just don't have a copy of photoshop at the moment!

I've seen the latest version (v10) of Elements for $49.99. That is a good value. Some tutorials can be found as well as books to supplement the minimal user guide.
12-28-2011, 04:18 PM   #13
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I have seen this problem mentioned about Picasa before on a K-r group on Flickr!
12-28-2011, 06:32 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by jbuck92 Quote
Is there anywhere I could find a mini-tutorial or guide on how to start with a RAW (either PEF or DNG) and start to convert it to a JPG and edit it from the very beginning? I had used photoshop exclusively a few years ago, so photo editing isn't an entirely new concept to me. I just don't have a copy of photoshop at the moment!
With most odern software, there is really no difference i the basic process of processing photos whether you start from JPEG or RAW. Either way, you look at the photo and decide if you want to adjust the exposure, color, cropping, or whatever, then you perform the adjustments. No difference in principle. It's just that you will get marginally (in some case, *extremely* marginally) better results if you start from RAW than if you start from JPEG. But the differences are the sort of things you'd never notice if all you are doing is web display.
12-28-2011, 06:34 PM   #15
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Alright thanks guys! I'd hope one day (Probably quite a ways down the road) to do studio work and/or field work for possibly engagement/wedding pictures and what not. Would it be helpful to be experienced going from RAW to JPEG for that? Assuming it's your average, run of the mill wedding or engagement photo shoot.
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