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01-28-2018, 01:10 PM   #1
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K50 or Dell - which one lies to me?

Hi!

So, I'm an amateur who uses K50 and take photos of my insects (ants in particular). Today I did another session. I ussed RAW+ option to store the shots on card. I know, RAW are displayed with conversion to JPEG on my camera (or so I was told once). But even if I choose the camera to save all RAWs with particular settings (like manual white balance) to JPGs the difference between camera and those JPGs displayed on the camera is huuuuuuuuuuuge. Not just a slight change in color and/or contrast. I know, my DELL laptop isn;t the best display for photographs and its color change depending on graphics card used in the moment, but the difference (at least in contrast) is like the best photo ever on my camera and the worst ever on laptop.

Which one lies to me? Or maybe they borh lie to me..?

For example this one - would you say it has the best exposure/contrast/brightness/colours ever? I doubt. But my camera shows it as an ideal image...



Last edited by BigMackCam; 01-28-2018 at 01:20 PM.
01-28-2018, 01:24 PM   #2
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What software are you using to display things on your laptop? As far as I know the only software that will read camera settings saved in a RAW is the Pentax supplied software. All others just render the RAW according to their own settings. I might be wrong on that but that is the way I understand it.

And depending on how old your laptop is (and the display settings on it) you might not be getting a realistic view of the image. Why not try some of those images on a different computer? That would tend to show you where the issue is.
01-28-2018, 01:24 PM   #3
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RAW files require post processing. They will always look bad without. The in camera display does quite a few changes when displayed, but not modified in the RAW sidecar, so your imported photos will look flat.
01-28-2018, 01:28 PM   #4
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Hello and welcome

Neither your K-50 or Dell laptop are lying to you

When you shoot a JPEG image (either in JPEG mode only, or RAW+ which produces both RAW and JPEG files), you get an image that has been heavily processed by the camera to optimise colour, contrast, tone curves, noise reduction, sharpening and other aspects, according to quite complex algorithms in the camera's firmware.

A RAW image, however - as the name implies - is simply a file of raw image data collected by the sensor, without any processing applied. You have to work with that file in image processing software - such as Pentax's DCU, Lightroom, AfterShot, RawTherapee and others - to produce the exact look that you want. You can then export that image to a JPEG file for regular viewing.

Effectively, a RAW file is equivalent to a "digital negative" in film photography, while a JPEG file is like a fully developed photograph.

With RAW, you have a lot more flexibility in post-processing your images - recovering under-exposed shadows and over-exposed highlights, applying tone curves, getting just the right amount of noise reduction and sharpening etc. But it can require quite a good deal of learning and effort, and the quality of the final result depends on you. JPEG is convenient, and will give you good results straight from the camera... but if you have the time and inclination, you can squeeze even more image quality out of RAW files

01-28-2018, 01:31 PM   #5
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I use the software attached to the camera (Silkypix). But the same result I see in regular viewers (like the default one in Windows 10 <which is terrific btw>, and the old one used in old Windows).

As I said above, even if I save the RAW as JPG with custom settings (like mentioned manual balance) the output is completely the same - ideal photo on camera, wors xyz on laptop. They simply do not differ from RAWs.
01-28-2018, 01:37 PM   #6
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Sorry for splitting, I can't edit my posts yet.

Don't get me wrong. What I do is:
1. I take measures of white balance and store as one of the settings
2. I do a couple of shots and save them as RAW+ (displayed as posprocessed )
3. Then I select imamges still on camera, choose to save them as JPGS, and then select the settings which camera have to use (including wbalance setting from step 1)
4. The output JPG does not differ from postprocessed RAW on camera and is beautiful, but when I download it my laptop it looks terrible, far from the JPG displayed on camera.


Last edited by geb88; 01-28-2018 at 01:50 PM. Reason: clarification of the steps, fixed typos
01-28-2018, 01:46 PM   #7
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To add to the comments above, if your Dell is showing you a thumbnail preview image, it is the same as what was sent to the K-50's LCD display which was generated using the JPEG settings on your camera. The DNG raw file from your camera includes preview JPEG images in three sizes. If the computer has the proper codec to view DNG, it simply extracts the JPEG and uses it. Since you have the Pentax software installed on your computer, it has the proper codec and is able to display the thumbnail.

P.S. If you have menu > Rec Mode > Color Space set to Adobe RGB, you may want to change it to back to the default sRGB. It may also be that your laptop monitor is poorly calibrated. You can ask Cortana about color management and calibration.


Steve

Last edited by stevebrot; 01-28-2018 at 01:55 PM.
01-28-2018, 01:50 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by geb88 Quote
Sorry for splitting, I can't edit my posts yet.

Don't get mem wrong. What I do is:
1. Take measures of white balance and store as one of the settings
2. Do a couple of shots and save them as RAW+ (displayed as posprocessed )
3. Select imamges still on camera, choose to save them as JPGS, and then select the settings which camera have to use (including wbalance setting from step 1)
4. The output is just bad as it could be on pc, and the ideal one on camera (I mean, mentioned JPG file)
Just to clarify...

Are you talking about the difference in appearance between what you see on the camera's LCD screen vs how it looks on your laptop? Or is that not what you mean? Forgetting about the RAW file for a moment, if you display the original camera JPEG file on your laptop, does it look OK?

Either way, we can figure out what's happening

01-28-2018, 02:22 PM   #9
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Thank you Stevebrot, good to know that

QuoteOriginally posted by BigMackCam Quote
Just to clarify...

Are you talking about the difference in appearance between what you see on the camera's LCD screen vs how it looks on your laptop? Or is that not what you mean? Forgetting about the RAW file for a moment, if you display the original camera JPEG file on your laptop, does it look OK?

Either way, we can figure out what's happening
Yes. I'm used to slight color/contrast changes when I download JPGS from camera. The RAW (displayed as processed) and saved JPG from RAW+ and JPG from saving the RAW manually with settings look completely the same. When I download all three of them on laptop, they still look the same and are all terrible (in Silkypix and standard viewers). This time the difference is just huge. I'm terrified because those shots vere not the greates in my life but one of the best for this species of ants :<

This time I changed my method of doing pics. Usually I do RAW+ and if I see a a really good photo I click on WB settings (arrow down), where the photo is displayed and save it from there with choosen WB setting (+/- button as default)*. I know, it is very inconvenient and is limited to the very core (if you turn off the camera or do another shot you can't choose the WB setting and save the image). But if you choose a batch of RAWs and save them to JPG with the WB setting chosen.. shouldn't it do completelty the same as I do for every single image I like?

What's more - the whole thing with saving single image via WB settings is because even the RAW is displayed as postprocessed.. it doesn't take the WB from setting for the JPG saved through RAW+ (it doesn't differ from RAW). Or maybe I just understand it incorrectly - the RAW is displayed as RAW with some slight changes for the sake of readibility?[COLOR="Silver"]

*I like to have all of the possibilities of further edition open
01-28-2018, 02:38 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by geb88 Quote
The RAW (displayed as processed) and saved JPG from RAW+ and JPG from saving the RAW manually with settings look completely the same. When I download all three of them on laptop, they still look the same and are all terrible (in Silkypix and standard viewers).
OK, so the RAW and JPG from your RAW+ shooting look equally bad on your laptop, right?

A couple of possibilities spring to mind...

Firstly, I think you mentioned that this time you set white balance manually, yes? If so, how did you decide on the white balance value? Did you set a custom white balance using a neutral grey card or reference point on the subject, or did you use a value you thought was appropriate for the lighting? Try adjusting the white balance in Silkypix... does it improve the look of the image? Also, did you switch to a different colour profile in the camera than the one you normally use?

If you shoot JPEG only, and the files look OK when downloaded to your PC, there's something in your new process that's different - something you're setting manually, or something you've changed in the camera's options. The good news is that with the RAW files, you've lost nothing - you can get the files looking exactly how you want... it might just take a some tweaking in Silkypix

Beyond that, it could be that the display profile for your laptop is way out of calibration compared to your camera's display. My HP (and, in fact, almost every fairly modern laptop I've used) seem to have a very, very cool, blue-ish profile as standard. It looks great for running applications on screen, and for playing games - but it's terribly inaccurate for displaying photos. I use an X-Rite Colormunki Display profiling tool to periodically calibrate the display profiles for my laptop and external monitors, and I believe everyone involved in digital photography - even amateurs - should do the same, using one of several available tools. The difference between the factory-supplied profile and tool-adjusted profiles is usually *huge*.

Last edited by BigMackCam; 01-28-2018 at 02:43 PM.
01-28-2018, 02:49 PM   #11
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Other than the way of saving the RAWs I didn't change nothing in my samera settings.
I checked WB balance by pointing the camera on a most white space (because there was no grey around), it was looking really good (even more, it looked better than usuall). By the way, it's sad that in this mode Pentax does not display the values other than A/B/G/M (which can't be translated easily to Silkypix).

Huh.. I remember that Windows got a huge update not long ago.. maybe it changed something. If it is nothing with the camera (and you seem to be quite sure about that - I would rather belive you than my laptop ) I will have to check this one thing. Eh.. it looks like I will have to buy the colorimeter after all.

Last edited by geb88; 01-28-2018 at 02:55 PM. Reason: typos
01-28-2018, 02:54 PM - 1 Like   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by geb88 Quote
Other that the way of saving the RAWs I didn;t change nothing in my samera settings.
I check WB balance by pointing the camera on a most white space (because there was no grey around), it was looking really good (even more, it looked better than usuall). It's sad that in this mode Pentax does not display the values other than A/B/G/M (which can't be translated easily to Silkypix) by the way.

Huh.. I remember that Windows got a huge update not long ago.. maybe it changed something. If it is nothing with the camera (and you seem to be quite sure about that - I would rather belive you than my laptop ) I will have to check this one thing. Eh.. it looks like I will have to buy the colorimetr after all.
If you're able to get a RAW and JPEG file to me (via Google Drive or something similar), and if it would help, I'd be happy to take a look and see how they display on my PC... also, I can look for anything in the EXIF settings that seems unusual. I'll PM you in case this is of use
01-28-2018, 03:09 PM   #13
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Oh! It would be great, love you already

I will send the pm with a link.
01-28-2018, 09:27 PM   #14
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If you are not using a color managed workflow, color rendering is up in the air.
JPEG's are modified according to the JPEG settings and the color fidelity as seen on the monitor is displayed by the settings of the computer.
RAW images are just that, RAW. The color fidelity is set according to the camera profile provided by the software you are using and displayed on the monitor. If your monitor can not show the colors correctly then your colors will not conform to what your brain considers "correct". There have been several threads on managed color workflow on this site, I suggest that you look into what it takes to control your systems color output rather than to expect to eyeball it. The human eyeball by it self will lead to wide variation in color perception, because it is so adaptable. You need to be working in a controlled workflow before you can really judge color fidelity.
01-28-2018, 11:09 PM   #15
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Are you telling that you are doing your post processing in your camera,
based on what you see in your camera's LCD?

If that is the case, there's your problem. The screen is too tiny and is not meant for serious pp.

If you look at your edited photos at your lap top shrinked in the same size as in camera's LCD, they probably look fine.

QuoteOriginally posted by geb88 Quote
Sorry for splitting, I can't edit my posts yet.

Don't get me wrong. What I do is:
1. I take measures of white balance and store as one of the settings
2. I do a couple of shots and save them as RAW+ (displayed as posprocessed )
3. Then I select imamges still on camera, choose to save them as JPGS, and then select the settings which camera have to use (including wbalance setting from step 1)
4. The output JPG does not differ from postprocessed RAW on camera and is beautiful, but when I download it my laptop it looks terrible, far from the JPG displayed on camera.
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