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04-09-2011, 06:37 PM   #1
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Why you should shot RAW!!!

I started to shoot RAW about 4 months ago. At first I shot RAW at night and indoors. Than I bought 4, 16 gig memory cards. Now I shot jpeg and Raw. I don’t always have the time to process RAW file so I have jpeg. For my daughter sport I usually shoot jpeg only. (outdoor sports) Last week I was playing with the setting and the last photo I shot was under the muted color setting. Today I went to the beach for the day. I did set my camera to RAW & jpep. I took 588 shots. The jpeg’s look like crap! I never change the jpeg color settings. Thank God for RAW! I will shoot RAW from now on!

04-09-2011, 07:24 PM - 1 Like   #2
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No reason to shoot jpg, really. For a quick conversion, you can "extract a jpg" from the PEF file using the Pentax software. It takes less than a minute for a whole card.
04-09-2011, 08:17 PM   #3
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I also shoot raw + jpeg. Several reasons: Storage has gotten cheap enough that I don't have to worry about the extra space. It is much easier to sort the photos with the jpegs, and occasionally the jpegs are good enough to use on their own. I also eliminate a step in processing by not having to extract a jpeg from the raw.

NaCl(works for me)H2O
04-09-2011, 08:55 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by SpecialK Quote
No reason to shoot jpg, really. For a quick conversion, you can "extract a jpg" from the PEF file using the Pentax software. It takes less than a minute for a whole card.
ugh, have you seen what that embedded JPG looks like? It's heavily compressed, it looks like crap. All the detail gets lost.

Nothing wrong with shooting RAW+. You get a better quality preview on the LCD screen to boot.

04-09-2011, 09:03 PM   #5
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or Why it may not be necessary to shoot RAW

QuoteOriginally posted by frattofoto Quote
The jpeg’s look like crap! I never change the jpeg color settings. Thank God for RAW! I will shoot RAW from now on!
RAW vs. JPG is a long standing debate - everyone has their opinion.

Whenever I come across some photographic difficulty
I get an almost blanket chorus to use RAW -
to solve all the problems
(including world peace! )

Everyone works differently and for many RAW is superior -
and I would basically agree -
but I have found it unnecessary for my usage -

I have found I can just about do most of the manipulations on a JPG!
Pentax DCU (Digital Camera Utility - the RAW processor supplied with every Pentax dSLR)
can open Pentax dSLR JPGs and most of the RAW manipulations can be applied to those JPG.

Even ACR (Adobe Camera RAW) can be used to open JPGs and again most of the RAW manipulations can be applied.

I had a real doozy of a challenge of a photo summarized in Post #101
(in thread: Modern LED Stage Lighting & photography problems ( 1 2 3 ... Last Page) )

By request I also posted the original paired RAW/DNG+JPG (see post #103) for anyone to try out the photos
(anyone care to try out the photos to demonstrate the superiority of RAW?).

There were good valiant attempts - but in the end I preferred the result using the JPG!

Like I said everyone to their own - I use my K-x a lot as evidenced in the long thread: Kx in Use ( 1 2 3 ... Last Page)

I shoot exclusively JPGs in what I consider very challenging conditions low available light so low in parts that it is below both the metering and AF limits of the K-x - yet I can more than get away with just JPGs.

Last edited by UnknownVT; 04-10-2011 at 08:08 AM.
04-09-2011, 09:46 PM   #6
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i shoot jpeg for some reason but i shoot raw if i really need to process the photos
04-09-2011, 09:52 PM   #7
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I only shoot RAW...

BUT, i may end up shooting RAW+ in the future if i manage to get my hands on an iPad2 Quick image checking on the fly with that in your backpack, and it'd be best to see it in JPEG on the iPad2...
04-09-2011, 10:28 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Hound Tooth Quote
ugh, have you seen what that embedded JPG looks like? It's heavily compressed, it looks like crap. All the detail gets lost.
That's why I said quick. It's fine for weeding out dupes and duds. A batch conversion at the best quality takes longer, but can be done unattended.

04-09-2011, 10:32 PM   #9
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wedding photographers use jpegs right?
04-09-2011, 10:38 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by SpecialK Quote
That's why I said quick. It's fine for weeding out dupes and duds. A batch conversion at the best quality takes longer, but can be done unattended.
and RAW+ is even faster, easier and cheaper. SD cards are cheap. Spares are good. And it's good practice to switch cards frequently anyways.
04-10-2011, 03:42 AM   #11
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Is image quality the only good reason to shoot in RAW? And since some people don't require RAW for the sort of photography they do, what are those reasons?

Also, what's the difference between RAW and RAW+?
04-10-2011, 04:47 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rainy Day Quote

Also, what's the difference between RAW and RAW+?
RAW+ is an output of both a RAW and JPEG version of one image. It's an option in your camera that also includes options for just RAW and just JPEG images.

I like shooting RAW because I have more variety in the editing I can do to pictures.
04-10-2011, 08:35 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rainy Day Quote
Is image quality the only good reason to shoot in RAW? And since some people don't require RAW for the sort of photography they do, what are those reasons?
RAW is supposed to give more flexibility - it is the raw image captured by the camera supposedly without any manipulations/processing.

One of the major reasons is that RAW allows one to apply any color/white balance to one's tastes and not be dependent on the AWB (auto white balance) or any other white balance selected for/by the camera - this really allows fine tuning the color balance under difficult lighting situations.

It is also much more flexible on how noise reduction (which can destroy fine detail) is applied or not applied - again giving much more control than the camera's internal processing.

In these ways - optimal processing of RAW can result in better/superior images than the JPG out of the camera.

However the operative word is optimal -
everyone has their own tastes -
so there is a very good reason to use RAW to get exactly the picture one wants
- but most of us are not that exacting - different days can result in different processing/results.

An easy challenge is to shoot a paired RAW+JPG - then use any other RAW converter than the supplied Pentax DCU (Digital Camera Utility) and try to match the JPG exactly - it may sound simple since RAW gives us all that flexibility -
but until one tries it - we do not realize how difficult it is - we can get close relatively easily - but to get it just right to match?

Ah! but who wants to do that?

No one really - but surely if RAW were that powerful - why is it so difficult to match a humble JPG? Why can one not be that exacting?

Here in lies the problem - it is NOT that exacting -
because I am sure the processors can potentially do it
- but it is beyond most of our capabilities -
no insult intended - I consider myself experienced in pp -
and I could not do it - so I am in the same boat/bucket.

The only pp package that could do it with any consistency is (obviously) Pentax DCU (which is supplied with all Pentax dSLRs) - it stands to reason that the Pentax supplied software understands the Pentax image -
yet who uses Pentax DCU as their regular processor?

I shoot almost exclusively JPGs - but I can apply most of the RAW manipulations to JPGs as Pentax DCU can open Pentax dSLR images - as can ACR - so when I need to do more serious color/white balancing I do use those but on the JPGs.

Noise reduction - RAW will/does have the advantage -
but for me Pentax seems to have found the right balance between retaining detail and reducing noise - most of the time I do further NR using pp - there are few (to no) cases when I wished I did not have the built in camera NR - besides one can turn NR OFF in camera.
04-10-2011, 09:50 AM   #14
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There is no right answer as it depends on what/why you are shooting.

Most of they guys I know who cover sports shoot JPEG. They are working for media outlets who are going to display the bulk of their images on the web where it will be compressed to the point that RAW is pointless. A good friend who covers college athletics will shoot over 1,000 images (pre-game, warm-ups, game time, post game interviews) and grab video clips all in one night. He then has to get his gallery loaded and ready to view before bed. All of this has to be done and on-line before 4:00 AM the next morning. No way in hell he is going to shoot RAW.

On the flip side. One of the first weddings I did when I went digital with my 5D I shot in RAW as I was still learning. The couple lost their home to a fire and all of their wedding pictures. They asked me if I could replace their lost images. I was amazed at how much RAW converters have improved over the last 3-4 years. My skill with RAW processing has also improved greatly, and I was able to give them an album that was noticeably better than the first. There were 10 or so images that were really great images, but I had shot at 3200 (5D max) and at the time I could not create what I thought was a quality image from the RAW files. I was LR 3.x I was able to bring those images up to a quality level that was presentable to a client, and they loved them. Had I shot JPEG that would not have been possible.

If you shoot RAW you can take advantage of advances in RAW converters. There is a lot of attention given to sensor improvements, but I think the biggest gains have come from RAW processors like Lightroom and DxO.

There is also the issue of differences in JPEG engines across all brands of cameras.
If I ranked JPEG quality by brand from my personal experience.
1. Olympus (E-3) - Hard to improve on the in-camera JPEGs. Not a lot of headroom.
2. Canon (5D)
3. Pentax (K-7) or Nikon (Limited experience with Nikon)
4. Sony (only used an A900)

I'm not sure where Panasonic would fall. I have never used one so I have no opinion. The GH1 seemed to do a decent job, but others that I have seen have not been as impressive.
04-10-2011, 10:46 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Winder Quote
I was amazed at how much RAW converters have improved over the last 3-4 years. My skill with RAW processing has also improved greatly, and I was able to give them an album that was noticeably better than the first.

If you shoot RAW you can take advantage of advances in RAW converters. There is a lot of attention given to sensor improvements, but I think the biggest gains have come from RAW processors like Lightroom and DxO.
This is a very good point - if I were to hedge my bets then RAW is the way to go -
kind of future proofs one's pictures.

However in reality - although in theory this might be true -
any camera has only a limited lifetime
and to do conversions correctly the camera has to be supported - and in many cases understood (eg: Pentax's Highlight Correction was not understood by some and did produce grossly underexposed shots with difficult to correct color casts) -
this leads to speculation whether improvements in RAW processing can actually apply specifically to one's camera - forever?

Doubts aside - that is still a very good point.

My own take is that I am happy with the JPGs out of my K-x -
when I did shoot DNG+JPG - and did I try with many processors/converters -
in the end I did not feel that DNG/RAW offered me any significant advantage over the K-x JPGs.

However mine is pretty general photography of live music - if I were to be more exacting and did scientific photography, then the case may be different.
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