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01-17-2009, 02:23 AM   #1
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K20 In-Camera JPEGs vs. Pentax Photo Lab

Best quality JPEGs from my K20 are around 10M files, and look good. But when I convert a RAW in Photo Lab, the JPEG file is only 3-5M at best quality. Am I missing something? With my K10, JPEGs converted in Photo Lab are far superior than those made in-camera.

01-17-2009, 03:09 AM   #2
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The compression steps in PPL and in the camera are not identical.
This is so.
I don't think that you will gain anything by using the "premium" (****) quality JPG from the camera. Better use the RAW.
01-17-2009, 04:54 AM   #3
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Generally speaking, the camera has to achieve raw-JPEG conversion in a limited amount of time with limited resources and thus produces results inferior to PC software that has no time limit and access to much faster hardware.
01-17-2009, 04:55 AM   #4
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define "superior"

01-17-2009, 06:03 AM   #5
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Hm? Smaller file sizes at the same quality, fewer artifacts & moire patterns, sharper, better colour,... Does this all apply to the K20D vs. say photoshop? No idea, that's why I said "generally speaking..."
01-17-2009, 06:35 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by shiner Quote
Best quality JPEGs from my K20 are around 10M files, and look good. But when I convert a RAW in Photo Lab, the JPEG file is only 3-5M at best quality. Am I missing something? With my K10, JPEGs converted in Photo Lab are far superior than those made in-camera.

Also, keep in mind that the JPEG engine in the K20D is known to have improvements over the K10D. Almost every review of the K10D insists that you shoot in raw, from which you can get excellent results - however, JPEGS straight out of the K20D (in any setting) usually look pretty much as good as possible, excepting under/over exposures and WB foibles where RAW could have saved the image.



.
01-17-2009, 02:43 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
Also, keep in mind that the JPEG engine in the K20D is known to have improvements over the K10D. Almost every review of the K10D insists that you shoot in raw, from which you can get excellent results - however, JPEGS straight out of the K20D (in any setting) usually look pretty much as good as possible, excepting under/over exposures and WB foibles where RAW could have saved the image.



.
This is pretty much what I'm saying- the PPL JPEGs do not seem to be as high quality as the in-camera ones- even when looking at pixels. Doesn't make sense to me, really, as dedicated computer software should be capable of doing a better job...
01-17-2009, 02:52 PM   #8
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The camera has a super-high-quality JPEG setting that uses very little compression, hence the large file size. I suspect PPL doesn't offer this quality/compression setting because it figures if you *really* care about the final IQ, you'll convert to TIFF instead of JPEG. Which is of course silly, but limitations like this are good examples of why people don't care much for the PPL interface despite the fact that it can produce good results.

01-17-2009, 04:22 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by shiner Quote
Best quality JPEGs from my K20 are around 10M files, and look good. But when I convert a RAW in Photo Lab, the JPEG file is only 3-5M at best quality. Am I missing something? With my K10, JPEGs converted in Photo Lab are far superior than those made in-camera.
When I convert RAW K20D RAW files to "best" quality JPEG with PPL, I typically get JPEG files around 10 M - about twice what you're seeing. I wonder why - maybe I'm missing something.

Jer
01-17-2009, 07:47 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
The camera has a super-high-quality JPEG setting that uses very little compression, hence the large file size. I suspect PPL doesn't offer this quality/compression setting because it figures if you *really* care about the final IQ, you'll convert to TIFF instead of JPEG. Which is of course silly, but limitations like this are good examples of why people don't care much for the PPL interface despite the fact that it can produce good results.
Would it be considerably more likely that it's simply that PPL has jpeg compression steps to match what the K10 had, and they've never bothered to add the K20's four star setting?
01-17-2009, 08:33 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by shiner Quote
This is pretty much what I'm saying- the PPL JPEGs do not seem to be as high quality as the in-camera ones- even when looking at pixels. Doesn't make sense to me, really, as dedicated computer software should be capable of doing a better job...
Consider the possibilities that the software in each was/is just different and likely written by different authors w different goals/restrictions..
It would be mostly just luck that the in-camera jpg is better...
The fact that the file size is that extremely different (you do realize file size is totally dependent on image and to compare 2 different programs you would have had to use the same file in each. So if you shot RAW + jpg and then processed the RAW in PPL, then you can compare file sizes to each other. Now you may be able to make some generalizations w/ a bunch of files but it is a bit risky) seems to point to a very different method of processing..
01-18-2009, 02:38 PM   #12
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Well, I have checked a number of images, and some are processed to nearly the same file size by PPL as by the camera, so I suppose it isn't that much of an issue. Here, however, is an extreme example (ISO400, DA35mm macro):



Detail from the ~8.5M in-camera example:


Detail from the ~3.5M PPL processed example:


It appears that there is more noise reduction in the PPL image than the in-camera image (which was set at "weak" noise reduction). Maybe there is a setting in PPL I'm overlooking...
01-24-2009, 09:20 PM   #13
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The NR seems defaulted at 80 on mine. (PPL). There is a checkbox to apply or not.
NR probably will change your file size, though this drastically???? Maybe
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