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11-23-2009, 04:29 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by deejjjaaaa Quote
CS3 must run ACR (Adobe Camera Raw)

Adobe intentionally blocked recent versions of ACR from being used by previous versions of photoshop (that was happening w/ each new version of Photoshop).

so CS3 will not be able to run the latest version of ACR which "supports" PEF raw files from Kx...

that is the way Adobe wants (politely) people either to upgrade Photoshop (CS3->CS4) or force them to spend some money on LR.
So... why does photoshop even notice the difference? .flac or .shn converters only notice the file type... Thats why I don't understand, its still a .PEF file.

11-23-2009, 06:46 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by jk333 Quote
Why would I ever want to use PEFs when the files are the same size as the DNGs? Is there a benefit?
imagine that one day you will decide to use a raw converter like DxO or Bibble or C1... there will be an unpleasant surprise waiting for you w/ DNG files...
11-23-2009, 06:58 PM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by jk333 Quote
So... why does photoshop even notice the difference? .flac or .shn converters only notice the file type... Thats why I don't understand, its still a .PEF file.
photoshop does not open raw files... ACR does... CS3 will not be able to use ACR > v4.6 (or whatever is the latest compatible)... ACR <= v4.6 will not be able to open .PEF from Kx just because 1) it is written that way 2) there are might be some changes in Kx that are significant enough to warrant that... do you want to check if there anything significantly new ? take a look at a free source code of DCRAW - you shall see what is the deal.
11-23-2009, 07:16 PM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by deejjjaaaa Quote
imagine that one day you will decide to use a raw converter like DxO or Bibble or C1... there will be an unpleasant surprise waiting for you w/ DNG files...
I find this rather disturbing.

DNG is being touted as a good archive format for digital images, and that's certainly one reason I've been using it for my RAW storage. I thought it would, to a degree, 'future proof' access to those files, in a way that proprietary formats like PEF, NEF, CR2 etc may not.

Pls tell us more about these 'unpleasant surprises' lurking in DNG's, especially when opened by non-Adobe RAW converters.

I don't like surprises - especially when I might want to use something like DxO at some point in the future...

11-23-2009, 08:45 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by deejjjaaaa Quote
imagine that one day you will decide to use a raw converter like DxO or Bibble or C1... there will be an unpleasant surprise waiting for you w/ DNG files...
They hid the DNG converter well, didn't they?
Why would I want to use DxO or Bibble or C1 when I have ACR, especially if, as you say, their software doesn't support the files I shoot?
For me, if it doesn't support DNG, it won't be considered by me.
11-23-2009, 08:58 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
They hid the DNG converter well, didn't they?
Why would I want to use DxO or Bibble or C1 when I have ACR, especially if, as you say, their software doesn't support the files I shoot?
For me, if it doesn't support DNG, it won't be considered by me.
I agree with this post. Why would I want to shoot DNG?- Because it is one format that can be opened by all DNG file openers. Presumably, all DNG files can be opened by all DNG file openers. Thus, DxO or Bibble or C1 should open DNG files.

Can the same be said for PEF files? Apparently not, because I'm stuck with 15 Raw files that are supposedly "the same PEF format" as from my K200d but I'm screwed because they look like ass in Picasa and won't open in ACR for CS3; even though the same file format will open in the CS3.

I obviously don't understand the RAW photograph formats; its annoying because this shit doesn't happen in the lossless audio world. Files named X can be opened by Y.
11-23-2009, 09:29 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by jk333 Quote
I'm not sure I understand. If the format is .PEF, why can't the PEF reader for CS3 read it?
Because as I said, it's not about the *format* of the file - it's about the data contained in the file. Any program that understands PEF will be able to find the sensor data within a K-x PEF file - it just won't know how to convert that raw data into JPEG, because it doesn't know anything about the sensor the camera is using.

QuoteQuote:
For an Mp3 player, it can read all mp3s... or, a better example, .shn, lossless audio files, can be processed by all .shn readers.
Here's a better analogy: imagine a program that can take a Word document, reads the text in it, and translate its contents into Chinese. Let's say it was designed to work on any Word file that was written in English, Spanish, or French. But now you give it a Word file written in Italian It won't be able to convert the contents to Chinese. The problem isn't not being able to understand the Word format - it's not being able to understand the *contents* of the file, because it is written in a language the program hasn't seen before. Similarly, CS3 understands the PEF format just fine - it just doesn't understand the *contents* of the file, because it is the data from a camera the program hasn't seen before.

QuoteQuote:
Not only what I said above, but the PEFs are 2x the size, as well. Look, the Kx is an awesome camera, I'm thrilled with it.

But, without knowing what they did for the inner workings of the RAW files, it sure seems like the new raw format is shittier in every way. A raw was 10mb, now its 15. Great.
First, going from 10MBto 15MB isn't 2X the size - it's 1.5X. I assume you are comparing from one of the 10MB cameras. Well, the K-x is a 12MB camera. so of course it's files are bigger! The actual size of the files varies depending on the amount of compression the camera was able to apply, and that will vary according to how much detail is in the scene, how sharp the pictures is, how much noise is present, etc. I suspect you'll find that *on average*, the difference in size is pretty clsoe to the difference you'd expect: 20% larger, since the K-x has 20% more pixels.

QuoteQuote:
Why would I ever want to use PEFs when the files are the same size as the DNGs? Is there a benefit?
Some programs understand PEF files form the K-x but not DNG; for others it's the other way around. Some people believe that 20 years from now, more programs will be able to read the K-x PEF files than the DNG files; some believe the opposite. I believe anyone who claims to *know* what will be the case in 20 years is not worth listening to.

BTW, swearing doesn't really help.
11-23-2009, 10:10 PM   #23
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All right, how about coming at this from another angle...

Isn't the point of a file name to identify what file type it is? Ie, I have a wildhorses.shn file... That is a song, in the "shorten" format. Its recorded from a microphone, to a DAT recorder, as an audio wave and saved on the hard drive, tape or flash memory. It is then compressed losslessly into the shorten format as the final file. That format can then be opened by all shorten programs. or played by all shorten players. Or burned by shorten burners. Alternatively, it could have stayed as a "wave" file, and burned or edited in programs that know how to use wave files.

Its my understanding that, that is the goal of DNG. No? To have a "DNG file" that is always the same. IE, "DNG Files" can always be used/opened by "DNG programs"

If we compare this to the PEF format, OR, other proprietary camera formats, this isn't the case. The PEF from the KX is unreabable by Picasa, where as the PEF from the K200 was readable. The PEF from the K200 was readable on CS3 (ACR) but the PEF from the KX is not readable. Its the same thing with the K7 PEFs as well, apparently.

This is confusing. Shouldn't the sensor just tell the file everything it needs to know to be a complete file? Isn't that what happens for the DNG files?

I'll check, tomorrow, but if the camera's DNG file opens in Picasa, then doesn't that say that they PEF is altered from the K200 to the KX but the DNG wasn't? Therefore, the PEF is not compatible with different programs between cameras, even though it is called the same file name. Where as all DNG files, are openable by all programs that open DNG programs.

And therefore, DNG files are (would be) the same. PEF files have been altered, even though they're called the same thing.

EDIT - Btw, the average PEF from my KX shots is 14.5MB, the average PEF from the K200 shots was 9MB. 38% larger. The sensor is 17% larger.

I am VERY pleased with my KX. Just annoyed with the PEF issue, and that I can't get my photos. Hopefully this thread at least lets people know that, DNG is needed to open with CS3.


Last edited by jk333; 11-23-2009 at 10:22 PM.
11-24-2009, 07:16 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by jk333 Quote

Can the same be said for PEF files? Apparently not, because I'm stuck with 15 Raw files that are supposedly "the same PEF format" as from my K200d but I'm screwed because they look like ass in Picasa and won't open in ACR for CS3; even though the same file format will open in the CS3.

I obviously don't understand the RAW photograph formats; its annoying because this shit doesn't happen in the lossless audio world. Files named X can be opened by Y.
You are operating under the misunderstanding that the file extension pef designates a specific file type.
It doesn't.
What it specifies is that it is a proprietary camera format, in this case proprietary to Pentax.
What you are not getting is that the pef format (and this applies to every manufacturer's raw format) is specific to each and every camera model.
A K10 pef is not the same as a K20 is not the same as a K7 is not the same as a K-x, etc.
The comparison to audio formats, or in fact any other format type is just simply not a valid one.

I switched over to DNG because I agree with Adobe regarding the philosophy of having a standardized across the board format rather than the patchwork quilt of non compatable formats the camera manufacturers are doing.
11-24-2009, 11:15 AM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by jk333 Quote
All right, how about coming at this from another angle...
What exactly was wrong with my Word angle? It's a perfect analogy. It demonstrates very simply the issue here - it's not a difference in *format*, it's a difference in *content*, which is absolutely completely unavoidable because it's a new camera. The whole point of a raw format like PEF is that the image data itself *hasn't* been converted to a standardized format. Raw data requires knowledge of the camera internals in order to know how to process that data into something that can be displayed on a standardized device like an RGB monitor or a printer. DNG is a raw file format that is enhanced to add extra information about the camera, and this extra information programs that don't otherwise know anything about the camera to process that data reasonably. Kind of like if the Word file in my example came with a built-in Italian-to-English dictionary. That would be the sort of extra information that would allow a translate-to-Chinese program to be able to use the file even if the contents were written in Italian.

So simply use DNG if your favorite application doesn't yet support the native / unenhanced PEF files form your camera. You may have to experiment, as there *are* different compression schemes used in DNG, and not all programs support all of them (in this way, it's just like TIFF).

QuoteQuote:
Isn't the point of a file name to identify what file type it is?
Yes, and my analogy captures that essence perfectly. ".pef" *does* identify the file type as "Pentax RAW data", just as ".doc" or ".docx" identifies a file type as "Microsoft Word document". But "Microsoft Word document" doesn't tell you what language the document is in - it gives you no assurance you'll actually be able to *read* it. And similarly, "Pentax RAW data" doesn't tell you what kind of camera was used - it gives no assurance that a program will be able to "read" the data.

Perhaps what you're missing here is the essential difference betwene raw and non-raw formats. Raw formats *must* be understood by a program and converted to an RGB-based format (like JPEG or TIFF or PNG or BMP or GIF) in order to display the image. you can't imply display raw data - our moitors are not designed to do that. They need RGB data, so a program that want to display data needs to understand that data and know how to convert it to RGB. And as I said, the details on how to do that are camera-specific enough that programs won't bother trying if they don't know about the camera.

QuoteQuote:
Its my understanding that, that is the goal of DNG. No? To have a "DNG file" that is always the same. IE, "DNG Files" can always be used/opened by "DNG programs"
Yes, precisely - because they contain the extra information about the camera necessary to allow programs to understand what to do with the data contained within the file.

There is no analogue for raw formats that I am aware of in the audio industry - all commonly / standard formats contain data that has *already* been processed to PCM or some other standardized representation in the same way that raw image data needs to be processed into RGB. There is no "raw" format. Actually, maybe there is one I can think of: tape. The physical medium itself is completely standard, but that doesn't mean that data written to that tape on one machine will be playable on another machine, because different machines may encode the data on that tape difference (in terms of how many tracks there are, the speed used, the direction the tracks run, whether encoding systems like Dolby were used, etc. so the medium itself - like the PEF format - is standard, but the *data* it contains is not.

Actually, one could say the same about a CD-R - the same physical CD might be written in Red Book audio format, or it might be Yellow Book CD-ROM format. The data on an audio disc might be additionally be written so as to cram more than the standard 74 minutes on to the disk; a data disk might it be multi-session, etc. Lots of variables involving the actual data on the disc, and device capable of reading on CD-R might *not* be able to read another CD-R if the data on it is of a type it doesn't support. Here again, a PEF file is like a physical CD-R. The specs are standardized so that any program that knows about PEF knows how to open it and look at the data, just as any device that know abut CD-R knows how to read the disc and look at the data - but whether either knows what to *do* with the data is another matter.

QuoteQuote:
Shouldn't the sensor just tell the file everything it needs to know to be a complete file? Isn't that what happens for the DNG files?
Yes, it is, and that's why many believe DNG is the way of the future. But the PEF format wasn't designed to hold that sort of extra information, and even to the extent there is a way to cram than info in there, camera manufacturers really have no incentive to do that when DNG already exists for that purpose.

QuoteQuote:
Btw, the average PEF from my KX shots is 14.5MB, the average PEF from the K200 shots was 9MB. 38% larger. The sensor is 17% larger.
Are you comparing identical shots - same scene, same lighting, same exposure, same lens? I know yo say "average", but unless the scene are of the same nature, there can easily be that sort of difference even with just one camera. For instance, if I look at the "average" of my K200D shots taken indoors at high ISO, I see a file size of about 9MB. If I look at landscape shots taken at low ISO, I see an average of closer to 12MB.

Last edited by Marc Sabatella; 11-24-2009 at 12:25 PM.
11-24-2009, 11:29 AM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
They hid the DNG converter well, didn't they?
Why would I want to use DxO or Bibble or C1 when I have ACR
because ACR is crappy ... unless you are a wedding photog of course
11-24-2009, 03:12 PM   #27
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Better analogy of the PEF issue would be video files. You can have a .mov file format, but the codec which is used to compress the video data can be anything like Sorrenson, ProRes, DVCProHD or h.264. Thanks for the heads up though. I will be using DNG on my K-X.
11-24-2009, 03:59 PM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
Kind of like if the Word file in my example came with a built-in Italian-to-English dictionary. That would be the sort of extra information that would allow a translate-to-Chinese program to be able to use the file even if the contents were written in Italian.
Ahhhhhhhh. This is what I was getting at. I don't/didn't understand why the pentax files don't have that added part. It seems like the job isn't complete/is only half done without that extra piece.

But you addressed that, DNG already did it.

So, I guess my only question left is, why do some people consider PEF better? I previously used it because it was smaller file vs. file on the k200. Is the added piece that DNG has, inaccurate?
11-24-2009, 04:20 PM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by deejjjaaaa Quote
because ACR is crappy ... unless you are a wedding photog of course
You keep braying about this. Please substantiate your blather that ACR is a couple of orders of magnitude worse than some other converter, since that is what it would have to be to be "crappy" by comparison to anything else.
Pretty much every photographer I know uses ACR, either as hosted by Photoshop or as hidden in Lightroom.
You are pretty much telling every pro photographer in the world that they don't know what they are doing, which strikes me as a pretty clueless thing to do.
11-27-2009, 10:37 AM   #30
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Check out any of the zillions of other threads on PEF versus DNG in general for more on why some prefer one over the other. While the basic sensor data is the same, DNG adds extra metadata capbilities that some find useful, but a few stone-age programs refuse to support it for no logical reason whatsoever, so poeple stuck using those programs have no choice but to use PEF. Others prefer PEF because they have an irrational hatred of Adobe. Others prefer PEF because in their crytal ball, they've seen a vision of the future where more programs support PEF than DNG. Others prefer PEF because they are concerned something important might be lost in the conversion to DNG. Others prefer PEF because they are hedging theior bets andf know that conversion from PEF to DNG later will be possible, but the reverse isn't true.

I prefer PEF for a different reason - because the program I use (ACDSee Pro) can work with it faster than DNG, since metadata is stored in a small sidecar file rather than requiring the entire DNG file to be rewritten at every adjustment.
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