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01-04-2010, 10:46 AM   #121
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There's always GIMP and UFRAW for people that have limited funds.


Last edited by Blue; 01-04-2010 at 02:33 PM. Reason: typo
01-04-2010, 12:22 PM   #122
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
Of the free tools out there, only Picasa to my knowledge currently supports the sort of workflow I am talking about, although it's got some significant limitations of its own. I guess for someone interested in shooting RAW, intrigued by the notion that it can be in fact as easy or easier than JPEG, but unconvinced enough to spend a couple hundred bucks to find out, playing with Picasa a while would be a reasonable way to experiment. Of course, LR and its competitors all offer free trials - usually a month, which may or may not be long enough to really come up to speed.
Thanks for that input....

However one can get LightRoom 3 BETA for Free and it's valid until April/30/2010 - so that's nearly 5 months of usage.

I never even considered Picasa - even though I use PicasaWeb quite extensively to post my photos.

However my so-called workflow is pretty good -
I really do not need a photo organizer -
as all the photos I upload are placed in a specific temporary folder -
in a sub-folder named by session/date so I know exactly where they are -

So whenever I PP -

For JPG - I merely open that folder - I actually use an old (Canon) TWAIN loader which displays thumbnails and strips the metadata (EXIF).

For RAW I use Adobe Camera RAW via PhotoShop Elements 7 - which as you indicated can open/convert in batch (obviously to the default camera settings) into Elements where I do PP - if I find I do not like the rendering/conversion of any photo - I can then go back into ACR and custom hand develop that one shot.

However the failing I find in my "workflow" is that I always preview/examine the photo full screen (and even 100%) so that I don't even have to open the file if I do not like it (since that takes a finite amount of time).

With JPG that's obviously "easy"
since Windows Explorer understands JPGs and can do that.

Whereas with RAW (DNG) I have to resort to another viewer like FastStone - which then is just a bit more awkward espcially in zooming and examining parts of the photo, and also takes up a bit more resources.
Or convert them first, which obviously defeats the fast preview to avoid even opening the file into the editor in the first place.

I have used LightRoom 3 BETA (anything for Free!) even though it has its own viewer and one can see the RAW file larger - it is slow - much slower than say FastStone Viewer and it isn't even full-screen and zooming and examining parts of the photos is awkward
- so I cannot get over what may seem minor failing for others -
but quite a big deal for me.......

I will admit I am a novice when it comes to LightRoom since I have only really played with it - my main requirement is to be able to view any shot full-screen and even at 100% quickly before I decide even to open or develop/convert it.

Is there a quicker way of doing this in LightRoom that I am not aware of?
01-04-2010, 12:35 PM   #123
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I shoot mostly raw as well. I would agree that for 95% plus of my shots it would make very little difference. However, with the size of SD cards now, and cheap USB hard drives, there is very little downside to shooting raw, so why not? It is very quick and easy to make jpegs from raw, and impossible to go the other way round.

Also, as discussed in another thread, going through the raw conversion helps me make decisions and edit.
01-04-2010, 01:21 PM   #124
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Agreed on LR being slow to display and i also use Faststone for this purpose, I think faststone just uses the embedded little jpg to display rather than actually converting the raw files per se.

01-04-2010, 01:58 PM   #125
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QuoteOriginally posted by Alfisti Quote
Agreed on LR being slow to display and i also use Faststone for this purpose, I think faststone just uses the embedded little jpg to display rather than actually converting the raw files per se.
Thanks for confirming.

Further showing my ignorance of LightRoom....

My "workflow" for PhotoShop Elements 7 and Adobe Camera RAW (ACR) is to "open" all the RAW files in my folder which invokes ACR and the previews are reasonably quick to open in ACR (but it still takes time especially if I have a lot of RAW photos) - I can then examine these in ACR zooming to 100% and using the hand icon to move around - of course all this is slower than Windows Explorer and native JPGs.

I can then decide and select only the RAW (DNG) files I want to open/convert (at default camera settings) which automatically opens in Elements - so the operation is seamless - but obviously the "opening"/conversion takes time - but at least I am only converting the files I have previewed and want.

Any RAW photo I see that needs custom processing I can do also from the previewing process in ACR before opening/converting into Elements.

Then the PP is straightforward as JPGs.

If I find any photo not to my liking in PP - I can return to ACR and custom hand convert it again to see if I can improve it before regular JPG style PP.

So I think my Elements/ACR workflow is about as streamlined as I can get it -
admittedly I am not that experienced with LightRoom - but I can't see it being that much better/faster for the way I work - all the delays are due to the actual physical conversion and/or preview processing - which I cannot see how they can be shortened or avoided, after all we are dealing with RAW (DNG) which is not natively viewable

Still I would be grateful for any suggestions why LR would be better?
01-04-2010, 02:15 PM   #126
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I am a little different, I load the images to a folder and open in faststone first. Delete the poor stuff then import to LR using my pre-sets.

Then just hand process those that are not to my liking and hit EXPORT for web then EXPORT for prints in jpg form. Anything being printed large goes to tiff.
01-04-2010, 02:32 PM   #127
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i shoot jpeg for snaps or action for the speed of writing.

if you want quality though, shoot raw. the jpeg engine in the camera is not that good (from the k-x from my experience) compared to processing on a separate computer and raw processing program like adobe lightroom.

there's a big and noticeable difference image quality between RAW then converted JPEG in lightroom for instance, to the JPEG straight from the camera.
01-04-2010, 03:02 PM   #128
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
If you're not good at it, sure.
.

Careful, Marc.

Couple things for everyone to remember about this never-ending debate:


1) It's hard to describe why you do what you do without sounding like you're slamming the other guy's method.

Raw shooter: "I shoot raw because I value having maximum artistic control over my images."

jpeg shooter infers: "Anyone who doesn't shoot raw-only does not value aesthetics? Jerk!"

Jpeg shooter: "I shoot jpeg because I like to get exposure right in-camera, no amount of PP matches a correctly exposed shot."

raw shooter infers: "Jerk. I get my exposure right most of the time, but I still like to shoot raw for other reasons!"

Jpeg shooter: "I shoot jpeg because I don't like to spend any more time than neccessary PPing in front of a computer."

raw shooter infers: "So I'm just a socially backwards pixel-peeping geek? I think not, jerk! Plus it doesn't take much more time, usually."



2) Everyone is annoyed by different things, or the same things to different degrees.

For example - I'm not a 10fps kinda guy, but I do occasionally like to have a fast burst rate and a free buffer available for when the action gets fast & furious. I get annoyed by the slowdown shooting raw usually brings. Some may not be bothered much by this, but I am.

Another example: Very small returns on even small effort bugs me. Diminishing returns bug me more. I very seldom see much if any benefit to shooting raw about 90% of the time - no real resolution advantage, color is more variable but I don't want to vary it from what was shot, I can bring out details in shadows but I don't want to, they just distract from the theme of the image, etc, etc. Some may not be bothered much by small returns on effort, but I am.

Another example: Disk space and image cleanup. I don't like the increased file culling necessity a raw-only workflow brings. If I don't take the time to cull, I'm backing up GBs of old image files that I have no intention of ever, ever going back to to tweak further. Some may not be bothered much by a chore like file management attached to a pleasurable, relaxing hobby, but it annoys me, especially when I consider the diminishing returns mentioned above...


I could go on with examples, but my point is to just remember that when you start a sentence with "All you have to do is..." remember that what follows may actually be annoying to someone, reducing their pleasure in the process. And don't judge what others find annoying - for sure, there are things that annoy you that others would find silly.




So, maybe we should all make a couple new-years resolutions regarding the raw/jpeg debate:



1) I resolve to not slam the other guy's method intentionally - and will try not to do it unintentionally.

2) I will try to offer suggestions and show why I think my method is good, but I will respect anyone's right to be annoyed by aspects of my method.






Last edited by jsherman999; 01-04-2010 at 03:08 PM.
01-04-2010, 03:11 PM   #129
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QuoteOriginally posted by Javaslinger Quote
I'm just wondering... it seems all the comparisons between the Kx and K7 are largely regarding Jpeg performance... but do any 'semi-pro' level users actually shoot in JPEG????
When I shoot for myself, I only shoot in RAW. I never use jpeg and when I edit, go straight to TIFF.

When I'm shooting professionally (motorsport stuff), we are all using only JPEG.
Reasons:
- Size of files on cards (as well as servers and backup storage)
- Time to edit files on computer
- Time of camera buffer lag
- Newspapers, magazines usually only require scaled down JPEG
01-04-2010, 03:44 PM   #130
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Free software? I use Digikam for indexing and file management and RawTherapee for raw developing. Though I work on a Linux box, RawTherapee runs on (and is primarily developed on) Windows. I really like
RawTherapee's results, and I learned more about raw development reading RT's tutorial than from any other source.

I just looked at rawtherapee.com and noticed the developer just today released the code under gpl license which will accelerate development. Worth checking out.
01-04-2010, 03:49 PM   #131
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QuoteOriginally posted by jsherman999 Quote
.

Careful, Marc.

Couple things for everyone to remember about this never-ending debate:


1) It's hard to describe why you do what you do without sounding like you're slamming the other guy's method.

Raw shooter: "I shoot raw because I value having maximum artistic control over my images."

jpeg shooter infers: "Anyone who doesn't shoot raw-only does not value aesthetics? Jerk!"

Jpeg shooter: "I shoot jpeg because I like to get exposure right in-camera, no amount of PP matches a correctly exposed shot."

raw shooter infers: "Jerk. I get my exposure right most of the time, but I still like to shoot raw for other reasons!"

Jpeg shooter: "I shoot jpeg because I don't like to spend any more time than neccessary PPing in front of a computer."

raw shooter infers: "So I'm just a socially backwards pixel-peeping geek? I think not, jerk! Plus it doesn't take much more time, usually."



2) Everyone is annoyed by different things, or the same things to different degrees.

For example - I'm not a 10fps kinda guy, but I do occasionally like to have a fast burst rate and a free buffer available for when the action gets fast & furious. I get annoyed by the slowdown shooting raw usually brings. Some may not be bothered much by this, but I am.

Another example: Very small returns on even small effort bugs me. Diminishing returns bug me more. I very seldom see much if any benefit to shooting raw about 90% of the time - no real resolution advantage, color is more variable but I don't want to vary it from what was shot, I can bring out details in shadows but I don't want to, they just distract from the theme of the image, etc, etc. Some may not be bothered much by small returns on effort, but I am.

Another example: Disk space and image cleanup. I don't like the increased file culling necessity a raw-only workflow brings. If I don't take the time to cull, I'm backing up GBs of old image files that I have no intention of ever, ever going back to to tweak further. Some may not be bothered much by a chore like file management attached to a pleasurable, relaxing hobby, but it annoys me, especially when I consider the diminishing returns mentioned above...


I could go on with examples, but my point is to just remember that when you start a sentence with "All you have to do is..." remember that what follows may actually be annoying to someone, reducing their pleasure in the process. And don't judge what others find annoying - for sure, there are things that annoy you that others would find silly.




So, maybe we should all make a couple new-years resolutions regarding the raw/jpeg debate:



1) I resolve to not slam the other guy's method intentionally - and will try not to do it unintentionally.

2) I will try to offer suggestions and show why I think my method is good, but I will respect anyone's right to be annoyed by aspects of my method.



based on your excellent review, i think that the answer is there is no right or wrong.

there are uses for both RAW and JPEG and providing the shooter knows what to shoot, when to shoot, and WHY to shoot either format then he/she can select either one and do as they please with it
01-04-2010, 03:59 PM   #132
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I use just raw now, not only to be able to fiddle, but also because JPEG is said to be poorer - so why even bother. Some things though you have to use JPG for. ie the inbuilt HDR, extended bracketing.

I can't honestly say I've ever considered printing from the camera. Everything goes on my HD, 99% gets binned, I keep 1% and putz around with it. Occasional prints if someone really asks for them.
01-04-2010, 04:09 PM   #133
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I generally shoot in Jenpeg...it's very good.

I'm not a semi-pro, although I used to be, years ago when I wrote and photographed for a publishing company.

I also shot and shoot (Mamiya) medium format...so I regard myself as having a bit of a discriminatory eye.

I wouldn't dismiss Jenpeg as the format for the masses.
01-04-2010, 04:30 PM   #134
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QuoteOriginally posted by Alfisti Quote
I am a little different, I load the images to a folder and open in faststone first. Delete the poor stuff then import to LR using my pre-sets.

Then just hand process those that are not to my liking and hit EXPORT for web then EXPORT for prints in jpg form. Anything being printed large goes to tiff.

Many thanks for that input.

Once I have uploaded my pics I do not delete anything on the PC HD
(only after I have reviewed and PP the ones I want, and backed the entire folder up to DVD+R).

So my "workflow" in RAW is similar. I can preview/examine in FastStone or ACR via Elements and select only the ones I want to convert - which "opens" them in to Elements.

When I have a lot of photos I use FastStone and for a lower number of photos I can skip that and use the "preview" in ACR. When using FastStone for previewing/examining I have to note the photos I want to process - then use ACR to open them into Elements.

So I think my workflow is not that much different than LR.

Like I said the previewing and converting/opening does take a finite amount of time which stands to reason and cannot be avoided - and that is kind of my "objection" - and it is simply a fact for my PP usage RAW (DNG) cannot possibly be faster than straight JPG.

I acknowledge in theory there are gains to technical quality by using RAW
- but most of the my photos end up on the web at something less than 600x400 - where even a 2Mp p&s would do......
so most of the time JPG is good enough, and I do not gain much by using RAW.

Besides that's why I chose the dSLRs I use - K100D initially and recently upgraded to the K-x as both of these give impeccable images in JPG.
RAW would even the playing field where I probably could even use one of the earlier Sony dSLRs with their horrible in-camera noise processing and possibly get images that are respectable in RAW -
but why work so hard - when I already worked hard at choosing my dSLR for their good (JPG) IQ to begin with?
01-04-2010, 04:56 PM   #135
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There are quite a few wedding and portrait photogs that use JPEG. You have to like the JPEG output options of your particular camera and get the exposure just right like with slide film.

The advantage is time savings which is the same as money savings. Some people hate messing with a lot of post processing. Maybe they shoot raw plus JPEG and only use the raw if there is a problem.
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