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Raw vs JPEG Is it worth the extra space and effort?

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Chris_L
Chris_L e2 Member 914 forum postsChris_L vcard United Kingdom
24 Jul 2014 - 12:31 AM

I think you would have to do both, then look for a shot that you would normally tweak and see if you can get a better result starting with the raw file, try tweaking white balance manually, numerically - you should be able to do better than your camera's presets / auto mode. Explore vibrance and clarity being careful not to overdo either, worth trying negative values on those as the effect can be just as pleasing to the eye for certain subjects.

http://tv.adobe.com/watch/learn-lightroom-5/working-with-clarify-vibrance-satura...

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24 Jul 2014 - 12:31 AM

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Paul Morgan
Paul Morgan e2 Member 1315379 forum postsPaul Morgan vcard England6 Constructive Critique Points
24 Jul 2014 - 2:51 AM


Quote: Ok, I spent an evening taking photos in RAW, I should have done RAW+jpeg for a comparison. I think my problem is my skills at developing RAW images aren't anywhere near as good as the processing in-camera of jpeg files, therefore, the extra information is wasted on me. I seem to do better using jpeg. Next time out I'll use both.

What Raw software are you using, if its Lr or Photoshop I`ve uploaded many useful DCP color profiles to the downloads section.

StrayCat
StrayCat e2 Member 1014816 forum postsStrayCat vcard Canada2 Constructive Critique Points
24 Jul 2014 - 4:21 AM

I'm using LR 4 Paul. I haven't ever tried profiles, I might do that.

John, I use clarity and vibrance in virtually every image, RAW or jpeg. The numbers I seem to use most are are clarity 25-30, and vibrance 20-25. I don't think I've ever tried negative values with them, but I will. I'll watch the link, thanks.

Chris_L
Chris_L e2 Member 914 forum postsChris_L vcard United Kingdom
24 Jul 2014 - 4:34 AM

Deffo try some negative values with clarity for any kind of misty or foggy scene, romantic scenes etc. I find negatives with vibrance and saturation work well to tame Disney-like artificial colours in towns and cities.

StrayCat
StrayCat e2 Member 1014816 forum postsStrayCat vcard Canada2 Constructive Critique Points
24 Jul 2014 - 4:36 AM

Would you consider mating damselflies a romantic scene?Wink

frenchie44
24 Jul 2014 - 6:52 AM

I only shoot RAW, but when i download from the card to the PC i use "instant jpeg from raw" program to give me the lpegs to view the pics, each jpeg is next to its RAW pic, it only takes seconds for it to do its work. It saves lot of space on the memory card. the program is free.

MichaelMelb_AU
24 Jul 2014 - 10:04 AM


Quote: I only shoot RAW, but when i download from the card to the PC i use "instant jpeg from raw" program to give me the lpegs to view the pics, each jpeg is next to its RAW pic, it only takes seconds for it to do its work. It saves lot of space on the memory card. the program is free.

Why waste the time and space? Most of modern image viewers are able to display a JPG preview which is a part of a RAW file. IrfanView is one of them, small but brisk and capable. And no messing with two files for a single image.

Having JPG and RAW captured together is a different sort of business anyway. In this case you have a ready JPG with all contrast, sharpness, etc, settings dialled in the camera at the time of taking the image. Only camera dedicated programs are capable to apply every camera setting to a RAW file to display it.

Ideally, one may even have no need to keep the RAW if JPG proved to be good enough. IdeallyWink

Chris_L
Chris_L e2 Member 914 forum postsChris_L vcard United Kingdom
24 Jul 2014 - 1:56 PM


Quote: It saves lot of space on the memory card

That doesn't make sense, how?

Paul Morgan
Paul Morgan e2 Member 1315379 forum postsPaul Morgan vcard England6 Constructive Critique Points
25 Jul 2014 - 1:10 AM


Quote: I'm using LR 4 Paul. I haven't ever tried profiles, I might do that.

John, I use clarity and vibrance in virtually every image, RAW or jpeg. The numbers I seem to use most are are clarity 25-30, and vibrance 20-25. I don't think I've ever tried negative values with them, but I will. I'll watch the link, thanks.

You will need to find that right folder to drop those DCP files into, for Lr 4, windows 7 or vista its here.

Windows Vista or 7óC: \ Users \ [your username] \ AppData \ Roaming \ Adobe \ CameraRaw \ CameraProfiles \

Last Modified By Paul Morgan at 25 Jul 2014 - 1:10 AM
Evertonian
25 Jul 2014 - 12:48 PM


Quote: Ideally, one may even have no need to keep the RAW if JPG proved to be good enough. IdeallyWink

Quite! I shoot in "RAW + jpeg fine". I save all to a dedicated folder and also to the back up Sagem hard drive. After viewing and attempting to assess what is required I try to process the jpeg. If I am successful then I delete the RAW.

Generally though one can tell at the time of exposure whether or not RAW will be required. The contrast ratio and thereby required shadow detail pretty much tells it all for me. That can determine the ultimate size of space required for archiving as you can more often than not, delete RAW files thereby saving space. I never ever feel however, that I could abandon RAW altogether. Those who say they never need it, are missing a lot in my humble opinion.

The working in "RAW + jpeg fine" is a great way as, however you feel at the time of the shoot, you have all the time in the world later, in which to make up your mind which to process. I tend to use Lightroom followed by Photoshop anyway so generally both software packages are open. Maybe one day I will be able to do everything in Lr as it is advertised to do but I cannot as yet get my old head round it. So both for me.

ade_mcfade
ade_mcfade e2 Member 1014815 forum postsade_mcfade vcard England216 Constructive Critique Points
25 Jul 2014 - 1:00 PM

Surely just shooting RAW is the simplest way these days?

The workflow for RAW and JPG is pretty much the same in programs like Lightroom... it's not like it used to be, converting part way in Capture one, then switching over to Photoshop... (though you can still do that)

Honestly can't see any real advantage in shooting JPG... unless you are so tight you won't invest in hard disc space or have a camera so old that RAW files take an eon to write to your memory card... in which case... well... you're in a tiny minority

lobsterboy
lobsterboy Site Moderator 1014143 forum postslobsterboy vcard United Kingdom13 Constructive Critique Points
25 Jul 2014 - 1:36 PM


Quote: Honestly can't see any real advantage in shooting JPG

Me neither & Raw+jpg seems like a great way of filling up disks for no advantage.

ade_mcfade
ade_mcfade e2 Member 1014815 forum postsade_mcfade vcard England216 Constructive Critique Points
25 Jul 2014 - 1:56 PM

utterly pointless in my workflow too - can't vouch for others though...

maybe if the jpg goes on a second card in the camera, it's a small "backup" ? dunno if you can do that ?

but can't comprehend why you'd need both...? if you need a JPG, create one from the RAW?

MichaelMelb_AU
25 Jul 2014 - 2:35 PM


Quote: Honestly can't see any real advantage in shooting JPG

Me neither & Raw+jpg seems like a great way of filling up disks for no advantage.

Let's start with JPG only. One serious advantage is the speed of the camera. Camera shoots to the buffer and processes to JPG anyway. Otherwise, there would be no JPG preview in RAW file and reviewing the images would be painfully slow.

Then it gives the photographer a choice of recording or discarding the JPG. If recorded, full size JPG is written to the card and RAW is discarded - or one can save both plus small JPG preview incorporated in RAW file. So job is always done no matter if asked for. Use it or not - up to the guy with the camera.

The trick here is that camera records JPGs much faster than RAWs - so if one is after action shots they will end with larger number of images in the series (cause RAWs get discarded and don't take the camera's internal memory), and the camera will be ready for the next series almost instantly - while shooting a series in RAW will incapacitate the shutter for quite a while. I call this an advantage.Smile

The other neat trick with JPG is that when it is written as a RAW+JPG pair in many cameras it is displayed instead of smallish preview incorporated in RAW file. This allows for better image control while decreasing memory card capacity by only 15-20 per cent -not an issue with 16-64Gb card at all. Again, in LR one can choose if they want to import a JPG duplicate at all, and if it is to be shown as an independent file.

I understand why professionals sneer at JPG - they will process the image anyway, and RAW gives more. But most of my creative images were taken in between family happy snaps those end printed in 4"x6" size in a general public lab, and involving RAW in this process would be like shooting a ship gun at a fly. That's why RAW+JPG is popular with me. An opportunity does not always announce well ahead.

JJGEE
JJGEE  96307 forum posts England18 Constructive Critique Points
25 Jul 2014 - 2:53 PM

When I started out with digital I could not get the hang of the RAW processing and considered going back to film.

I guess if I had had some jpg files it would have helped me realise earlier that RAW digital images would be OK, if I could conquer the processing.

Obviously I did stick with it and with thanks to some Lightroom video tutorials I can now end up with some reasonable, for me, images fairly quickly Smile

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