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Best format for a beginner?

DpM

Prominent Member
Hi Guys/Gals,
I had my D40 delivered yesterday and have taken a few quick pics on it (very impressed, a big improvement over the finpix s8100fd I had last week). I transferred the pic's to the PC the last two I took were in RAW format. Now am I right in thinking I need the Nikon software to edit RAW images? I have CS2 and expected it to be able to edit most formats being an industry standard. Can I convert the RAW file to something else somehow (a bit of freeware maybe) to keep the versatility and quality?
Or would you say just stick to the best qulity setting and use JPG's?

Sorry if this question seems silly. Im sure to be back again with more!
 

Yandros

Prominent Member
Hi Guys/Gals,
I had my D40 delivered yesterday and have taken a few quick pics on it (very impressed, a big improvement over the finpix s8100fd I had last week). I transferred the pic's to the PC the last two I took were in RAW format. Now am I right in thinking I need the Nikon software to edit RAW images? I have CS2 and expected it to be able to edit most formats being an industry standard. Can I convert the RAW file to something else somehow (a bit of freeware maybe) to keep the versatility and quality?
Or would you say just stick to the best qulity setting and use JPG's?

Sorry if this question seems silly. Im sure to be back again with more!

The best D40 RAW converter will be Nikon Capture NX. It allows non destructive editing of RAW files, as well as access to all the in-camera settings like white balance, noise reduction, sharpening, colour mode etc.

You can then save the nikon .NEF file which then preserves all you edits to that file, and also allows you to selectively toggle any of the edit steps on/off :thumbsup:

For archiving, you can save as lossless .tiff files from NX, and obviously .jpg when you're done.
 

Triggaaar

Distinguished Member
Now am I right in thinking I need the Nikon software to edit RAW images?
No you're not right, you don't need Nikon software. Nikon's Capture NX2 is very good, but it's about £100. You can use photoshop (either full version or elements) to adjust things like exposure, white balance, etc, and end up with better pictures than if you'd shot jpegs - shooting raw is more forgiving, and if you have some shots to keep forever, you can always edit them again in the future as your skills improve.

Once you've edited a raw file, you can save it as a jpeg (for emailing etc), but keep the original raw file too.
 

Boldonion

Established Member
Adobe Light Room 2 is also quite a good tool for editing raw files ( it also uses Adobe Camera Raw ) . You can pick this up for about £40 if I remember rightly .
 

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