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RAW vs JPG

paleblue

Active Member
I think I'm done with RAW. Are there actually any advantages that you cannot achieve in JPG format. I know it's great to be able to adjust exposure, and the amount of minor adjustments you can do in RAW is great, but if the final result is going to be bad then what's the point?

Example: I have shot an image and zoomed into 300%. Top is RAW; bottom is JPG. Neither have been PP'd. I can see every ugly pixel in RAW.
3595899391_f2f45c5219_o.jpg

EXIF: 1/125, f3.5, iso400 (canon 450d)

Am I missing something here? :confused: I may need to print these out at high resolution and can't print out something such poor quality. If there is something I am doing wrong, please let me know.
 

Yandros

Well-known Member
off the top of my head...

blown highlight recovery
custom sharpening
selective sharpening
white balance adjustment
colour mode adjustment
custom noise reduction
selective noise reduction
exposure compensation (in particular for generating HDR images)

Your jpg has probably had some mild noise reduction applied (400 ISO is when it kicks in on my D200). If you're not applying NR and sharpening to your RAW file at the very least, your test isn't a level playing field.

btw, zooming to 300% is pretty pointless
 

RobDickinson

Well-known Member
300% and 8bit? Shirly RAW should be 12 or 16bit.

The JOG has also been processed, probably in camera.

You cannot judge an unprocessed RAW. You can only judge a processed raw to see if you can get better than the processed JPG, and at the very least yo should be able to match it, but probably better it.

But doing a good job on raw conversion isnt easy.

Raw has several other advantages too.
 

paleblue

Active Member
off the top of my head...

blown highlight recovery
custom sharpening
selective sharpening
white balance adjustment
colour mode adjustment
custom noise reduction
selective noise reduction
exposure compensation (in particular for generating HDR images)

Your jpg has probably had some mild noise reduction applied (400 ISO is when it kicks in on my D200). If you're not applying NR and sharpening to your RAW file at the very least, your test isn't a level playing field.

btw, zooming to 300% is pretty pointless

I understand zooming to 300% is pointless (and knew it would be brought up) but I was just trying to focus on something I could see at less than 100%. I will look at applying more NR, thanks
 
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snakeyes30

Standard Member
Remember, every time you edit a JPG and save it, it degrades the quality of the image. So if you plan on doing a lot of work to your pictures I would recommend keeping the original in RAW.
 

OrbitalPete

Well-known Member
I think what you're seeing there is compression artifcating on the jpg and true pixel intensity on the raw. jpg will trim out detail in order to save file size, causing smoothing.

By zooming to 300% you're basically seeing this earlly jpg compression. If you look at those images and ignore the grainy effect you can see there is far greater colour intensity in teh raw file and much better definition.

basically raw is a far superior format. That grainyness is the genuine image and the smoothing seen in the jpg is actually going to be reducing image quality when at anything more sensible than 300% zoom.
 

OrbitalPete

Well-known Member
All my raw processing happens in Adobe camera raw, in which you can easily open large numbers of raws simultaneously, apply preset post process settings, then bulk save as jpegs. I would imagine other raw processors have similar functionality.
 

TarMoo

Well-known Member
shooting nikon raw is there an easy way to mass convert photos so you can stick them on the net?

I use Bibble Labs Pro - you can output high and low res JPG versions from it and can process batches of photos.

I find that I madke adjustments too all shots - white balance, sharpening, cropping, highlight recovery, fill light, straighening, noise reduction (noise ninja), contrast, B/W conversions etc etc. Shooting in RAW is the way to go so long as you have an tool that can easily process and convert the RAW images. With regard to highlight recovery and colour balance there is a lot more scope with a RAW file than a JPEG.

Peter
 

johnaalex

Distinguished Member
shooting nikon raw is there an easy way to mass convert photos so you can stick them on the net?

Nikon does provide ViewNX free of charge which allows you to do some basic adjustments to your RAW files and batch convert them to TIFF or JPG.
 

marchand

Active Member
RAW vs JPG :boring:

People will always disagree to what is best. Both have its Pro's and Con's. Just shoot in which ever format works for you.
I never shoot RAW. I’m not a big Ken Rockwell fan, but I do agree with him in this matter. "Saving this raw data is exactly like people who save twenty years of newspapers in piles around their house. They know they might need the information sometime, but it sure gets in the way! Other people think they are crazy. - Ken Rockwell"

RAW vs JPG

Yes Yandros is correct:

"blown highlight recovery
custom sharpening
selective sharpening
white balance adjustment
colour mode adjustment
custom noise reduction
selective noise reduction
exposure compensation (in particular for generating HDR images)"

But my philosophy to this is just to shoot the image correctly in the first place. The screen on your camera is your friend ;) and things like blown out highlights, WB is easily spotted.

I know RAW is better but IMO it’s just not worth the effort, I’m sure many will disagree :rolleyes: (God help me!)
 

dazza74

Distinguished Member
I'm moving towards less photo editing and getting the exposure correct in the 1st place I still can't see the point in not taking everything in RAW though even if you do RAW + Jpeg in camera. I could probably do away with a lot of RAW format benefits now but I do like to be able to tinker with the WB after the even to get the colour I want / like.
 

senu

Distinguished Member
RAW vs JPG :boring:

People will always disagree to what is best. Both have its Pro's and Con's. Just shoot in which ever format works for you.
I never shoot RAW. I'm not a big Ken Rockwell fan, but I do agree with him in this matter. "Saving this raw data is exactly like people who save twenty years of newspapers in piles around their house. They know they might need the information sometime, but it sure gets in the way! Other people think they are crazy. - Ken Rockwell"
:rotfl:
Even Ken would agree that if being " crazy" gets you there then.. fine!

RAW vs JPG

Yes Yandros is correct:

"blown highlight recovery
custom sharpening
selective sharpening
white balance adjustment
colour mode adjustment
custom noise reduction
selective noise reduction
exposure compensation (in particular for generating HDR images)"

But my philosophy to this is just to shoot the image correctly in the first place. The screen on your camera is your friend ;) and things like blown out highlights, WB is easily spotted.
.. or not
Therein lies the problem.. "shooting correctly in the first place"
This is not only easier said than done, it can be a matter of hit or miss , some expertise, or finding the best custom " settings " with your camera and sticking with them. That takes time
I know RAW is better but IMO it's just not worth the effort, I'm sure many will disagree :rolleyes: (God help me!)
No flaming..:lease:.. It is an opinion you are well entitled to and works for you. Plus with that kit list.. Im sure you are a dab hand at not " needing RAW":rotfl:

This topic has been done to death in the past and it is as a middle ground that Camera have a Raw+jpeg setting: If the Jpeg is great out of the camera Just delete the RAW.
It used to be that you could not view RAW files, natively, now you can
If you can get into the hang of using LR or even DPP +PSE or PS as a workflow with the current spec of PCs the extra minute or so spent in tweaking and converting will not seem like much. ACR within PSE 6/7 CS2-4 is pretty intuitive too
If no tweaking is needed , even less time is needed on the RAW
I can see where it might be a PITA but it can also be a lifesaver when the cameras jpeg output is off on that once in a lifetime unrepeatable shot!
Like dazza74 I would love to shoot well in the irst place and tinker less ( it can be tiresome TBH) but if I did have to tinker, shooting RAW would make it posssble without wishing I had not relied on the camera
 
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marchand

Active Member
No flaming..:lease:.. It is an opinion you are well entitled to and works for you. Plus with that kit list.. Im sure you are a dab hand at not " needing RAW":rotfl:

Sorry for that :oops: (not my intension)
 

Yandros

Well-known Member
The D200 jpg engine is pants. REALLY REALLY bad. So for me it's a no brainer. Also, if you shoot at high ISO, or need to be careful and selective about sharpening, you're pretty much screwed if the in-camera settings have smeared your detail or over sharpened.

Bog standard low iso stuff in good light isn't a problem, and I could quite happily work with jpg and never notice the difference.
 

senu

Distinguished Member
Sorry for that :oops: (not my intension)
Not a problem;)
I really just didnt want anyone moving the threadaway from the Pros and Cons of RAW vs Jpegs by attacking your own post
I use a D300 at work and shoot RAW ( See Yandros post!:devil:)
If there is any D200/300 user who relies on those cameras jpeg Id be most keen to know thier workflow
OTOH the D40/D60 jpeg processing is so good that any user of those who is not warming to Raw is probably being pragmatic
 
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HotblackDesiato

Well-known Member
"Saving this raw data is exactly like people who save twenty years of newspapers in piles around their house. They know they might need the information sometime, but it sure gets in the way! Other people think they are crazy. - Ken Rockwell"


:blush: I only shoot in Raw... and have a spare room stacked with copies of hi-fi and photo mags from the early 80s onwards :laugh:
 
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senu

Distinguished Member
:blush: I only shoot in Raw... and have a spare room stacked with copies of hi-fi and photo mags from the early 80s onwards :laugh:
Ken wont think much of you..it seems...:devil:

:offtopic:PS: Did you know the first CD player ( 1982) from Sony weighed a ton was a hit in Japan but didnt get here till a few years later .."What Hi Fi" was around even then....:suicide:
 
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mij

Well-known Member
Nikon NEFs have embedded JPEGs with the in-camera settings that were active when the image was taken, they can be extracted with certain software, Capture NX, Photo Mechanic, Preview Extractor are some that I know of.

In Capture NX2 you can batch covert NEFs to JPEGs using the in camera settings set at the time of taking the picture (no change) or using the software's picture control settings which are other Nikon camera settings, handy if you left the vivid setting on for a portrait etc.

So shoot raw and batch convert to JPEG if you are happy with the shot, they will look just the same as if you had used the cameras JPEG mode and you will still have the fall-back of adjusting the raw if unhappy with the shot.
 

gpa

Banned
Raw for me definitely, it gives you some much latitude to play with. However it is very easy to get the combinations wrong, IE increasing the contrast say and then sharpening as well, for this can introduce grain and it becomes very messy. High ISO is another area you need to tread very carefully.

I have been able to pull back pictures that had they been just Jpeg would have been unusable for sure. I only use Nikon Capture NX2 and am slowly getting used to it, however I am nowhere near an expert with it and tend to use mostly the basic functions.

I guess the real answer is to get your exposure and white balance correct first time.
 
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Radiohead

Well-known Member
I always shoot raw.

There seems little sense to me personally to spend a lot of money of bodies and lenses and then throw away valuable data at the point of capture. With the advent of software like Lightroom converting to JPG is so simple it's not true.

Factor in the fact that I don't have to worry about WB and have more latitude to highlight and shadow recovery after capture and it's a no-brainer.
 

Orwella

Active Member
I always shoot RAW on my 40D. 90% of my keepers are converted straight to JPEG (using DPP) without adjustment. The remaining 10% undergo minor corrections to white balance, contast or sharpening before conversion. The 10% converted are usually my BEST out-of-cameraa shots which I like to get the absolute maximun from. If I took a really great shot in JPEG, but had the white balance wrong I would be peeved.

As RAW is easy to convert yourself to JPEG, and as memory cards are cheap, there is no reason to shoot in JPEG.
 

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