RAW is WAR

Discussion in 'Photography' started by Guest, Oct 5, 2005.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

    I noticed that when I shot some pictures in the RAW/Adobe RGB format on a
    1DS, and then converted them to sRGB, they are flat and colourless prints
    (photographic process), whereas when I shoot in sRGB jpeg, the prints are
    much more natural and punchy. Any ideas why?
     
    Guest, Oct 5, 2005
    #1
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  2. Guest

    Paul Furman Guest

    Jpeg mode probably has some built in contrast increase. You should be
    able to match that by resetting the default RAW conversion parameters.
    Going through that with some test shots should identify where the
    difference is in any case.
     
    Paul Furman, Oct 5, 2005
    #2
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  3. Your color management work flow is non existent or you just do not know
    what you are doing.

    Read this and comeback with questions:
    http://www.drycreekphoto.com/Learn/color_management.htm

    This is good too: http://www.apple.com/pro/color/

    also, what OS are you using?

    (HINT: You are probably not "converting" them to sRGB, but you are just
    ripping out the ICC profile.)


    *
    Photographs by Christian Bonanno
    http://christianbonanno.com/
     
    Christian Bonanno, Oct 5, 2005
    #3
  4. NO NO NO! JPEG is a file type. it does not DO anything.
    Wow, would have been better if you would just not say anything.



    *
    Photographs by Christian Bonanno
    http://christianbonanno.com/
     
    Christian Bonanno, Oct 5, 2005
    #4
  5. Guest

    Diverse Art Guest

    Probably because your camera is applying sharpening and extra saturation by
    default.
     
    Diverse Art, Oct 5, 2005
    #5
  6. JPEG is a "standardized image compression mechanism" according
    the JPEG FAQ at

    http://www.faqs.org/faqs/jpeg-faq/part1/section-1.html

    Which of course means it is a lot more than a file type, and
    in fact does DO many things.

    Regardless of that, what Paul said was "Jpeg mode", which refers
    to the camera firmware implementation's process for converting
    RAW data to a JPEG formatted file. It most certainly does *do*
    something! It is a 12 bit to 8 bit conversion, and therefore
    *must* adjust contrast, not to mention white level, black level,
    and gamma.
    Ahem. He got it right, what else could we ask for?
    While I'm picking on you Christian, I might as well point out
    that what is called a "signature" actually has a well defined
    standard delimiter. If you'd like I can find the right RFC file
    and point it out for you, but the simplified version is that '*'
    is not a signature delimiter, and should be replaced with a line
    that contains only two dashes followed by a space, "-- ".
    Everything that follows will be treated differently by more
    sophisticated email and Usenet readers. The guidelines suggest
    that signatures be no more than 4 lines, but that evolved from the
    days of 300 baud modems, and really isn't very significant
    today. (Years ago a fellow persisted in posting 300+ line
    signatures, just to make fun of the "standard".)

    I enjoyed viewing your portfolios on the webpage.
     
    Floyd Davidson, Oct 5, 2005
    #6
  7. Guest

    Colin D Guest

    That's not nice, Christian. Do you not realize he said jpeg *mode* -
    meaning the camera set to that mode. Most, if not all, cameras add
    sharpening and contrast when processing images to jpg output, whereas
    RAW output files are unprocessed, and need converting to
    tif/jpg/whatever, and if no contrast or sharpening is added at that
    point, the images will be 'flatter' than a jpg file straight from the
    camera.

    I take it that English is not your first language? I ask because
    although you write well, some nuances of the language seem to trip you
    up now and then.

    Colin D.
     
    Colin D, Oct 5, 2005
    #7
  8. I don't want to defend either argument, but your complaint is
    simply mistaken -- JPEG is a file type, yes, but *JPEG MODE*,
    which is what the previous poster was talking about, is not;
    is a mode of operation of the camera, and as such, it can do
    whatever Canon engineers decided that it should do.

    It *could* increase sharpness and contrast, or maybe just
    contrast, or who-knows what.

    Notice that I do not know if that claim is true, but certainly
    your counter-argument is not valid.
    And the irony keeps growing... Thank God you didn't add a
    third statement! :)

    In fact, when analyzing your reply better, if I had to choose
    one as the mistaken one, that would be you. Strictly speaking,
    JPEG is not a file type -- JPEG is a standard lossless compression
    algorithm for images. Digital cameras have built-in software that
    implements such algorithm to store the images in what we know as
    the JPEG "file type". But the algorithm *could* indeed have a side-
    effect -- or even a direct effect -- of increasing the contrast;
    not only that: given that it is a lossless compression algorithm,
    *it is not that far-fetched* that the algorithm itself could
    increase contrast (by reducing the levels of brightness). I'm not
    claiming that it does, and in fact, from what I've read about the
    internals of JPEG, it does not (again, I'm saying that given the
    nature of what JPEG really is, it *could* even be reasonable that
    it could have a side-effect of increasing the contrast).

    JPEG *does* do something -- it *changes* the image (it changes
    it as a consequence of discarding part of the information with
    the goal of achieving high compression ratios) -- so, even then,
    when we pass your statement under the microscope, even your claim
    that "it [JPEG] does not DO anything" is absolutely incorrect.

    So, please, think about what you have to say next time that you
    feel the urge to hasrhly attack and insult someone else based on
    their presumably mistaken statements.

    Carlos
    --
     
    Carlos Moreno, Oct 6, 2005
    #8
  9. Guest

    Colin D Guest

    <more snip>

    A small error there, carlos. Jpeg compression is a *lossy*
    compression. LZW, ZIP, RAR, and others are lossless, but jpegs are
    lossy.

    Colin D.
     
    Colin D, Oct 6, 2005
    #9
  10. When you first import them into PhotoShop, RAW images look very flat.
     
    Randall Ainsworth, Oct 6, 2005
    #10
  11. Guest

    McLeod Guest


    Jpeg does do something. When shot in-camera it applies all the
    processing parameters selected by the user, plus all the processing
    set by the camera default.

    Jpeg is a great file format for certain applications, like sending to
    a printer, or using on the web, but it is a lossy format. Information
    is discarded when using.

    Raw does not apply the camera default processing unless opened and
    converted through that camera manufacturers program. For example, if
    you convert a NEF through Nikon Capture it applies the sharpness,
    white balance, and colour space that was selected on the camera at the
    time unless you change it before converting.

    Adobe RGB has a much wider gamut than sRGB. You need to learn about
    colour spaces if you want to operate in the digital world.

    http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/using/digitalphotography/prophoto/colorspaces.mspx
     
    McLeod, Oct 6, 2005
    #11
  12. Huh? Lossless? Surely not. Lossy compression I would have thought.

    hc
     
    Hugh Chaloner, Oct 6, 2005
    #12
  13. Guest

    Guest Guest


    To re-iterate, I use the Photoshop RAW plug in to open the file as an sRGB
    tif which is then saved as a jpeg file at the highest quality setting. The
    camera simultaneously makes jpeg files that I do not adjust at all, I just
    print them for comparison. The camera is on the factory settings apart from
    custom white balance.
     
    Guest, Oct 6, 2005
    #13
  14. There's an analogy in the movie business whereby when digitising the
    negative image in telecine or scanner, the operators often leave the
    image looking deliberately "flat" so that subsequent post-production is
    left with as many options as possible. It is infinitely easier to add
    contrast than to remove contrast without screwing up the image. This is
    referred to as a "tech grade" in the movie business.

    Similarly, I assume that RAW files are left deliberately "flat" so that
    you have as many options available to you in PhotoShop / Gimp as
    possible.

    Sadly, I don't have a RAW option on my camera (digital IXUS 500) but
    wish I did!

    Hugh
     
    Hugh Chaloner, Oct 6, 2005
    #14
  15. Guest

    Chris Down Guest

    That is preceisely the point with RAW. It is the pure unadulterated output
    from the sensor elements in the chip. It will hopefully not be of any
    great surprise to anyone that the digital camera consists of a lot more than
    a lens, a sensor and a circuit to save the chip output to the memory card.
    What that handy little box is full of is electronic circuits to process the
    data into something we find pleasing to look at.

    RAW is the data in its most pure state. Pretty well anything you do to it
    will degrade it in some way, and usually there will be no going back after
    you save. I have tried some RAW shooting but for most shots I found
    it quite tedious to adjust white balance (colour temperature), contract,
    brighness, colour saturation etc to get what I found good to look at. It
    is also important to remember that to edit RAW images well you need to have
    a fully calibrated monitor so that what you see on screen and what you print
    are the same. For most shots I find that what my Canon 300D can do
    automatically in converting the RAW data to superfine JPG surpasses what I
    can do on a PC, in the time I have with the screen I have.

    Top line DSLR cameras save JPG and RAW together for a reason. The JPG
    gives you a proof and shows what the shot could like like, while the RAW
    data provides the best starting point for involved editing of the frames you
    really want to base your work on. Incidentally you never shoot in JPEG,
    the camera always starts with RAW data, you just tell it what post processed
    file(s) you want as well as or instead off the RAW data.

    If the OP is unhappy with their 1Ds I would he happy to swap. I can't help
    but feel that they went for expensive state of the art kit without ever
    really grasping how digital photography works.


    Chris
     
    Chris Down, Oct 6, 2005
    #15
  16. You shouldn't have to be messing with white balance and all the rest.
    For the most part, you'll need to bring up your shadows and maybe do a
    little exposure compensation - that's it.
     
    Randall Ainsworth, Oct 6, 2005
    #16
  17. *ARRRRGHHHH*, yes, of course -- why does this "dyslexia of ideas"
    keeps happening to me!!! Of course, my brain was *saying* lossy,
    while my fingers were typing lossless!!! :)

    Cheers,

    Carlos
    --
     
    Carlos Moreno, Oct 6, 2005
    #17
  18. Guest

    Chris Down Guest


    Well i guess that you shouldn't need to, but the Canon RAW software does
    include this as an option, along with many many other things. So many
    options in fact that it is easier just to use the JPG if all you want is a
    quick 7x5 print for your own enjoyment.
     
    Chris Down, Oct 6, 2005
    #18
  19. Guest

    Paul Furman Guest

    It's likely the camera default settings for jpeg are more punchy than
    the photoshop default settings for RAW conversion.
     
    Paul Furman, Oct 6, 2005
    #19
  20. Guest

    Paul Furman Guest

    I'm not sure about this for digital. You need to make sure it's 16 bit
    in order to do more processing, usually it's best to do as much
    adjustment as you can during the RAW conversion process. Once it's made
    into a jpeg or even low bit TIF, the extra info is lost and contrast
    increases will show posterization and loss of detail in shadows and
    highlights.

    I think the default RAW conversion settings are less contrasty just
    because that's less exaggerated and more 'tasteful' compared to the rude
    in-your-face punchiness of a P&S jpeg. If you want to punch it up,
    it's up to the photographer to decide how to add the punch.
     
    Paul Furman, Oct 6, 2005
    #20
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