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Dropping RAW and going Jpeg

Discussion in 'The Olympus Outlet' started by Ardy, Dec 6, 2015.

  1. bradells

    bradells DIR Practitioner

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Calgary, AB
    472
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    Regardless of which output format you choose (raw/jpeg/raw+jpeg), Getting it right in the camera is the first step of some or many.

    I don't do underwater photography, but I do pull stills out from UW Video.

    Topside, I shoot nothing but raw*. As long as my lens is pointed in the right direction, and my image isn't blurry where it shouldn't be, I usually end up with a great photo (either shooting Manual, or in a custom mode) from the sensor.

    It all then goes into LR, and then (even if it is a JPEG), I do probably about 2 minutes tops of editing (usually less than a minute). Just slightly adjusting the contrast, exposure and sometimes framing.

    It's handy having the RAW format if I wanted to do something crazy with the photo, and keep the pixels still looking good (vs JPEG).


    With memory being cheaper every day, I'd shoot JPEG+RAW if your camera supports it. You might not care about it today (even though you did yesterday), but tomorrow, you might want to do something with that image.

    * On vacations, I shoot RAW+JPEG, so that I have something quick to upload to family/blogs/journals without having to archive/format/export/etc.


    BRad
     
  2. James R

    James R PADI Pro

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Austin, TX USA
    2,720
    1,132
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    RAW files always come out flat, as they have nothing applied to them in-camera, so if you shoot RAW then post the images SOOC (strait out of camera) they will definitely not look their best. Post processing should be part of your workflow if you shot RAW.
     
  3. tursiops

    tursiops Marine Scientist and Master Instructor ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: U.S. East Coast
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    6,003
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    You are right, of course. I guess RAW and Lightroom makes it so easy for me I no longer need to think about the disadvantages of jpeg.
     
  4. Storker

    Storker Divemaster

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: close to a Hell which occasionally freezes over
    12,849
    9,240
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    You can't post raw images SOOC. They need to be developed, translated into a recognizable image format like JPEG, TIFF etc.

    And for some image management/processing programs, like LR, that happens automatically upon import. LR applies a set of standard development settings on import and the output is nearly indistinguishable from an SOOC JPEG. My dSLR has four preset JPEG profiles, and in LR can I choose between presets that emulate those pretty well and set one of them as default to be applied on import. I can also make my own presets just as you can adjust the JPEG settings on your camera and have those applied automatically. It takes just as much work as setting the image controls in the camera, but everything I do is 100% reversible Portrait session shot in Vivid? No prob, change preset to Portrait. Flash picture shot with cloudy WB? No prob, change WB to flash, no data loss.

    That myth that PP'ing raw files has to be labor-intensive is only true if you use the wrong program.
     
  5. muzikbiz22

    muzikbiz22 Manta Ray

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Southern California
    1,122
    377
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    I shoot with the intent of "nailing it", and not using any post. I shoot Manual and RAW. When I process with "post", it's with the RAW files, and usually spend no more than a minute on an image, adjustments of a "smidge of color correction, sharpness, contrast, etc.", if in fact it is a keeper. I use Aperture and/or Capture One/Phase One. If you need to spit out a different format other than JPG, i.e. TIFF, etc., RAW from the beginning is best.
     
  6. WetLens

    WetLens REEF Volunteer

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: North Carolina
    417
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    I've listened to RAW proponents for years, all saying that there is so much more data to work with in RAW than JPEG or so much more latitude for improving the image. I've listened to the pros and wannabe pros go on and on about the importance of shooting RAW. I still don't see it. I've run many side-by-side experiments using RAW tools in Lightroom, Nikon ViewNX and Photoshop and run them against what I can get using just a few tools in Photoshop with JPEGs and I simply do not see a difference. Switched to shooting RAW for a brief period back in 2010 and went right back to shooting JPEGs. I'm still waiting to see the light, but at this point in time I don't believe RAW is worth the time, effort, and wasted disk space.
     
  7. Storker

    Storker Divemaster

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: close to a Hell which occasionally freezes over
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    OK, here are two challenges to try:
    1. Shoot a subject with a dynamic range that exceeds the DR of an 8-bit JPEG file. Try to recover the blown highlights. You can't. Try to darken almost-blown lights. Poor color. Try to recover detail in blown shadows. You can't. Try to lighten overly dark shadows. Excessive noise and loss of IQ. Do the same with a raw file from a decently modern digital camera. You can usually recover 1-2EV of blown highlights, and about the same of blown shadows. And you get better color rendering in lowered highlights and less noise in lightened shadows.
    2. Shoot a scene with the WB seriously off. Like incandescent lighting or deep underwater in daylight WB. Correct the WB. Compare to a raw file with corrected WB.

    Time? As long as I import, tag and manage my pictures in a computer program, raw doesn't have to take more time than JPEG.
    Effort? Se above.
    Disk space? I'll give you that. But if I wanted to save on disk space, I'd probably be better off selling my GoPro.

    I can accept that folks who just print or post to FB directly from their camera have more work shooting in raw, and some people are happy with that. Fine, that's what they want. However, the second you import your images to your computer to sort, cull and possibly keyword-tag them, the difference in workload is exactly zero with the right tool.
     
    bmorescuba and muzikbiz22 like this.
  8. muzikbiz22

    muzikbiz22 Manta Ray

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Southern California
    1,122
    377
    83
    Yep, precisely.
     
  9. WetLens

    WetLens REEF Volunteer

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: North Carolina
    417
    366
    63
    I've done those tests. I've gone to my RAW copy when I've had blown highlights. When I look at the results, I once again find it not worth the effort - and, yes, I find it an effort to get the same cataloging, tagging, and filing with RAW images. I get the same results with my JPEG - that can be viewed by ANY program. Even with the RAW shots that I do work, I find I simply convert it to JPEG and work it in the same process as my other JPEGs. I'm happy for others that find RAW to be this miracle method and I continue to look and try to find a difference that makes my photos better. Like others have said, my time is better spent learning and understanding how to get the best image with my camera - not with processing.

    Take a look at some of my photos - not saying it's all great, but I'm not a slouch... The only RAW processed photos that I have are from the first two-thirds of the 2010 Indonesia trip - everything else is JPEG.
     
  10. Manneca

    Manneca Barracuda

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Memphis (TN, not, unfortunately Egypt)
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    The major reason I see to photograph in RAW is the way JPEGs are stored compressed. Each time they are saved, data is lost and the image will eventually degrade.

    Photographing in JPEG is easy. You are allowing the camera to process the image for you. Some people prefer to process their images themselves. Years and years ago, people would drop their film cartridges at the corner drug store and come back a week later for the prints. Other people preferred to process the images in their darkroom. There isn't a right or wrong. It's a matter of what you want to do and how whether it's fun for you to process or not.
     
    muzikbiz22 and Storker like this.

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