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Thread: GF1 RAW comparison

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    Member laptoprob's Avatar
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    GF1 RAW comparison

    I am struggling to get a RAW conversion to match the in-camera JPEG, let alone surpass it. I have tried both Silkypix and Adobe Camera Raw.
    Ko, my neighbour's cat was willingly modeling, but after the first click he ran away, so only one photo. The JPEG was in low resolution, since I am planning to go RAW only.
    I have read statements that ACR default raw already improved on the in-camera jpegs. But after the problems with this file I don't know.

    Have a look at the out-of focus whiskers and the fine hair detail.

    What am I missing here?

    Full size and cropped jpeg with cropped conversions.
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    Re: GF1 RAW comparison

    RAW default is not the best thing to compare to out of camera jpegs. Remember the jpegs are sharpened, have contrast added, saturation,etc., etc., etc. --IOW the processing that the engineers decided was best for the settings you chose in camera. In RAW you need to process to what YOU want--out of camera jpegs are just RAW plus processing by the camera.

    Default in either RC has the camera profile that those developers chose for that camera. It might please you or not--most people shooting in RAW use the opened RAW file as just a stepping off place--a relatively neutral image that needs some capture sharpening, perhaps a bit of WB, exposure, fill, contrast, etc. tweaking. For output, its best to then resize to what you want--web, print, etc. and do the final sharpening for that purpose.

  3. #3
    Senior Member m3photo's Avatar
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    Re: GF1 RAW comparison

    Just to add to what Diane has said.
    JPEG is only 8-bit - RAW can be 16-bit; so much more information at your "tweaking" fingertips.

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    Re: GF1 RAW comparison

    Hi,
    Typically it is in the shadow areas and highlight areas that you will see any difference, if there is a difference to be had, also when pushing your exposure with high ISO.

    JPEG is a compression technique that looses data, when there are lots of details then that data is retained, it is when there is little difference in that the JPEG algorithm discards information. It decides how similar the adjacent data is and if it is within a tolerance it discards it. The level for the tolerance is affected by the settings of the quality in the camera.

    If you compare the size of the files - a RAW file may be 10-12 Meg, and the same photo as a JPEG can be 1-5 Meg, that is lost data that can never be recovered.
    It is for that reason people like RAW.

    However the decoding of the RAW data is Camera dependent and it can look different when opened by different software. I do not think there is a single best RAW application, they all seem to have some issue, probably ACR (including its use in Lightroom) is the most used.

    I use Apple Aperture, but their issue is a slow turnaround for new cameras - for example they do not support GF1 (as of today 18/10/09).
    I have heard it said that the Camera Makers own software is usually the best conversion, but these applications leave a lot missing for the Digital Workflow - or DAM.

    Maybe for the next test photo try setting up a Still Life - like a bunch of flowers or fruit in a bowl - and try different exposures. You can do RAW vs JPEG - and JPEG vs JPEG, but at different quality settings, also try the different colour settings for the JPEGs like the built in saturation .. and do this with the camera as fixed as you can - on a tripod.
    Try testing the different ISO with JPEG and RAW to see how they can be post processed afterwards - try a decent Noise Reduction software for this like NoiseNinja.

    Good Luck.

  5. #5
    ChrisJ
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    Re: GF1 RAW comparison

    I took this pic a while ago which shows the difference between Jpeg and Raw quite well. It was shot on a G1 with the Raw + Jpeg option the Jpeg was maximum resolution.



    The breast feathers on the right hand bird show the difference most, they are burnt out on the Jpeg, there is some detail on the left hand bird. Overall there is much more detail overall, in the branch it's noticable.

    Chris

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    Re: GF1 RAW comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by pellicule View Post
    Hi,
    I have heard it said that the Camera Makers own software is usually the best conversion, but these applications leave a lot missing for the Digital Workflow - or DAM.

    LOTS OF SNIPS

    .
    I think that's probably true--but, AFAIK, Silkypix is an independently owned software company. I don't know its affiliation with Panasonic--maybe none other than it just being chosen to be the software included with the camera. When it first came out several years ago it seemed to be just a couple of guys developing a new RC--its grown since then, but since it doesn't function like DPP for Canon, for instance, where it can actually use the film modes as profiles, then I'm guessing they worked enough with Panny to include the corrections, but isn't Panny owned or developed. Could be mistaken though.

    So--I agree about mfg. own software at least as far as Canon (which is my only reference). DPP does a terrific job of processing--its just still a bit kludgy (though not nearly as much as the original software back in 2000/01 when we were so excited that Chris Breeze developed a better software--Breezebrowser--because the Canon Zoombrowser then was just awful LOL) and I prefer to use Lightroom for a much better workflow.

    Gosh---wrote a lot more than I intended --I tend to do that.

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    Member laptoprob's Avatar
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    Re: GF1 RAW comparison

    Thanks for all your replies. Ofcourse I understand that with RAW conversion you can tweak whatever you want, standard JPEG is just an automatic. And most automatics suck.
    But in the Dpreview article on the RAW processing through ACR it is stated that even the default ACR conversion does miracles to sharpness. It doesn't. Only after some tweaking. So that is what I am trying now.

    I am fairly new to RAW because the Digilux 2 is so slow in writing RAW and does an increadible fantastic job in processing in-body JPEGs.

    Do you have some standard baseline in ACR you start from? As a standard application for a camera or lens combo? Or is every photo a new development?

    thanks in advance for your opinions.

    BTW - The Digilux is for sale!
    "You live and learn; at any rate you live" (Douglas Adams)

  8. #8
    jerryk
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    Re: GF1 RAW comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by laptoprob View Post
    Thanks for all your replies. Ofcourse I understand that with RAW conversion you can tweak whatever you want, standard JPEG is just an automatic. And most automatics suck.
    But in the Dpreview article on the RAW processing through ACR it is stated that even the default ACR conversion does miracles to sharpness. It doesn't. Only after some tweaking. So that is what I am trying now.

    I am fairly new to RAW because the Digilux 2 is so slow in writing RAW and does an increadible fantastic job in processing in-body JPEGs.

    Do you have some standard baseline in ACR you start from? As a standard application for a camera or lens combo? Or is every photo a new development?

    thanks in advance for your opinions.

    BTW - The Digilux is for sale!

    If you are a really serious about raw you might want to consider a full image management system that will remember the setting and.or let you create and save profiles for the various conversion/editing you like to perform. I use Lightroom for these tasks and also file store, tagging, searching, and backup.

    Also, lightroom stores instructions on how to modify the raw file versus actually creating a converted image. Reduce the space required (no 40 MB TIFFs) and preserves the raw file.

    If you want to try Lightroom you can get a free 30 day trial from the Adobe site.

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    Re: GF1 RAW comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by laptoprob View Post
    But in the Dpreview article on the RAW processing through ACR it is stated that even the default ACR conversion does miracles to sharpness. It doesn't. Only after some tweaking. So that is what I am trying now.
    I'll have to reread it, but if they said that, they left out the part that RAW in digital almost always needs capture sharpening and then in most cases, output sharpening.

  10. #10
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    Re: GF1 RAW comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by pellicule View Post
    ...I have heard it said that the Camera Makers own software is usually the best conversion, but these applications leave a lot missing for the Digital Workflow - or DAM. ...
    Very rarely. I've tried and discarded*as unusable the image processing software supplied by Canon, Olympus, Nikon, Pentax, Panasonic and Sony. None of them are worth the effort. I get as good or better image quality, and FAR better UI/speed/workflow options, out of Bridge+Camera Raw+Photoshop or Lightroom.

    The important thing to remember, however, is that Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom software does not look at camera image processing settings and, by default, does not even try to mimic what the camera's JPEG engine does. If you want that, you have to create a camera calibration profile with DNG Profile Editor to match the in-camera JPEG engine and set that to be the default for your RAW processing.

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