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Thread: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

  1. #1
    gregg
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    RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    OK, I'm sort of a newbie at RAW conversion. I have a Nikon D200 and have used RawShooter with great success.

    Unfortunately RawShooter is discontinued and, to my knowledge, doesn't support the DNG files from my GX100.

    I also have Adobe Photoshop CS - it has a DNG conversion tool (2.4) that is OK but the workflow really stinks. For my needs I haven't bothered to upgrade to CS2 or CS3.

    I manage my files with Picassa - really a decent tool for the volume I shoot. My assignments are often date driven and I like the ability to create albums while editing down hundreds/thousands of images.

    So - I'm obviously working with some old(er) software in RawShooter and Photoshop CS.

    Ideally I would like to upgrade to ONE TOOL that allows me to manage, convert and edit all my file formats (JPG, DNG, NEF). I don't do too much crazy stuff with Photoshop but it would be nice if this dream tool could also:

    - Utilize my film and flatbed scanner for input
    - do perspective control
    - correct for lens distortion
    - layers (curves, levels, color balance, channel mixer, photo filter, etc...)
    - have nice B&W conversion options
    - print (printing in "packages" especially nice)

    I'd like to not spend a ton more money - maybe less than $150 if possible (dreaming!)

    I think Photoshop Lightroom will do all the above, but it is twice what I'd like to spend. An upgrade to Photoshop CS3 may fit the bill too. I have the Silkypix "free" software - it is crippled so badly though I'm not sure what the "full version" would do.

    Any other suggestions?

    (BTW: if this has already been discussed ad naseum elsewhere on this forum or the net please point me to it... I've done a lot of net searching and there is very little in the way of useful comparisons for the practical things I'm looking at. If you want to see microscopic spectral analysis of converted grain patterns, it is all out there! But if you just want a great competent tool you'll come up short...)

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Subscriber Member TRSmith's Avatar
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Lightroom seems the obvious choice to me, although you've said it's beyond your budget. (I believe the upgrade to PS CS3 will cost more but doesn't offer the tremendous cataloging and backup features of lightroom.) The editing features of lightroom do not include layers, but there are some very good tools in it that will bring you to a point where you can export to Photoshop and continue editing with layers as necessary. Download the demo and give it a go.

  3. #3
    Sean_Reid
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Take a look at SilkyPix.

    Cheers,

    Sean

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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*) -- COneV4?

    COne V4 will read in GR-D files, since it reads "generic" dng format, but what profile works for color? The generic one and the Leica D-3 profile each take quite a bit of work to get to colors that feel right.

    Anyone succeeding with COne?

    scott

  5. #5
    Sean_Reid
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Hi Scott,

    I'm using C1 4.0 now as my primary program for the GR2 but I use the JFI profiles.

    Cheers,

    Sean

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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Hello,

    As my first post on this forum, I thought I'd upload an image that was processed with Aperture, which I'm using mostly out of convenience, to have everything in one place and save disk space. The image was captured raw on a GRD II, and the default settings resulted in the first attached image. After various tweaks I obtained the second image.

    I'd love to see what other people, and their raw converters, can do with the image, and welcome any comments on what's wrong with my image (I'm quite new to PP). The original DNG can be found at http://idisk.mac.com/vid33-Public?view=web.

    Vid
    Last edited by sizifo; 4th April 2009 at 12:08.

  7. #7
    gregg
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    I'm on a PC so Aperture is not an option.

    I did try a few common things in the trial versions of "Capture One 4", SilkyPix, RawTherapee (free), and LightRoom.

    For my needs, and as a 90% solution for most digital organizing and editing, LightRoom has the advantage. The controls and output are especially good. It even integrates output into my old Photoshop CS for when I need to do more advanced editing.

    I like the Library and the web output works well too - those were especially lacking in the other programs. (OK, although "Capture One 4" doesn't have these C1 may but I'm REALLY not willing to pay $500 for it...)

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    Senior Member ShiroKuro's Avatar
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Thanks sizifo for uploading your dng file ..just what I was looking for .. gives me chance to try out silkypix ..... Just ordered my GRD2 from PopFlash, should be here in a few days : )

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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Mitch Alland and I have been using LightZone to good effect on RAW and DNG files. I've got CS3, but I find myself using LZ more often.

  10. #10
    gregg
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    I downloaded the trial of LightZone too. Sheesh, my cable modem is getting a workout!

    I'm on a fairly beefy XP Pro PC with 3gb of RAM and LiteZone seems REALLY SLOW for some things. Zooming to 100% takes about 8 seconds on a DNG file. That operation is instant in C1-4 and LightRoom. Other than that I really like the output and options.

    I like Picasa's organizer - even better than LightRoom - call me crazy but it works for me.

    I'm leaning towards the following workflow:
    Picasa -> LightRoom/LightZone -> (if needed) Photoshop CS

    I'll give LightRoom's organizer a little more time. I love the web output - so useful for posting client previews.

    Thanks everyone - keep sending me advice and I'll play with things as I have time.

  11. #11
    Super Duper
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    LightZone is written in platform-agnostic JAVA, so if you don't allocate a bunch of memory to it in its preferences, it will be slow.

  12. #12
    gregg
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Thanks Maggie O - what setting are you using?

    I've set it to 1gb and it seems a bit faster.

  13. #13
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    I pushed mine up to 1.5GB.

    BTW, a new and much snappier version of LightZone was released today! MAJOR improvement on rendering speed and tool response.

  14. #14
    gregg
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    I've boosted my LightZone memory allocation to the maximum allowed (1.5gb) and it does seem to make a difference. Also, I am testing with the latest version: 3.4

    The field is thinning a bit as I make my selections:

    - Silkypix is slow(ish) and doesn't make it easy to save for web. I like its development module but that is about it. Its sharpening tool doesn't do much for me and there is no organizer or spotting tool. It is off my testing list.

    - C1-4 keeps crashing. When it does develop, the auto (color/exposure/etc) features work really well. It doesn't have much in the way of web output. Unless I find more redeeming qualities, it is off my list.

    - LightZone is great for processing. I like the sharpening/noise controls a lot, it has a spot tool, saves for web OK. I'm not sure I'd use the "full" version additions all that much. The organizer leaves a lot to be desired and I'd probably keep using Picasa and set .dng and .nef to auto-open LightZone for processing.
    ** The most awesome feature of LightZone is the "RAW Tone Curve" tool. I can't say enough how excellent this is for micro-exposure/contrast control.
    ** Is anyone using the "lift" feature with success? Is that similar to "Presets" in LightRoom.

    - LightRoom does pretty much about everything. Including building web galleries. I'm guessing once I figure out LR's "Tone Curve" tool a little more it will be on par with LightZone's - though LZ's is really intuitive.

    My workflow with each tool would probably end up looking something like this:

    LightZone
    Organize - Picasa
    Develop - LightZone
    Export for Web - LightZone
    Web Gallery - jAlbum

    LightRoom
    It could do everything I guess...

  15. #15
    gregg
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    I saw on another thread that Mitch is using LightRoom for organizing and general editing and then LightZone for developing. I'm not all that interested in investing in two tools.

    Mitch, if you are reading, why don't you use LightRoom to process RAW files?

  16. #16
    wbrandsma
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Lightroom greatest limitations are regional adjustments. You can not apply adjustments on specifically selected regions like you can in Photoshop and Lightzone. You simply can not dodge and burn in Lightroom.
    Besides that I also have the feeling that a little bit of noise reduction is already applied on my raw images (GX100). I also do not feel sharpening works as good as I want to. I do like clarity though.
    The workflow is great in Lightroom and use the developmodule for color images. I feel Lightzone is the better darkroom for B&W images. Especially when you want to dodge and burn your images.

  17. #17
    Senior Member ShiroKuro's Avatar
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    wbrandsma have you checked out the "Target Adjustment Tool"feature in Lightroom ?
    Available in the Tone Curve and the HSL , Color , Grayscale panels of the Develop module.

    Click on the little circular toggle in the upper left hand corner of the window to activate this tool ....... it allows you to specifically target parts of your photo ...... very cool feature .....

  18. #18
    wbrandsma
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    I know that tool, but it will specifically target parts of your photo with for instance the same color. It is still applied on the entire photo and not on a specifically selected part like you can do with masking in Photoshop or the regional selection tool in Lightzone.
    But is a very cool feature. You are right!

  19. #19
    7ian7
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    ACR + CS3 all the way.

    I second Wouter's comments. PhotoShop is better than ever, and from my limited experimentation, still the way to go over Lightzone, if for no other reason than it's an industry standard, and that translates in to all kinds of convenience for post-processing jobs with labs or other retouchers or printers, etc. They are putting a ton of effort in to pushing it forward, and I think it is pretty fantastic.

    I've been using iView Media Pro to catalogue work for years (another industry standard), but recently a friend forced me to reconsider Bridge. I have to admit it's come a long way, and beyond organizational tools, it can access serious features from all of the CS3 applications from within in ways I hadn't been aware, such as doing RAW conversions, and saving those conversions without opening the image. Tons of other stuff too.

    If Sean is using C1, I'm sure it is great, but PhotoShop is better than ever.

  20. #20
    Super Duper
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    I can't really recommend ACR. Something about the way it renders colors just leaves me flat. C1's colors and NR are just soooo much better and Lightzone's handling of noise is more film-like.

    Photoshop is Photoshop and there is no substitute for it in lots of applications, especially when it comes to composite images or images that need multiple layers. But, if you don't need all that horsepower, LZ is a good choice, especially if you do a lot of B&W work.

    I'll second 7ian7's comments about Bridge, which I've just started to mess with- it really is surprisingly versatile and powerful. If I wasn't invested in iPhoto, I'd seriously consider switching to a Finder/Bridge organizing workflow.

  21. #21
    7ian7
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    I'm achieving anything but flat color rendition using ACR, but I've downloaded the C1 4 demo and will do a bit more experimenting.

    Regarding PhotoShop, pretty much every image I process requires at least a handful of adjustment layers. It's the only way I know to achieve impressive depth and contrast while avoiding blocked-up areas and retaining detail across an image that has a wide tonal range. Wouter was mentioning these kind of techniques earlier in the thread, and I've evangelized about them ad nauseum in another post. It's a way more "down to earth" method of working than describing it here may make it sound. It makes things easier, not more difficult, and way, way way more precise. And no that precision doesn't have to mean sacrificing "gutsiness". Anyway, to me it doesn't feel like heavy artillery; the program just runs super-smooth, rarely a crash and none in recent memory.

    I don't mind experimenting with other converters — I've tried a bunch of them — but I tend to end up back in ACR and PhotoShop (despite my resistance to the idea of such industry dominance) and it really is way better than it was only a year ago.

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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    which reminds me, Ian... you were quite effusive in your love of using curves on specific areas of the images in that post. i'm not a PS newbee (have been using it since before there were layers -- LOL!), but your explanation kind of flummoxed me. can you explain it again or, perhaps, PM me? thank you!

  23. #23
    7ian7
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    1) Eyeball an area in your image you want to alter.

    2) Create a curves layer and make the adjustment while focussing your gaze on that area alone (sort of difficult but possible).

    3) Take the change even further than you may need, hit "ok", once the change is made, even though it has changed the entire image.

    4) Invert the adjustment layer (apple + i on the Mac) so the change "disappears", creating a layer mask (a black square with a frame around it in the layers palette).

    5) Then use a low opacity paintbrush (one of a few tool options) to "paint" that adjustment back in with "white", which will reveal the adjustment incrementally and only in the areas you choose. I sometimes get impatient and up the opacity of the tool, but in general, gradually revealing the adjustment garners better results.

    That's it. Curves layers are a great way of doing so many things, like making subtle saturation or color adjustments without messing up the integrity of the color with a sponge tool. Great for contrast and depth.

    In my experience, it is pretty rare to achieve accurate color or tonality across an entire image — especially an enlarged one — with one set of values.

    It is exactly like doing this kind of thing on an enlarger (color or black & white), using various filters or color values and burning and dodging techniques, only this is more accurate, completely non-destructive, and repeatable, which is great. Plus, you can go back and hone your adjustments or turn off layers and add new ones in order to try different adjustments, without losing your initial efforts. (The "Layer Comps" feature is a great way for A/B'ing various combinations of layers with a single click.)

    I am sure I am not describing this as clearly as possible but I promise it feels much simpler when you're actually doing it and experiencing the results. If anyone else can say it more simply, or point to an online tutorial that explains it more clearly, please chime-in.

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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    just as Wouter was ready to make a tutorial for me, i got it!!! duh! it was the Adjustment Layer that had me stumped ( i was working almost exclusively in Flash and Illustrator for a few years and missed some of the nuances added to PS). wow wow wow!!! thank you! you don't know how much i've needed this!!!

  25. #25
    dandylion
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    I've only ever used Pshop, so I can n't really make comparrisons, but I've always found it able to do what I want with it. (Curious grammar!)
    [IMG][/IMG]

  26. #26
    7ian7
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    you're welcome

  27. #27
    gregg
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    7ian7 - your technique for tone adjustment is amazing. I suppose it is basic stuff that could have been learned by going through the tutorial but your succinct explanation was great. Now I don't feel so bad for spending time reading forums - just got my "money's worth" and then some! Thanks!

  28. #28
    7ian7
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Cool, thanks. I feel like I've come to this stuff relatively late in the game — through a retoucher and photo-illustrator I met fairly recently — so I'm excited as hell about these concepts. I'm finally getting results that rival or really surpass what I was achieving in the wet darkroom. (Don't forget to use curves layers for targeted color and saturation adjustments, and it goes on ... I know I'm only scratching the surface, in terms of what tools are available.)

    Forums are great: I'm generally kind of resistant to change, but Sean has recently piqued my curiosity about a number of concepts — for instance pre- and manual focussing rather than constantly missing moments and living with that — and processes and software — C1, JFI — that I will ultimately have to explore further.

    I've learned or honed some useful techniques thanks to generous and talented photographers on the web.

  29. #29
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    You know, it's funny- I've been using a technique like Ian's in Photoshop to sharpen up bits of Ortoned images and do selective color, but until I read his post, it never occurred to me to use the technique to do tonal manipulations! w00t!

    Also, I'll add a big +1 to Sean's recommendation of JFI B&W profiles in C1; they're beautiful.

  30. #30
    wbrandsma
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Thank you for sharing your technique Ian. Instead of the brush you can also use the Lasso tool and select the region you want to adjust with the Curves adjustment layer. Fill it with white and from the Filter menu choose Gaussian blur and opt for a very high setting to create nice feathered borders. With help of the opacity slider you can change the amount of altering. This works really well for larger sections of your photo. The brush is very usefull for smaller regions. For instance emphazing someones cheekbone or nose on a photo.

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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Quote Originally Posted by Maggie O View Post
    I pushed mine up to 1.5GB.

    BTW, a new and much snappier version of LightZone was released today! MAJOR improvement on rendering speed and tool response.
    I downloaded the update and I don't think it's any faster,at least for me
    That, I can live with but I don't like this new Preview window, it's useless on the laptop I'm using and I miss being able to quickly check and uncheck different saved styles.
    Maybe on a bigger screen the Preview would be useful

    Like the 24" IMac I've been looking at

    Hmmm
    -Shawn

  32. #32
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    After using the new version for a bit, I concur with you- the preview window is a poor substitute for being able to apply and uncheck various styles. Bad move on LZ's part, IMO.

  33. #33
    Mitch Alland
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Quote Originally Posted by gregg View Post
    ...Mitch, if you are reading, why don't you use LightRoom to process RAW files?...
    Lightroom is best for overall adjustments but not for selective burning and dodging. For the latter I find the LightZone selection tools, which are vector-based and allow you to control and selections and feathering by pushing vector shapes around on the screen, to be much easier to use and than Photoshop selections. Also, I like the "tone picker" tools of LightZone better suited for my purpose than Photoshop curves. Finally, I like the LightZone "styles" facility, which allows one to save a whole set of adjustment tools as a style that can then be applied to other pictures with similar light characteristics. I usually apply a "style" to a picture and then change the selections and tonal adjustments as required for a particular picture.

    The above refers to editing B&W pictures, but if you work in colour and and make only overall adjustments that are not as radical as B&W tonal adjustments, then Lightroom is a very good tool.

    —Mitch/Johannesburg
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/

  34. #34
    Mitch Alland
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Quote Originally Posted by Maggie O View Post
    After using the new version for a bit, I concur with you- the preview window is a poor substitute for being able to apply and uncheck various styles. Bad move on LZ's part, IMO.
    Maggie:

    I'm traveling and have not downloaded the new version because I've had slow internet access. How has LZ changed with this new Preview Window, and is there now no way of checking or unchecking tools in a Style or changing the Region shape within one of the Tools in a Style? If that is the case the major advantage of editing a Style would have disappeared. Do you recommend not upgrading to the new version?

    —Mitch/Johannesburg
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/

  35. #35
    gregg
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Quote Originally Posted by Mitch Alland View Post
    Lightroom is best for overall adjustments but not for selective burning and dodging.
    Thanks Mitch, your experience is certainly appreciated.

    I found this video tutorial and think there is a comparable selective adjustment in Lightroom by desaturating a HSL image and then adjusting luminance using the point-tone selector on the image. Just like LightZone you can continue to mess with color temp/tint/etc. to get the final look you like.

    Agreed that LightZone's mapping of the various tones is a wonderful visual.


    BTW: I still haven't made up my mind between LightZone and Lightroom - they are my two "final contestants" though I'm leaning a bit more toward Lightroom at the moment.

    All things considered, LightZone is quite a bit slower and has had a few fatal errors but its B&W tools are truly excellent as Mitch and others have raved. Since B&W conversion is a big priority for me, this is keeping me working with LightZone and trying to find adequate (and easy to use) similarities in Lighroom.

    Lightroom is a "one stop shop" solution for 95% of what I need to do - the other 5% being more detailed touch-up, extra sharpening or extreme layered corrections in Photoshop CS. If it weren't so capable in the organization and web presentation modes I might not be as interested in diving in.


    Quote Originally Posted by Mitch Alland View Post
    —Mitch/Johannesburg
    You sure do get around...

  36. #36
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Quote Originally Posted by Mitch Alland View Post
    Maggie:

    I'm traveling and have not downloaded the new version because I've had slow internet access. How has LZ changed with this new Preview Window, and is there now no way of checking or unchecking tools in a Style or changing the Region shape within one of the Tools in a Style? If that is the case the major advantage of editing a Style would have disappeared. Do you recommend not upgrading to the new version?

    —Mitch/Johannesburg
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/
    Mitch, I think I'd hold off if I were you.

    May I ask you to drop a downgrade app file in my .Mac public folder, too? I'd like to do a head-to-head comparison and the new version over-wrote my old one. (Go to Finder-->Go-->iDisk-->Other User's Public Folder and use "Maggie_Osterberg" for the username. No quotes)

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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Maggie -- if it's too difficult for Mitch from where he is, i still have it. let me know.

    never mind -- i'll just do it. you can always dump it.

  38. #38
    Mitch Alland
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Yes, Cam, you'd better do it if you don't mind as I'll be traveling tomorrow and won't be able to do it until Friday, when I'm back in Bangkok — or perhaps until Saturday, because I'll probably be too jet-lagged on Firday.

    Maggie, I'll be most interested in your comparison.

    —Mitch/Johannesburg
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/

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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Quote Originally Posted by Mitch Alland View Post
    Yes, Cam, you'd better do it if you don't mind as I'll be traveling tomorrow and won't be able to do it until Friday, when I'm back in Bangkok — or perhaps until Saturday, because I'll probably be too jet-lagged on Firday.

    Maggie, I'll be most interested in your comparison.

    —Mitch/Johannesburg
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/
    it's done (i figured it would be difficult for you). i'm interested in what Maggie thinks as well.

  40. #40
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Thanks, guys!

    Bon voyage, Mitch! May the road rise to meet ye.

  41. #41
    7ian7
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Hey, thanks Wouter. I employ similar variations on that theme, but I'll retrace your method exactly next time I'm up against that type of thing.

    Maggie, (I think it was you) selective sharpening impacts an image layer, so I avoid that until the very end of the process, even until after re-sizing.

    Mitch, I can't wait to see what you come up with in Nambia. Hope it's going well.

    Cheers,
    Ian

  42. #42
    Mitch Alland
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Ian, Nambia was anything but a photographic trip and I've only posted two pictures on my flickr site' the rest were pictures of mine development and slag heaps: nothing of any inteterest.

    —Mitch/Bangkok
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/

  43. #43
    Bob Yanal
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    This is principally directed at Maggie O, though of course I'd like to hear from anyone.

    After an initial infatuation with LightZone, I've been mainly using Photoshop CS3 (special discount from my university). And I'm liking PS3 more and more.

    I'm also invested in iPhoto, but have been toying with Bridge. What I'd especially miss about iPhoto is its "Web Gallery" function, though there's no reason I couldn't (somehow) use both.

    If anyone has anything to share regarding Bridge and/or (versus) iPhoto, I'd like to hear it.

    Bob Yanal
    http://gallery.mac.com/ryanal#gallery

  44. #44
    gregg
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Well - after a week-long vacation, 1000s of images and five programs - I've finally placed an order for Lightroom.

    Yes, it was twice what I really wanted to spend but on the positive:

    1) Organize/Develop in the same interface
    2) Clone images take up little space (C1-4 too)
    3) An active module/styles development community
    4) Web gallery output - flash
    5) File Export (file, flickr, web, Photoshop)
    6) Integration with Photoshop
    7) Non destructive editing of JPGs
    8) Selective color/tone control
    9) Integrated keywording that works with the tagging recognition of my stock site and flickr. (no more exif editor or importing to Photoshop to add tags!)

    Like others I really like LiteZone's tone control but I found that using LightRoom's histogram sliders gave me the same results.

    There have been a lot of reviews done on these software applications so there probably isn't a need for another (although writing is one of my sources of income...)

    Ultimately, which software to use is a pretty subjective decision. LightRoom "works" for the majority of my workflow, produces very consistent results, has the support of a huge company and user base behind it (i.e. has lots of incentive to improve), and integrates seamlessly with Photoshop CS for times when I need really localized control.

    Capture One (4) did a great job at development as did LightZone. I never really liked SilkyPix's interface or its lack of a decent file browser. Capture One (4) crashed a lot and gave fatal errors on simple things like export for web. LightZone was slower than the rest, even when I pumped its memory allocation up to the maximum.

    The last week of my daily photoblog, Project365, has all been processed with LightRoom and some pretty standard adjustments that take about 30 seconds per image. I've also gone back to some photo essays that were in desperate need of editing and have made quick work of those tasks.

    Thanks to everyone for all the advice, tips and experience. Pay it forward and happy shooting.

  45. #45
    7ian7
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    • I don't know, Mitch, images of mine development sound potentially very interesting.

    • Bob, I HATE iPhoto. I feel like Apple is way too parental — seizing control of too many aspects of file and folder management that I'd rather it leave alone. Also, last I checked, it's import process impacts file integrity, just one more stage of compression I don't want or need.

    Bridge, on the other hand, is turning out to be an awesome tool — it has evolved tremendously since I first tried it out a few versions ago. Lately I've been migrating my workflow over to Bridge from iView Media Pro, a magazine industry standard which I used to swear by, and Bridge is really great. It has seamless access to many serious features from each program in the entire CS3 design suite without actually having to launch the applications. Cool, and great for editing.

    • Gregg, I know a lot of photographers who are thrilled with Lightroom. I personally haven't taken to it. I find that pretty much every image needs at least some "localized" work, so in the end, it is just one more stop on the way to the inevitable PhotoShop treatment. I've used it to create and then post some batch-processed contact sheets for clients, but I'm finding Bridge is just as good for that. I'm sure I'll press "submit reply" and five minutes later a situation will arise where Lightroom is the obvious solution, but so far that hasn't happened.

    I've also experienced buggy behavior with C1v4, but I'm guessing PCs and Intel Macs can crunch those numbers with greater ease than my dual G5, even though it's a fast computer with a lot of RAM. I don't doubt Sean's or a number of other contributors here when they say it rocks, but so far I haven't experienced great enough discernible advantages when using it to get me to switch from ACR. That said, I'm open to using it — or anything else, on a case by case basis — when I'm not satisfied with what I'm getting from the odd, particularly problematic ACR conversion.

  46. #46
    Super Duper
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Quote Originally Posted by 7ian7 View Post
    • Bob, I HATE iPhoto. I feel like Apple is way too parental — seizing control of too many aspects of file and folder management that I'd rather it leave alone. Also, last I checked, it's import process impacts file integrity, just one more stage of compression I don't want or need.
    It does no such thing. You may not like how it handles file organization, but the files it imports are just fine, thank you.

  47. #47
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Bob, iPhoto and Photoshop play very well together, FWIW. That's been my standard workflow now for over a year.

    I like LightZone's tools and the way it handles RAW files from my D-Lux 3 (C1LE is still my preferred M8 DNG developer, tho'), but I only use it on the files I really want to tweak up just so. I'm not under time pressure, so I'm free to use whatever tool serves the image best. If I was on deadline again, things would be different.

  48. #48
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Mitch and Cam, I think I'd pass up the latest version of LightZone. The preview window smells like *** and is pretty much useless. Some tools are faster, but some are slower, so there seems to be zero net gain in application speed.

  49. #49
    Mitch Alland
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Maggie, does that mean that the old preview window and tools stack on the side of it has been replaced by a new configuration? What is the difference?

    —Mitch/Bangkok
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/

  50. #50
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    Re: RAW Software (Ricoh GX100, GRD*)

    Quote Originally Posted by Mitch Alland View Post
    Maggie, does that mean that the old preview window and tools stack on the side of it has been replaced by a new configuration? What is the difference?

    —Mitch/Bangkok
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/
    The styles stack has been moved down and the preview window is a mirror of the zone window on the RH side. The preview window changes as you mouse over each style. If you select a style, the undo command is the only way to remove the tool from the main window.

    The mouseover preview also seems to have slowed down the program a bunch- I see the beachball of doom™ a lot now.

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