PDA

View Full Version : Switching to RAW...any suggestions?


denise
04-21-2011, 12:22 PM
Ok, I'm going to take the plunge and switch to RAW from JPEG. Everyone says post production is better in RAW and that I should switch.

I Leave in less then one week on the Wonder and want to make sure I am set for it.
Are there any things I need to know before I leave? Any different settings I should use? :confused3

I have a D7000 and it has 2 slots for memory cards. I can set up the cards many different ways.
Should I:
1. have card one as RAW and card 2 as RAW overflow
2. have card one as RAW and card 2 as JPEG
3. have card one as RAW and card 2 as copy of card 1

Any hints or suggestions are appreciated.
thanks,
denise

zackiedawg
04-21-2011, 12:35 PM
Well, not EVERYONE says RAW is better for all processing. But most do. ;) Actually, RAW has more latitude for corrections and alterations in post processing than JPG - not that it is necessarily 'better' all else being equal. If you don't have anything to correct, or the corrections are extremely minor, you might never see any real gain from JPG to RAW. But as soon as you need to make large alterations or large-scale processing, the extra data contained in the RAW file comes in very handy and will give you much more room for recreating your photo minus much of what you got wrong and/or wanted to touch up.

As for how to shoot - I'd strongly recommend as a newbie to RAW that you take advantage of your dual card slots, and shoot in RAW + JPG, with RAW to one card and JPG to the other. This will give you two nice advantages - 1. For those shots not really needing much work or any, you can just grab the JPGs and be done with it - save yourself processing time...and 2. If you find yourself struggling to get your processing workflow down with RAW, at least you have a card full of JPGs of the same shots - you can resort to those and can always come back to the RAWs as you get better.

mom2rtk
04-21-2011, 02:01 PM
My advice? Buy more memory. Then buy some more. Or bring a laptop.

I enjoy having the RAW files, as I like having the latitude to correct my mistakes, especially from special trips where I can't just go reshoot if I messed up. So it was worth it to me to just get tons of memory for the trips where I don't have a computer along.

TC09
04-21-2011, 02:18 PM
I would go with #2 or #3. Either way, it may be a better idea to have the second card as backup (whether it be JPG or RAW) just in case one of the cards go bad. I haven't experienced a card going bad on me, but I prefer playing it safe.

I agree with mom2rtk... buy more memory. I also have a D7000 and shoot RAW. My 8GB sd card can only hold about 220 RAW shots. Sorry, I don't remember the exact number.

photo_chick
04-21-2011, 04:16 PM
Double the number of memeory cards you use to shoot jpeg. And invest in good software for your RAW workflow otherwise processing will take over your life.

Jalva22
04-21-2011, 04:21 PM
Double the number of memeory cards you use to shoot jpeg. And invest in good software for your RAW workflow otherwise processing will take over your life.

What would be recommended? I currently use Elements. Sufficient or could my life be much easier? Thanks!

klmall
04-21-2011, 05:19 PM
What would be recommended? I currently use Elements. Sufficient or could my life be much easier? Thanks!

That's an excellent question! I also use Elements and it's fine for my XSi processing but my Canon G12 posed a different issue since Canon hasn't released the ACR converter yet for raw (UGH!) so I have to either shoot in jpeg or use Canon's proprietary software (a pain) or do what I have been putting off for years buy Lightroom or whatever!

Since I don't have anyone in the family qualified for a student discount for Lightroom and don't want to spend $400 or more I am as they say stuck between a rock and a hard place :headache: I would rather spend my $$$ on a new lens for landscape pictures.

I really don't want the learning curve of Lightroom either and I like the photo organization system I have (not Elements).

Suggestions for denise and me, anyone? TIA.

mom2rtk
04-21-2011, 05:27 PM
That's an excellent question! I also use Elements and it's fine for my XSi processing but my Canon G12 posed a different issue since Canon hasn't released the ACR converter yet for raw (UGH!) so I have to either shoot in jpeg or use Canon's proprietary software (a pain) or do what I have been putting off for years buy Lightroom or whatever!

Since I don't have anyone in the family qualified for a student discount for Lightroom and don't want to spend $400 or more I am as they say stuck between a rock and a hard place :headache: I would rather spend my $$$ on a new lens for landscape pictures.

I really don't want the learning curve of Lightroom either and I like the photo organization system I have (not Elements).

Suggestions for denise and me, anyone? TIA.

Steal a student????

OK, just kidding. Wish I could help. I totally used my kid last summer to get the student discount for LR3. Honestly, I know I'm not getting the most out of the program yet, but have been VERY happy with the parts I have used. I didn't think the basics required a steep learning curve. I do still hope to learn much more about it (and have now purchased the Scott Kelby LR3 book) it was worth it already.

I also was happy with my organization system, and have not availed myself of its cataloging function yet.

photo_chick
04-21-2011, 05:50 PM
What would be recommended? I currently use Elements. Sufficient or could my life be much easier? Thanks!

It's personal preference. Personally I cannot stand using Bridge and Adobe Camera RAW, so I use Lightroom for my RAW processing and image management. Now you can do all the same processing with ACR in Elements. I just find it much more efficient for me with Lightroom, mainly because of how easy it is to access images in it.

DVC Mike
04-21-2011, 06:05 PM
I use card 1 as RAW and card 2 as RAW copy/backup.

I use Lightroom 3 for RAW processing.

denise
04-21-2011, 07:07 PM
Thanks for all the answers!!

I will have my netbook with me.

Currently I have 4 cards of 8 GB each. I also have several 2 GB cards. So I could use the 8 GB for the RAW and the 2GB as JPEG backup. Does this sound ok?

I have Photoshop CS5 and Lightroom 3.
I got the student discount because I took photoshop last semester at the local JC and I'm taking color photography this semester which also teaches Lightroom. The student discount was nice....:)

Ok dumb question about Raw. I DO NOT have CS5 or LR3 on my netbook. It has no dvd drive. If I have to empty cards onto the netbook to reuse them will the RAW pics load up or do I have to have a special software for them to save and be viewed on my netbook?

denise

SrisonS
04-21-2011, 09:22 PM
I'd say to probably just install the Canon software on your Netbook. Then at least you'll be able to view them in full glory. And you can download that software for free, since you have no DVD drive.

@klmall: there have recently been discounts for LR3 on Amazon. Check to see if they're still going on. And like someone else mentioned, there isn't a big learning curve for Lightroom. Heck, the processing aspects of it are much more straightforward than the organizatonal ones.

ukcatfan
04-21-2011, 09:41 PM
Give Bibble Pro a look for processing. Most people use LR, but I personally like Bibble more.

EDIT: Nevermind, I just noticed that you already have LR

denise
04-21-2011, 10:42 PM
OK now another question------especially for the D7000 users;

when looking at the options for RAW and JPEG I see:

1. RAW + JPEG fine
2. RAW + JPEG normal
3. RAW + JPEG basic


if I choose 1,2 or 3 I can also choose what size image, Large, Medium or small for the JPEG. (I really have never shot is basic and small so I don't think that should even be part of my question, or should it?)

What size should the JPEG be, Large or Medium? and should I use fine or normal?
I'm going to have card 2 be the card for the JPEG (2GB) and card 1 be the RAW(8GB).

With the JPEG set to fine and large I will get about 135 shots.
With the JPEG set to normal and large I will get about 269 shots
With JPEG set to fine and medium I will get about 239 shots
With JPEG set to normal and medium I will get about 398 shots

BUT NOW....if I take the 2GB card out of slot 2 and change the settings to just RAW it says I will get 398 shots!!! I get the same results, 398 shots, if I change the card 2 slot to be a overflow.
WHAT am I not understanding?
I don't understand.....:confused3

photo_chick
04-21-2011, 10:49 PM
IMO shooting RAW plus jpeg is redundant, wastes memory card space and takes more time to write to the card. It's like wearing socks with sandals.. commit to one or the other. You're shooting RAW to process them into jpegs yourself. If you're worried about how they'll look, most RAW processing software does have presets to make getting started easier.

ukcatfan
04-21-2011, 11:02 PM
IMO shooting RAW plus jpeg is redundant, wastes memory card space and takes more time to write to the card. It's like wearing socks with sandals.. commit to one or the other. You're shooting RAW to process them into jpegs yourself. If you're worried about how they'll look, most RAW processing software does have presets to make getting started easier.

I have to disagree here. I always do RAW plus JPG because then I instantly have a file I can give to the DW so that she can share on FB. When she has to wait for me to post process, she is not a happy camper! :scared1:

denise
04-21-2011, 11:08 PM
IMO shooting RAW plus jpeg is redundant, wastes memory card space and takes more time to write to the card. It's like wearing socks with sandals.. commit to one or the other. You're shooting RAW to process them into jpegs yourself. If you're worried about how they'll look, most RAW processing software does have presets to make getting started easier.

I wondered about the time it takes to write to the cards. I don't want to slow down.
I would never wear socks with sandals....:lmao: now my DH, that's a different thing;)

I have always shot in JPEG but want to have more flexibility with post processing. I am learning LR and want to get the full effect by using RAW.
I might just make card 1 RAW and card 2 overflow....:confused3...before I thought about changing to RAW I had slot 1 as JPEG and slot 2 as JPEG copy. I also don't want to shot and have the card go bad....what to do, what to do????:confused3:confused3

denise
04-21-2011, 11:10 PM
I have to disagree here. I always do RAW plus JPG because then I instantly have a file I can give to the DW so that she can share on FB. When she has to wait for me to post process, she is not a happy camper! :scared1:

Does it slow you down when taking pictures?
I see your point too....
but what settings would you use for the JPEG?

KAT4DISNEY
04-21-2011, 11:56 PM
I have to disagree here. I always do RAW plus JPG because then I instantly have a file I can give to the DW so that she can share on FB. When she has to wait for me to post process, she is not a happy camper! :scared1:

:thumbsup2

(And I also have been known to wear nice warm socks with my Birks. ;))

Gianna'sPapa
04-22-2011, 12:26 AM
I shoot RAW + JPEG for many of the same reasons. When I'm on vacation I and the family want the instant gratification of seeing the images without waiting to PP. The only time I notice any slowing down of the camera is when I am shooting in bursts. If the buffer fills then it will stop or slow down until it clears. That has been rare. Maybe because I am cognizant of that I try not to push it to the limit. I believe the newer cameras have a larger buffer and I know their burst rate is faster than my 3-5 FPS.

SrisonS
04-22-2011, 01:50 AM
Since you're going on a cruise, I'll assume you're not gonna be using the internet much; and probably not at all. So that would make no need for instant online sharing. And whatever RAW software you can download on your Netbook will give you the ability to look at your pictures, so no need for jpegs there either.

So I'd agree with Photo_chick, if you don't think you'll need to do anything with the pictures right away. And like she mentioned, even basic software should be able to do batch processing; so no need to put in a lot of work... unless of course you want to.

My suggestion would be this:
- Use both slots.... one as the main, and the other as overflow.
- Backup both of those cards each night to your Netbook, and put in a new set of cards for the next day; but try to still keep those pictures on the card.
- Keep repeating Step 2. During this rotation, you might go back to using the first set, but that'll be alright.

The main idea is to have your pics nicely spread out over different cards, in case any of them gets lost. And don't delete the pictures from the cards unless you run out of room. Sure, they're backed up to your Netbook, but you don't wanna put all your eggs in one basket. If you can help it, wait until you get home and everything is placed in your normal system of things, before you start deleting anything.

And as far as RAW processing; as your skills grow over time, the more you'll be accustomed to making the most of those RAW files. You might not see anything special about it at first, but you'll eventually get to the point where you revisit old shots, to really put your skills and knowledge to the test. And you'll be glad that you shot in RAW to begin with. :thumbsup2

TXFL
04-22-2011, 05:58 AM
Don't forget to download the NEF codec for windows, but I doubt you want to look at RAW images on a netbook, this is where JPGs come in handy. Enjoy your trip

TC09
04-22-2011, 06:22 AM
OK now another question------especially for the D7000 users;

when looking at the options for RAW and JPEG I see:

1. RAW + JPEG fine
2. RAW + JPEG normal
3. RAW + JPEG basic


if I choose 1,2 or 3 I can also choose what size image, Large, Medium or small for the JPEG. (I really have never shot is basic and small so I don't think that should even be part of my question, or should it?)

What size should the JPEG be, Large or Medium? and should I use fine or normal?
I'm going to have card 2 be the card for the JPEG (2GB) and card 1 be the RAW(8GB).

With the JPEG set to fine and large I will get about 135 shots.
With the JPEG set to normal and large I will get about 269 shots
With JPEG set to fine and medium I will get about 239 shots
With JPEG set to normal and medium I will get about 398 shots

BUT NOW....if I take the 2GB card out of slot 2 and change the settings to just RAW it says I will get 398 shots!!! I get the same results, 398 shots, if I change the card 2 slot to be a overflow.
WHAT am I not understanding?
I don't understand.....:confused3
The indicator on the LCD will only show the number of shots remaining on the card in Slot 1, if the camera is set to use Slot 2 as Overflow. When the first card is full, it'll show the remaining shots for the card in Slot 2.

If it's set as Backup, the indicator will display the remaining shots of the card with the least amount of space.

If you need the space (I'm sure you'll be taking lots of pictures :)), I would do what SrisonS suggested about backing up the files to your netbook each night... or even every chance you get. This way, you can set the card in Slot 2 to be Overflow. If you want, and if you have one, bring along an external/portable hard drive to backup files to that too. Then you'll have 3 places that the files are backed up to: SD cards, netbook and portable hard drive. Of course, that's if you don't mind bringing along a little extra hardware.

klmall
04-22-2011, 08:56 AM
@klmall: there have recently been discounts for LR3 on Amazon. Check to see if they're still going on. And like someone else mentioned, there isn't a big learning curve for Lightroom. Heck, the processing aspects of it are much more straightforward than the organizatonal ones.

Thanks SrisonS! I'll check Amazon out.

Happy Easter and Passover everyone!

photo_chick
04-22-2011, 09:27 AM
I have to disagree here. I always do RAW plus JPG because then I instantly have a file I can give to the DW so that she can share on FB. When she has to wait for me to post process, she is not a happy camper! :scared1:

I can see that. I guess because I do all the processing and FB posting it's different for me then.

Pea-n-Me
04-22-2011, 09:35 AM
I've been shooting RAW for a couple of years now but am in the process of going back to shooting straight JPEGs - I'm pretty sure. (Still have to do a few more shoots to make sure I'm getting good images and it's strictly a processing issue - if anyone would like to address this I'd appreciate it.)

I'm doing this for several reasons. First, my upgrade a year ago got me a camera that has good JPEG images straight from the camera, so I'd like to take advantage of that. Second, I have been doing little to almost no post processing with my RAW images lately. (Thank you, God! Finally! :worship: ) Third, the sheer amount and size of the RAW files I have is freaking my DH out, lol. Fourth, I have a ton of pictures from the past couple of years I haven't even processed yet, which seems silly. Fifth, the time I've put into processing is time I no longer have. And finally, the truth is, I never really enjoyed it. :eek: I mean, sure, I like being able to improve an image. But I don't like being dependent on it, if that makes sense.

I think the whole photography thing is a process (pun intended:laughing: ). We all have to see what works best for us personally and go that route ultimately. I think that shooting RAW and learning how to process those images did help me learn how best to get those shots right in camera, which was really always my goal. While I love seeing some of the things that *can* be done in pp, I'm not sure it will ever be for me, and that's ok. I did get LR for XMas and I haven't even watched the tutorial yet let alone use it. I will eventually, but I'm not sure how or if it will change anything for me, other than maybe storage and hopefully ease of basic editing and watermarking.

If I am off base on any of this stuff, please let me know. I don't think I'll ever be done learning.

zackiedawg
04-22-2011, 11:38 AM
Welcome, Pea! I reached that conclusion many years ago, and other than for my professional or hired shoots where I shoot RAW for safety (it's the client's shoot, not mine, so I can't risk a screw up) I stick with JPG exclusively and mighty happily. I work very diligently to get my cameras set up to deliver just the output I like (tune your JPGs for contrast, color, saturation, and sharpness that suits you), pay close attention to white balance, and take the extra concentration needed to nail exposures at the shot, so what I get out of the camera is exactly what I wanted to get with no processing needed. When it comes down to it, I'm just not having a whole lot of fun processing photos, and having an absolute ball taking photos...so I spend more time doing what I love, and less time doing what I don't. I even tried all of the 'batch processing' RAW solutions that would supposedly make RAW processing take no more time than JPG - but it didn't - just the load times, the batch-running times, the backlog of photos would start to build like you mentioned. For me, nothing is as pleasureful as taking hundreds or thousands of photos, getting home, plugging in the card for about 2 minutes and loading all photos to my computer...and start the slideshow. That's it - nothing more needed - photos are ready to go. And as long as you make the effort to pre-tune the camera and get the exposures right, nothing needs correction or alteration.

RAW definitely gives both more latitude to correct, and also can pull ultimately more of nearly any parameter out of a file - it has that much more information for color, and full control over how it is displayed, how noise is removed, how sharpening is applied, etc. So beyond question, it's the more powerful tool. But a well-taken JPG can be good enough to sell large prints, publish in national magazines, and anyone viewing the print wouldn't be able to tell if it was a JPG or RAW when shot. So it does come down to personal preference. Neither method is 'wrong' or 'right' - just different ways to shoot that each have their own advantages and disadvantages. Like everything else in the world - there's compromise no matter which way you go - so as long as you're happy and enjoying yourself, you're doing the right thing.

GrillMouster
04-22-2011, 12:47 PM
IMO shooting RAW plus jpeg is redundant, wastes memory card space and takes more time to write to the card. It's like wearing socks with sandals.. commit to one or the other. You're shooting RAW to process them into jpegs yourself. If you're worried about how they'll look, most RAW processing software does have presets to make getting started easier.

I respect others' choices, but personally, my reasons for shooting RAW rather than RAW + jpg are the same ones that photo_chick outlined above. For those who want quick & easy jpgs for posting to FB, etc., the camera manufacturer's proprietary RAW processing software can quickly spit out jpgs that are identical to what would have come out of the camera. You don't have to make any adjustments at all, just "Select All", then "Export jpg", and you have all the jpgs for immediate upload without having wasted space on the memory card.

Alternately, some cameras allow you to create jpgs from RAW files in-camera. This way, rather than having duplicate jpgs of all your RAW files, you can go through the image and select the few images you want in jpg for immediate posting to FB (or wherever).

Pea-n-Me
04-22-2011, 03:28 PM
Welcome, Pea! I reached that conclusion many years ago, and other than for my professional or hired shoots where I shoot RAW for safety (it's the client's shoot, not mine, so I can't risk a screw up) I stick with JPG exclusively and mighty happily. I work very diligently to get my cameras set up to deliver just the output I like (tune your JPGs for contrast, color, saturation, and sharpness that suits you), pay close attention to white balance, and take the extra concentration needed to nail exposures at the shot, so what I get out of the camera is exactly what I wanted to get with no processing needed. When it comes down to it, I'm just not having a whole lot of fun processing photos, and having an absolute ball taking photos...so I spend more time doing what I love, and less time doing what I don't. I even tried all of the 'batch processing' RAW solutions that would supposedly make RAW processing take no more time than JPG - but it didn't - just the load times, the batch-running times, the backlog of photos would start to build like you mentioned. For me, nothing is as pleasureful as taking hundreds or thousands of photos, getting home, plugging in the card for about 2 minutes and loading all photos to my computer...and start the slideshow. That's it - nothing more needed - photos are ready to go. And as long as you make the effort to pre-tune the camera and get the exposures right, nothing needs correction or alteration.

RAW definitely gives both more latitude to correct, and also can pull ultimately more of nearly any parameter out of a file - it has that much more information for color, and full control over how it is displayed, how noise is removed, how sharpening is applied, etc. So beyond question, it's the more powerful tool. But a well-taken JPG can be good enough to sell large prints, publish in national magazines, and anyone viewing the print wouldn't be able to tell if it was a JPG or RAW when shot. So it does come down to personal preference. Neither method is 'wrong' or 'right' - just different ways to shoot that each have their own advantages and disadvantages. Like everything else in the world - there's compromise no matter which way you go - so as long as you're happy and enjoying yourself, you're doing the right thing.
Thanks for confirming I'm not completely off base!

denise
04-22-2011, 04:42 PM
wow I have so much to think about now.
I really enjoy learning the post processing techniques in PS and LR. I probably spend too much time goofing off on this but it's fun.

I downloaded the Nikon ViewNX2 software to my netbook so we can view the photos. I have an external backup and will take that too. I'm covered on backup each night. Thanks for the suggestions everyone.

I am thinking I should go to Costco and buy an couple more 8GB cards. They have a 2 pak for around $49 I think..not sure of the price. They usually have a coupon for $10 off but not now...darn.
I just don't want to run out of cards. I have 4 of the 8GB and 4 of the 2gb, I think. Plus I have to remember my DD will be shooting with my old Nikon and she may need cards....:rolleyes1
It's not like our cruise is going anywhere that wouldn't have cards, it's the Repo from LA to Vancouver, I just want to be prepared.

Again thanks for all the input...I appreciate everyone's thoughts and ideas.
denise

ukcatfan
04-22-2011, 06:50 PM
I have to disagree here. I always do RAW plus JPG because then I instantly have a file I can give to the DW so that she can share on FB. When she has to wait for me to post process, she is not a happy camper! :scared1:

Does it slow you down when taking pictures?
I see your point too....
but what settings would you use for the JPEG?

It is not any slower, but I get about one less shot in my burst. If that is going to be important, I switch to just RAW.

manning
04-23-2011, 12:58 PM
Here's some interesting views

http://www.tlc-systems.com/artzen2-0123.htm

http://www.dailyphotographytips.net/comparison/raw-vs-jpeg-picture-format/

There isn't any right answer.