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Jamie_B

Raw vs jpeg

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I had always heard that raw provided the best quality because the images were not compressed, but the pics I have been taking in raw dont look as good as the jpeg images.

Am I missing something here?

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ok i was wrong in what i had heard.


[url="http://digital-photography-school.com/blog/raw-vs-jpeg/"]http://digital-photography-school.com/blog/raw-vs-jpeg/[/url]

[quote]A Raw file is…
• not an image file per se (it will require special software to view, though this software is easy to get).
• typically a proprietary format (with the exception of Adobe’s DNG format that isn’t widely used yet).
• at least 8 bits per color - red, green, and blue (12-bits per X,Y location), though most DSLRs record 12-bit color (36-bits per location).
• uncompressed (an 8 megapixel camera will produce a 8 MB Raw file).
• the complete (lossless) data from the camera’s sensor.
• higher in dynamic range (ability to display highlights and shadows).
• lower in contrast (flatter, washed out looking).
• not as sharp.
• not suitable for printing directly from the camera or without post processing.
• read only (all changes are saved in an XMP “sidecar” file or to a JPEG or other image format).
• sometimes admissable in a court as evidence (as opposed to a changeable image format).
• waiting to be processed by your computer.


In comparison a JPEG is…
• a standard format readable by any image program on the market or available open source.
• exactly 8-bits per color (12-bits per location).
• compressed (by looking for redundancy in the data like a ZIP file or stripping out what human can’t perceive like a MP3).
• fairly small in file size (an 8 megapixel camera will produce JPEG between 1 and 3 MB’s in size).
• lower in dynamic range.
• higher in contrast.
• sharper.
• immediately suitable for printing, sharing, or posting on the Web.
• not in need of correction most of the time (75% in my experience).
• able to be manipulated, though not without losing data each time an edit is made - even if it’s just to rotate the image (the opposite of lossless).
• processed by your camera.[/quote]

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Raw provides the best ability to process the image in something like Adobe Lightroom. It's highly recommended if you shoot professionally or want to shop your stuff a bit.

Personally I use JPG just because it's easier for me to share pics without having to import and convert and and and.

Lightroom is fantastic though, but if you've got great chop skills, then you can do pretty much the same with a JPG in Photoshop, imho.
VB

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[quote name='VonBlade' post='692316' date='Aug 28 2008, 12:11 PM']Raw provides the best ability to process the image in something like Adobe Lightroom. It's highly recommended if you shoot professionally or want to shop your stuff a bit.

Personally I use JPG just because it's easier for me to share pics without having to import and convert and and and.

Lightroom is fantastic though, but if you've got great chop skills, then you can do pretty much the same with a JPG in Photoshop, imho.
VB[/quote]


what does lightroom offer that i cant do with photoshop?

ive never used lightroom, i have used photoshop.

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It looks like you've answered most of your own questions.

Raw just allows manipulation of the image more than jpg does... raw your actually dealing with data files that haven't been "meshed" together yet into a single image yet. Jpg obviously is a single picture image. jpg has the compression so in the end you lose some quality (but to almost anybody looking wouldn't be able to tell it) but you get significantly more images on a memory card. You could easily (I know I have with my Canons') take a jpg you've shot at its highest resolution and blow it up into a 20x30 or larger (poster size) to print and still have no problem with pixelation. I routinely print 11x14's of my boys' baseball pictures (the action shots) and they look nice and crisp. I'd think Nikon / Canon would be similar in that manner.

Raw will absolutely eat the hell out of your memory and. Unless you intend to do a bunch, and I do mean a bunch, of editing after the fact it probably isn't worth your time / trouble / storage space to shoot in RAW. I have a friend that shoots weddings 2-3 times a month (not his day job) and he does a really good job - but he shoots in jpg as well. Just doesn't see the value in shooting the RAW format.

I know the Canon's can - shoot for awhile in both (it'll take a jpg and a raw image of the same picture) and you'll actually be downloading 3 files for each image (1 jpg, 2 for the raw format) and you can see if you end up working the raw at all.

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I reset the camera to raw+jepg and have 400+ shots that I can take (i have a 8gb memory card) so memory isnt the issue.

To my eye the jpegs look better, the raw images seem to lose some quality when bringing them into photoshop.

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Lightroom does what it says on the tin really. It's a digital lightroom. What you can do in Photoshop is adjust the curves and levels and all that jazz.

Lightroom allows you to adjust exposures and a myriad more things than Photoshop. It's quite cool to play with and you can get some mad effects. Because the data isn't really attached to an image as such. It's hard to explain. There is a good thing on the Adobe website, or download a *cough* trial of it and have a play. You'll be pleasantly surprised.

Although of course, if you're happy with what PS does, then stick with that.

[url="http://www.photoshopsupport.com/lightroom/tutorials.html"]http://www.photoshopsupport.com/lightroom/tutorials.html[/url]

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lightroom allows you to correct the mistakes you made when taking the photo. photoshop allows you to cover them up.

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