I recently bought my first digital SLR, the E-500. I'm interested in trying some photo editing, and perhaps experimenting with RAW (versus JPEG, what I have been using so far). My impression is that if I don't want to spend the $600 or whatever it is for Photoshop, I should maybe be getting Adobe Photoshop Elements 5.0 or Corel Paintshop Pro Photo XI.
So I have two questions:
1. Do either, or both of these accomodate Olympus RAW files?
2. Any opinions on one versus the other? My impression from what I have read so far is that Paintshop may have a bit more processing power, but might be slow or crash. Elements might be better for organizing and browsing. Just my impression from reading things on the web.
Thanks in advance for any help - it will be greatly appreciated.
Welcome to the bewildering world of RAW converters. Yes, any third-partyprogramfor RAW conversions will work with Olympus RAW files. The two you mentioned are good programs, but all RAW converters have differences in terms of workflow, so it's a good idea to "play the field" before settling on one type converter, and most offer free trials you can download for a few days to see what you do and don't like.
I use Capture One LE by Phase One. I also have Photoshop CS2 and it's Camera RAW converterand, obviously, the Olympus software that came with my cameras, so I have 3 different converters to choose from, but I am more comfortable with, and get better results with Capture One LE.
This question is asked alot in other Olympus forums like the one on DPReview and at myfourthirds.com. Go to those forums and do a search to find some of the discussions regarding RAW capture and converting.
One last thing you need to know, as you buy new cameras in the future, software makers have to create new script to work with those new cameras' RAW files. Remember that after you buy whatever programyou decide on. New cameras require currentprograms to be updated for thosefuture cameras.