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Old Jul 5, 2005, 9:31 AM   #1
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I have 2 questions regarding editing RAW files:

1. Which software, of the supplied in-the-box software, is best to use?

2. Are you better off purchasingadditional software?

Thanks.
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Old Jul 5, 2005, 10:28 AM   #2
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Don't edit a RAW file consider it to be your base negative.

Of the supplied software you can use Digital Photo Professional to open, adjust and save them to a different format.

None of the supplied Canon software is a real image editor
(Photoshop Elements is quite workable if it comes with the camera, don't remember if it does) I use the full PS CS 2 package for my image editing.

Peter.
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Old Jul 5, 2005, 3:56 PM   #3
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Canon provides two programs for converting and making minor enhancements to RAW images: Zoom browser and Digital Photo Professional. If you have a 300D, you didn't get DPP but you can download it, and it works fine with 300D RAW files.

DPP allows some brightness/contrast adjustment, sharpening, cropping, and image resizing. Your end product can be saved as a TIFF (8 or 16 bit) or JPEG. Depending on your PS or PSE version, you should use either 8 or 16-bit TIFF. Apparently, the DPP software will also save changes to the RAW image--however, I wouldn't recommend it. As the other poster said, this is your original image--your negative, so to speak--and you want to keep it as is. So if you get better RAW image conversion software or learn better techniques later, you can still go back to your original.

Another RAW converter with many, many enhancement features is RAW Shooter Essentials from Pixmantec. This beta version is also free, and many people swear by it. I use it, but when I'm working--gotta get the job done now--I always go back to DPP. It has the best halo-free sharpening I've seen, and the latest version is reasonably fast.

Once you've got your images converted to TIFFs, you can edit with your favorite image editor. Photoshop CS2 is the current king, but it is pretty expensive. A large portion of what you need is in Photoshop Elements 3, which can also serve as a training platform for the big Photoshop program later. There are a few alternatives to PSE. I use Paint Shop Pro 9 (in addition to Photoshop 7), as there are certain things that I can do faster with PSP. JASC, Paint Shop Pro's publisher has recently been acquired by Corel, so its future is uncertain. Corel claims it will maintain and upgrade PSP for the foreseeable future. Some users are not optimistic about that.

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Old Jul 5, 2005, 6:00 PM   #4
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I will recommend Breeze Browser or Capture One for RAW conversion. I use C1 LE and very happy with it. Changes you make to the RAW file don't change your RAW file data and you can undo them anytime.
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Old Jul 7, 2005, 8:20 AM   #5
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Thank you for the information. I guess I'll use DPP to convert the RAW file to a JPG format then use PS Elements as the image editor.
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Old Jul 7, 2005, 11:47 AM   #6
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Convert to either a .psd or a .tif for your working files.
Save it as a jpg for sending to the web :-).

The jpg is a lossey format and loses image information each time it is re-saved.

Peter.
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Old Jul 7, 2005, 2:07 PM   #7
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I usually look at all my files first in "EOS Utility Viewer" because it has a very easy to use exposure compensation slider for RAW images. It works great and is different from just using the brightness in other programs.

Once you go through all of them and set the exposure it remembers where each photo is set and you can convert them all and save them all to another folder at the same time. Like it has been mentioned I always keep the original RAW file in tact.

Then I usually give them a look in DPP and crop because I can do another batch save and once again save them all at the same time. This seems to be faster than cropping and saving them one at a time and you can also select what crop ratio you want. Always say "No" when asked if you want to save changes to your photos in DPP to keep the original in tact.

Once cropped I go to Adobe Photo Elements or Photoshop and edit as needed.

It sounds like a lot of work but when you have a lot of photos at one time it is nice to be able to do the batch saves.
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Old Jul 7, 2005, 4:04 PM   #8
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:!:Kevin, be careful with jpeg files. They are very good to handle because of their compactness, but there are two things you should be aware: (1)it is a compressed file, that means that information already in the RAW file was eliminated to make it compact. After you take the expense of creating a RAW file, it is a waste to discard part of it. (2) jpeg files lose quality after being saved several times. If you will be working with a project that requires time to complete you may need to save it several times. My recommendation is using tiff or PSD (the PhotoShop format). These files will not degrade after several re-save's.
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Old Jul 7, 2005, 8:47 PM   #9
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wburychka -
I've been using DPP for a while. I've just updated to the latest ver. There is no option for sharpening that I can find in this program. Please tell me where to find it.
Thanx,
Ron
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Old Jul 22, 2005, 8:27 AM   #10
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surfnron wrote:
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wburychka -
I've been using DPP for a while. I've just updated to the latest ver. There is no option for sharpening that I can find in this program. Please tell me where to find it.
Thanx,
Ron
I think I answered this in a private message, but for others with the same question, sharpening is in the Convert and Save dialog. Obviously, you don't get the opportunity to preview the sharpening effect. Fortunately it is subtle enough and without side effects (aka halos), that in most cases you can just keep the sharpening slider at max.
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