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Old May 22, 2010, 12:14 AM   #11
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You don't NEED to adjust exposure and WB in RAW - most of the raw developing programs use the camera settings as default. There is the ABILITY to make corrections prior to conversion to jpeg or tiff, or whatever. Making the adjustments in raw, means you are working with a 12-or 14-bit file, and have more leeway to do corrections than with 8-bit jpeg. Most of the raw developers also allow finer detail in the final result than the camera jpeg processor.

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Old May 22, 2010, 1:58 AM   #12
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This is a hugely debated subject and one that has many differing views. I shoot all my sports work in jpg, for both duration and editing issues. Using 10fps fills a buffer pretty quickly.

For weddings and portraits I still do 90% in jpg and some key shots in RAW+jpg for protection, however I've only ever needed to use 2 or 3 RAW shots as I can still colour correct a jpg file and these were just where I wanted to pull highlights back a bit more for a slightly blown wedding dress.

There have been some cameras where shooting jpg would give pretty poor quality, I think it was possibly the Pentax K10 but can't be sure so with that RAW was the only real way to go.
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Old May 22, 2010, 3:32 AM   #13
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Thanks everybody for your share of the conundrum

I've been searching like a mad man on the webs also, and its like you guys say that one would probably be better of using RAW when you know it will be a difficult shot to pull of, to help process it into what really was there
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Old May 22, 2010, 5:41 AM   #14
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I guess, it is a great tool for professionals and veeeery veeeery sirius amateurs...
I believe, that an amateur would never be left without a good photograph, whenever he decides to take a picture. One way or the other, he would have a decent, if not perfect, result! (unless he runs out of battery!)

Last edited by kibaris; May 22, 2010 at 5:44 AM.
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Old May 22, 2010, 5:50 PM   #15
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Maybe somebody already said this, but here goes: a RAW file is like an exposed frame of film. It hasn't been 'developed' yet. Every digital camera builds that RAW data, which is then quickly developed by a tiny on-board computer according to the camera settings, and rendered as a JPEG. (A rough JPEG is stored as a thumbnail within a RAW file.) The developed / rendered JPEG may be quite fine, or it may be just acceptable, or it may be unfixable crap.

Shooting RAW, you can make more subtle and better fixes without degrading image quality. I find that both manual and automatic lenses sometimes give odd metering, not-so-great exposures. If I shot only JPEG, those shots would be wasted, or at least I wouldn't want anyone to see them. Yes, RAW processing takes time; so I just work more slowly, more thoughtfully. If I know that each shot will occupy several minutes of my time in PP, I'm more careful about what I shoot.
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Old May 23, 2010, 8:53 AM   #16
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Question about "when" has two answers.

1) Whenever you have time to learn a new program/technique. That will get you ready to use RAW if/when you feel the need and give you a fair idea of how much of an advantage it has for you.

2) When you are uncertain about exposure and/or white balance. When you know you won't have time to get the settings just right. Several folks have had some good comments on that.
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Old May 23, 2010, 3:01 PM   #17
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I like RioRico's well thought out reply a lot.

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Old May 23, 2010, 5:23 PM   #18
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I shoot RAW 99% of the time, I don't find it that much more time consuming than to shoot and edit jpegs. Reason I shoot RAW is choice of how the photo will look. The camera take the settings across to DPP when I upload. I keep the camera on neutral. Once in Dpp I can then choose the kind of picture style and lighting, such as landscape, portrait, faithful, auto white balance, shade etc. once you have shot a jeg, thats it. No ability to really change the settings. In a way shooting RAW is the lazy way as you don't have to think so much about this side of the photo until after you have shot the subject. There is also a plus side to RAW shooting and that is you can take a RAW image and edit it several different ways for a totally different look each time. Jpeg is fine if you know exactly what effect you want from a photo and set the camera up accordingly but shooting RAW gives you much more options.
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Old May 23, 2010, 5:33 PM   #19
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It is a tool, some may need it some may not. So having the option is good. I shoot mostly jpeg. As I really hate editing, I enjoy shooting. So I do not shoot raw often. But if I were to be put into a really really difficult shooting situation. I have shot off a Raw bracket just incase my jpegs were not going to get it right.

So there is really no right answer which is the better format, both formats has their merits.
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