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Old Apr 3, 2004, 9:14 PM   #1
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Default Shooting in Raw ..... Part II

About a week ago, I asked for opinions concerning shooting in Raw and I appreciate the feedback. Since then, I 've been doing a good bit more independent research to build on. The problem I'm running into is, the more I read, the more questions lead into additional questions.

I've noticed that most who shoot in raw recomend that you turn off sharpening in your camera. I haven't tried it yet, but I understand the reason behind it. The problem I have is my camera has an image optimization menu where I can select from normal, vivid, landscape, etc (They're builtin routines to auto adjust sharpen, hue, saturation, etc ... ). Mine is currently on normal. To actually turn off in camera sharpening, I have to choose the cutom option, where upon I can adjust sharpening, Tone compensation., color mode,saturation, and hue adjustment. Can I safely leave all but shapening on either auto or normal or is is recomended that I set these values to things like moderate?

Now another thing I'm confused about is I read that raw is just that .... raw ... no in camera processing. Is this really true though? When I look at my raw picture in Capture, they look pretty descent without adjustments. If I loot at the camera information, I see things such as White Balance: auto, Sharpening: auto, Saturation:Normal, etc. So what exactly is happening here and should I care if I'm going to be processing the pictures anyway?

Lastly, for awhile anyway , is leaving White Balance in auto ok as well since I can change the white balance in capture?

Thanks for your help.
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Old Apr 3, 2004, 10:28 PM   #2
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I'm not familiar with your camera, but RAW images are not affected by the camera's settings so when it says normal, I would suspect that the camera is not doing any adjustments to the image. I keep my WB set to auto and don't bother changing it. To my knowledge, it doesn't matter. My adjustments when exposing my RAW data set the white point, tweak the exposure, and may make some minor color corrections for saturation depending on the image. I normally do not sharpen my images until the last step in Photoshop. I tend to sharpen a bit heavier for .jpg files headed for the web than I do for TIFF files for printing.

Experiment with your settings of your camera to see if they do make any difference in the RAW image. Pick a subject that shows high contrast and rich colors.
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Old Apr 4, 2004, 10:25 AM   #3
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Henry, No matter what the subject I allways come away with a little more knowledge from your posts... Thankyou
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Old Apr 4, 2004, 10:45 AM   #4
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Yes, Thank you very much Henry. It's great how we all have our own contirbutions .... some just more than others due to experience

I don't know why I didn't think to change my settings while in raw and compare identical shots for color variations, etc. Slowly but surely I'm getting this all worked out
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Old Apr 4, 2004, 10:53 AM   #5
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OK Dale ... flattery will get you everywhere! LOL

I could say the same thing about your images you post!

MDParker: One of the best things about digital is that it doesn't cost us any more to experiment with things we might not have tried with film. I continue to learn DAILY whenever I process RAW images or work with Photoshop. There is just SO much in Photoshop and digital image enhancement in general that it is sometimes overwhelming. There are a number of very good Photoshop users right here in Steve's, perhaps not as many that shoot in RAW though. RAW is a wonderful way to shoot your film and once you get by the fear of it and learn the basics, you can understand why many people prefer to shoot in nothing but RAW. The biggest complaint I've seen against shooting in RAW is processing time, but to tell you the truth, after doing a few batches the time becomes negligent. Keep playing with it and keep learning!
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Old Apr 4, 2004, 2:55 PM   #6
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When shooting raw (NEF in your case) the camera will record the settings it used to capture that image onto the raw file. And once you convert it to a viewable version, Capture uses those settings in order to create the image. But those settings aren't etched in stone, so to speak, compared to jpg's and tif's. With NEF or other raw files you can change those settings after the fact. So you CAN shoot with sharpness set to high or no sharpening at all, when you open the NEF in Capture you can change it back to whatever settings you prefer. That applies to white balance as well, but not to exposure. Capture can recover highlight details up to a point, imo 1/3 stop, before highlights start getting grayish. So try to get the exposure as accurate as possible when taking the picture, and if you can, the white balance too. It's just less work for you later, and should shave off some time off converting NEF's. For example, had I gotten the white balance exactly right in my last photoshoot I wouldn't be telling Capture to calculate white balance automatically (which adds time in processing), instead leaving it unchanged. Would've saved me a few minutes at work converting 50+ NEF's.
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