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Old Feb 21, 2007, 11:59 AM   #1
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I had a little too much time on my hands 2 days ago and decided to compare different RAW converters.I just post the images here, Please come to your own conclusions.

The original image was taken in DNG with K10D and Sigma 15mm EX f2.8 at F4 and 1/60 sec, ISO 100, Auto WB, no flash, -0.5 exp. comp. I picked this file mainly because of the color red. I did convert all files individually, and tried to apply about the same amount of sharpening during conversion.WB was left on whatever the converter suggested or as shot from camera.

Iused Stopek's RAW importer (Free ware), Fastone Image Viewer (Freeware), SilkyPix 2 (Free Version), SilkyPix 3 (Trial version), Pentax Photo Lab 3 and the New Adobe Lightroom (Trial version).

Not included: Rawshooter as this won't work on my PC even with the modded exe file and Picasa (forgot it was available).

A few things I noticed: Faststone and Stopek willmess upsome EXIF camera data. Stopek's converter also loses time and date info of the image.

Part 1





















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Old Feb 21, 2007, 12:02 PM   #2
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Part 2

















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Old Feb 21, 2007, 12:04 PM   #3
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Part 3


















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Old Feb 21, 2007, 12:08 PM   #4
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Part 4 Images resized to 25%



















Hope somebody will find this useful :-)
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Old Feb 21, 2007, 2:30 PM   #5
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Hogrider,

Did YOU find the experiment useful? Did you draw any conclusions from it? I can see some differences in some of your examples, but they seem fairly small.

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Old Feb 21, 2007, 2:43 PM   #6
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I thought the same thing - the differences are small. I can't post a lot of images in this thread for all the examples, but I noticed thatonce an image was resized in PSP and I used USM once, there weren't any noticable differences anymore - maybe personal preferences.

I think the only difference are in the 100% crops.

My personal fav is probably still SilkyPix as I think it had the nicest colors.
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Old Feb 21, 2007, 4:51 PM   #7
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HogRider wrote:
Quote:
I thought the same thing - the differences are small. I can't post a lot of images in this thread for all the examples, but I noticed thatonce an image was resized in PSP and I used USM once, there weren't any noticable differences anymore - maybe personal preferences.

I think the only difference are in the 100% crops.

My personal fav is probably still SilkyPix as I think it had the nicest colors.
I agree - differences are indeed small, which probably is a good thing.

I went through a phase not long ago trying to find "THE" raw program, and many (many) dollars later, discovered that most all of them are pretty capable, and have their strengths and weaknesses. I have RawShooter Premium, Bibble Light, Silkypix (free and not so free), Lightroom, and the Pentax Lab (which is the Silkypix engine).

After spending lots of time with them all, in my mind, the cream has risen to the top, and that is Silkypix Developer (the not so free one). It is very much like the K10D for me - the more I use it, the more surprised and pleased I am with its capabilities, features, and it surprises me constantly with well-thought out features.It is truly a powerful program, from browsing, batch renaming and deletion, LOTS of tweaking capabilities, full customization, and it is stable, stable, stable. Have yet to have it crash or freeze, unlike every other program. The more I use it, the more I am blown away by what it can do. With my K10D raw images, several of the other programs read the raw files and displayed them with a very narrow barcode-like band on the right side. This can be cropped off, but it never has happened with Silkypix.

Between Silkypix and Photomatix Pro, I do 98% of my PP work. I used to do a lot of the multiple exposure HDR with Photomatix, but I like how it handles one exposure as an HDR, then tone-mapped. Much more realistic, without the cartoonish qualities sometimes apparent in HDR. Evidently, version 2.4 due out this week or next will be able to handle Pentax PEF. Now I convert my PEF's to DNG with Adobe DNG converter, new 3.7 version.

Thanks for the work put into thisraw comparison exercise. I know it takes a lot of work, but I also know it is fun also, or you wouldn't be doing, now would you?
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Old Feb 21, 2007, 11:53 PM   #8
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It does seem like there is little difference, even looking at the 100% crops. I'm very mildly not crazy about the Stopek at 100%, and think that the Lightroom version looks the less "processed" or maybe "natural" would be a better term. That might or might not be a good thing, would depend. There's so little difference between Silkypix and PhotoLab, I can't tell. What your pictures tell me is to use whichever you happen to like/prefer - it doesn't look like it makes much difference.
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Old Feb 22, 2007, 4:02 AM   #9
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I'd say the best ones appear to be the two Silkypix programs and the Pentax, all performing about the same. I'm basing this mostly be looking at how clean the edges are as I don't see much else that I'd consider a real quality difference.
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Old Feb 22, 2007, 4:14 AM   #10
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Like you said HogRider

My K10D constantly amazes me.... often when I think no chance this is going to work... but its digital so why not?

Now you have me curious to do more RAW and play around with Pentax Lab.

Nice to have somethng decent come with a camera... vs the usual semi useless stuff, most do.
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