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Old Oct 9, 2008, 12:20 PM   #1
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Hi folks -- I have never been able to make sense of the silkypix software that was included with my K100D. If anyone has any tips on using it, I'd appreciate that. But my main question is this: Virtually of the raw conversions I do are with the version of ACR that is included with PSE6. I realize it's not a full powered version of ACR, but surely it can do the basics. One thing I have never been able to figure out is how to convert more than one pic at a time. If I shoot 40 or 50 pictures, it takes forever to convert them one at a time. There must be a way to convert all pics at once, but I don't know how to do that. I'm not a newbie with digital photography, but raw conversions have never clicked with me, and I know that I have to get more comfortable with raw in order to continue advancing.

You have all been very helpful to me in the past, and I thank youin advance for your help.
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Old Oct 9, 2008, 2:34 PM   #2
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Maybe this isn't the answer you are looking for, but here are my two cents:

For me RAWs are like negatives. I never copied a negative if it wasn't a good one. I see little point in converting a picture if it isn't the best in a series which is worth showing to others. So rather than tomass convert, I pick a few, adjust them as well as I can (still have a long way to go there) and convert one by one. The rest of the RAWs I either throw in the bin because they are lousy or save for future just in case...

Kjell
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Old Oct 9, 2008, 3:14 PM   #3
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I don't think there's a way to do a batch conversion in ACR - at least there didn't seem to be a way of doing it in the version that works with CS2. I know what you mean about PhotoLab - it isn't the easiest software to use, but it does have the capability of converting more than one picture at a time.

I use Lightroom and find it fits my needs very well. It will show thumbnails of all of your pictures, you can either change them individually or in batches and then you can export the changes to tiff or jpg files which ones you want. Makes sorting really easy and I like the adjustment tools.
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Old Oct 10, 2008, 7:02 AM   #4
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Thanks very much for those replies. It helps to know that I wasn't missing something obvious. Kjell, i agree it's only worth converting the best shots, but my computer cannot even display a thumbnail of a raw file. The only way I can tell if any shot is a keeper is to do the conversion, one picture at a time. Most of my photo work I do on a Toshiba Sattellite laptop running Windows XP, but my Dell Dimension 8200, running XP is also unable to display thumbnail images without doing the conversion.

Is there some bit of software I need to download in order to view a raw file? That would be a huge help, as I would only need to convert my few good shots.

Thanks again Kjell and Harriett. This really is a great forum, with some of the friendliest people on the Internet.
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Old Oct 10, 2008, 7:15 AM   #5
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As for PPL (Pentax Photo Lab) - you can set an option so that the RAW conversion isn't done when you adjusted the pic, but you can queue these corrections up and apply all the different settings to - lets say 20 RAW files - each with different histogram works and stuff. Then you start the conversion and PPL will batch-process the queue and convert all the pics in one run.

However I don't think this is what you want. I bet you are after a fully automatic processing. Now while I agree with Kjell there are some situations where I need a automatic batch convert. Imagine a meeting with family/friends. People in general want lots of pics and quality is not that important. Don't get me wrong - the images should look ok/good/nice, but the last expert tweaks aren't necessary at all.

After some research I am now testing QImage for this. The studio edition has a batch RAW convert function, that works identically to the batch printing. Automatic postprocessing by QImage so far was quite ok, images are well adjusted. It's a painless and fast process to chooses which RAW images to convert, set the output size and quality/postprocessing parameter, hit the button and that's it. You CAN tweak settings per image before the run, but even without that the tool does a good job to produce a decent and nice looking image. Price is reasonable if you take into account, that you also get a good printing tool.

Another choice is DxO, but they only support a limited number of Pentax lenses, so you aren't using it's full potential in most cases.


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Th.
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Old Oct 10, 2008, 10:27 AM   #6
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And with your camera you should have gotten the Pentax Photo Browser, which for sure can show the unconverted RAW files. I never use it myself (I use Adobe Bridge or Lightroom) but it's there and it's already been paid for.

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Old Oct 10, 2008, 11:06 AM   #7
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You're righk Kjell, I had completely forgotten about Pentax Photo Browser. I'm so used to viewing pics with Windows Explorer, I completely forgot about that. I'll have toset that as my default viewer. And maybe, someday, I'll make the jump to a program like Lightroom. Thanks again everyone.
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Old Oct 10, 2008, 1:26 PM   #8
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Lightroom becomes more affordable if you have a connection with a school (student in the family, staff, etc.). Adobe offers good academic pricing - $99 for Lightroom vs. $199 list price originally, and I think that the new version is the same price. I've been reading up on Lightroom 2 and now am seriously thinking of upgrading, sometime when I can get some extra funds (or Christmas?).
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Old Oct 10, 2008, 7:56 PM   #9
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mtnman wrote:
Quote:
Is there some bit of software I need to download in order to view a raw file? That would be a huge help, as I would only need to convert my few good shots.
I use Picasa for all my photo downloading and as my library software. It displays Pentax RAW images from any camera and, IMO, simplifies many tasks such as emailing and uploading images to the internet.

I do not use Picasa for editing as it is pretty limited in that regard. I am using Lightroom for the little RAW shooting I do and Paint Shop Pro for post processing most of the time.

My workflow is to download the photos from the card into Picasa. I do the culling there and then either develop (for RAW) in lightroom and/or post process in PSP X2 as needed.

Tim
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Old Oct 10, 2008, 8:28 PM   #10
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I have been using a small utility which extracts low quality jpegs (at full dimensions) from the raw file and inserts them into a jpeg subfolder. It is called PEF2jpeg. I don't have the link handy, but you should be able to google it. It is actually quicker than to view thumbnails from the raw using Irfanview. (another viewer/raw converter/editor)

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