Open / Edit / Save, maybe not Save Question

Discussion in 'Digital Discussion & Q&A' started by nhsmitty, Feb 16, 2008.

  1. nhsmitty

    nhsmitty TPF Noob!

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    1. My understanding is.... If I open a photo file for editing and Save then I have made changes to the original and also degraded the file a bit.. Makes sense to me.

    2. If I edit and Save As to a new file then I have maintained the original file quailty and now have a new edited (but degraded) version of the original..

    Now, if I open a file into processing software and play around with it BUT do not save any changes, have I degraded the original file? I tend to open various photos constantly to experiment with software but never save changes. Am I damaging my originals by constantly opening them for experimatation? Seems # 2 above would apply.

    Just want to make sure I'm thinking correctly.
     
  2. The_Traveler

    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent Supporting Member

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    If you do all this with a JPG, you are degrading the file every time you save because the file is uncompressed to open and then re-compressed when saved. (If you exit without saving, you are not degrading). This degradation is because this is a lossy compression and you may/probably/do compress and lose different bits every time you go through the cycle.

    If you do your editing on a lossless format (PSD or TIFF) the number of open/save cycles is irrelevant. (another arguement for large hard drives and shooting raw)
     
  3. nhsmitty

    nhsmitty TPF Noob!

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    Yes, they are JPG.

    Thanks.
     
  4. lifeafter2am

    lifeafter2am TPF Noob!

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    Why not just save them as psd's or tiff's when editing them? Then you can convert them to jpg when you are done.
     
  5. The_Traveler

    The_Traveler Completely Counter-dependent Supporting Member

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    So when you edit, save a PSD or tiff until you are finished editing, then save for good as a low compression jpg
     
  6. bhop

    bhop No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Your original file won't be harmed unless you save over it. Opening it up and "playing around with it" will have no effect... (unless you save over it)
     
  7. nhsmitty

    nhsmitty TPF Noob!

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    Well, you guys took me a step further than I was concerned with but I'll keep in mind to save as PSD or TIFF until editing is complete. Good advice... Haven't thought that far ahead


    So far I haven't stopped in the middle of editing and saved to go back to it. I either saved as a new JPG (finished) or just tossed the edit out the door.
     
  8. ann

    ann No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    why not make a copy of the file, close the orginal, then do what ever you wish with the copy. If you decide you don't like the changes nothing is lost you can just go back to the orginal, make another copy and move into some other direction.
     
  9. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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