RAW vs JPEG - Canon 50D

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by jakezori, Mar 5, 2010.

  1. jakezori

    jakezori TPF Noob!

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    So after taking a couple hundred photos with my new 50d (my old camer was a sony A100), I have discovered that I am not that big of a fan of RAW (I had never taken RAW before my 50d). The images seem too starched or dark. After editing I guess they are good, but I don't see why so many people like them over JPEG. In addition, I have also discovered that I can't stand going through my photos when I have both JPEG and RAW. My question is, what should I shoot with and why.. If raw, what is the best/easiest way to edit.
     
  2. Jeremy Z

    Jeremy Z No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The best way is raw, but it is obviously more labor intensive.

    I like jpg well enough, but it burns me up when a shadow area is un-fixably dark and there is no detail in the midtones. You wouldn't notice if you've been shooting digital for a long time. But I had been shooting and developing my own 35mm B&W, and the difference is huge. RAW is easy compared to B&W film.

    iPhoto on Macintosh easily does Canon raw. It is included with a new Mac purchase, and is no more difficult than jpg. The only problem is that it takes up a lot more memory. If you're shooting raw, and don't like sorting through the pix, you can skip the jpg. But I think the idea is that jpg is usually good enough. In those cases, trash the raw images. But when you get one that needs some doctoring, doctor up the raw one and throw out the original jpg. Save a new jpg from the raw.

    Keep in mind that this is how digital photography works. We are really spoiled by it. Not too long ago, if you blew a pic, it was really blown. We could do some stuff, but mostly the quality of the negative determined the quality of the print.

    Another thing you could do is not take so many pictures. Learn from your mistakes and you will have less to filter through later. The problem is that it is so easy to do, we tend to just do it.
     
  3. RobNZ

    RobNZ TPF Noob!

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    If its an important shoot I now shoot RAW only, more work but you also have alot more flexibilty post. So much new information to take in when I went to DSLR but once I got a bit of knowledge like actually learning how to use Digital Photo Professional properly (still learning as the need arises, and probably always will...lol) its a fast and simple process.

    My method, open the folder containing the RAW images in DPP, select all then Tools, then Start Quick Check Tool, I then go through them quickly full screen and mark the ones I think may have potential with a check mark 1.

    Next step, Edit, Select check mark1 images only, then Edit image window button, this will cue them all up, I quite often shoot from the same location with similar lighting so I adjust the first and save recipe, then where possible paste the recipe to each one as I come across them, this gives me a baseline, then just some minor tweaks and then export as tiff for other post if required, I will quite often use DPP for cropping as well.

    Works for me and I can wade through quite a few images fairly quickly, and then spend time on the keepers.
     
  4. jakezori

    jakezori TPF Noob!

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    Thanks guys... I get that I should use RAW (even though I'm not that big of a fan as of yet), but is there any use in using JPEG then besides not having to edit the photo?

    JPEG has been good to me for the past 2 years. Raw seems white washed or something. I can't put my finger on it... What are the supposed benefits of RAW?
     
  5. DRoberts

    DRoberts TPF Noob!

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    If you are out taking everday shots jpeg is fine. It doesn't use as much memory on your card as it is a smaller file, and easy enough to edit the day to day shots. If you are shooting serious shots then RAW is the way to go. It saves more detail of the image, thus making it a much larger file, giving you alot more to work with in your post work.
    Just like everything else the more you use it the more familiar you will become with it and the more you will see the diferences and the advantages.
     
  6. jakezori

    jakezori TPF Noob!

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    Well, I'd like my "everyday shots" to look just as good as my "important shots" though. IDK, after more looking I can see advantages of RAW and JPEG, but I hate go through photos of RAW + JPEG. So I feel I must choose one (I'm not concerned about space. I upload photos to my comp every other day.) Also, I'm still looking for ways to edit RAW to make them more... colorful. No mac programs please. PC only.


    I would love to post a pic of what I mean, but I can't seem to figure out how to upload. What am I missing here. :confused:
     
  7. RobNZ

    RobNZ TPF Noob!

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    You should have a copy of Digital Photo Pro already if you have a 50D?
     
  8. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    Have you tried what Canon's DPP calls "Faithful"? It's not all that faithful, but I think it's a lovely pre-set look and rendering for Canon raw files, at least from the 5D.

    ANd yes, RAW files can look rather flat or dark right out of camera; a lot of how they look depends on the pre-set profile that the particular RAW converter uses when it opens up the RAW data files. The default "look" of one raw converter or another can look dark to the eyes of many people.

    There are a zillion RAW converter applications, but two 3rd party ones might really,really change your mind. The first one is called SilkyPIX, and is created in Japan,and has a unique "verbal" way of describing how to adjust images. The second one is a product named Bibble, from Bibble Labs.com, here in the USA. Neither of these products are mass-market, but each one has some very,very capable software engineering, and some very,very outside the box color and rendering capabilities.

    Both have free downloads available. I would suggest that SilkyPIX is easier to figure out interface-wise. I hate to sound like a stereotyper or some sort of racist or something like that, but Japanese raw developer software engineers have a very NON-western approach to developing raw images,and SilkyPIX for example showed an understanding of one of the worlds most-maligned and most-complex d-slr cameras, the Kodak 14n; until the SIlkyPIX people got their 14n module completed, converting the 14n's massive 14 megapixel, full-frame RAW files was a horrible chore, with the dreaded "Italian flag" color nightmare. The engineers there were able to take a camera with RAW output that was riddled with several color problems,and "tame the savage beast".

    It has recently gone to a version 4.1.30.0 release, and I am still on the 3's with it. A free trial of SilkyPIX Developer Studio can be downloaded here

    Download SILKYPIX Developer Studio 4.1.30.0 Free Trial - Improve your images with this easy-to-use software utility - Softpedia

    and Bibble can be downloaded here: Bibble Labs - Professional Photo Workflow Software
     
  9. DerekSalem

    DerekSalem TPF Noob!

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    The big advantage to RAW is simply that it doesn't store any white balance data with the picture. It's "raw" picture data (hence the name) with virtually no post-processing done in-camera. This means that you can assign your own white-balancing to the picture (where as most of the time when you assign white balance to a picture you're actually trying to edit what's already there by changing color values).

    Yes, it can definitely make pictures look better (color and light wise) but it won't improve the actual quality of the picture. I rarely use RAW, but I find that it's easy enough to change from Jpg to RAW (even easier on the new T2i -- Hit Q, tap down, and scroll the wheel over one slot).
     
  10. Sw1tchFX

    Sw1tchFX TPF Noob!

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    The huge advantage of RAW is that you can adjust color without being destructive.

    You can change your white balance, saturation, high pass, color profile with no reduction in overall image integrity.

    You can also recover highlight and shadow detail much easier.


    And it's not as obvious on the Canons, but on a Nikon, there is MUCH more micro detail in the RAW files than in jpegs.


    With programs such as Adobe Lightroom, unless it's seriously high-volume work (sports), there's no reason you shouldn't shoot RAW, especially if you're up to the level of using a 50D.
     
  11. UUilliam

    UUilliam TPF Noob!

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    I skipped most of this post.

    In your camera you have "picture styles" I.e. Standard, Portrait etc... (not shooting modes.) which you can also customize to do different sharpness, saturation, contrast etc...
    This is only applied to a JPEG image.

    Raw does not have anything applied to it, it is simply "what the camera sees"

    that is why RAW needs to be edited
    Jpeg is good if you learn to use it but RAW is better for imporant shoots where editing is almost necessary i.e. the model is too dark, the sky is too blue or whatever the case may be.
     
  12. Jeremy Z

    Jeremy Z No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I just read through this again. It sounds like the original poster likes jpg, but FEELS like he should like raw, because it is more capable.

    If you like jpg, then stick with it. But keep that little voice in the back of your mind: "When I'm shooting a scene with wide tonal range or I'm not sure about the white balance, I should shoot in RAW + jpg."

    In other words, do what works for you, but keep your options open.
     

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