Selecting Image Quality

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by BmDubb, Oct 9, 2009.

  1. BmDubb

    BmDubb TPF Noob!

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    Ok. So for the past 2 weeks, Ive been doing nothing but researching, reading, and watching tutorials for the Nikon D80 ( Which will be here tomorrow!!:D )

    The only thing Im having a problem figuring out is what Image Quality to shoot in. Here are my options ( forgive me if this is a dumb question )

    NEF ( RAW )
    JPEG FINE
    JPEG NORMAL
    JPEG BASIC
    NEF ( RAW ) + Jpeg Fine
    NEF ( RAW ) + Jpeg Normal
    NEF ( Raw ) + Jpeg Basic

    Im obviously wanting the best quality for my photos... But also want ease of uploading and editing photos... ( And I hear RAW can be a little tricky at first )... So would Jpeg Fine be the next best?
     
  2. Canosonic

    Canosonic TPF Noob!

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    RAW is a negative that gives a great freedom on editing your photos. But they take up a great size. I had examples appr. 30 MB. You have to have good software and lots of memory in order to get the full potential of this format.
    Forget about JPG Normal or basic. Use this only when your memory is tight. Use JPG fine for normal day pics.
    The other three make two photos, one RAW, one JPG normal/fine/basic accordingly.
    Use this when your not sure will you edit it or not (as far as I understand).
    Hope I helped.
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2009
  3. BmDubb

    BmDubb TPF Noob!

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    Definitely helpful. Thank you so much. I will be using Jpeg fine to start out.. untill I get more comfortable with this process.
     
  4. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I'd suggest starting with RAW. Sure, there is a steeper learning curve but since you are just getting your camera, you may as well start out right...rather than having to backtrack later.

    Besides, you can always get a JPEG file from a RAW file...but not the other way around.

    http://www.ronbigelow.com/articles/raw/raw.htm
     
  5. ErectedGryphon

    ErectedGryphon TPF Noob!

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    :thumbup: :thumbup: Big Mike!

    RAW is the best way IMO, but if you don't want to process the images yourself, then JPG will be a necessity.

    If you go RAW+JPG, make sure you have a large card, The RAW so you have all the data for later use (When you get to that level), and JPG so you can share immediately. Always fine when using JPG, you bought a quality camera, use it to its full potential.
     
  6. Dwig

    Dwig TPF Noob!

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    The best quality will come from shooting and learning to process RAW. The next best thing would be to shoot RAW+JPEG(fine).

    You can start out by using the JPEG and just keeping the RAW for the future. After you begin to get the hang of things you can then work with the RAW, using the JPEG as a reference, a sort of "proof print". Later, when you get comfortable with RAW you can simply switch to shooting RAW only to get a bit more space on your cards.

    The "RAW is the negative" concept is good. Think of it this way:

    1. Shooting RAW only is like shooting film and having the lab just return processed negs leaving you to do your own printing.
    2. Shooting RAW-JPEG is like getting both negs and prints from the lab; you can always make your own better prints later when you learn to use a darkroom.
    3. Shooting JPEG only is like getting the negs and prints back from the lab and throwing away the negs and keeping only the prints.
     
  7. IgsEMT

    IgsEMT No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Dear friend,
    My self, I'm a JPGer and most of the time will emphasize jpg over raw only b/c jpg being less forgiving in errors you are more bound to push your self making less mistakes. I also find that I spend 2ce as much time processing raws then jpgs.
    However, after recent conversation with Steve Sint, I'm beginning to shoot RAW + Jpeg Fine. While I'm still in the experimental stage of this shooting style, I'm already wondering if its for me.
    Through time you'll hear different things and different styles. Experiment until you'll fine what suits you best.
    Good Luck
     
  8. Allyn

    Allyn TPF Noob!

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    RAW, absolutely no contest. JPG and other formats absolutely have their uses (compression, printing, the web, easily shared, etc.), but when it comes to looking for the most flexibility and highest end image quality it must be done in RAW.

    Two of the main advantages are: editing in RAW is non-destructive (i.e. the changes can be reversed at any time with no impact on the original image) and RAW files contain more information (higher bit depth).


    Yes, the learning curve for exactly what you need to do with a RAW file is a little steeper, but the end result is more than worth the extra time it will take.
     
  9. mammarazzi

    mammarazzi TPF Noob!

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    I shoot in RAW and Jpeg fine with my D60.
     
  10. abqstyle

    abqstyle TPF Noob!

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    If you want ease of uploading and editing, jpeg fine is what you should use for now. RAW editing, to be done right, is a time consuming process to really master that will require an investment in a decent RAW program to get it right. That may be too much to handle right now. It took me about two years to ease into RAW when I first started shooting digital. There is no rush. You can still do basic edits on your jpegs for now.

    After all, look how long it took Ken Rockwell to get into RAW . . . Yes, I've invoked his name . . . let the catty comments begin . . .
     
  11. Aye-non Oh-non Imus

    Aye-non Oh-non Imus TPF Noob!

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    I started out shooting in JPG only because I didn't understand the benefits of RAW nor did I have software that would handle the files. I shot with my D80 for about a year in JPG and captured some wonderful shots, but needed some tweaking such as white balance....... pretty screwed with adjusting that.

    I got LightRoom and editing is a snap. I don't really understand (now) why people say RAW is any more difficult to edit. Push a few sliders and you're done, well nearly. I keep finding neat stuff LR can do and rarely go into Elements anymore.
     

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