Issues with RAW and PS

truephotoga

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I have a Canon T3i and have been shooting in RAW. When I import my images into Photoshop I am noticing the colors and overall exposures are not looking the same as in my cameras screen. I adjust some basic controls and white balance settings in Photoshop's RAW editor, but its still not as good as whats in my cameras screen. I have Photoshop set to sRGB as colorspace and 16 bit. I do have an older PC and monitor so I'm wondering if a new separate graphics card in my PC (with more memory / separate GPU) and or new / better monitor would help with this? Do I need to get a calibration tool and just calibrate my monitor? Another thing I notice is that I can do all my edits in PS and get the photo looking the way I want it on my PC, but if I upload it to an online site like Flickr and view it on my smartphone that has a hi-res screen, the photo looks different then also. Basically I would like what I see in my cameras screen to be what I see on my PC's screen. Should I just go back to shooting JPG? Thanks guys.
 

KmH

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You may find this group of tutorials helpful - Tutorials on Color Management & Printing

The rear LCD of your camera cannot show you the Raw file or it's histogram. It can only show you a JPEG Basic that gets embedded in the Raw file. That JPEG has been edited in the camera based on the defualt or user selected picture control settings in the menus.

The histogram the camera shows you on the rear LCD is also from that JPEG basic. The rear LCD on the camera is a poor tool for accessing image quality, because of it's small size, its use in variable ambient light, and

As far as editing in Photoshop, image editing experts generally recommend using the ProPhoto RGB color space for editing, and then converting to the color space as appropriate for the final usage.

Another variable is the internet browser you use to access the internet. Not all of them are color space/color profile aware.
 

Big Mike

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As Keith said, the image you see on the camera's LCD screen, is just a quick JPEG version of the Raw file. It's not a true representation. Also, that jpeg has been processed according to the in-camera settings (sharpness, contrast, saturation etc.) whereas the Raw file won't have those settings applied. This means that when you open the Raw file in Adobe Camera Raw, it likely won't look like what you're expecting. But this is a good thing because it allows you to choose the processing parameters with much more control.

Another thing to note, is that what you see on the camera's screen, shouldn't be trusted. Firstly, these screens aren't made to be perfectly calibrated (would require a calibration device and software) and they are viewed in very differing lighting situations. If you look at it outdoors in bright light, it will look at lot different than when indoors etc.
One of the first things I teach the students in my DSLR course, is not to trust what they see on the LCD screen. Use the image on the LCD to check for sharpness and use the histogram to check the exposure.

Do I need to get a calibration tool and just calibrate my monitor?
Yes. If you don't calibrate your monitor, then you'll never know if what you're seeing is accurate....and you'll be guessing with all of your image processing & editing.
 

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