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Raw + Jpeg?

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snowfiend131

New Member
Joined
Nov 15, 2007
Messages
9
Hello everyone,

How do you handle shooting RAW + JPEG? I realize Lightroom lets you choose to treat the files seperately, or ignore jpegs, but I'm not sure how either settting helps me. I would like to shoot raw + jpeg, go thru my pictures looking at the jpegs (since they have my in camera adjustments), keep raw files for my favorites (perhaps in the background), and dump the rest of the raw files and only keep the jpegs. Is there a simple way to do this?

Another side question: To my eyes, jpegs look better in terms of contrast and brightness than raw files, at least at the defaults Lightroom presents raw files with. Does this drive anyone else crazy, and how do you deal with it? Does profiling your camera with a colorchart significantly help this? I realize some of the benefits of raw, but have not been convinced to shoot raw all the time due to the extra time involved to adjust brightness, contrast, saturation, etc for each picture.

Thanks for any info. Great forum.
 
J

JimS

Guest
Hello everyone,

How do you handle shooting RAW + JPEG? I realize Lightroom lets you choose to treat the files seperately, or ignore jpegs, but I'm not sure how either settting helps me. I would like to shoot raw + jpeg, go thru my pictures looking at the jpegs (since they have my in camera adjustments), keep raw files for my favorites (perhaps in the background), and dump the rest of the raw files and only keep the jpegs. Is there a simple way to do this?

Another side question: To my eyes, jpegs look better in terms of contrast and brightness than raw files, at least at the defaults Lightroom presents raw files with. Does this drive anyone else crazy, and how do you deal with it? Does profiling your camera with a colorchart significantly help this? I realize some of the benefits of raw, but have not been convinced to shoot raw all the time due to the extra time involved to adjust brightness, contrast, saturation, etc for each picture.

Thanks for any info. Great forum.

Snowflake

Not sure if this thread will help or not? I found it while scanning the Lightroom General Discussion forum.

http://www.lightroomqueen.com/community/showthread.php?t=396


I shot RAW+Jpeg for a short while then realized I liked the flexibility of RAW. And, I saw no benefit, other than much smaller file sizes (disk space is relatively cheap these days) by having both the RAW & Jpeg files. If I decide to export and print the RAW file, most of the time it's a Jpeg anyway. From a finishing perspective, I personally have experienced much better printing results (shadows, wood grain, etc.) from my RAW files. YMMV.

As for adjusting the RAW (WB, clarity, exposure, HSL, etc.), I have presets set up that provide a good starting point. The more I use presets the more I enjoy using them not only for their ease of use but the benefit of having a much more efficient workflow... if that's important to you? Another idea that other's have recommended is to start with the Auto Adjustment setting as a base then adjust from there.

If I'm in a hurry and the final output is not critical, I'll convert a color photo to B&W using the Greyscale adjustment then make fine-tuning adjustments from there. Most of the time however, I use a modified desaturated B&W preset based on one by Scott Kelby which I obtained from his outstanding Lightroom book. (If you haven't read Scott's book, I highly recommend it. Keep in mind, it's based on LR 1.' but I believe his publisher (not sure about this? I remember getting a free update somewhere?) offered a free pdf download with updated 1.1 information. Not sure if a 1.2 download update has been made available?)

Just some food for thought.

JimS
 
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billg71

Active Member
Joined
Oct 10, 2007
Messages
192
Location
Acworth, GA
Lightroom Experience
Advanced
Lightroom Version
Snowfiend,

First of all, welcome to the Forum! It's always good to see new members, especially when they come on board with questions like yours.

Let me ask you a question: Why would you want to keep the jpegs? Jpegs are like 4x6 prints from CVS, they are what they are and that's all they are. They'll never be any better than they are now, if you reproduce them or change them, they'll get worse.

A raw file is like a negative, properly cared for it doesn't deteriorate and can always be printed at the original quality. As printing technology improves, it provides better prints because all of the information available at the time the photo was created is still there. You've thrown out a lot of data when you converted that sensor information to jpeg and it won't ever come back. Sure, a particular photo may not impress you today but who can say what you'll be looking for ten years from now. Maybe one of your rejects will become a keeper and you'll wish you had the negative to work with instead of a 4x6 drugstore print....

As Jim pointed out, disk storage is cheap. LR makes it so easy to work with raw files I find no reason to keep up with jpegs, I'll create them as needed and then delete them once I've uploaded.

I'm a Nikon shooter and used to shoot JPEG+RAW for the same reasons you do, using Capture NX on the raw files to make them look like the jpegs.. Then I realized that making a high-resolution raw file look like a photo that had been processed with a chip that could fit into a camera body was probably not the smartest thing to be doing with my images.... Check out the Private Links forum on the homepage, there are several sites that will give you LR presets for your camera/settings configuration that will beat the in-camera jpegs for quality hands down.

If you want to get absolutely balls-to-the-wall down to it, buy yourself a Gretag Color Checker, download the Fors ACR calibration script(and read the instructions) and calibrate your own individual camera. That way, you'll know your camera is producing absolutely accurate results for the lighting conditions you calibrated it in. Or you can just eyeball it and play around with the LR settings until you find a combination that looks god to you and reset the Default settings to that.

Hope this helps,
 

snowfiend131

New Member
Joined
Nov 15, 2007
Messages
9
Thanks.

Thanks for the comments.

Ignoring the raw vs jpg debate for the moment, it is possible to make lightroom link the raw and jpg files, but allow some flexiblity with the files as well? I want to link the files, see the jpg by default instead of the raw, to apply keywords and ratings to both files at once, and to individually dump either the raw or jpeg for a photo depending on whether or not I felt I actually needed the raw file for that particular photo. I think the answer is no, Lightroom can't do this, but I would like to make sure.

I ask because I would dump raws and keep jpgs for non-keepers to save file space (files I should just delete, but don't for documentation purposes), and sometimes even for keepers when the jpg provides adequate quality. I realize hard drive space is fairly cheap, so if I can get a raw workflow as easy as a jpg workflow in lightroom, I may decide to shoot raw all the time. I will try playing around with presets a bit more, especially the default settings that come up with raw files, as well as downloading some presets on the web to help get the look I want.

Has anyone actually used a color checker chart to profile your camera, and if so did it help you? It would be nice to hear some experiences prior to dropping $6'+ on a piece of cardboard with colors on it.

I appreciate and understand your comments on the benefits of raw, in particular on files that require drastic corrections in white balance, exposure, shadows, etc. If a lot of corrections are required, I consider that a camera operation screw up, and am thankful if I have the raw file to get a better result. However, I would not go as far as to call jpgs 4x6 drugstore prints, they are not garbage files. A properly exposed jpg, with in-camera white balance, contrast, and saturation set appropriately, can create a jpg file that can be printed into a very pleasing 11x17 print with very little post-processing. I don't particularly like post-processing photos, and one can save a lot of post-processing time by trying to make the image good in-camera.
 

rcannonp

Active Member
Joined
Oct 21, 2007
Messages
467
Location
Atlanta, GA
snowfiend131;3'49 said:
Has anyone actually used a color checker chart to profile your camera, and if so did it help you? It would be nice to hear some experiences prior to dropping $6'+ on a piece of cardboard with colors on it.

I tried running a calibration script on files from my 2'D, and I wasn't really happy with the results. The contrast was flat and the colors oversaturated. I get better results by setting things manually.
 
I

itreeye

Guest
Lightroom presets for RAW importing

Check out the Private Links forum on the homepage, there are several sites that will give you LR presets for your camera/settings configuration that will beat the in-camera jpegs for quality hands down.
,

Hi there,
I totally agree with your reply to that fellow and appreciate this as it has helped me resolve the decision. Still, I am having trouble accepting my RAW images compared to the ones processed in-camera, and find it too time consuming to get my RAW ones looking as good (usually better, granted) I would really appreciate the presets you've mentioned above. I've found the WOW ones and think this is great, but not enough. I mean, I haven't been able to find a singe preset that will do what my in-camera chip does to jpg's, but better. Could you point the way?
cheers,
JP
 

billg71

Active Member
Joined
Oct 10, 2007
Messages
192
Location
Acworth, GA
Lightroom Experience
Advanced
Lightroom Version
JP,

If you shoot Nikon, Adobe now has the DNG beta camera calibration profiles that some say comes very close to the classic D2x modes. They also have Neutral, Standard, Portrait, Landscape and Vivid generic profiles. At least that's what loaded on my machine, they may load something different if you shoot Canon. I think they only work with LR2 but I could be wrong.

These are profiles, not Develop presets, and they load into the Camera Calibration panel under the Profile drop-down. I think they're only for LR2. They've been mentioned in the Forum, I'm sure you can dig up a download link. Try them, you might find something you like.

The site I had in mind was the Inside Lightroom page, scroll down and you'll see the Presets link at the bottom. onOne Software gives away the WOW presets, you'll find a link at the bottom of their homepage. They're more for tweaking specific aspects like contrast, tone, and color but some of them are pretty interesting. Google (your camera) Lightroom Presets and you'll find enough presets someone has made for any particular camera to last you a while.

Personally, I don't use any of the Develop presets unless I'm converting to B&W or just playing around. For my workflow, I'll go through a shoot and select the keepers, pull up the first one, make my adjustments in the Develop panel from the top down and then copy the settings. Then I'll look for similar frames(exposure and content), select them all and paste those settings. Then I'll find a frame shot in different conditions and repeat the process. And the next, so on.... Then I'll go look at the individual frames for cropping and fine-tuning.

Once you get familiar with LR, it's really easy to get a rhythm going and pretty soon you're done. Most of the time, I just tweak recovery, fill light, blacks, clarity and vibrance and maybe play with the tone curve if the shot is overly flat or contrasty. Sharpening works well at the default unless I need to add NR, then I'll play with the Detail and Masking sliders.

FWIW, I shoot my cameras at Neutral settings and my RAW files match the jpegs in LR almost spot-on with the default camera profile and develop settings.

Wish I could be of more help,
 
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