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Camera Recommendations and Editing Software
Sep 19, 2011 08:37:58   #
Tx Snapper Loc: SC Tx
 
I use and like these Nikon Cameras, D-40 and D-90. I also like the Capture NX2 editing software, and what can’t be done in Capture NX2 I finish off w/ PS Elements 6. I/we choose to record only in .NEF (Raw) and the initial (work flow) in-the-computer viewing is in View NX. We rate and delete from there, edit the worthwhile shots, first for any needed corrections, enhancements, cropping, - convert to either .jpg or .tif for printing or further editing in PSE.

I've noticed that the members of this site tend not to mention software that complements their camera choice recommendations and with Nikon offering their own editing software that does complement their NEF file format, shouldn’t this be part of the scope of concerns expressed along with the recommendations by Digital Nikon owners?

I feel that Modern Nikon owners who don’t also invest in the Capture NX editing software are not getting the full benefits of owning a Nikon DSLR camera. But I have to admit that I have limited info to base this opinion on.

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Sep 20, 2011 06:18:41   #
profpb Loc: Venice, Florida
 
I've been a Nikon user for a long time N6006, D70 and now D7000 and have used Photoshop 7, Elements 8 & 9 and Lightroom 3. I loaded Capture NX2 because it was free with my last camera. I don't use it. I don't know of any advantages over Photoshop.





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Sep 20, 2011 11:25:53   #
Tx Snapper Loc: SC Tx
 
Great Moon! I think the damsel fly could use a little help though.




profpb wrote:
I've been a Nikon user for a long time N6006, D70 and now D7000 and have used Photoshop 7, Elements 8 & 9 and Lightroom 3. I loaded Capture NX2 because it was free with my last camera. I don't use it. I don't know of any advantages over Photoshop.


Not using Capture?

I think that is probably true for most Nikon DSLR owners. They don’t use it and have no experience with it. (The only software that came free with the D-90 last year was View NX2. Capture NX2 was recommended, but not included. I feel it should be included w/camera but they gash you extra for it!) However, I feel it is what separates the Nikons from the rest. It really is one of the best parts of owning the Nikons.

Are you shooting in RAW? (Nikon’s .NEF) What is your processing work flow?

I personally cannot get PS Elements to come close to achieving what I can get Capture to do. But it doesn’t do everything so I have elements too (for cloning and artsy filters, cut and paste, layers, better shape selection tools, etc.). But to perform pure picture enhancement adjustments such as focus sharpening, color control, contrast, crop, etc., it out performs elements. (IMHO)

I have an example of an edit in CNX 2

Camera settings: (Metadata)

Device: Nikon D90
Lens: VR 18-200mm F/3.5-5.6G
Focal Length: 200mm
Focus Mode: Manual
AF-Area Mode: Single
VR: ON

Exposure
Aperture: F/8
Shutter Speed: 1/400s
Exposure Mode: Manual
Exposure Comp.: -0.7EV
Metering: Spot
ISO: 200

Image Settings
White Balance: Direct sunlight, A1, 0

Picture Control
Picture Control: Vivid
Contrast: Active D-Lighting
Brightness: Active D-Lighting


A smaller aperture would have helped with the initial micro focus and greater DOF but it was close enough to make a “Keeper” out of it by applying an Unsharp Mask adjustment to the damsel fly area only, and of course the close-up crop. I really like the ability to apply adjustments to specific area of the original .NEF Raw file picture without layering (although you could go crazy with it in layers) and saving it without losing the original. The color point technology of Capture NX2 is a really neat tool. I think the Nik filters add-on (plug-in?) for PS does the same things.
Before
Before...
After
After...
Another Damsel w/Nikon 70-300mm
Another Damsel w/Nikon 70-300mm...

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Sep 20, 2011 11:51:01   #
Toni's Vision Loc: Quincy, Illinois
 
I just purchased a D7000 on Saturday and it came with View NX2 and not Capture NX2 but I haven't even opened the disc yet. Since it's only View.. is it worth downloading? I currently use Photoshop CS3.
Also.. I have a question. I am just learning how to use Photoshop and have been using the Unsharp Mask adjuster but how do you single out a specific area? As it is now if I use it.. it sharpens the entire photograph.

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Sep 20, 2011 12:22:39   #
Tx Snapper Loc: SC Tx
 
Toni's Vision wrote:
I just purchased a D7000 on Saturday and it came with View NX2 and not Capture NX2 but I haven't even opened the disc yet. Since it's only View.. is it worth downloading? I currently use Photoshop CS3.
Also.. I have a question. I am just learning how to use Photoshop and have been using the Unsharp Mask adjuster but how do you single out a specific area? As it is now if I use it.. it sharpens the entire photograph.


Toni,

I like and use View NX. We shoot exclusively in RAW so it is necessary to use VNX to view our photos. (Also, the initial downloaded views must be in a reduced state of resolution because activating the RAW button can really enhance the photos, although I’ve noticed that the D90 pix do not improve as much as the D40’s) I think VNX can also be used to convert from .NEF to .jpg’s too, but I have not done so since we use CNX2 for that.

The way I use PS Elements to sharpen certain areas of the photos is to create a background copy layer(s) and apply the sharpening to the entire layer, then cut out the unwanted area of adjustment, and stack it on top of the original background. But I prefer to do the initial adjustments in Capture and If I’m happy with them I save that as my “to-print keeper” in either .jpg or .tif. And if I want more, then over to PSE and layer the subsequent adjustments.

I’m still learning too, so any work flow tips by others will be much appreciated. So far, I’m convinced that CNX2 is an integral part of Modern Nikon Digital photography.

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Sep 20, 2011 21:00:10   #
Nikonuser Loc: South Dakota
 
I have a D90 and use Capture NX2 all the time. I also have Photoshop Elements 7. Bought both at the same time and tried both at the same time. Capture NX2 is so much easier to use and much faster than Photoshop. Have not had the time to really do much with Photoshop except panoramas. I believe Photoshop is an excellent editing program, but in my case has a much steeper learning curve compared to CaptureNX2. I work 60 to 70 hours a week so I don't have the time to really learn Photoshop to really compare. Capture NX2 is simple and fantastic for NEF RAW from Nikon. Just my humble opinion.

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Sep 21, 2011 09:40:41   #
profpb Loc: Venice, Florida
 
TX, after seeing your shots of the Damsel fly, I will never post another "bug shot." Yours were great!

And regarding my comment on Nikon software vs Photoshop: Ignore me next time. I meant NXview not Capture--Night and Day.

I am old and have struggled with Photoshop 7, CSx,
PS Elements 8 & 9, and Lightroom3, as well as many other pieces of photo software.

My best advice is ignore my advice. I learned that as a chemistry professor who has taught many students wrong stuff since the early 60s.

And my three wives and five kids agree.

I just can't shut up. O.K. I will for now, but I'll be back.

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Sep 26, 2011 20:16:31   #
dongrant Loc: Earth, I think!
 
Toni's Vision wrote:
I just purchased a D7000 on Saturday and it came with View NX2 and not Capture NX2 but I haven't even opened the disc yet. Since it's only View.. is it worth downloading? I currently use Photoshop CS3.
Also.. I have a question. I am just learning how to use Photoshop and have been using the Unsharp Mask adjuster but how do you single out a specific area? As it is now if I use it.. it sharpens the entire photograph.


Mask will isolate the effect of your chosen tools.

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