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JPEG Vs. RAW
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Jan 10, 2019 12:24:54   #
sbohne
 
Gene51 wrote:
If you found yourself waiting 90 sec for each image to come up you may have been using inadequate software, possibly on a very slow computer. I use Capture One which is quite fast with raw files but I still use Photoshop for finish work.

I don't shoot jpeg simply because I can get to a better result in less time shooting raw.


While it has been a while since I have worked with any RAW files, when I did I had a monster of a computer, with the fastest processor and the RAM was maxed. I had a 20GB scratch drive. While not using Capture One, it was good software. I could get coffee while the file loaded. This complaint was common. Even the early versions of Capture One were relatively slow based on anecdotal evidence...I never used it personally, so I have no actual use to report.

We used multiple bodies. Didn't run into that much of a problem. Now if I was using Canon bodies AND Fuji/Nikon bodies for the same event, I'd expect some variance. However, I had a camera go down and had to rely on a Sigma SD9...no problems. The Sigmas at the time had their own proprietary software...you didn't open a jpg right from camera.

As far as the Creative Director doing edits...nope. In my experience, most of them didn't know their way around a desk, let alone a file.

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Jan 10, 2019 12:38:04   #
f8lee Loc: New Mexico
 
sbohne wrote:
And herein is the very problem I am addressing. You are wrong. You are 100% wrong. Like in absolutely wrong. To wit:
https://www.lifewire.com/jpeg-myths-and-facts-1701548


I dunno - read the piece and you see they state: "Using a JPEG image in a page layout program does not edit the source image so no quality is lost" - so editing will re-invoke the compression algorithm.

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Jan 10, 2019 12:47:08   #
PHRubin Loc: Nashville TN USA
 
Let me add my Welcome To UHH!

So many responses so I'll keep it short. I rarely shoot RAW. For me the real reason to shoot RAW is that it has more dynamic range than jpg. Of course, if you expect the subject has great dynamic range, you can bracket and use HDR software to combine them.

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Jan 10, 2019 12:56:21   #
billbarcus Loc: IPNW
 
You are quite welcome, Sir. Enjoy your new love-affair, whatever mode you choose to use ...

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Jan 10, 2019 13:26:20   #
Retina Loc: Near Charleston,SC
 
billbarcus wrote:
...The Raw thing in my humble opinion is pure, Bunk! Plain and simple...

As a late comer to PP and someone who would rather shoot than compute, I have nearly always worked with jpg. To me it depends on the sort of photography someone does. Where you have some control over the lighting, shooting volume is high, and speed of delivery matters a lot (like with successful and busy studio) SOOC with relatively minor adjusting afterward obviously can make a lot more sense--and dollars. Others may have a different situation such as more time, challenging lighting, and who make a lot fewer exposures, or just need more control. Then RAW can be better. I am just one amateur, but I probably speak for at least a few others who are happy with JPG much of the time but save RAW sometimes for those occasional shots that benefit from more flexibility in processing. In other words, which to use is more of a practical consideration than a dogmatic one.

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Jan 10, 2019 13:42:26   #
jhkfly
 
Interesting topic, helpful replies. I'm a nitpicker--not about photography, still just an amateur after 65 years of picture taking--but about our English language. Misspellings are understandable in the rush to respond, but malapropisms and mangling Latin phrases bug me. So in the spirit of helping...

"ad nosim" not a word: "ad nauseum" (to the point of making me sick) is the proper spelling of the Latin phrase.

"sacreligious" not a word: "sacrilegious" (dishonoring sacred things or customs) is the appropriate spelling.

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Jan 10, 2019 13:59:38   #
KarenKaptures Loc: New Jersey
 
sbohne wrote:
Man, after nearly 20 years I still can't believe there is confusion on this. Here we go:

A RAW file is all the data from the sensor capture. Your RAW files will need post-processing. When you open them as is, they are flat and lifeless. Some people use software that comes with their camera, others use Photoshop or OnOne Software RAW. Yes, the post-processing software normally permits saving to TIFF, jpg, gif, etc.

Ok, here's the whole "lossy" thing: if I were to save a RAW file as a TIFF, and again as a JPG, and I printed a 16x20" print of each file, you would see no difference in the two. Now, if I opened the JPG, edited it, saved it, and then repeated that process about 100 times, then you MIGHT be able to see a difference in a large print, most likely not on small prints. The amount of "loss" has really been mischaracterized; mostly by so-called "experts." One of these same experts told me that every image should have a Histogram that looks like a mountain range. Really? Even a marshmallow photographed on a white fur rug? Even a black cat on a bed of coal? A gray scarf on a gray background? His answer? "Yes." Well, that's just plain wrong.

If you learn how to make a proper exposure, jpg away. I owned 3 studios. We made hundreds of thousands of captures for portraits, weddings, and commercial photography. None of them RAW. None. Zero. Zip. Nada. Every single one, a jpg. And we made prints to size 40x60...and a couple of billboards. Why jpg? Because by the time my competitor across town had opened the RAW files from the wedding he shot on Saturday, I already had the album layout sent to the printers. The reason is TIME. My studios were busy, and people didn't feel like waiting two months for me to do all of the post-processing, and most of them wouldn't have been able to tell the difference between a print from a RAW file (which has to be saved as a jpg or tiff for printing) and a print from a straight jpg if it bit them on the ass.

Worried about blowing an exposure? Look in your manual for the AEB (Auto Exposure Bracketing) function. Depending on the camera, you can make up to 7 bracketed exposures. If you are REALLY anal, most cameras let you save a RAW file AND a jpg.

Nearly EVERY image needs some post-processing DEPENDING on what you are using it for. Taking a quick snapshot of the kids playing in the leaves? It's a memory captured...frozen for posterity. Will it hang in the Guggenheim? Probably not. Even if the color is off a tad, you can probably live with it.

Now, a bride photographed full length in a green room? You're going to need to work the image. You'll most likely have to remove a green color cast. But unless you've absolutely blown it (camera set on manual and you forgot), most images are not going to "be terrible without post-processing."

What happens to the quality of an image viewed in pp software vs a post-processed JPG? Nothing. Opening a file, viewing it, then closing it does nothing to the file. You can open, view, and close a bazillion times, and it will be the same file quality as the first time. Only EDITING and then SAVING causes any "loss." And there is not going to be a lot of that.

I hope this has been helpful.
Man, after nearly 20 years I still can't believe t... (show quote)


Very helpful to me, thank you

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Jan 10, 2019 14:00:26   #
tdekany Loc: Oregon
 
billbarcus wrote:
The Raw thing in my humble opinion is pure, Bunk! Plain and simple. And, this thing of shooting RAW and then going into PP and creating an image from an image is NOT photography. It's manipulation of colors, balance, composition, the Rule of Thirds, and all the rest of what real photography is supposed to be. Photography is an ART not a PROCESS. The only thing I have ever used Photoshop was to erase garbage cans and junk cars


Hi Bill!!!

Thank god that it is just your opinion because it is not a fact.

Personally and unfortunately I don’t have an ounce of creativity in my bones, but even I understand what art is. Process IS part of art.

And do you really think it is logical for you to claim that processing a photo in front of a computer screen is pure BUNK, BUT IT IS OK IF THE PROCESSING IS DONE IN CAMERA? WHY IS THAT?

And why is it ok to remove some objects in a photo in your opinion, but adjusting highlights and or shadows is not? Since most of photography that we see are processed, including AA’s, how did you come to your conclusion? What convinced you?

On another note, could you post an example of a sunset for example, that you had taken that would prove to the rest of the world that a camera can reproduce all the dynamics range in camera that our eyes see?

Something like this?

Thanks Bill, have a happy 2019.


(Download)

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Jan 10, 2019 14:13:53   #
jeep_daddy Loc: Orange County - CA
 
If you read any of things written here, these two comments sum it all up and you almost needn't read any further. It's up to you to decide what works best for you.

rgrenaderphoto wrote:
The difference is in control of the process. The last poster explained what a RAW file is vs a JPEG, but did not go into the differences in workflow between the two formats.

If you are going to shoot for nothing more than viewing images right out of the camera on a screen, a tablet or the web, it makes sense to shoot in JPEG. If you want to learn the creative process on how to manipulate your images to something different or unique, shoot in RAW. Your options in editing JPEG are limited vs the complete range of editing possibilities with RAW images.

So, shoot in JPEG and learn your camera, lenses and accessories. Learn how to crop, rotate, do minor exposure tweaks. Then, when you feel comfortable, start playing around with RAW files and see the difference the format can make to the end result.

To the second poster's point about quick output, it is valid given his workflow's requirements for quick turnarounds for weddings, etc. I know several AP Stringers and SPorts photographers who only shoot in JPEG because they have a photo editor breathing down their necks for images right now, now, now.

I also know many advanced portrait artists who use the awesome power of RAW for fine exposure and tonal control, retouching that would make your head spin, and composite images that are otherworldly.

Do JPEG now, try RAW later. One great advantage of UHH is the wide range of talent and opinion you can take advantage of.

Have Fun.
The difference is in control of the process. The ... (show quote)


sbohne wrote:
Man, after nearly 20 years I still can't believe there is confusion on this. Here we go:

A RAW file is all the data from the sensor capture. Your RAW files will need post-processing. When you open them as is, they are flat and lifeless. Some people use software that comes with their camera, others use Photoshop or OnOne Software RAW. Yes, the post-processing software normally permits saving to TIFF, jpg, gif, etc.

Ok, here's the whole "lossy" thing: if I were to save a RAW file as a TIFF, and again as a JPG, and I printed a 16x20" print of each file, you would see no difference in the two. Now, if I opened the JPG, edited it, saved it, and then repeated that process about 100 times, then you MIGHT be able to see a difference in a large print, most likely not on small prints. The amount of "loss" has really been mischaracterized; mostly by so-called "experts." One of these same experts told me that every image should have a Histogram that looks like a mountain range. Really? Even a marshmallow photographed on a white fur rug? Even a black cat on a bed of coal? A gray scarf on a gray background? His answer? "Yes." Well, that's just plain wrong.

If you learn how to make a proper exposure, jpg away. I owned 3 studios. We made hundreds of thousands of captures for portraits, weddings, and commercial photography. None of them RAW. None. Zero. Zip. Nada. Every single one, a jpg. And we made prints to size 40x60...and a couple of billboards. Why jpg? Because by the time my competitor across town had opened the RAW files from the wedding he shot on Saturday, I already had the album layout sent to the printers. The reason is TIME. My studios were busy, and people didn't feel like waiting two months for me to do all of the post-processing, and most of them wouldn't have been able to tell the difference between a print from a RAW file (which has to be saved as a jpg or tiff for printing) and a print from a straight jpg if it bit them on the ass.

Worried about blowing an exposure? Look in your manual for the AEB (Auto Exposure Bracketing) function. Depending on the camera, you can make up to 7 bracketed exposures. If you are REALLY anal, most cameras let you save a RAW file AND a jpg.

Nearly EVERY image needs some post-processing DEPENDING on what you are using it for. Taking a quick snapshot of the kids playing in the leaves? It's a memory captured...frozen for posterity. Will it hang in the Guggenheim? Probably not. Even if the color is off a tad, you can probably live with it.

Now, a bride photographed full length in a green room? You're going to need to work the image. You'll most likely have to remove a green color cast. But unless you've absolutely blown it (camera set on manual and you forgot), most images are not going to "be terrible without post-processing."

What happens to the quality of an image viewed in pp software vs a post-processed JPG? Nothing. Opening a file, viewing it, then closing it does nothing to the file. You can open, view, and close a bazillion times, and it will be the same file quality as the first time. Only EDITING and then SAVING causes any "loss." And there is not going to be a lot of that.

I hope this has been helpful.
Man, after nearly 20 years I still can't believe t... (show quote)

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Jan 10, 2019 14:22:12   #
flashgordonbrown Loc: Silverdale, WA
 
sbohne wrote:
Man, after nearly 20 years I still can't believe there is confusion on this. Here we go:

A RAW file is all the data from the sensor capture. Your RAW files will need post-processing. When you open them as is, they are flat and lifeless. Some people use software that comes with their camera, others use Photoshop or OnOne Software RAW. Yes, the post-processing software normally permits saving to TIFF, jpg, gif, etc.

Ok, here's the whole "lossy" thing: if I were to save a RAW file as a TIFF, and again as a JPG, and I printed a 16x20" print of each file, you would see no difference in the two. Now, if I opened the JPG, edited it, saved it, and then repeated that process about 100 times, then you MIGHT be able to see a difference in a large print, most likely not on small prints. The amount of "loss" has really been mischaracterized; mostly by so-called "experts." One of these same experts told me that every image should have a Histogram that looks like a mountain range. Really? Even a marshmallow photographed on a white fur rug? Even a black cat on a bed of coal? A gray scarf on a gray background? His answer? "Yes." Well, that's just plain wrong.

If you learn how to make a proper exposure, jpg away. I owned 3 studios. We made hundreds of thousands of captures for portraits, weddings, and commercial photography. None of them RAW. None. Zero. Zip. Nada. Every single one, a jpg. And we made prints to size 40x60...and a couple of billboards. Why jpg? Because by the time my competitor across town had opened the RAW files from the wedding he shot on Saturday, I already had the album layout sent to the printers. The reason is TIME. My studios were busy, and people didn't feel like waiting two months for me to do all of the post-processing, and most of them wouldn't have been able to tell the difference between a print from a RAW file (which has to be saved as a jpg or tiff for printing) and a print from a straight jpg if it bit them on the ass.

Worried about blowing an exposure? Look in your manual for the AEB (Auto Exposure Bracketing) function. Depending on the camera, you can make up to 7 bracketed exposures. If you are REALLY anal, most cameras let you save a RAW file AND a jpg.

Nearly EVERY image needs some post-processing DEPENDING on what you are using it for. Taking a quick snapshot of the kids playing in the leaves? It's a memory captured...frozen for posterity. Will it hang in the Guggenheim? Probably not. Even if the color is off a tad, you can probably live with it.

Now, a bride photographed full length in a green room? You're going to need to work the image. You'll most likely have to remove a green color cast. But unless you've absolutely blown it (camera set on manual and you forgot), most images are not going to "be terrible without post-processing."

What happens to the quality of an image viewed in pp software vs a post-processed JPG? Nothing. Opening a file, viewing it, then closing it does nothing to the file. You can open, view, and close a bazillion times, and it will be the same file quality as the first time. Only EDITING and then SAVING causes any "loss." And there is not going to be a lot of that.

I hope this has been helpful.
Man, after nearly 20 years I still can't believe t... (show quote)

Amen brother. JPG is treated badly by the so- called experts. Any loss in processing JPGS can be avoided by making a copy and only working on that. My studio experience is similar to yours in that we never shot raw. My art photography is also all JPG, and I have made 20x30 images from cropped 10 mp images that look great. All of my cameras shoot raw as well as JPG, and for a while I used the setting that shot both, but I decided that so far I had never processed a raw image I was wasting a lot of storage space-both on my cards and my computer's hard drive. There are always self-appointed experts out there. My experience has been that you should learn the basics, learn how your camera functions, then set it on program and go. Your camera will show you what it's doing, and if you feel like adjusting it for reasons known only to you, you can do that. (I know that this last little bit is off topic, but I felt the need to interject that as additional food for thought )!

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Jan 10, 2019 15:31:57   #
paver Loc: Miami, Fl
 
Gene, thank you for your reply.

One point you made that makes sense to me
Is thst at the software, internal to the camera, is not nearly as powerful as some stand alone image processing programs are.

Second, and the most salient point to me, is that, unlike film, a digital camera is already post processing the info. captured by the sensor system, when you view a image directly from the camera. (Can't review the shot, without software involvement). I guess, if one never saved in JPEG, no in camera processing would occur. The info. from the sensor system, that is recorded in memory, would be "pure".
The joy being that we have the ability to save both pure, and adulterated info. in the form of both RAW and JPEG.
Extremely over simplified!

And third, as an analogy to film, the camera develops the film as a JPEG (negitive in film), plus gives one the ability to use a very powerful digital darkroom, if wanted or needed.

Sorry if I over simplified, or misfired with some of my novice comments.

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Jan 10, 2019 15:41:14   #
paver Loc: Miami, Fl
 
WOW, great comments, one and all!

I learn something EVERY time I read posts in this forum.

Thanks everyone.

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Jan 10, 2019 15:46:09   #
sbohne
 
f8lee wrote:
I dunno - read the piece and you see they state: "Using a JPEG image in a page layout program does not edit the source image so no quality is lost" - so editing will re-invoke the compression algorithm.


Read that info carefully. If you open a jpg file and save, no loss. Ever.

If you open a jpg file, edit, and save, a very small loss. Really small.

If you open a jpg file, do not edit it, and do a "save as" it will re-invoke the compression algorithm. You will have a small amount of loss. Again, very small.

If the image is dropped into a page layout program, you have not edited it. No loss. Ever.

As another poster noted: if you are really that uptight, save the file as a tiff, work on that, save a copy as a jpg.

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Jan 10, 2019 15:51:10   #
sbohne
 
PHRubin wrote:
Let me add my Welcome To UHH!

So many responses so I'll keep it short. I rarely shoot RAW. For me the real reason to shoot RAW is that it has more dynamic range than jpg. Of course, if you expect the subject has great dynamic range, you can bracket and use HDR software to combine them.


Hmmmmm. "Many people argue that RAW is superior to JPEG in that it captures a significantly wider dynamic range, a fact quite true for single image photography. When it comes to creating hdr images, however, JPEG is the virtual equal of RAW."

https://www.picturecorrect.com/tips/hdr-photography-raw-or-jpeg-format/

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Jan 10, 2019 16:15:24   #
Gene51 Loc: Yonkers, NY, now in LSD (LowerSlowerDelaware)
 
RichieC wrote:
Been reading this forum for many years, and newbies ask the same questions most or all of us did when we first arrived... 'Some' lose track of this and assume it is the same people asking the old question.

As others have said, your camera shoots raw, then processes it into a jpeg.

RAW is an uncompressed lossless format- everythign that was captured is retained- good or bad. There are others- files sizes are large ( TIFF, native PSD formats are some example of lossless formats- that compress). RAW files unadjusted at all look awful - RAW require some PP work- even displaying them in Photoshop (.psd) have had some adjustments made by the program just to view it as no monitor works in 14 bits.

JPEG is a "lossfull" compression algorithm- just saving in it loses information because that is the primary reason for its existence. Many programs accept the format - like HTML, word, your phone, etc.

JPEG is just a very widely supported compression algorithm. It was designed to save memory space , when that was a very expensive premium, by averaging and grouping colors of pixels that are similar and then drops the digital number of these RAW pixels- which represents the color, from 12 or 14 bits across three channels, and drops them to 8... (the bigger the bit depth number, the more accurate the color) this saves a tremendous amount of memory space. The bit depth is a logarithmic scale (8 bit = 256 tones per pixel- total possible tomes = 16.78 million vs. 14 bit = 16,383 tones per channel = 4.39 trillion possible tones), so this alone offers profound savings in memory, and the amount of pixel averaging ( high quality vs low) is controllable- but no matter your setting, some pixel averaging is taking place. In a final jpeg, you can't see these nuances of pixels color... but these slight differences are retained in a RAW negative- thus they are available to enhance in post production. Things like details in what appears to be blownout highlights and plugged shadows, midtone details etc. etc.

So JPEG vs RAW is really a workflow question. DO you want to be in control of converting the digital negative to a format you choose... or want the camera to do it mindlessly ( based on pretty darn good assumptions) for you.

In a nutshell. Raw is a digital negative, JPEG is a print. You can PP a jpeg, but lots of nuances have been lost. IF you didn;t like a print in the old days, you re-load the negative in the enlarger..I shoot both at once, when I come across a situation that needs adjustment- I use the raw.
Been reading this forum for many years, and newbie... (show quote)


A raw file can be uncompressed, lossless compressed, or lossy compressed - and either 12 or 14 bit.

You can use the exact same workflow that you would start with in raw, and apply it to a jpeg. Nearly all raw converters I use and have used in the past can do this.

The photographer sets the rules for in camera jpegs - there is nothing mindless about the process - only the photographer can really be mindless if they don't make adjustments to the settings that are appropriate to the situations - even seasoned pros do not waste time drilling down through menus to make adjustments to picture controls (contrast, sharpening, noise reduction, saturation, color space, etc).

The problem with editing a jpeg is the missing information that becomes evident when you edit one. Open Photoshop with an image, then make a levels adjustment and look at what happens to the histogram - all of a sudden there are these gaps where previously there were none. This is not cosmetic, it's real missing data. When it gets really bad you will see banding, posterization and other really ugly stuff in your images. In general, jpegs get bad faster than 16 bit psd or tiff, and those get bad faster than raw edits.

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