do you shoot raw?
/forum/topic/1170333/0

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nugeny
Registered: Jan 22, 2004
Total Posts: 5187
Country: United States

For years, I have been shooting nothing but raws. When I bought the D4, I programmed the XQD slot as the backup with jpg-fine. Until now I just discard them after knowing that the Raws are safe. But in the last few days, I am curious and look at these jpg files. To my surprise they look great and they have the same pixel dimention as the raws, only the storage files of the jpgs are much smaller.
I opened these jpg files as raws and they have the same file size as the original raws.
I haven't worked these Jpg files seriously yet, but am just wondering if the raws still have the advantage over the Jpeg-fine as it used to have.
Do you have more experience?



Peter Figen
Registered: Apr 28, 2007
Total Posts: 3103
Country: United States

Well, the pixel dimensions are about the only thing that's the same. You can't open a jpeg as a raw. It's already a jpeg. All you can do is open it in a raw converter and, while you might think it's raw, it ain't.

The differences, which have been talked about to death on every photo forum on the intertubes, are far greater. The raw file has greater dynamic range available. The jpeg has been pre-cooked by the camera's on board chip and that means that the white balance, sharpening, picture styles and most importantly, highlight and shadow clipping, are all pre-baked into that jpeg and anything you do to changes any of those parameters is likely to show up in ways you don't want.

Eight bit per channel files from digital cameras are much more fragile than 8 bit scans of film that are full of grain to hide defects. Add the lossy compression from the jpeg and anything like a blue sky is going to suffer with the slightest tweak. It really does make a difference and it's so easy to test for yourself.

There are some situations where shooting in camera jpegs make sense, but not when you're interested in maintaining the highest quality with the most flexibility.



Ho1972
Registered: Dec 02, 2007
Total Posts: 1248
Country: United States

I was just handed a memory stick full of jpegs. They're portraits for a photo directory, all shot using auto white balance and a lighting scheme that apparently varied from day to day. Some shots are fine from a color perspective, most are not. If I had access to raw files this wouldn't be an issue. But the shooter shot jpeg, not raw and so I'm looking at a few extra hours of pro bono work.

When I volunteered to do this I was assured the camera operator (notice how I've avoided using the P word) knew what he was doing. "He's a pro..."



nugeny
Registered: Jan 22, 2004
Total Posts: 5187
Country: United States

Ho1972 wrote:
I was just handed a memory stick full of jpegs. They're portraits for a photo directory, all shot using auto white balance and a lighting scheme that apparently varied from day to day. Some shots are fine from a color perspective, most are not. If I had access to raw files this wouldn't be an issue. But the shooter shot jpeg, not raw and so I'm looking at a few extra hours of pro bono work.

When I volunteered to do this I was assured the camera operator (notice how I've avoided using the P word) knew what he was doing. "He's a pro..."



Why don't you ask the "pro", he/she may have the raws and just wants to give you a hard time. or it is not a pro at all"



nugeny
Registered: Jan 22, 2004
Total Posts: 5187
Country: United States

Peter Figen wrote:
Well, the pixel dimensions are about the only thing that's the same. You can't open a jpeg as a raw. It's already a jpeg. All you can do is open it in a raw converter and, while you might think it's raw, it ain't.

The differences, which have been talked about to death on every photo forum on the intertubes, are far greater. The raw file has greater dynamic range available. The jpeg has been pre-cooked by the camera's on board chip and that means that the white balance, sharpening, picture styles and most importantly, highlight and shadow clipping, are all pre-baked into that jpeg and anything you do to changes any of those parameters is likely to show up in ways you don't want.

Eight bit per channel files from digital cameras are much more fragile than 8 bit scans of film that are full of grain to hide defects. Add the lossy compression from the jpeg and anything like a blue sky is going to suffer with the slightest tweak. It really does make a difference and it's so easy to test for yourself.
o

n jpgs.
There are some situations where shooting in camera jpegs make sense, but not when you're interested in maintaining the highest quality with the most flexibility.



I kind of suspect it. glad I haven't wasted much time om jpgs.



Ralph Thompson
Registered: Jan 02, 2008
Total Posts: 1222
Country: United States

nugeny wrote:
Ho1972 wrote:
I was just handed a memory stick full of jpegs. They're portraits for a photo directory, all shot using auto white balance and a lighting scheme that apparently varied from day to day. Some shots are fine from a color perspective, most are not. If I had access to raw files this wouldn't be an issue. But the shooter shot jpeg, not raw and so I'm looking at a few extra hours of pro bono work.

When I volunteered to do this I was assured the camera operator (notice how I've avoided using the P word) knew what he was doing. "He's a pro..."



Why don't you ask the "pro", he/she may have the raws and just wants to give you a hard time. or it is not a pro at all"



Are you saying if you don't shoot Raw you aren't a pro??



obscure
Registered: Sep 11, 2011
Total Posts: 39
Country: N/A

Ralph Thompson wrote:
Are you saying if you don't shoot Raw you aren't a pro??

Pros can and do shoot jpeg. The issue here is that the "pro" supplied jpeg images that had white balance (and other) problems. A pro shooting jpeg would have eliminated those problems at time of shooting or would have recognised that a retoucher would need (or at least greatly prefer) RAW images in order to correct such issues.



Ho1972
Registered: Dec 02, 2007
Total Posts: 1248
Country: United States

^ That would be it.



georgms
Registered: Jan 08, 2009
Total Posts: 3301
Country: Germany

Jpeg size large/normal compression for team-sports like soccer, hockey, handball. For everything else RAW these days.



Mescalamba
Registered: Jul 06, 2011
Total Posts: 2978
Country: Czech Republic

RAW has always advantage in "free WB" and in case of your D4 quite a lot of exposure headroom. Plus you can get bit more resolution with proper sharpening. Or better de-noise than default.

I shoot both RAW and JPEG as I have camera thats so old, that it cant show image unless its JPEG.

Well and Fuji X-Pro 1 and X-E 1 users surely shoot mostly JPEGs.



nugeny
Registered: Jan 22, 2004
Total Posts: 5187
Country: United States

Ralph Thompson wrote:
nugeny wrote:
Ho1972 wrote:
I was just handed a memory stick full of jpegs. They're portraits for a photo directory, all shot using auto white balance and a lighting scheme that apparently varied from day to day. Some shots are fine from a color perspective, most are not. If I had access to raw files this wouldn't be an issue. But the shooter shot jpeg, not raw and so I'm looking at a few extra hours of pro bono work.

When I volunteered to do this I was assured the camera operator (notice how I've avoided using the P word) knew what he was doing. "He's a pro..."



Why don't you ask the "pro", he/she may have the raws and just wants to give you a hard time. or it is not a pro at all"



Are you saying if you don't shoot Raw you aren't a pro??


I bet we should qualify the word 'pro." That is not bad nor good. From my perspective, a pro is one who makes a living from his /her photography.
In this sens, he/she doesn't have to shoot Raw to be a pro.



Ralph Thompson
Registered: Jan 02, 2008
Total Posts: 1222
Country: United States

I'm just stirring the pot... I'm a full-time pro, sports guy. For what I do, I rarely shoot Raw. It takes time and eats drive space. Recently I shot a job and took just shy of 8k in an 8 hour shoot. I also have a youth sports T&I business where I rarely shoot Raw. That being said, depending on who I have on my crew, the conditions of the day, I "may" shoot sRaw's to a second card as an insurance policy. But it's been my experience that the Raws are rarely needed. As a sports guy, I'm really used to getting it super close in camera because many of my images may have to go to print right off the card (sport tournaments).

I guess what I'm getting at is each file type has it's place. One should not judge the photographer strickly by the type of file they use. I've seen some real crap come out of a Raw file. A turd is still a turd. A real pro would not give a customer crap files, but we all know some that do. Ethically, I can't.....

Remember back when we shot "chromes"? You had to get it close in camera. You could not cut corners and fix it in post. Shooting digital is alot like shooting chromes (or should be). err for you folks that have only shot digital, chromes are slides....



gheller
Registered: Apr 30, 2002
Total Posts: 5875
Country: United States

Another chime in for a "jpeg-pro".

Certainly not to boast, but purely for the sake of argument, my jpegs have been seen at 2 gallery exhibits (fine art nudes and surfing) as well as magazine covers (Luxury Homes Magazine).

I don't dispute that RAW has advantages over jpeg, but if you know your exposure, jpeg shooting can elicit spectacular results.

greg



Skarkowtsky
Registered: Feb 22, 2009
Total Posts: 1420
Country: United States

nugeny wrote:

I bet we should qualify the word 'pro."


Here is my interpretation:

Pro has become such a loose term. For instance, there was a time, not too long ago, that to achieve the status of 'pro', rather, to earn a living with a specific skill, one had to first master his or her craft, then marry the technical ability of how to achieve their vision through their tools with their creative ability to deliver something that an amateur could not. This is true across-the-board.

Not being able to deliver consistent white balance (in regard to Ho1972's story) means one thing: the so-called professional on this job didn't know to closely watch auto white-balance from one photo to the next when shooting jpg because the space for correction is small in this format, didn't consider to correct it before tripping the shutter, and didn't consider leaving wiggle room to correct it in post by also providing RAW files. Maybe RAW was out of the question based on the subject matter? I'll give the photographer that much. But, a basic understanding of color temperature goes a long way, in any shooting mode.

I'm not saying a pro can't shoot JPG, or even-full-auto. I'm simply stating that a true professional would have the training and experience behind his or herself to make obvious adjustments during the shoot to ensure consistency.

There's more to photography than making a pretty picture. Especially when your images are passed off to other people on a collaborative project. Being a professional 'anything' is not just about your abilities, it's about ensuring that the job meets a professional standard as it passes from one contributor to the next. We wouldn't want one station on an automobile assembly line mounting wheels with Elmer's Glue, would we?

By and large, pro, like the term artist, has become an ambiguous catch-all. It's rather sad. With that said, I know there are still consummate professionals in the industry, too.



nugeny
Registered: Jan 22, 2004
Total Posts: 5187
Country: United States

" a pro is one who makes a living from his /her photography"
I would add: he doesn't have to be an artist. An artist is "a dreamer" , some times a hungry one, he doesn't care if his work sells, as long as he achieves in rendering his vision, he is happy.



Skarkowtsky
Registered: Feb 22, 2009
Total Posts: 1420
Country: United States

Hi Nugeny,

I wasn't suggesting that a photographer must also qualify as an artist. Some photos are utilitarian, some painters are, too. I was just likening the two terms, pro and artist, and how both, respectively and individually, have lost some of their truths. I just don't subscribe to the idea that what makes a professional is the simple fact that one makes money from performing a specific task. I believe it's that idea merged with also fully understanding and wielding said task that separates an amateur from a professional.

On a side note, and in my opinion, an artist is more than just a dreamer. Starving or not, an artist is also a thinker, interpreter, communicator and thinker, to name a few. Some more clearly than others.



dr_teng
Registered: Dec 03, 2012
Total Posts: 11
Country: United States

I always shoot RAW but if I were doing some high-speed photography (like the sports photos above) I might consider otherwise. I never have to shoot high-speed/thousands of shots for what I do though so the extra flexibility of RAW is essential.



irlfan82
Registered: Oct 17, 2012
Total Posts: 87
Country: United States

im no pro at all i sometimes think im lucky if i even make it to amateur photography. Im finally teaching my self to use the cameras other setting rather then auto. Thats why i lean towards shooting raw more now.

i do have a question, i like to shoot sports (mainly auto) will shooting in raw slow down the camera transfer to much?.....sorry to thread jack....lol



RonR2
Registered: Oct 29, 2003
Total Posts: 247
Country: United States

You will surely get some strange looks if you shoot in the raw



Paul Mo
Registered: Dec 12, 2012
Total Posts: 2898
Country: Thailand

I shoot RAW because (among other things) removing color casts in jpegs either sucks eggs, or is impossible without degrading the image.



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