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PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2007 12:22 am 
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Hi everyone, I was just wondering how many of us use the Adobe DNG format, and why? Or equally why not?

For the uninitiated, DNG is Adobe's open standard for RAW images. The idea being to avoid having new RAW formats for every new camera which require updates to processing software. See: www.adobe.com/products/dng

Adobe actually offers a free piece of software which converts proprietary RAW files into its DNG format, which can be handy for opening RAW files from new cameras into older applications - for example, opening the Canon 40D's RAW into Photoshop CS2.

A handful of cameras inbcluding the Pentax K10D can also record RAW files directly into the DNG format.

So the question is who uses it and why? Are there any quality or performance issues to making the coinversion? Do you lose proprietary data such as dust reference info on Nikon's files?

Be great hear from DNG users, and equally those who've rejected it...

Gordon


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 Post subject: DNG comments
PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2007 2:35 am 
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Hi - I think all manufactures should produce DNG files as the default RAW format. My protocol is to download the RAW files (currently from Canon G9 or Canon 400D) then immediately convert to DNG (using the free converter from Adobe). After checking that the DNG files are okay (ie that conversion was successful and that files can be opened in Photoshop or whatever) I then delete the original RAW files (*.CR2 in the case of Canon).
The DNG format has been touted by Adobe as a standard for RAW files and they are to be praised for it - in years to come those old original RAW files (such as the CR2) will be unreadable.
After deleting pics that I don't want and when I no longer want to play with the good ones, I copy the latter to 2 external hard drives (which should be kept physically separated if possible). Hard drives fail eventually (I've had 2 go on me this year), so I wouldn't just rely on one for archiving.

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PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2007 9:39 pm 
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Hi Peter, two quick questions about your files:

1: Are the DNG files more compact than the original RAW files?

2: Have you done any testing to see if there is any loss of quality during the conversion?

And another Q! Why did you choose to convert to DNG in the first place? Was it a compatibility issue or one of file size, or something else?

Thanks!

Gordon


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 Post subject: DNG?
PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2007 11:18 pm 
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Hi Gordon, the DNG file seems to be about 20% smaller, which makes it a minor advantage. I don't see any quality loss - I assume that there wouldn't be, as the RAW format is the basic raw data from the camera sensor. The main motivation for me is to be able to access the files in years to come - the software for proprietary conversions will be long gone. For eg, a "CR2" file from my Canon 400D is not the same "CR2" for my new Canon G9. I shoot RAW because it gives much more control over the image - I can make all sorts of adjustments after taking the pic. Of course the files are much bigger than jpeg, but hard drives are constantly dropping in price.
Peter

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PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2007 11:54 pm 
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Well, Strabo actually has a good point there...I might just start converting my CR2's to .DNG!

Just now, I record RAW or Raw + Fine JPG, and import using Adobe Lightroom 1.2, then any adjustments that are above and beyond Lightroom I do in Adobe Photoshop CS2 - don't use CS3 yet.

As I've said before, a standard needs to be reached in terms of RAW imaging, but the one thing I will say - OPEN SOURCE - That is a must, no one company should have the control or right to it as then, like sony has done for years on cd's and dvd's, hold the rights, then sell them for those who want to use the CD/DVD "Brand" and physical properties.

.OSR would be a good extention for such a system :D OpenSourceRaw!

The problem is with ever advancing ways of storing and calculating the RAW data, and making sure that they are compatible with older imaging software.

I don't see why ever camera (DSLR anyway) doesn't offer the option of recording a TRUE raw image, as in, EVERYTHING the sensor takes in, no compression - and just make it the one format, then any advancements made in lossless compression doesn't need to be used.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 14, 2008 11:46 pm 
Gordon, thanks for the response and referenced. I did find the adobe white paper on DNG and thought you may be interested in reading it.


http://www.adobe.com/products/dng/pdfs/DNG_primer_manufacturers.pdf

I found it interesting that adobe recommends retaining the original RAW and the DNG for archival. That seems to defeat the arguement of long term storage and viability (since I could convert them later in the event that DNG becomes the standard for RAW).


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 9:41 am 
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Remember there are some things which are proprietary to each manufacturer's RAW formats which can't be adjusted once converted to DNG - for example, the dynamic range adjustment and anti-dust mapping features you find on some new models. But again to adjust these, you need to also use the manufacturer's own RAW software...

DNG is handy though for opening RAW files from a new camera into an older version of Photoshop...


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 1:40 pm 
I think on reflection I will stay with RAW over Adobe DNG.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 4:11 pm 
Same here, until I have a camera that will shoot in .DNG.


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