Although I have always shot JPGs, I occasionally do a fair amount of post-processing so I thought I would give RAW file processing a try. One of the reasons is because during PP the JPG files seem a bit prone to artifacts which is apparent esp. after noise reduction and sharpening.
Went for a test drive with Capture NX2 - interesting software, totally different UI from the Paint.NET that I am used to. Basic concepts seem to be the same though but with additional flexibility I guess. Still looking for in-depth tutorials, although Jason Odell's is a good introduction.
Anyway, after working with the NX2's noise reduction, I found that it is quite tedious and fairly inadequate compared to Neat Image which I have used for the JPGs. I googled a bit and found out that a few people do this:
1. Export the RAWs as TIFF after global adjustments
2. Use specialized software for NR e.g. Topaz, Noise Ninja.
3. Open up the TIFF again and do local adjustments.
So, my questions to you all is:
1. When does NR come into play when you are PPing? Last step along with sharpening (after global+local adjustments)?
2. What software do you use for NR (is it the same as the raw-converting program e.g. NX2? Converting between formats as described above negates the "non-destructive editing" advantage of working with RAWs?
Would appreciate all your inputs on this matter, or even tips on workflow. Thanks!