In-camera sharpening permanent in NEF?


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johnyu

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I remember I read in Thom's D70 Guide that it is advisable to shoot NEF with in-camera sharpening set to NONE as USM in PC software offers far more fine tuning. He sounds like in-camera sharpening alters the image permanently. But, in Nikon Capture, it seems I can easily alter or even switch off the in-camera sharpening setting of a NEF file.

Which is true? Is in-camera sharpening setting stored as an EXIF tag in NEF like custom curve does or is it applied to the data permanently?
--
John
 

gooseberry

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johnyu said:
I remember I read in Thom's D70 Guide that it is advisable to shoot NEF with in-camera sharpening set to NONE as USM in PC software offers far more fine tuning. He sounds like in-camera sharpening alters the image permanently. But, in Nikon Capture, it seems I can easily alter or even switch off the in-camera sharpening setting of a NEF file.

Which is true? Is in-camera sharpening setting stored as an EXIF tag in NEF like custom curve does or is it applied to the data permanently?
--
John
In-camera sharpening is not permanent when you shoot NEF - as you can use Nikon Capture Advanced RAW to set sharpening to off. Thom says to set in-camera sharpening to off to make it easier on the workflow - one less step to reset the sharpening setting.
 

espn

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Normally, I'd set everything to normal and/or off if possible, and when I get to my PC I'd adjust accordingly, that's the fun and pain of RAWs (NEFs).
 

johnyu

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Thanks epsn and gooseberry.

A related question:

Nikon Capture runs like a snail on my PIII 700MHz (384MB) machine. :( It's barely usable. I'm contemplating if I should use Photoshop CS (with Camera Raw) instead for the entire workflow. But I have the perception that NC, being a nikon product, should do a better job on NEF than any other things.

What are your view and what do you use?
 

Gymrat76

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What makes you think Photoshop CS would be any faster than NC4 on your machine? :) Only way to get faster performance is to upgrade your processor (P4 systems are pretty cheap these days) and to get more RAM (512MB at the very minimum, but go for 1GB if you can afford it)
 

johnyu

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Gymrat76 said:
What makes you think Photoshop CS would be any faster than NC4 on your machine?
Empirical evidence. :D
I used both PS and NC. PS is an order of magnitude faster than NC.
 

gooseberry

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If I do actually do any adjustments to my pics, I actually use both Capture and PS CS. Capture initially, and then PS CS to do final adjustments and resizing.

I have a 3+ year old laptop (PIII 800, 384MB RAM), so similar equipment to yours. It's a bit slow, but quite usable - maybe you can get more RAM and/or a faster hard disk. Haven't really noticed too much difference in speed between NC and PS CS.
 

novaD70

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IMHO, if you use NC only for reading NEF files - I dun see its use. PS is more powerful. GO for PS. BUT NC has many other functions which PS dun have.

But, if you into this digital hobby, anything less than p4 2GHz is not good enough. Even my 3.0Ghz 2GB Ram show some lag when manipulating NEF with NC.
 

espn

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Hmm let's put it this way, the NEF is a file created by the camera and Nikon together, no other 3rd party software would be able to process the image information more effectively than the NC itself.

NC has a memory leakage problem, after several loads, the PC considerably gets slower (esp on my laptop, but my PC is still fine, even after several days of uptime). That's why PS CS would probably rule in terms of speed for processing the shots, but the final results, I'd say is that NC gives me better controls and the images produced are better to my liking.

Btw, I run NC and then do my processing on it, then transport it over to PS CS for framing/resizing & watermarking.



Hey, be glad Nikon has NC for you to edit RAW (NEF) files, some other cameras manufacturer don't!
 

Watcher

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Read [URL="http://www.bythom.com/raw.htm]this[/URL]

His summary: "Nikon NEF order of preference (Windows): Nikon Capture, CaptureOne DSLR, Photoshop CS, QImage, Bibble"

Those who trawl DPReview often will find that Adobe RAW converter is fast but the quality is not the best. In fact, there are cases in ver 1 (and in the current version to a smaller extent), fine details are not rendered correct. The colors are also different. NC is still the best in terms of quality and control (vignette, FE rectification, RAW settings on/off) but slow, and the workflow a bit more troublesome.
 

ckiang

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Your solution is simple. Simply shoot in JPEG. I'd dare to say that for 99% of the time, LARGE JPEG FINE is more than enough. Some pros would even shoot JPEG NORMAL. There's no need to shoot RAW just because someone else does it.

Regards
CK
 

Amfibius

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ckiang said:
Your solution is simple. Simply shoot in JPEG. I'd dare to say that for 99% of the time, LARGE JPEG FINE is more than enough. Some pros would even shoot JPEG NORMAL. There's no need to shoot RAW just because someone else does it.
I suppose he needs to ask himself why he needs to shoot NEF. I always shoot RAW because I like the advantages I get from RAW:

1. You can correct exposure problems more easily in RAW.
2. Highlight/shadow detail is more accurately preserved so you can retrieve them if you need to.
3. You can correct white balance in RAW with no loss of quality.
4. Wider colour space.
5. Better image quality. You see the difference on any camera in DPReview - the pictures converted from RAW have better preserved detail.
6. Would I prefer a dinky little camera CPU to process my images, or my 3.5GHz watercooled desktop monster with 2GB RAM? Hmmm ...

There are downsides to shooting in NEF, and you need to make an investment. You need:

1. Lots of CF storage.
2. A fast PC with a lot of storage.
3. Invest your time in developing a digital workflow. My workflow goes something like this: transfer images to PC, then start converting images from RAW to TIFF. I do this one image at a time, adjusting white balance and exposure as necessary. If the image has too many problems (bad focus, bad composition, etc) I discard it. I put all my noisy images in a seperate folder, then batch run noise reduction software on it. While all this is happening I go make myself a coffee or check my pr0n downloads are still happening ;) After that I open the images in PS and make final adjustments before saving it in a "processed" folder.
 

solomon76

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Is the raw converter on the nikon capture any different with the nikon view ?
tks
 

bernards

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Don't mind if I ask a question related to the topic.

If the sharpening in Nikon Capture is not permanent, but applied when you open the NEF with in the program. How about if I open the NEF in Photoshop. Are the in camera settings applied?

BTW. I don't use Nikon Capture because I find it a terrible program. Terrible placement of menus, slow, memory leaks, etc.
 

King Tiger

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Hi Guys

Pardon my ignorance, but what do you mean by memory leakage in Nikon Capture? Is the software so bad ? or it is because it require to run on higher processing PC like Pentim 4 @ 4HZ or so on.
Please advise. Thanks.
 

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