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Basics – File Types RAW vs JPEG and Others

File Types “RAW vs JPEG vs TIFF”

Why does file type even matter?

All semi pro and professional DSLR cameras and some consumer cameras allow you as the photographer to choose what file type or types you want the image to render. This is an extremely important option for a digital photographer to consider. The RAW image file is the largest file type available and contains the most information about the image when the image was captured. All other file types will include LESS information. There are advantages and disadvantages of both but the RAW image is most selected by pro and advanced amateur photographers. Why? Because the more date you have about the image as taken allows you as the photographer more flexibility to refine the image in the post processing stage.

RAW files can easily be reprocessed for exposure, white balance, color adjustments and other via proprietary software for your camera or via Adobe RAW image conversion program which is a part of the Photoshop Suite. Of course, there are many other RAW conversion programs available in the market.

Adobe Photoshop CS4 Full Version and Adobe Photoshop CS4 Upgrade do allow for JPEG and TIFF standard RAW conversion options but with these file types there is simply less data than with the RAW file.
Note: Some in camera setting such as Sharpening, Hue, Saturation, Contrast and other can only be read and processed by the proprietary software manufactured by the camera vendor. Adobe Raw conversion and other RAW image processing software do not have the rights nor the code to read these in camera settings. Therefore, programs such as Nikon Capture NX 2 Full Version and Nikon Capture NX 2 Upgrade from Capture NX 1.x for NIKON camera systems will read the in camera settings and display the results of those settings in your image.Adobe Photoshop CS4 Full Version and Adobe Photoshop CS4 Upgrade will ignore those in camera adjustments and render the image without those in camera adjustments.

Digital Cameras have a menu driven system for camera settings that allow the photographer to specify the file type. Many digital SLR’s allow for the storage of multiple file types which allow the camera to capture and save the image to multiple file typs at once or even to multiple flash cards and file types at once. In the image to the left the photographer has selected to save the images both as RAW and JPEG file types.



Copyright Robert Shreve Photography

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