Subscribe Contribute Advertise Facebook Twitter Instagram Forums Newsletter
Question about RAW and Lightroom
Display Avatars Sort By:
Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Question about RAW and Lightroom on 08/06/2013 17:22:05 MDT Print View

I have a Sony RX100, which can take pictures in RAW, JPG, and both at the same time. I understand the advantages of RAW for post-processing.

(1) Do you take both RAW and JPG; or just RAW -- and why is one method your preference?

Supposedly Lightroom 4.4 can process the RX100 RAW captures, although I haven't tried yet.

(2) I am concerned about the best file management method using Lightroom. Obviously from I have read, it is best to do all file moving and renaming inside Lightroom application. How do you manage things? Import from the camera, edit and move files? Other methods? I am not worried about storage space (although Lightroom doesn't duplicate photos just changes data), since I have a couple 3TB external drives.

(3) I also have PhotoShop CS2, but Lightroom seems to be much easier to use for my meager needs. Any thoughts on this?

BTW, if it matters I am running Windows 7.

Bradley Attaway
(AttaboyBrad) - F

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Just RAW, import to LR on 08/06/2013 17:30:03 MDT Print View

I shoot in RAW only. The reason you might not is if you want to share images in a commonly readable format (JPG) before you have a chance to edit them. This is useful if you have clients that need to see previews while you're shooting and you upload them directly from the camera over GSM or something, but I'd be surprised if you had a real need for it--I only ever used it when I was shooting for newspapers and timeliness was of the essence.

Likewise, I use Lightroom to organize my library. I don't even know how I'd find my photos without searching for Metadata in LR at this point, since I've been using it since the original Beta. It's a lot like using iTunes to manage your music library, in that regard.

For 99% of the pure photographic work I've done, LR is all I need. I use photoshop for graphic design contracts and composites but even then only after I've done everything possible in Lightroom.

Edited by AttaboyBrad on 08/06/2013 17:32:17 MDT.

Nico .
(NickB) - MLife

Locale: Los Padres National Forest
RAW and Lightroom on 08/06/2013 17:39:24 MDT Print View

I too mostly shoot in RAW only. It provides a lot more flexibility for editing after the fact than jpeg. You have greater ability to adjust exposures, shadows, highlights, etc after the fact with fewer unfortunate results to image quality.

The only advantage (imo) to jpeg is that it looks a lot better straight out of the camera (because it will record within the image your in-camera settings adjustments to things like contrast, saturation, etc.); this allows for you to have a nice(r) looking images prior to doing any editing, which as the other poster noted can be useful when you need a quick turn-around.

I also use Lightroom to organize and catalog all of my photos. Unfortunately, I have yet to make much use of the ability to add metadata to files, but I generally find the default organizing by year-month-day to be a useful method for me. I can then go in after the fact and combine days into a "trip" folder.

I rely on Lightroom and a handful of after market LR plug-ins for all of my photo editing needs.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Just RAW, import to LR on 08/06/2013 17:42:32 MDT Print View

Thanks, Brad.

I was thinking that I would move all RAW pictures to a folder for processing. After processing, I would move the RAW files to an external drive in folders by date and subject. Will Lightroom need to be connected to the external files to work?

To clarify...

Here is what I have. A laptop with docking station and two 23" external monitors hooked up in my office. This makes processing much easier. If I travel and use the laptop, I suspect Lightroom will not work if I have moved the RAW files to my external drives that stay at home.

Richard May
(richardmay)

Locale: Swamplands.
Re: Question about RAW and Lightroom on 08/06/2013 17:43:17 MDT Print View

(1) Do you take both RAW and JPG; or just RAW -- and why is one method your preference?


I do both. If the images is fine as a JPEG then I'll tweak from there. If it needs more intense work then I start with the RAW. Some find it redundand. As you use them you'll find what works best for you.

(2) I am concerned about the best file management method using Lightroom. Obviously from I have read, it is best to do all file moving and renaming inside Lightroom application. How do you manage things? Import from the camera, edit and move files? Other methods? I am not worried about storage space (although Lightroom doesn't duplicate photos just changes data), since I have a couple 3TB external drives.


I like to create catalogs with the images outside the catalog. This way they are easier to access directly without LR.

(3) I also have PhotoShop CS2, but Lightroom seems to be much easier to use for my meager needs. Any thoughts on this?


Unless you need to use Adobe Camera RAW (ACR) or some new feature of CS6 then keep CS2. On the other hand you can't upgrade from CS2 to CS6 but you can do so to CS5 (maybe one is still available on eBay). Just that is worth the upgrade to CS5. However, ACR in CS5 may or may not support your camera.

Cheers

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: RAW and Lightroom on 08/06/2013 17:47:04 MDT Print View

Nick,

I don't really have a need for the JPEG. Just wanted to make sure I wasn't missing something. I have owned the camera since December and it has taken me 8 months to figure out how to use it... much more difficult than programming my entertainment system at home.

I have mostly been editing in PhotoShop (not expert in that either), and my experimentation with Lightroom has made me unorganized. It seems that the metadata tags would be helpful, just need to figure out a keyword methodology. But then I only sort my iTunes by Album name or Artist. Everything else seems to much work :)

Bradley Attaway
(AttaboyBrad) - F

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Re: Just RAW, import to LR on 08/06/2013 18:12:02 MDT Print View

Lightroom produces image "previews" that are stored in a separate folder than the RAW data. Most of the time, these previews are what you're actually looking at because they're much faster to render edits. You can specify in preferences what quality you want these previews to be, and where they're stored.

Based on what you've told me, I'd import the RAWs directly to the external HDD and render the previews on your local laptop. If you're in the field and have to import the RAWs to your laptop, just make sure you use LR to move the files once you're home, so LR knows where you've put them.

With the previews on your laptop, you'll be able to do a considerable amount of editing even without the original file available because your edits are basically a set of rendering instructions and they can be applied to the low quality preview as well as they can to the original RAW. You'll just see a little icon over the preview saying that LR can't locate the original file until you've plugged in the externals again.

You won't, however, be able to export your work in full quality until you're back in the office, and the results will probably be slightly different, but not enough that you'd care or even notice if you're not using carefully calibrated monitors and printers.

Edited by AttaboyBrad on 08/06/2013 18:13:13 MDT.

Jason Elsworth
(jephoto) - M

Locale: New Zealand
Question about RAW and Lightroom on 08/06/2013 18:27:05 MDT Print View

I usually shoot both. I just find that it's nice to have a quickly available straight out of the camera image. When I was pursuing photography professionally I shot RAW only.

I have never used Lightroom and currently use Photoshop CS6 and Adobe Camera Raw, plus a stand alone package for digital asset management (DAM) . However, this is just because I don't want to learn a new package. For most people Lightroom is the way to go and if I was starting from scratch I would use Lightroom for image processing and DAM.

If you would like to learn more about how to download, store, manage and then find your images I would recommend The DAM Book: Digital Asset Management for Photographers by P.Krogh. Available as a PDF from his website or from all good book sellers:).

www.http://thedambook.com/. Looks like he has a new Lightroom book coming soon (see his blog page for more detail), but the latest edition of the current book also deals with Lightroom.

http://dpbestflow.org/ and http://www.updig.org/guidelines/ph_toc.html are also good sources of information on digital photography workflow.

Kevin Babione
(KBabione) - MLife

Locale: Pennsylvania
Re: Question about RAW and Lightroom on 08/06/2013 20:05:57 MDT Print View

Thanks for starting this thread...FedEx tried to deliver my RX-100 M2 (with the hotshoe) today when we weren't home. I've been wondering how to set it up and will probably shoot both RAW and JPG to start and see how often I'm going back to the RAW files to tweak things.

Daniel Collins
(Diablo-V)

Locale: Orlando FL
raw and lightroom on 08/30/2013 22:24:24 MDT Print View

All those "in camera" effects that are advertised such as in-camera HDR are for Jpeg only.
If you are open to looking beyond Lightroom check out ACDSee Pro photo manager.
It has built in raw converters and is designed to operate much like Lightroom, has a full photo editor as well.