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Thread: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

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    Default The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    I've published on my blog the first part of a complex review about the most important general RAW developer software. In the first part I cover the setup, the hardware and the first big surprise.

    In the next parts:
    1. noise reduction ability (it will be published on November 2nd);
    2. detail quality;
    3. correcting difficult or wrong exposure;
    4. color rendering;
    5. best quality;
    6. advantages and disadvantages.

    First part can be found here: http://www.tertulia.ro/blog/2009/10/...prerequisites/

    I'm awaiting comments, suggestions and questions. And, of course some good old ranting and critique.

    Thank you for your time,
    Cristian
    Last edited by Tertulia; 10-29-2009 at 09:31 PM. Reason: Added the date for the next part.
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    Cristian Samoila
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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    Looking forward to the rest of your review. If we're talking about the same phenomenon, the bit about various RAW developers' handling the borders of images differently by a number of pixels is rather well known. Someone else can respond more specifically, I 'm sure.

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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    I knew about some "alignment" differences, but for sure I didn't expect such overshoot rendering. I know that each sensor has more hardware pixels than the resulting image. But I didn't expect to have a stripe of 48 by 68 more pixels rendered.
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    Cristian Samoila
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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    I have updated the software list:
    - Bibble Pro 5.0
    - Breeze Browser Pro 1.9.4.1
    - Adobe Camera RAW 5.5 (ACR)
    - Phase One Capture One 4.8.3
    - Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 2.5
    - Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3 beta
    - LightZone 3.8
    - RAW Drop 1.11 – Free
    - RAWTherapee 2.4.1 – Free
    - Silky Pix 4.1.22.1
    - SilverFast HDR 6.6.1r3a

    - DxO Optics Pro 5.3.5 will be used only for NEF and CR2 Files.


    I have got some NEF and CR2 files and it seems the story is repeating. RAW Drop and LightZone provided always the bigger files. On short:
    - Olympus E-500 ORF: 2448 x 3264 px in ACR, versus 2504 x 3340 px in RAW Drop si 2504 x 3340 px in LightZone;
    - Canon 400D CR2 File in ACR: 3888 x 2592 px versus 3906 x 2602 in RAW Drop and 3898 x 2594 px in LightZone;
    - Nikon D300 NEF File in ACR: 4288 x 2848 px versus 4320 x 2868 in RAW Drop and 4312 x 2860 px in LightZone.

    Excluding RAW Drop and LightZone, all the other RAW developers had chosen different areas from the RAW file for rendering. If you have an object that just bites the edge in an unique photo, it’s worth trying another editor to see if that object is in fact complete or not.
    _____________
    Cristian Samoila
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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    If the object is just to render all pixels captured by the camera, program 'DNG Recover Edges' does that. Convert any RAW file to DNG and drop it onto that program. You get a DNG file with ALL available pixels. Continue with your favorite converter.

    Moshe

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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    As a matter of fact I've been using Lightroom since it's first beta. But since then I've also kept trying RAW developers from other vendors. This is in fact the reason of the review: sharing the knowledge about the competition and learning something in the process.
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    Cristian Samoila
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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    With a delay of almost a day, I've managed to post the second part of the review concerning the noise reduction algorithms. See the post here: http://www.tertulia.ro/blog/2009/11/...ise-reduction/
    _____________
    Cristian Samoila
    www.tertulia.ro/blog
    E-3, E-500, ZD 9-18 SWD, ZD 14-54, ZD 50-200 SWD, ZD 70-300, ZD 35, FL36, Lensbaby 2.0

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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    It seems that finally DxO has released a Windows version of it's software that supports some Olympus bodies and lenses. For the moment I've downloaded the trial version and it still has some problems as reported earlier in my review. Olympus bodies earlier than E-410 are not supported. Also, just 10 lenses are supported. No 50-200 is supported, nor any HG lenses besides 7-14.

    The first impressions will be posted in the following episode of my RAW Developers Review.

    More info here:
    http://www.dxo.com/intl/photo/dxo_op...rsions_pricing
    http://www.dxo.com/intl/photo/free_trial_version
    Last edited by Tertulia; 11-03-2009 at 04:59 PM. Reason: Added link to the trial version and for the key features and pricing
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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    Just got back from Europe shooting in Austria and Italy, and now I find out I might have lost some pixels at the edges of my images. Should I go back and re-shoot? What is you learned opinion?

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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    As I've stated in the first part of my review, RAW Drop gets the most pixels out of the RAW files. The bad part is that it can't be really controlled and poorly exposed images would not benefit from the most advanced recovery algorithms existing in other applications.

    RAW Drop can be found here: http://www.wizards.de/rawdrop/

    Thanks to Mronen which suggested the DNG Recover Edges you get the benefit of working with a DNG file. But be aware that not all the RAW Developers support the DNG file format and more than this not al the RAW Developers that support the DNG will really recover all the data.

    Adobe Camera RAW, Lightroom 2 and 3 beta, CaptureOne, SilkyPix do support the DNG file format and recover the same number of pixels as RAW Drop.

    LightZone, RAW Therapee, Scarab DarkRoom, SilverFast support the DNG file format but don't save all the pixels.

    DxO Optics Pro 6, Bibble Pro 5 don't support the DNG file format.

    IrfanView will see only the embedded preview and save only a small image 1024 x 768 px.
    Last edited by Tertulia; 11-04-2009 at 09:40 PM. Reason: Deleted some duplicate info.
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    Cristian Samoila
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    E-3, E-500, ZD 9-18 SWD, ZD 14-54, ZD 50-200 SWD, ZD 70-300, ZD 35, FL36, Lensbaby 2.0

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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    You can convert to dng, then paste your images to "dng recover edges", an addition to dng the program. Oops, you already mentioned that.
    Cheers, and God bless
    Marc VanderArk
    Please, comment on my blog and image sites:
    http://mrvphotography.wordpress.com/
    http://mrvphotography.zenfolio.com/

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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    Tertulia, I was wondering how difficult the web based image program you use is? It looks like 3 is pretty good.
    Cheers, and God bless
    Marc VanderArk
    Please, comment on my blog and image sites:
    http://mrvphotography.wordpress.com/
    http://mrvphotography.zenfolio.com/

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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    Sorry, but I don't get your question. Which web based image program are you referring to?
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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    Hi Cristian, I will be very interested to see how your tests progress.
    I was interested to read your problems with the way DXO renders files. My first test image from an E-3 orf rendered a nice primary blue sky into a definite purple hue. Not promising. I look forward to you getting deeper into the comparisons.
    PS: after a total computer crash and having to reinstall after it simply would only half-process a file, I have sent it packing. The only thing I liked was lens correction which was very nice. Maybe another time when it is sorted.
    Last edited by Don Baldwinson; 11-05-2009 at 11:18 AM.

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    Question Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    Quote Originally Posted by Tertulia View Post
    Sorry, but I don't get your question. Which web based image program are you referring to?
    That would be the gallery web page you have. They look simple, but are they difficult to navigate and set up. They have gallery 1, 2, and a new 3, I presume?
    Cheers, and God bless
    Marc VanderArk
    Please, comment on my blog and image sites:
    http://mrvphotography.wordpress.com/
    http://mrvphotography.zenfolio.com/

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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    Frankly, I was really disappointed by the stability issues of DxO. They have surrounded themselves with marketing hype and I was expecting at least stability on any configuration. And I've started adding minuses at a really alarming rate: crashing during processing, crashing during previewing, application hang-up, resource hog, really slow at rendering previews compared to the other top contenders, psychedelic rendering of D300 NEF files, no DNG support, limited camera and lenses support and a slow update rate. And I've only started the review.
    _____________
    Cristian Samoila
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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    I've been thinking about reorganising my website but for the moment I'm in the middle of this review, plus some other projects. Reorganising all the information would mean dedicating at least one month of work and I simply don't have that much time at my disposal. Maybe at the end of the year. The Gallery2 section contains only photos until august 2007. The blog contains parts of the personal photography projects, daily and travel photography since august 2007. I have almost no graphic design work online. And what's missing alltogether is my advertising/commercial photography. And I have to go through a database of more than 120.000 photos. I've been sometimes looking at old photos and sometimes I discover very nice photos that were left out.
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    Cristian Samoila
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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    Ah, very well. Just always looking for a good free site to put some work on. One that everyone does not use. Thanks for the info, I like your work.
    Cheers, and God bless
    Marc VanderArk
    Please, comment on my blog and image sites:
    http://mrvphotography.wordpress.com/
    http://mrvphotography.zenfolio.com/

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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    Gallery is a software platform for managing photo galleries on your website. It means you have to own a domain name and to have a hosting. Even if the software is free, the domain name and the hosting usually costs something.

    Free on-line photo galleries are available in many locations across the web and you can also use some free blogging platform to publish your photos. Either free solution would usually have the downside of some embedded advertising.
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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    _____________
    Cristian Samoila
    www.tertulia.ro/blog
    E-3, E-500, ZD 9-18 SWD, ZD 14-54, ZD 50-200 SWD, ZD 70-300, ZD 35, FL36, Lensbaby 2.0

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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    Since a photographer that I know commented about the workflow, I've updated my post with my considerations and the hard facts. And the conclusion is the same.
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    Cristian Samoila
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    Default Re: The Digital Darkroom - my complex review

    Next part is online:
    RAW Developers Review – Color correction support in applications (part 1)
    http://www.tertulia.ro/blog/2009/11/...ations-part-1/
    _____________
    Cristian Samoila
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    E-3, E-500, ZD 9-18 SWD, ZD 14-54, ZD 50-200 SWD, ZD 70-300, ZD 35, FL36, Lensbaby 2.0

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