Just got Aperture! Raw Assistance

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Dark, Oct 7, 2006.

  1. Dark macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2005
    Location:
    New Jersey
    #1
    So I finally got Aperture. I never really had a desire for it because I was always so confused using it in the Apple Store. I barely ever shot in raw because I diddn't see the benefits of it. However, after messing around with it and experimenting with Raw photos I am in pure love. I just have a few questions. Whats the difference in editing Raw photos and regular Jpegs on Aperture or any program in general? It seems like you can modify a regular Jpeg just the same as you can the Raw File. Is shooting in Raw produce the same quality images or better as Jpeg, just with the ability to modify the photo to your hearts content? Any input would be greatly appreciated.


    http://irace559.smugmug.com/gallery/1962797/1/100676925

    Theres one quick photo I edited with Aperture. I really love how it turned out.
     
  2. Aperture macrumors 68000

    Aperture

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2006
    Location:
    PA
    #2
    I'm no expert, but I believe that RAW is of much higher quality and the picture is saved exactly as the camera sees it. It doesn't fool with it at all as opposed to JPG.

    By the way; I love your photos. How did you get the effect seen here?

    Kevin
     
  3. Dark thread starter macrumors regular

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    Aug 22, 2005
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    New Jersey
    #3
    Yeah I read up on a bunch of Aperture guides and I think I got the hang of it now. I basically knew the idea of it all...but diddn't know what it meant, if that makes sense. Thanks though for the input, that really means alot coming from an experienced Photographer. That one picture I just upped the exposure really high and fiddled with the blacks and the contrast all in Adobe Lightroom. Thats what I was using prior to Aperture.
     
  4. peterj1967 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2002
    #4
    There are benefits and drawbacks to RAW and plenty on the web written about it. So I'll be brief and here's a link

    http://www.photoxels.com/tutorial_raw.html

    RAW is the unprocessed base image your camera produces. Shooting RAW gives you an ability to make exposure white balance and other changes outside the camera. Lots of flexibility and a RAW file can ALWAYS be converted back to it's original state, just like it came out of the camera. It is as Adobe calls it a "Digital Negative." Well worth looking into Adobe DNG files if you really want to rely on RAW files.

    Drawback, is you deal with larger files, and you add steps to your post processing. Really not a big deal, I shoot everything in RAW, color correct what I need and then convert as needed.

    The other drawback is Camera companies RAW files are completely proprietary, that's why converting to DNG is worth it. It's an open specification and it give your future protection of your files.
     
  5. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    Dec 27, 2002
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    #5
    Can I ask you something out of curiosity? How did you fall in love with shooting RAW if you didn't even know the benefits of shooting in RAW? :confused: Not trying to be an ass. I just want to know why you liked RAW editing in Aperture if you didn't even realize you could get more out of editing RAW?

    Anyway, you have more editing latitude with RAW files, which is why people like it so much. When you make an image a JPEG, it's compressed. Things like white balance, saturation, sharpening, etc, are set by the camera (if you shoot in JPEG format) and then the image is "fixed" (not a technical term, I realize). Essentially, your camera has a little Adobe Photoshop inside that automatically edits photos, but with little control from your end as the photographer. Then the data the camera deems is unnecessary or redundant is thrown out. You don't need it once the settings are set in the photo. Problem is that since the rest of the data was thrown out, you can't edit JPEGs much, and you can't go back to the original state of the photo since all the data thats's required to go back to an unprocessed photo is thrown out.

    With RAW, you can change the settings how you want rather than letting your camera do so. Plus, none of the original sensor data is thrown out, so all the original data is still intact and so you can go back, or edit in a non-destructive way. With JPEGs, the camera takes the RAW data, edits it, makes the image file, and throws out some of the data making it impossible for you to edit much.
     
  6. Dark thread starter macrumors regular

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    Aug 22, 2005
    Location:
    New Jersey
    #6
    have the whole RAW format down, but the program itself is starting to lose me somewhat. I was importing my photos straight from the card into Aperture, but I found that its really hard to then go back and get all your master files from the aperture library if need be. So im thinking maybe I should import all the photos first and then import them into Aperture, like I was doing with Adobe Lightroom. So then I could edit and screw around with the photos all I want on Aperture, but know that I always have a set of untouched masters all in one place. Does anybody use that workflow or am I just crazy?
     
  7. Clix Pix macrumors demi-goddess

    Clix Pix

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    Oct 9, 2005
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    8 miles from the Apple Store at Tysons (VA)
    #7

    That is exactly what I do. First I import all the images from the CF card to a folder in Pictures. Then I open Aperture and import the images again and either set up a new project or add the images to an existing project. That way I'm covered.
     
  8. snap58 macrumors 6502

    snap58

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    Jan 29, 2006
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    somewhere in kansas
    #8
    I keep a separate copy of all of mine on a different computer, just in case. BTW after importing into Aperture, you always have a untouched master to work with, and you can export the master at anytime if you wish.
     
  9. Dark thread starter macrumors regular

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    Aug 22, 2005
    Location:
    New Jersey
    #9
    Yeah I started reaching up on the Aperture Pro Training Manual. I was just confused on the archiving structure of Aperture. I think what I'll do is only use Aperture for my Raw shoots, like Landscape, abstract and portraits as opposed to the Sports Photography I do. I see now how I can export all my originals and still have a master file in the Aperture Library. I have an external HD that I use for my personal file backup. Im assuming that it would be smart to create a vault on there as well for my Aperture stuff.
     
  10. peterj1967 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2002
    #10
    I don't have aperture so I may be missunderstanding your reply, but a RAW file, by nature, will always be able to revert to its original untouched state. You never need to keep a second copy, other then standard backup.



     
  11. snap58 macrumors 6502

    snap58

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    Jan 29, 2006
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    somewhere in kansas
    #11
    Yes, it has to do with Darks comments, see #6. You can at anytime export master RAW or others files form Aperture, and can always work another master copy in the program. Was not sure he understood that part.
     
  12. compuwar macrumors 601

    compuwar

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    Location:
    Northern/Central VA
    #12
    There are only about three advantages to shooting raw:

    1. Once you save a jpeg, any additional edits will lose quality, so if you do multiple edits, you'll end up with a worse and worse picture.

    2. You can set white balance, sharpening or any effects in post-processing without any ill effects.

    3. If you're willing to shoot right at the right hand side of the histogram, you can process an image and get better shadow detail, and maximize the dynamic range of your shots:

    http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tutorials/expose-right.shtml
     
  13. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

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    Feb 19, 2005
    #13
    RAW: It is basically the digital form of a negative. Having shot film, still shooting film, raw is more important to me than ever before. However, I have shot and will continue to shoot when the mood strikes me in JPEG. Why? Because having shot film, 35mm medium, large (4x5, 8x10, 11x14) you learn to do all of the work you can in camera. If you can get a near perfect negative then you will ultimately spend less time in the darkroom fixing your prints. This is important in the film world, not so important in the digital world. I get that and I like both worlds. But raw at least lets me have what is exactly from the camera. It lets me learn so that the next time my only process would be to import the photos and save as tiff or jpeg. No post processing necessary.
     
  14. compuwar macrumors 601

    compuwar

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    Oct 5, 2006
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    Northern/Central VA
    #14
    Funnily enough, I found myself spending *more* time printing great negatives than poor ones because I knew I could tweak them to be even better. I'd recommend reading the luminous-landscape link above for why you can't not post-process if you want the most dynamic range out of a digital camera, since sensors are linear in exposure.
     
  15. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #15
    Aperture does not ever make changes to the RAW image files. So in theory you could always export those files out of Aperture and have your unchangesd files back. In fact, you might have a better chance if _finding_ those RAW files if they atre inside an Aperture library than if theywere in a folder sorted by date. Can you really remember the date you did that landscape photo with the sailboat in it? Let's see was it 8 or 6 years ago....?

    That said. The very first thing I do is download the memory card to a desktop folder then burn the folder to CDROM. So I have a CD copy of the camera memory card. Then I import from the folder. I have been using computers as eeither a software engineer or system admin from way back before the PC era back when computers filled rooms. We always had the rule that importent data needs to kept, at a minimum, in three copies and in two diferent physical locations. I think any workflow should as quickly as possable get you to having three copies of your work. If the goal is to make these photos last 50+ years even three copies is not enough
     

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