G1 -> CS3 RAW Solution? (eg Any way to use DNG5.4 without CS4?)

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Makosuke, Jul 15, 2009.

  1. Makosuke macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2001
    The Cool Part of CA, USA
    I'm pretty sure I already know the answer to this problem, and Google didn't help, but hey, never hurts to ask.

    Long story short, is there some method I'm missing for (cleanly) opening the DNG v5.4 files necessary to get the most from a Panasonic G1 in Photoshop CS3? Or am I stuck using the clumsy included app for that, and waiting for Apple to add support to iPhoto so I can hand that work off to it?

    Short story long:

    I just got a Panasonic G1. My previous photo workflow (not work as in I'm a pro, work as in how I deal with my best photos) with an FZ8 was to use Adobe's converter to convert from that camera's RAW files into DNGs, which I would then catalog in iPhoto. When I wanted to do something with one, iPhoto handed it off to Photoshop CS3. This worked great.

    Well, the G1 added a feature to its RAW files where a correction factor for the lens is included. Adobe, thankfully, recently updated their DNG converter to handle this properly with the new DNG v5.4 files.

    Except, of course, there is no importer for those in CS3. They want you to buy CS4. Bastards. You can convert to the older DNG format, but doing so quadruples the file size and loses some of the flexibility on top of that.

    Now, even if I had several hundred dollars laying around for CS4, which I don't, I haven't seen a thing added over CS3 that I'd actually use and a whole lot of changes I don't like. And even if I *did* want it, the past two months of fighting Adobe's installer monstrosities at work has filled me with a burning rage that I don't think I'd give them money even if you threatened to kick me in the tender bits. That there's no backward compatibility for DNG 5.4 in CS3 just makes my rage burn hotter.

    Here's hoping, however, that I've overlooked some obvious solution. I even read here and there about one of the betas out of Adobe labs actually working with v5.4/CS3, although I haven't been able to figure out if it was actually just using the interim kludge method of dealing with G1 RAWs in the pre-5.4 DNG spec and people posting about it were just not making that clear or misunderstanding what was going on.
  2. ghileman macrumors regular

    Feb 4, 2008
    did you ever get an answer to this question?

    i'm trying to use Photoshop CS3 with G1 RAW files. Is this possible?
  3. Makosuke thread starter macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2001
    The Cool Part of CA, USA
    Unsurprisingly, no, I haven't come up with any solution other than setting the DNG converter to produce 4.6 compatible files, which will work with CS3 but are huge (and, though I'm not sure, may also lose some information).

    Although, after getting an adapter to use some of my dad's old Minolta manual lenses, I discovered that if you're using a lens that doesn't supply correction data Adobe's RAW converter will automatically produce CS3-compatible DNG files. Presumably this would also be the case with adapted non-micro 4/3 lenses.

    It's really rather annoying since the RAW processor is completely separate from Photoshop itself, and comparatively simple, so I can't imagine it would be difficult to give away or sell just that component to CS3 owners who really don't want to fork over for CS4.

    I'm currently considering converting to incompatible, small, 5.4 DNGs, and then converting from THOSE to temporary interim 4.6 DNGs for just the Photoshop import process. Since iPhoto doesn't support 5.4 yet and I have neither Aperture nor Lightroom this makes for a pain-in-the-butt workflow, but it's better than nothing.

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