Help with RAW processing?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by gryffinwings, Apr 28, 2012.

  1. gryffinwings macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2012
    #1
    I'm just getting in processing RAW from my Nikon D5100.

    I use Adobe DNG Converter and Aperture 2. Could anyone guide me I a direction in how to best use the converter and which adjustments are most important in aperture and maybe some more guidance. I'm doing ok, but want to take it up to the next level, and if you can direct me to a tutorial that would be great.
     
  2. mofunk macrumors 68000

    mofunk

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    Location:
    Americas
    #2
    When you upload to Aperture it should convert it for you. Every Apple photo editor has a converter or Camera RAW updated. It will convert it to a DNG file. This allows your App to read the raw file from your Nikon camera.


    http://www.apple.com/aperture/specs/raw.html

    The updates for Aperture 3 are the same for Version 2 for Camera RAW.
     
  3. gryffinwings, Apr 28, 2012
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2012

    gryffinwings thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2012
    #3
    I understand at, I forgot to mention that I'm using a Mac G5 and I don't plan on upgrading for a while, so I have to do the converting via a separate program, sense aperture 2 doesn't support the Nikon D5100.

    Does the camera do any processing of the RAW photo when the picture is taken?
     
  4. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2001
    Location:
    Sendai, Japan
    #4
    Processing RAW files takes a lot of cpu horsepower and memory. I think you underestimate that. Even my current machine (a maxed out 2010 MacBook Pro with SSD upgrade) starts sweating heavily when I launch Aperture and edit RAW files or worse, make a book. Just putting 100 RAW files into memory (8~10 or ~20 MB each, depending of whether they are D80 or D7000 RAW files) takes up a lot of resources). I wouldn't want to think about complicating my workflow by having to convert my RAW files first.

    Perhaps instead of shoehorning a RAW workflow onto your system, I strongly encourage you to stick to jpg and start saving for a new machine. An iMac G5 is quite old (comparable to the 20-year-old college car) and OS X has since moved on. To give you an idea by how much: the current iPhone 4S has about the same cpu horsepower as your iMac and has a much faster GPU!
    No, only the embedded jpg for previewing purposes is generated, but that's it. A RAW file is a digital negative and needs to be processed by your computer.
     
  5. Bear macrumors G3

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    Jul 23, 2002
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    Sol III - Terra
    #5
    I have to disagree with this advice. It almost feels like if we were talking film, you're advocating getting a Polaroid instead of a film SLR. If the performance and workflow is acceptable to gryffinwings (which he made no complaint of) why tell him to toss away useful image data?

    Also, based on gryffinwings recent posts he is comfortable with the performance and workflow of his system.


    Exactly this.
     
  6. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

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    Apr 14, 2001
    Location:
    Sendai, Japan
    #6
    No, that's not what I meant to imply. I remember running Aperture 2 and 3 on a first-gen MacBook Pro with 2 GB RAM, a system that is significantly more powerful than the OP's system. Editing RAWs on that system tended to be a pain, Aperture would quickly run out of RAM, edits would take a very long time, etc. And that was with the smaller NEF files that my deceased D80 produced, RAW files of my D7000 are more than twice as large on average. I don't want to imagine if I were forced to do that with a G5.

    The OP is forced to take a detour and convert NEFs to DNGs first, and then import the converted photos. He is excluded from further upgrades to Aperture and OS X, etc. I'm all for keeping things as long as they're useful -- which in most cases means as long as they work for me. If my system is 2~3 years old or so, I start saving for a new machine, because from experience, I know I need a new machine every 4~5 years. I don't think it's very clever to cling to an 7+-year-old machine* and pretend it'll work forever. I don't think it's a responsible thing to do.

    (By the way, back in the film days, I didn't like Polaroids, I preferred my Nikon slr by far. :p)

    * The last G5-based iMacs were released in 2005.
     
  7. mofunk macrumors 68000

    mofunk

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    Location:
    Americas
    #7
    I don't have Aperture 2 on my Mac, but I did a search for Aperture 2 and the Camera Raw updater for your camera, and there was one. It was the exact same one for iPhoto and Aperture 3. I have Aperture 3 trial and iPhoto 10 on my Mac. I still get Camera Raw Updates for them. Maybe you can try downloading it from the site vs using Software Update...

    This way it will be working in the background for you. And you can go that route. It's kinda odd that your Aperture 2 is not updated.

    ((re-reading)) You want to know how to edit your RAW images? Ahh gotcha. It really depends on what you shoot and how you want your images to look. Just go to youtube and check out videos on Aperture 3. I know you are using Ap2, but it's basically the same.

    here are some more adjustments
    http://www.apple.com/aperture/how-to/
     
  8. gryffinwings thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2012
    #8
    So far I've found my way of improving pictures so far when the conditions are sunny on the beach. From my Nikon D5100.

    Increase Temp a bit
    Increase Exposure
    Decrease Brightness
    Increase Vibrancy a little bit

    It really allows the colors and subject to pop really well, I'm so far very impressed with what I've been able to do with Aperture 2.

    Also the work flow speed is just fine on my Mac G5, no problems, it lags a very little bit, but I have no problems with that, probably just need to add another 2 GBs of RAM and I would be fine.
     
  9. Mr.Noisy macrumors 65816

    Mr.Noisy

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    May 5, 2007
    Location:
    UK™
    #9
    Adding more RAM helps greatly, upgrade as much as you can as memory is cheap enough now, as for your RAW workflow, try adjusting exposure first then the white balance, then have a play, just take your time, and develop your own workflow that your happy with, apertures definition tool is nice too.

    good luck ;)
     
  10. gryffinwings thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2012
    #10
    However since I have a Nikon D5100, that listing says I require Aperture 3, which is why I use the DNG converter.
     
  11. mofunk macrumors 68000

    mofunk

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    Location:
    Americas
    #11
    Sorry the list is a current list which (from what I've gathered) works with Aperture 2. When you go to Support - Downloads - search Aperture 2


    http://support.apple.com/kb/DL1386

    ahhh gotcha .. looking at it again I see what it is. Maybe if you don't want to spend the $80 for Aperture 3, just get iPhoto 11. I need to test it and see if it works, cause that sucks. My brain is now working... I have the same problem with Lightroom3 and PS4. Camera RAW is updated on LR but not with Photoshop 4. gotcha.
     
  12. Designer Dale macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

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    Folding space
    #12
    The OP has PPC iMac, and all the updates you suggest require an Intel based machine. Since you have several PPC machines, what would suggest he/she use to read these files?

    Dale
     

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