RAW photos on iPad?

jclardy

macrumors 68040
Original poster
Oct 6, 2008
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I was glancing at the buyers guide for the iPad Pro and noticed it mentioned this in the blurb about the new storage controller:

The speed at which the A9X can process data required Apple to design a new memory architecture with a revamped desktop-class storage controller that results in faster read and write speeds. With the new controller, 4K videos and large numbers of RAW photos can be opened quickly.
It mentions that "large numbers of RAW photos can be opened quickly." Have I missed something in iOS 8 or 9? Does the iPad now allow you to edit actual RAW files? Last time I tried it would import raw files, but then any app using them would just by working on the jpeg preview. So you could "edit" them but you lose the extra flexibility that raw files provide.
 

gteska

macrumors member
Apr 21, 2015
70
16
Greenville, SC
I was glancing at the buyers guide for the iPad Pro and noticed it mentioned this in the blurb about the new storage controller:



It mentions that "large numbers of RAW photos can be opened quickly." Have I missed something in iOS 8 or 9? Does the iPad now allow you to edit actual RAW files? Last time I tried it would import raw files, but then any app using them would just by working on the jpeg preview. So you could "edit" them but you lose the extra flexibility that raw files provide.
It is certainly not clear at this point what will be possible with the iPad Pro when it comes to Raw files. The hardware is certainly capable, but will the Adobe suite of products available for the iPad Pro support Raw files? We'll know soon. This is one of the first things I will be checking out this weekend after I have my new iPad Pro. I'll let you know what I find out.
 
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BrettJDeriso

macrumors regular
Jan 15, 2010
162
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Northern Virginia
To date, there has not been a RAW workflow worth shouting about on iPad. Like sparksd said, most apps only work with RAW files that either have an embedded JPEG, or they give you the unprocessed RAW info. I'm guessing nobody has wanted to wade into the swamp of weekly RAW engine updates that are required to keep applications compatible with the ever-expanding selection of camera models. I think the iPad Pro certainly has the hardware specs to pull it off, but until Adobe or Phase One get on board, I'm not getting my hopes up.

I very much look forward to the day I can shoot DSLR RAWs directly into a tethered iPad (wired or wirelessly) and do the previewing, triage, and initial edits in the field. Until then, there will always be a place in my camera bag for my Macbook Air.
 
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sparksd

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Jun 7, 2015
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This is actually a very good use case for my Asus TF700T Android tablet with clamshell keyboard that my iPad Air 2 really cannot handle - RAW photo work while traveling without a laptop. Using a file explorer app, I use the keyboard's built-in USB and SD card ports to transfer my Canon RAW photos from my camera's card to a portable HDD - actually works very quickly. I can view and edit the RAW photos on the HDD using Photo Mate R2, an app whose processing and output are excellent. I use another app to view the finished JPEGs on the HDD - I don't need to import them to the tablet. Love my Air 2 but there are some things it just can't do well.
 

BrettJDeriso

macrumors regular
Jan 15, 2010
162
59
Northern Virginia
This is actually a very good use case for my Asus TF700T Android tablet with clamshell keyboard that my iPad Air 2 really cannot handle - RAW photo work while traveling without a laptop. Using a file explorer app, I use the keyboard's built-in USB and SD card ports to transfer my Canon RAW photos from my camera's card to a portable HDD - actually works very quickly. I can view and edit the RAW photos on the HDD using Photo Mate R2, an app whose processing and output are excellent. I use another app to view the finished JPEGs on the HDD - I don't need to import them to the tablet. Love my Air 2 but there are some things it just can't do well.
Hmmm... hadn't considered Photo Mate R2. I pretty much gave up trying to get a RAW workflow on my Android tablets. The closest I've come to full, tablet-only RAW workflow was running full desktop Lightroom and PShop CC on the Surface Pro 3. Perfectly capable setup with or without an external HDD, but it's still not as thin or sexy as an iPad.

LR's Smart Preview option is a decent compromise, but it tends to fall apart if you want to sync with more than one LR library. Given that my NEF assets are all stored on a network drive anyway, and the urge to edit usually strikes when I'm on the road, it might make some sense to start carrying smart previews. It's workable -I just haven't given it much thought.
 

sparksd

macrumors 68040
Jun 7, 2015
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Seattle WA
Hmmm... hadn't considered Photo Mate R2. I pretty much gave up trying to get a RAW workflow on my Android tablets. The closest I've come to full, tablet-only RAW workflow was running full desktop Lightroom and PShop CC on the Surface Pro 3. Perfectly capable setup with or without an external HDD, but it's still not as thin or sexy as an iPad.

LR's Smart Preview option is a decent compromise, but it tends to fall apart if you want to sync with more than one LR library. Given that my NEF assets are all stored on a network drive anyway, and the urge to edit usually strikes when I'm on the road, it might make some sense to start carrying smart previews. It's workable -I just haven't given it much thought.
In the end all, to get a good finished product there really is not a good substitute for RAW editing other than a machine with ample horsepower and a calibrated monitor. My road editing is really to just get a good idea of what my shots are looking like and to backup my RAW images.
 
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