In love with the FZ200 right out of the box

Started Mar 31, 2013 | Discussions thread
SirLataxe
Senior MemberPosts: 1,420
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Re: SirLatex - Something I might even try, but I am not worthy . . .
In reply to Mikedigi, Apr 2, 2013

Mikedigi wrote:

SirLatex, OK, let's pretend:

St Michael,

Your question:

  • "Can I then, without any other software .... take RAW photos with, say, -0.66 EV under-exposure, and then hit a button in SP 5 Pro to get acceptable JPEGs, i.e. at least as good as I can get with my usual weird JPEG habits"?

Well yes ..... but why would you want to apply the very same (automated) "PPs" to each and every photo, no matter what it's subject matter and taking conditions?  In other words, before answering your question, I'll just point out that it's the wrong question, since it's based on the fallacious idea that every image is the same, should look the same and therefore requires the same development process.

But this to the side (for the moment).

Silkypix has the notion of "taste", which is like other RAW development software "presets" or "profiles".  It is a set of values for some or all of the various development controls  (everything from tone & colour controls to cropping, NR, sharpening and loads of others) that Silkypix has.  The set of values will render the RAW file to have a certain "look" (in the Silkypix-developed TIFF or jpeg) just as setting FZ200 camera jpeg controls will render the RAW file to have a certain "look" (in the camera jpeg).

You can derive and save any number of these Silkypix "tastes" then call one up to automatically render the RAW file to have the associated "look" in the output TIFF or jpeg.

Silkypix, when it first opens a RAW file, will render it according to it's "default" taste.  If you don't specify & save the default taste yourself, Silkypix uses built-in values for it's various control sliders to render the RAW file into a viewable image.  Silkypix seems to be quite clever at varying these automatically-derived values for it's "default" rendering, with the variations driven by ISO, the amount of noise, WB, the exposure and so forth.

So, you could load all your RAWs straight into Silkypix, highlight them all then tell Silky to render them into 16bit TIFFs, 8bit jpegs or whatever and it will automatically output all those TIFFs or jpegs, in one pass.  It can do so using it's own built-in "default" development parameters; or your own personal ones that you've specified and saved as the new "default" values. This is EXACTLY like setting controls on the camera (or leaving the default ones) that result in the camera developing and storing its own jpegs.....

.....except that you can decide to go back and alter the "default" development parameters to something more suitable to the image then redevelop it .... and you can control the development with much more finesse than you can with the relatively crude & limited controls of the camera jpeg engine ..... and you have 16bit output files to correct elsewhere (should you want to) rather than 8bit files.

*****

My own workflow in Silkypix is something like the above except that I know I don't want every kind of image to be developed in the same way.  Portraits and landscapes, for example, need quite different treatment. Some landscapes need to be dreamy and soft; some need to be sharp and vivid.  Etc..

Therefore I have derived various "part-tastes" that I overlay on the basic Silkypix "default" values, for different image types.  Some increase sharpnening and decrease NR.  Some change the WB and the colour profile. SOme apply a tone curve. Etc..

You can do something of the same with the camera jpeg engine controls - but they are crude.  You can turn 4 parameters up or down in 5 steps.  Many of these steps (particularly in NR and sharpening) introduce undesirable effects (smears, jags, blocks, outline halos, etc.) so are effectively useless.  You can only set these controls BEFORE taking the photo - no subsequent corrections allowed!

*****

Personally I tend to do a last-sharpen outside of Silkypix, in Photoshop.  The Photoshop controls allow very fine and targetted sharpening to be done in a way that can't be done by Silkypix (and defnitely not by the camera jpeg engine).  Photoshop is also good for various other image-improvement techniques that involve masks, layers, channels, cloning and all the other sophisticated stuff of Photoshop.  I don't often use these but sometimes one needs to remove a lampost sticking out the top of someone's head!

So, despite your fervent wish:

  •  "I'm sufficiently prehistoric to hope that my camera will produce a jolly good photo, not a DIY kit . . . innit?" 

I'm afraid it won't come true.  Is there a camera on Earth for which this could be true?  Was there ever in film days?  I suppose so - it's the studio camera that only takes the same sort of portraits in the same lighting to render into the same sort of prints for the same purpose (the passport photobooth). 

We photographers, on the other hand, prefer to practice the craft, which consists of more than pressing a Big Green Button on a mysterious machine in order to make it auto-gurgitate a plastic thing that doesn't work very well, look very good or otherwise meet our requirements.

One must be careful that what is wished for doesn't come true.  The logic of your wish is that, eventually, you will get some other bloke to take the pictures for you.  I understand that there are small businesses everywhere-about that do just this. 

SirLataxe, who always enjoys the journey and starts a new one as soon as he gets there.

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