I Will Not Shot in RAW

Started May 19, 2013 | Discussions thread
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Repeating the same non-argument
In reply to Marco Nero, May 21, 2013

I can't disagree about JPEG files looking better than they used to.  Comparing old cameras to new ones, however, doesn't mean RAW has been made obsolete.  Better sensors mean cleaner images period, whether processed into JPEG or unprocessed RAW.

Again with the steak metaphor.  You are responsible for your steak no matter how great the camera is at encoding JPEGs.  You are the one setting things beforehand and you're setting them in stone.  If you're good at it, you don't have a whole lot to worry about, but if you chose to keep the raw slab of meat then when your cooking techniques are better you'll have the option to try the same slab of meat cooked a million different ways and on better grills.  You even have the option to have a grill master take that same, perfectly preserve piece of beef and go to town on it if you're given the opportunity.

The JPEG can be encoded exactly as the camera would have encoded it by using the RAW file and Canon's DPP.  Set everything just as you would and the images will be the same, even though one camera in the form of the G1 X refuses to encode a RAW+JPEG combo with the camera's JPEG settings.  Those exact same settings can be done after the fact.

If JPEG files have improved so dramatically as a result of much better sensors and that fits one's needs, then that really is awesome.  It saves space and time, but it doesn't allow for the maximum flexibility in future changes.  RAW is all about options.  It isn't about not taking the time to get the shot right the first time, it is about not forcing you to live with that moment's decisions about camera settings for the rest of your life.  And if you can edit a JPEG then you can do an even better job editing a RAW.  It's just that simple and it's the truth.  Split hairs all you want about how meaningful the differences are, but to some the differences matter and those are the people who happily buy a larger hard drive to accommodate their priceless files.

So much happens when encoding a JPEG that despite the great new processors put in cameras now they still won't do as well as a computer and powerful editor.  Every single highlight and luminance level is preserved without gamma correction, curves, sharpening, contrast, white balance, or anything else permanently altering/discarding the data.  All of those algorithms and more complex ones like demosaicing processes are always improving but cameras very rarely have their firmware upgraded to include new advancements in those areas.....maybe the processors have already been optimized and can't go much further.

There's nothing wrong with shooting JPEG.  To say RAW has no meaningful advantages or downplaying the fact that they are important differences is either ignorant or self-deluding.

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Canon PowerShot G1 X
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