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MetaRaw plugin offers Photoshop and Elements users broader Raw support

By dpreview staff on Jun 17, 2013 at 20:21 GMT

The Plugin Site has created the MetaRaw plugin for Photoshop and Photoshop Elements that allows the conversion of Raw files not supported by the associated version of Adobe Camera Raw. The MetaRaw plugin offers access to three Raw conversion methods - ACR, DNG Converter or its own, dcraw-based converter. It also allows Elements 10 and 11 users to access ACR's lens correction and chromatic aberration tools.

The MetaRaw plugin gives uses the ability to open a Raw file in Adobe Camera Raw (with access to more features for Elements users), to run it through Adobe DNG converter and open the results, without leaving the software (giving access to Raw support for more cameras than their version of ACR offers), or use a built-in, dcraw-based, Raw converter, which adds support for 13 formats and 50 cameras not supported by Adobe. This includes support for Sigma's Merrill models.

MetaRaw provides in-software access to a choice of Raw conversion engines

The plugin is currently only available for Windows, and can be downloaded for $39.95.

Comments

Total comments: 34
bob elkind
By bob elkind (9 months ago)

Just to confirm what I believe to be true:

MetaRaw does *not* permit the use of (example) ACR 8.x (which supports the Nikon D800) with Photoshop CS5.

MetaRaw does provide support for Nikon D800 to CS5 through MetaRaw's DCRaw conversion engine.

MetaRaw does provide support for Nikon D800 to CS5 through Adobe's DNG converter.

Do I have these right?

0 upvotes
HarryG7
By HarryG7 (9 months ago)

MetaRaw could allow running ACR 8 in older Photoshop versions, but that would be illegal, so such a feature was not built into it. So you are right.

0 upvotes
Jim Evidon
By Jim Evidon (10 months ago)

All of the comments, so far, show why camera manufacturers should use a common raw converter. Adobe tried to encourage a move in that direction with DNG which is used by Leica and very few others. It is time that, at least the smaller manufacturers stop putting out their excellent products that have proprietary converter codes. If they would all get on board, then we consumers would all benefit. Certainly, the dizzying assortment of RAW converters packaged with cameras cannot be a major profit center for them, so why do they do it? Even competing cameras that use exactly the same sensor use proprietary RAW converter codes. It is time they all cooperated, at least to that extent.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
3 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (10 months ago)

What are you talking about?

DNG is a format not a converter. And different raw converters do extraction of various raw formats differently. Just download the trialware of Silkypix5 and pick a raw file to try out--doesn't really matter there results are horrid.

Then try ACR or Aftershot, or C1, or PhotoNinja.

No one pays much attention to raw converters packaged with cameras. Except that people defend Canon's. The specialized Silkypix3 for Fuji X camera raws isn't horrid. And then of course Sigma's ProPhoto is the only game in town for recent DP Merrill Sigmas.

And by the way Adobe has more than one variation of the DNG format. Just try opening a recent DNG with say PSE 3.

2 upvotes
mootaineer
By mootaineer (10 months ago)

Not so fast for us Fuji X-Trans users.
I'll post more later but I see more artefacts than with LR4.4.
This is with sharpness reduced to 0, but I'll have to try a few more tests first.

My only reason for needing to upgrade to CS6 is because of the X-Trans support in ACR (for my X100s). Otherwise I'm still using a Nikon D700 (and Ricoh GRD iv) so ok with CS5.
I'm also "one of those users" who don't like LR's catalogue mechanism so bought LR4 but looking to go back to CS.

I'm still hopeful.

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 11 minutes after posting
1 upvote
HarryG7
By HarryG7 (10 months ago)

If you use Adobe DNG Converter 8.1 within MetaRaw you get an identical image quality as in the latest Adobe Camera Raw. MetaRaw's own converter produces images with a slightly different look from X-Trans raw files. It is your choice which one you want to use.

2 upvotes
mootaineer
By mootaineer (10 months ago)

Thanks Harry. I didn't know that but I will give it a try.
My "only" other options are to stick to LR4.4 or go Adobe Photoshop CC.
Photoshop CC isn't really my preferred option.

0 upvotes
Nikonworks
By Nikonworks (10 months ago)

Adios Adobe!

1 upvote
nnowak
By nnowak (10 months ago)

Finally! The primary reason I have been upgrading Photoshop the last few years has been eliminated with an inexpensive plugin. That 5% of my subconscious that was still tempted to switch to Adobe CC just died.

This almost seems too good to be true!

7 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (10 months ago)

This is probably just a variation of DCRAW (I've not checked yet) and DCRAW isn't the greatest raw extraction software.

Bet this plugin no matter how good at raw extraction likely doesn't solve the problem of not being able to view new camera raws in Bridge CS6 that will start to show up in say 10 months, or perhaps next week.

Comment edited 23 seconds after posting
1 upvote
HarryG7
By HarryG7 (10 months ago)

Most image viewers, including Bridge, let you view raw files, even if they are not able to convert the raw data. They do it by showing the thumbails and JPEG images, which are embedded in as good as all raw files.

2 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (10 months ago)

HarryG7-

Never mind, too many viewers to keep track of here, I'd posted about that Thumbs Plus (Cerious) and what it doesn't view.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 6 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
solarsky
By solarsky (10 months ago)

@HarryG7

Thank you so much for going to such lemgths in order to create the proper support for Sigma-cameras, which should have been done right in the first place by the screw-yous at Adobe. I find it technologically fascinating that you prupose to actually use Sigma Photo Pro in the background for best conversion-quality of Foveon-files. We Foveon-Fans should go absolutely mad about your clever and distinct proposition. I sincerely hope that you get a huge support for MetaRaw!

0 upvotes
HarryG7
By HarryG7 (10 months ago)

Thanks! Running Sigma Photo Pro in an automated fashion although it has no command line will be a challenge, but should be doable.

0 upvotes
dbateman
By dbateman (10 months ago)

@Harry G7
I responded below, but it falls off the page. It would be great to have Sigma support through Sigma Photo Pro. The software has the best results for Sigma cameras (I own one) but is a pain to use and is counter intuitive. IF you do get it to work, it would be an amazing addition for the growing Sigma users!

0 upvotes
Kinematic Digit
By Kinematic Digit (10 months ago)

I very much like the idea of DCRAW control in this plug in architecture, but I wonder how much control I have over the DCRAW options I have using this.

Hoping for a Mac version as well and what version of DCRAW is supported?

0 upvotes
HarryG7
By HarryG7 (10 months ago)

MetaRaw uses the latest version of dcraw with some additional improvements. You can see the currently supported features on the last screenshot on the Screenshots page of the MetaRaw product pages.

A Mac version is planned, but there is no schedule yet.

0 upvotes
Edymagno
By Edymagno (10 months ago)

This is best idea since sliced bread. When for Mac?

1 upvote
IrinaJolo4
By IrinaJolo4 (10 months ago)

a bit expensive, since DNG converter is free and can do batch processing. I still have CS2, so not much added that the DNG free converter can do. If

2 upvotes
dbateman
By dbateman (10 months ago)

@ IrinaJolo4,
Thanks for copying and pasting my comment. I see you get 2 likes for it :)

1 upvote
dbateman
By dbateman (10 months ago)

Seems like an interesting idea. Works with old versions of Photoshop as well. But I think its a bit expensive, since DNG converter is free and can do batch processing. I still have CS2, so not much added that the DNG free converter can do. If I had CS3 then I could use the filter feature, which I don't think I would ever use.

After Adobes PR explosion. I am expecting many more Raw software tools out there springing up. Hopefully Topaz will handle Raw files soon. That would be great.

1 upvote
tkbslc
By tkbslc (10 months ago)

DNG converter requires pre-conversion and duplicate files, though. For $40, if it saves a photoshop upgrade and streamlines your workflow, it sounds well worth it.

4 upvotes
HarryG7
By HarryG7 (10 months ago)

The Camera Raw Filter feature of MetaRaw will be work in Photoshop CS1 and CS2 in a future update.

2 upvotes
pedrolito
By pedrolito (10 months ago)

there is said: will open raws from sigma sd1m, dpxm

yes it does but the color is completely off. same like dcraw.

maybe in a few weeks and some updates ahead

0 upvotes
dbateman
By dbateman (10 months ago)

I doubt it. Since it uses dcraw as its own converter. Need a fix to how dcraw handles the files.

0 upvotes
pedrolito
By pedrolito (10 months ago)

I tried the plugin.

0 upvotes
Mescalamba
By Mescalamba (10 months ago)

Custom color profile might help fixing it.. Just saying.

0 upvotes
HarryG7
By HarryG7 (10 months ago)

I am the main developer of MetaRaw. I noticed myself that dcraw and thus MetaRaw produces bad colors for Sigma X3f raw files.

I tried improving the X3f conversion of dcraw. It seems that it performs a wrong conversion from Foveon color space to RGB, which causes the bad colors. As I found no information about how to do it correctly, I had no luck making it work so far.

Unfortunately Adobe Camera Raw does not support all Sigma camera models and produces overexposed and oversaturated results with default settings. A future update of MetaRaw will make make sure that Camera Raw uses more sensible default setting for X3F raw files.

Otherwise it seems that only Sigma Photo Pro (any maybe Silky Pix, but I did not check it out) are able to convert Merrill X3f files. It is planned to support Sigma Photo Pro in MetaRaw. This means that MetaRaw will run Sigma Photo Pro hidden in the background, so that the Camera Raw workflow is not disrupted.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 9 minutes after posting
8 upvotes
Hornbrille
By Hornbrille (10 months ago)

@HarryG7:
Silkypix doesn't support Sigma Merrill files.

0 upvotes
brittonx
By brittonx (10 months ago)

@HarryG7 - Thank you for working on better support for the Sigma X3F files.

0 upvotes
dbateman
By dbateman (10 months ago)

@ Harry G7

That would be great if you did use sigma pro in the background. I didn't think it was possible. But that would make your tool worth while.

0 upvotes
ashwins
By ashwins (10 months ago)

@ Harry G7

That would also be great if this plugin was available for Macs as well.

0 upvotes
jonathanknights
By jonathanknights (10 months ago)

Would be great to have this as a Mac version as well..
I would buy the Mac version but not the Windows one!

0 upvotes
cquarksnow
By cquarksnow (10 months ago)

Dave Coffin has been made well aware that the word "supported" for dcRaw is confusing, as for instance it means reading tags for a Merrill X3F, and even then I doubt the metadata is fully decoded, not to mention color extraction, noise handling and the like. So whoever wrote this article would need to provide the source of the Merrill claims.

0 upvotes
Total comments: 34