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The Everyday Sling might just be the perfect pack for not carrying too much gear, combining comfort with Peak Design's signature modern style.
If anyone understands the ins and outs of RAW, it's Dave Coffin, he has reverse engineered the RAW formats of almost every digital camera on the market and provides his code (dcraw.c) freely for anyone to use. He recently posted a note on his web page pointing out that the encryption of metadata (in the current Nikon vs. Adobe situation) is nothing new and that it's fairly common for manufacturers to apply some kind of protection to their RAW formats. We decided to ask him some of the questions this information raises and also those which have been asked by our readers.
From Dave's page (talking about metdata encryption):
A note about metadata encryption
A firestorm of controversy recently erupted when Thomas Knoll of Adobe accused Nikon of encrypting the white balance data in the D2X and D2Hs cameras, thus preventing Adobe from fully supporting these cameras.
I cracked this encryption on April 15, and updated dcraw.c and parse.c on April 17. So "dcraw -w" now works correctly with all Nikon cameras.
This is not a new problem. Phase One, Sony, Foveon, and Canon all apply some form of encryption to their RAW files. Dcraw decodes them all -- you can easily find decryption code by searching for the ^ operator.
Compression is not encryption. Phase One and Sony do encryption only. Kodak does compression only. Canon, Nikon, and Foveon compress the image data and encrypt some of the metadata.
We decided to try and get a bit more background to this and conducted a brief interview with Dave to discuss his work and the encryption / obfuscation of RAW data. It seems clear to us that while it's a concern that manufacturers are making it harder for the RAW decoders, this isn't something new and certainly (not at the moment at least) nothing that can't be cracked.
1. Can you just give us a short history of dcraw and how it got started?
It started in February 1997, when I bought a Canon PowerShot 600. Decoding the RAW data was more difficult than I had expected, knowing nothing about filter arrays, colorspace conversion, etc. But in August 1997, I found a decent interpolation technique, and finally was able to create images comparable in quality to Canon's.
Word slowly spread, and people asked me to do other cameras, sending me sample images to decode. I added support for the PowerShot A5 in May 1999 and the PowerShot A50 and Pro70 in May 2000.
In late September 2001, after months of effort, I finally figured out the lossless compression algorithm used by the PowerShots Pro90, G1, G2, S30, S40, and EOS D30/D60 cameras.
I solved the Canon EOS-1D on Jan 28, 2002 and the Nikon compressed NEF format on March 24, 2002. Olympus ORF format is not compressed, so it's much easier to decode.
On November 19, 2002, I was laid off. During that month, I added nineteen Kodak cameras, the PowerShot G3/S45, the Canon EOS-1DS, the Fuji S2, and the Minolta DiMAGE 7. In early December, I replaced the whole color-interpolation system, yielding sharper images for all cameras.
On December 10, I attacked the Sigma SD9. I solved the compression algorithm on December 31, then spent another six weeks constructing a Foveon-specific interpolation routine to enhance color and reduce noise.
2. As we know none of the manufacturers openly document their RAW formats, how long does it typically take for you to reverse-engineer a format?
It can take minutes or months, depending on the complexity of the format.
3. Are you ever concerned about the legal implications of reverse-engineering proprietary file formats?
If anyone sued me, I'd be the biggest free software hero since Jon Johanson. It's better for the camera makers to ignore me and hope I lose interest.
4. I take it that reverse-engineering the metadata out of the RAW file is just as complicated (if not more so) than the actual sensor data itself, is this correct?
Yes, the metadata is much more complicated. That's why dcraw reads only metadata necessary to decode the image, and ignores the rest.
5. Which RAW format was the first you worked on which showed signs of having its metadata deliberately encrypted / obsfuscated? Can you give us examples of other formats which have been made 'hard to decode' by the manufacturers?
The Canon PowerShot G6, S60, S70, and Pro1 apply a trivial XOR to the metadata related to color balance. Phase One encrypts the entire image in a slightly more complicated way.
6. I understand that Sony's SRF file format is encrypted, does this include the actual RAW data or just metadata?
Both are encrypted with a hard cipher. My sony_clear program decrypts the entire SRF file.
7. Do you believe manufacturers are doing this to protect their own RAW converters or simply as a method of compressing the metadata?
Encryption is not compression. XOR'ing cleartext with a key does not change the size of a file -- it only makes the contents harder to read.
8. It's clear that many photographers are concerned over the current situation between Adobe and Nikon because they feel it may be an indicator of worse to come (harder encryption, more 'locking down' of file data). So is this a storm in a teacup or a sign of more to come?
Photographers have reason to feel scared. Not being computer hackers, they feel powerless to stop Nikon from asserting property rights over their images.
I'm not so worried. Whatever scheme Nikon tries next, I'll just reverse-engineer it.
9. Is there a place for a standard 'Open' RAW format or does that raise too many issues to do with the sharing of proprietary image processing between competitive manufacturers?
Adobe Digital Negative (DNG) is a great format -- I totally redesigned dcraw for maximum DNG compatibility. But you won't see much enthusiasm from the camera makers. This Joel essay explains why:
Photoshop and digital cameras are complements. Adobe wants to commoditize the digital camera, and the camera makers want to stop them.
10. Manufacturers (Canon for example) claim that only they know how to use the RAW data - along with their knowledge of the sensor's characteristics - to squeeze the best possible quality out of their cameras. Our tests indicate this often isn't the case, with 3-rd party converters often getting better results. Is there any advantage a manufacturer might have when producing a RAW converter?
Whatever advantage the manufacturer has, it disappears when a camera reaches the market. Then anyone is free to buy the camera, shoot test patterns, and analyze the RAW data.
11. Are you aware of significant differences in the way the various manufacturer's converters process RAW files, as we see huge differences in the quality of output, or are they all basically the same thing, just some better optimized?
I don't know -- I usually trace the manufacturer's code just far enough to extract the RAW data.
12. How raw is a RAW file, are there any formats in which the sensor data has actually been modified before it's recorded?
Some Nikon cameras have gaps or spikes in the raw histogram, indicating that the colors were multiplied before being saved to the RAW file. Most cameras leave the RAW data alone, and write color multipliers into the metadata.
The Everyday Sling might just be the perfect pack for not carrying too much gear, combining comfort with Peak Design's signature modern style.
When the Fujifilm X-T2 arrived, it was more than just a modest upgrade to the already impressive X-T1. While the new X-T3 hasn't changed the overall design of the camera, this model is way more than an upgrade; rather, it's a quantum leap.
The Movie Maker is a compact, motorized slider designed for phones, action cams and small mirrorless cameras. We think it's a fun little kit and a good value proposition for the cost, provided you can work around a few of its weak points.
Nikon's Z7 is the first camera to use the all-new Z-mount, the company's first new full-frame mount since 1959. We've put together our first impressions based on quality shooting time with a pre-production camera - check out what we've found.
What's the best camera for a parent? The best cameras for shooting kids and family must have fast autofocus, good low-light image quality and great video. In this buying guide we've rounded-up several great cameras for parents, and recommended the best.
What's the best camera for shooting landscapes? High resolution, weather-sealed bodies and wide dynamic range are all important. In this buying guide we've rounded-up several great cameras for shooting landscapes, and recommended the best.
What’s the best camera costing over $2000? The best high-end camera costing more than $2000 should have plenty of resolution, exceptional build quality, good 4K video capture and top-notch autofocus for advanced and professional users. In this buying guide we’ve rounded up all the current interchangeable lens cameras costing over $2000 and recommended the best.
|Abstract bokeh by Minas_Eye|
from Your City - Bokeh in the City (Rerun)
|Green Tree Frog by BruceRH|
|Custom Red Roadster by Mitchmeister|
from Car Shows 2018
At Sony's press conference at Photokina the company announced that 12 more E-mount lenses will be arriving over the next two years. In addition, the company is working to utilize artificial intelligence in its technologies, with one application being Eye AF trained to detect animal eyes.
Sigma has said it will create a full-frame Foveon camera and will adopt the Leica L mount for its system. It will be able to adapt or convert SA mount lenses to the L mount, for existing users.
Hasselblad is expanding their X System with their announcement of three new lenses: the XCD 80mm F1.9, XCD 65mm F2.8 and XCD 135mm F2.8, along with a teleconverter. The 80mm F1.9 is the fastest in the system. Get all the details and check out Hasselblad's official sample images here.
Sigma has announced give new lenses at Photokina, including a 'Sport' series 70-200mm F2.8 and a 56mm F1.4 for Micro Four Thirds and Sony E mounts.
Sigma has announced the 28mm F1.4 Art, 40mm F1.4 Art, 70-200mm F2.8 Sport and 60-600mm F4.5-6.3 Sport lenses for several full frame lens mounts, including Canon, Nikon and, in the first two instances, Sony E.
ON1 has announced the impending launch of ON1 Photo RAW 2019. The new version, due out in November, brings a handful of new tools and features in a revamped interface.
Fujifilm has said it is developing a 100MP GFX medium format camera that will include both phase detection autofocus and in-body image stabilization. The 4K-capable camera will sell for around $10,000.
Leica has announced the S3 medium-format camera – an S2 successor with a 64MP sensor capable of 4K video.
The GFX 50R is a 50MP rangefinder-style mirrorless camera. It borrows heavily from the existing 50S model but in a smaller body and at a lower price. How does it differ?
Fujifilm has announced its GFX 50R, a rangefinder-styled version of the company's GFX 50S medium-format camera. The 'guts' of the two cameras are the same, with the difference being the design, weight and Bluetooth, all at a considerably lower price.
In this episode of DPReview TV, we get our hands on Fujifilm's GFX 50R which hides a medium-format sensor in a new, more compact body. Watch to get Chris and Jordan's first impressions on image quality, video and more.
Fujifilm is adding a trio of new medium-format lenses to its G-mount roadmap. GFX owners will soon be able to get their hands on 100-200mm F5.6, 45-100mm F4 and compact 50mm F3.5 lenses. Pricing and availability have not been announced.
Micro Four Thirds users will soon get a super fast, constant aperture wide angle zoom.
Panasonic has announced it is developing two full frame mirrorless cameras: the 47MP S1R and the 24MP S1. We've been shown fairly advanced-looking but non-functional prototype cameras, and have been able to squeeze a few details from Panasonic.
Panasonic is developing a pair of full-frame mirrorless cameras that use Leica's L-mount. The S1R will feature a 47MP sensor, while the S1 will be 24MP. Both cameras will support Dual IS shake reduction 4K/60p video capture and will have XQD and SD card slots.
Leica, Panasonic and Sigma are teaming up. Expect L-mount cameras from Panasonic as well as L-mount glass from Sigma.
Ricoh has announced the development of the GR III enthusiast compact, due to ship in early 2019. The camera gains sensor-shift image stabilization and an updated 24MP sensor with phase-detection. The 28mm equivalent F2.8 lens has also been redesigned and a touchscreen added.
The 'I'm Back' is now available for a range of old film-SLRs, such as Nikon's F-Series, the Olympus OM10 or the Canon AE-1.
IRIX has announced its latest lens, the 150mm F2.8 Macro 1:1. IRIX claims the lens features 'close to zero' distortion and stands out with its 150mm telephoto focal length.
The RF 24-105mm F4L IS USM is one of four lenses to launch with Canon's new full-frame mirrorless system, and it boasts the longest reach of the range. Take a look at some of the samples we've gathered thus far as our EOS R testing continues.
Nikon's Sendai factory in the Tōhoku region North of Japan has been churning out cameras and lenses since 1971. We had the opportunity recently to visit Sendai during events to mark the launch of Nikon's new Z mount.
There's no mistaking the Nikon Coolpix P1000 – with a 24-3000mm equivalent zoom, it really is in a class of its own. It's a conspicuous-looking superzoom with one main job: getting you really close to far away subjects. We've put together a gallery showing the kind of results you can expect from it.
A new report from The Verge claims Instagram is currently testing a feature that allows users to re-share posts to their own account feeds.
GoPro has announced its HERO7 camera lineup. The updated action cameras feature new HyperSmooth and TimeWarp modes, as well as improved video and photo specs.
The latest Samsung midrange smartphone offers a super-wide-angle lens in its triple-camera setup.
The Sony 24mm F1.4 is the latest lens to join the company's premium G Master lineup. We've been shooting with one for a couple of days - here's what you need to know.
Apple released iOS 12 a few days ago and some iPhone X users are less than happy with how the new operating system has made their phones look.
Camera bag manufacturer Lowepro has introduced mark II backpacks for its ProTactic AW range with models that are said to feature an improved handling experience as well as a collection of accessories that can be attached to the outside.
Canon has announced its latest superzoom camera, the PowerShot SX70 HS. Compared to the SX60 that came before it, the SX70 has the same lens but offers a higher resolution EVF, 4K video capture and support for Canon's new CR3 Raw format.
Cosina has announced its eighth lens designed specifically for Sony's E-mount system. The Voigtlander 21mm F3.5 lens is due out October 2018.