Photoshop CS3 Beta....

Started Mar 25, 2007 | Discussions thread
Z (is real) Veteran Member • Posts: 3,269
Re: Danger, wait for update

X3F files are similar to DNG in that the format is designed to contain all the info that a converter needs to turn the raw file into an image. Thus the Foveon provided code used in prior versions of ACR converts the SD14 files as it did with SD9/SD10 files.

(I have heard reports that dcraw does not work with SD14 files yet. My guess is the reverse engineering is not complete and it isn't known where to read certain info from the file and thus values that the Foveon code gets from the file had to be hardcoded. It is very difficult to do that type of reverse engineering, handling future camera possibilities, if only files from a very small number of camera models are available. Since the SD9 and SD10 are basically the same file format and parameters, there was only one case to work from prior to the SD14.)

The issue is that Foveon has evolved their algorithms for doing the conversion and thus can offer higher quality with their new code. This code is not in ACR 3. or 4.0 .

Kendall has posted a number of times saying the quality of conversion with ACR 3.7/4.0 for the SD14 is unacceptable many times but is pretty light on specifics. It would be useful to the entire community if he, or others, elaborated on what doesn't work well. To my eye it is in the same range of quality as was provided for the SD9/SD10 and is usable. At least for the relatively non-challenging images I've had a chance to work with so far.

(I can't really go into details on what to expect with the updated code. The difference between the prior version of SPP and the newest one would be a good guide.)

Bottom line is that the X3F file format handles new products gracefully and you can use existing versions of Adobe's raw converter with SD14 files today. Image quality can be argued, but SPP vs ACR could be argued with the SD9/SD10 as well.

-Z-

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