I have changed my mind.

Started Mar 23, 2008 | Discussions thread
JasonOdell Senior Member • Posts: 2,282
Re: I have changed my mind.

ACR can manipulate RAW files, but it only reads the bayer data and applies a WB correction based on its interpretation of the in-camera settings.

Once you click "open" in ACR, a TIFF file is produced, which is what Photoshop (proper) works on. Photoshop does not open RAW files; that is what ACR's job is.

Capture NX can both demosaic your NEF and then work on the processed image at the same time. NX has more overhead because it keeps the bayer data in memory-- every time you change a parameter in the "Base Adjustments" area of NX, the NEF is COMPLETELY re-processed from the ground up, as if you re-opened the file in ACR.

Other things unique to NX is the way it writes data (changes) into your NEFs-- NX will use a part of the NEF itself (kind of like a sub-directory) to write change data to (Note that it never overwrites the as-shot data in the NEF). In addition, NX updates the embedded preview JPEG in your NEF every time you save. This has a side-effect of slowing down batch operations as compared with ACR/Bridge, where the only thing ACR has to do is write a 10k sidecar XMP file outside of the NEF to "batch" changes. Every time you batch in NX, the image is completely re-rendered! If you use a browser like Photomechanic, which uses the embedded JPEGs to produce image previews, NX users get the benefit of seeing the edits you made to your file without having to create a separate JPEG or TIFF file of the NEF.

As others point out, the best way to speed up NX is to provide it with a secondary Hard Drive for cache files, and give it 2GB of RAM minimum. Those two things will help a LOT!

Another thing people sometimes miss is that you can work on your images while the "updating image" message is in the image window.


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Author, 'The Photographer's Guide to Capture NX'
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