Is it better for me to shoot JPEG as opposed to RAW if I dont do any PP?

Started May 8, 2013 | Discussions thread
Keith Z Leonard Veteran Member • Posts: 6,102
Re: Custom White Balance - Why Not "LEARN" to shoot right the 1st time?

WilbaW wrote:

Keith Z Leonard wrote:

WilbaW wrote:

I bet you drive a manual car and regret the loss of the manual choke, right? 

Hey now, I love my manual car!  Of course there is a good argument for it, better gas mileage and better performance, not as much here.

Truth is, I think raw shooting is the manual option - if you want maximum performance and control, you have to shift your own gears...

Yeah, I can see that, I'd say RAW though improves performance quite a lot easier than switching from automatic transmission to a manual one, but the analogy has merit.  Someone bad at driving stick won't gain much, won't save the brakes, won't know the power curve of the car and when best to shift for performance vs fuel savings, etc.  Shooting RAW is slightly different in that you can put it on auto later if you want.  You don't HAVE to do additional processing, just use DPP and you'll get pretty much what the camera would have produced, or better as the software is updated and the camera jpg engine really isn't.  (maybe the occasional firmware, but not the same regularity)

I suppose if you "get it right" you have less PP work,

It might not be what you mean, but I get the sense from words like that (and what followed) that "right" means something like authentic, rather than how I want the image to look, which fits with the tired old idea that OOC is honourable and editing is lazy and cheating.

Getting it right in this context is to have your main subject perfectly exposed and the image exposed such that highlights are not unnecessarily blown, that sort of thing.  Not sure what you really mean by "authentic".  There is PP work to do in order to preserve details in highlights, for instance, then there is instagram style PP or HDR where you are reworking a source image into something otherworldly to fit your vision.  (or in instagram's case often just clicking on things until you think your friends think you're cool )

You can't always "get it right" anyway and have to make choices knowing your camera and what you want from the image.  I just processed a shot from outside in the afternoon where I needed to push the shadows up 1.5 stops and pull down the highlights 1 stop, but I'd say the shot was "right" in camera in that I had the latitude to do that without blown highlights or too much shadow noise.

at times getting white balance right after the fact is a real pain

Yeah? Do you mean to get it authentic, or how you want it? Would you describe the pain for me so I can understand what that means?

White balance is objective, there is a "correct" white balance, you might not choose that, but there is a correct one.  It's much easier to adjust to what you want from the "correct" white balance anyway.  If you want your image slightly warm, you start at correct and bump it up.  White balance is of course the color temperature of the light sources such that when reflected off of an 18% grey card it yields an appropriately grey image.  At times there isn't 1 correct value for an image if it has mixed lighting (incandescent + strobe, for instance), and you have to make a stylistic choice.

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