Why can't Adobe and Nikon work to have LR/CC/PS process Nikon color profiles?

Started Oct 24, 2016 | Discussions thread
Eamon Hickey Veteran Member • Posts: 3,997
not sure what you're asking for
1

iainlea wrote:

Subject says it all...

Why can't Adobe/C1/etc. process Nikon NEF images with the in camera specified profile ?

I am interested in a streamlined workflow so why can't Nikon give/licence the part of their View* software code that parses the in camera profile to Adobe and other raw convertor companies?

Are you claiming that Nikon won't allow Adobe et. al. to read the metadata that identifies the in-camera profile assigned to the raw image? (Your phrase "parses the in camera profile" confuses me a bit.) And then, if Adobe has that information, do you want Lightroom to automatically apply the Adobe-created profile that most closely matches the Nikon in-camera profile?

Or do you want the Adobe software to be able not only to read (i.e. "parse") the metadata that identifies the in-camera profile but also duplicate, exactly, the look of that profile within Lightroom?

If you're asking for the first possibility, how do you know that Adobe et. al. can't already read that metadata? It seems likely to me that they can read it -- I don't know of any legal restrictions from any manufacturer about this, and technically, it's trivial -- but choose not to use it for their own reasons.

If you're interested in the second possibility, I think it's clear that Adobe et. al. cannot use Nikon's actual code to exactly duplicate the Nikon in-camera profile. The Adobe processing engine is different than Nikon's -- it might not even be written in the same programming language. What Adobe tries to do (with Nikon and Canon and, to a lesser extent, with some other brands) is provide their own approximations of the in-camera profile (these are the profiles in the calibration panel that all begin with "camera" -- i.e. "Camera standard" or "Camera portrait"). Other applications like Capture One obviously face exactly the same issue.

In any case, whichever of the two possibilities you're asking for, I'm dubious about your assumption that it is Nikon that is preventing it. As far as I know -- and I test cameras and software for a living -- no third-party raw processor does either of the things I outlined above for any brand of camera. That's a very strong indication that it's an issue with the software side of things, not the camera company side of things. Everybody uses their own raw processing engine, so code is not interchangeable from one application to another.

One last thing: before the advent of Lightroom, Capture One et. al., it was indeed common for camera companies to provide plugins for Photoshop that would duplicate their in-camera processing. But these plugins were self-contained raw converters and they provided TIFF files to Photoshop. They bypassed Adobe's raw converter -- in other words, you can do exactly the same thing today by using Nikon View to output a TIFF, then import that TIFF into Lightroom.

Nikon! you should be making our lives easier and not adding extra steps to get the most out of your gear.

Again, I don't think there's any reason to believe that Nikon is the obstacle here.

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