Affinity Raw engines

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Digital Nigel Forum Pro • Posts: 13,225
Affinity Raw engines
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Affinity is a great image editor, but raw development is not exactly one of its strengths. In particular, it doesn't save raw development settings in sidecar files, or indeed anywhere else. So, on the desktop, I only use Affinity to process images from cameras DxO doesn't support. But Affinity Photo for iPad also offers raw development which works offline.

I decided to try the same image in both, and soon realised that they're not quite the same. What I discovered was that Affinity on the iPad doesn't use the same raw processor engine as the desktop version. So, depending on platform, you get different raw engine options:

  • Windows: Serif Labs raw engine
  • Mac: Serif Labs raw engine or Apple MacOS raw engine (user selectable)
  • iPad: Apple iPadOS raw engine

You can really see the difference when it comes to lens geometry correction. The Serif engine lets you see the full, uncropped corrected raw image, so you can choose how to crop it, for a wider, or taller image. The Apple engine does not, and only gives you the same crop as OOC JPEGs. Here's an example:

Affinity Photo for Windows lets you see the full, corrected uncropped image, and you can choose how much of the distortion to correct.

Affinity for iPad only gets a narrower, cropped view, and doesn't get the option to see or develop an uncorrected image

So, yes, Affinity for iPad does include an offline raw developer, but it's the low function Apple version, not Serif's better one.

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