Let's poll it: Do you use CNX2?

Started Feb 26, 2014 | Polls
Devendra
Devendra Veteran Member • Posts: 3,584
cnx2 is wonderful except for people shots

I usually use cnx2 as a starting baseline, except for people shots.
In cnx2 I try to balance out the exposure, use moire reduction if it is high iso/noise shot. Some details recovery while turning on/off adl, some sharpening. Upoint only for fun or extreme recovery, then opening in Photoshop. If it trys to save changes, I say no since it usually stores a tif along the way while opening in Photoshop. Also, if I really need, I can make photoshop open processed cnx2 file in acr (non-nef file) for further tuning.
Now for people shots I just use acr since it does a better job of smoothing skin tones and harsh lighting on skin.
Thaz it folkz

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stevegep Regular Member • Posts: 175
Re: Let's poll it: Do you use CNX2?

Yes.  Currently, just for getting the camera settings for raw, sometimes for white balance or exposure.  I also like their auto-retouch brush and printing options better than LR.

Steve Bingham
Steve Bingham Forum Pro • Posts: 25,818
Re: Let's poll it: Do you use CNX2?

Really? Take a raw file from a D610 - convert it to 16 bit tiff. Using ACR that takes me 1 second (3 year old PC). CNX2 takes many times longer! I guess fast is a relative term. Having run many speed tests I tend to disagree with your statement. I respect your opinion, I just don't agree with it.

Shotcents wrote:

Steve Bingham wrote:

Slow, awkward, and cumbersome. Did I mention slow?

Steve, NX2 is as fast or faster, on my quad core mac, than pretty much anything else.

But even my duo core Macbook Pro with 8 GB ram can do reasonably well. I admit that when I had a slower experience with my PC/NX2 setup.

Robert

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1w12q312qw1 Contributing Member • Posts: 732
Speedtest
3

Steve Bingham wrote:

Really? Take a raw file from a D610 - convert it to 16 bit tiff. Using ACR that takes me 1 second (3 year old PC). CNX2 takes many times longer! I guess fast is a relative term. Having run many speed tests I tend to disagree with your statement. I respect your opinion, I just don't agree with it.

Steve,

My PC and NX2 can convert a RAW 24MB file into 16-bit TIFF in less than a second. ACR is the same, so I cannot explain why you have such a lag with the software.

Here is a Photoshop speedtest posted over at PC-Talk that may help compare everyone's processing time:

Hightail Speedtest

It is very RAM-intensive so max out available RAM in your PS preferences. PS 64-bit usually will run faster. FWIW, my time was 39 seconds.

IN MY HONEST OPINION, that is.

Stan

jean bernier Veteran Member • Posts: 3,181
just updated NX2 to 2.4.6
1

every picture I've done since the D2X has gone through NX then NX2.

As mentioned, I just received the Nikon message that version 2.4.6 is available

how ironic, as I learned about the demise just yesterday...

first thing I noticed is the daylight sunny slider now goes down as low as 2500°K, in other words, it's seamless between 2500 and 7000°K

there used to be a gap between incandescent and daylight: some temps you could just not obtain

a second choice fix was to use the adjust-->color-->saturation/warmth to get some of  those unobtainable funny temperatures I sometimes encounter.

second thing is a file with a custom wb done in-camera now shows the values the camera calculated, in temperature and hue.  The sliders wich were grayed out now are active and you can tweak the custom wb whithout having to start from the top with a preset wb...

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Jean Bernier
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1w12q312qw1 Contributing Member • Posts: 732
Re: Speedtest
1

1w12q312qw1 wrote:

Here is a Photoshop speedtest posted over at PC-Talk that may help compare everyone's processing time:

Hightail Speedtest

It is very RAM-intensive so max out available RAM in your PS preferences. PS 64-bit usually will run faster. FWIW, my time was 39 seconds.

IN MY HONEST OPINION, that is.

Stan

Anyone try this test yet? Download that file, you'll find an atn, manually load that into the PS "actions" folder. Open Photoshop, go to your actions and look for "Speestest - V1"; if it isn't there, go to the actions menu, go to "load action" and click on it. Once it's loaded, just click on the > button and time the test. Other Photoshop tests have you open an image but this one doesn't need that to run.

Maybe some of the frustrations with NX2 stem from underperforming PCs. All of my editing software run blazing fast.

In my honest opinion, that is.

Stan

Manfred Bachmann Senior Member • Posts: 1,060
Re: cnx2 is wonderful except for people shots

Devendra wrote:

I usually use cnx2 as a starting baseline, except for people shots.
In cnx2 I try to balance out the exposure, use moire reduction if it is high iso/noise shot. Some details recovery while turning on/off adl, some sharpening. Upoint only for fun or extreme recovery, then opening in Photoshop. If it trys to save changes, I say no since it usually stores a tif along the way while opening in Photoshop. Also, if I really need, I can make photoshop open processed cnx2 file in acr (non-nef file) for further tuning.
Now for people shots I just use acr since it does a better job of smoothing skin tones and harsh lighting on skin.
Thaz it folkz

i am a people shooter, and i never use LR, because the terrible skintone rendering, cnx is the best if iq is importend, including skintones!

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Steve Bingham
Steve Bingham Forum Pro • Posts: 25,818
Re: Speedtest

1w12q312qw1 wrote:

Steve Bingham wrote:

Really? Take a raw file from a D610 - convert it to 16 bit tiff. Using ACR that takes me 1 second (3 year old PC). CNX2 takes many times longer! I guess fast is a relative term. Having run many speed tests I tend to disagree with your statement. I respect your opinion, I just don't agree with it.

Steve,

My PC and NX2 can convert a RAW 24MB file into 16-bit TIFF in less than a second. ACR is the same, so I cannot explain why you have such a lag with the software.

Here is a Photoshop speedtest posted over at PC-Talk that may help compare everyone's processing time:

Hightail Speedtest

It is very RAM-intensive so max out available RAM in your PS preferences. PS 64-bit usually will run faster. FWIW, my time was 39 seconds.

IN MY HONEST OPINION, that is.

Yes, I have a time posted here - somewhere - but it was slower than 39 seconds - maybe 59 or something.  I mean your time is quick! My computer is 3 years old but I run at 3.2 with i7 with 16 gb of ram. Tried overclocking to 3.8 but lost the stability.Perhaps newer versions of CNX2 does a faster job. I haven't tested it in two years so perhaps I am mistaken . . . I was getting 5-6 seconds. I pretty much use ACR and PS CS6 99.9% of the time. I do notice that the Nic plug-ins are a little slow loading. (I have the full package which might explain it).

In any case, I guess it is a moot point now. Thanks for your input.

Stan

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Steve Bingham
Steve Bingham Forum Pro • Posts: 25,818
Re: Speedtest

Steve Bingham wrote:

1w12q312qw1 wrote:

Steve Bingham wrote:

Really? Take a raw file from a D610 - convert it to 16 bit tiff. Using ACR that takes me 1 second (3 year old PC). CNX2 takes many times longer! I guess fast is a relative term. Having run many speed tests I tend to disagree with your statement. I respect your opinion, I just don't agree with it.

Steve,

My PC and NX2 can convert a RAW 24MB file into 16-bit TIFF in less than a second. ACR is the same, so I cannot explain why you have such a lag with the software.

Here is a Photoshop speedtest posted over at PC-Talk that may help compare everyone's processing time:

Hightail Speedtest

It is very RAM-intensive so max out available RAM in your PS preferences. PS 64-bit usually will run faster. FWIW, my time was 39 seconds.

IN MY HONEST OPINION, that is.

Yes, I have a time posted here - somewhere - but it was slower than 39 seconds - maybe 59 or something. I mean your time is quick! My computer is 3 years old but I run at 3.2 with i7 with 16 gb of ram. Tried overclocking to 3.8 but lost the stability.Perhaps newer versions of CNX2 does a faster job. I haven't tested it in two years so perhaps I am mistaken . . . I was getting 5-6 seconds. I pretty much use ACR and PS CS6 99.9% of the time. I do notice that the Nic plug-ins are a little slow loading. (I have the full package which might explain it).

In any case, I guess it is a moot point now. Thanks for your input.

Oh wait. My speed test required an image. Different test!

Stan

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Steve Bingham
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Emil Varadi
Emil Varadi Senior Member • Posts: 1,411
Probably will use it untill the last...
5

... and then, when it's gone, I'd curse Nikon.

Have been an NX user from the beginning, now NX2, updated to version 2.4.6, with all the possible Nik filters.

Not only the U-point technology will I miss, but also nik's filters.
When Google gobbled up Nik, I was rather pessimistic, and felt the end was coming. And it did.

Yes, I was also thinking about switching to LR, since nik filters with Silver Efex are still avalaible for that, but did not make the move. I tried twice to like LR, but after the NX2 it was such a pain to use.

Also have DXO pro 8, but almost never use it, maybe only to correct geometric distortion...

Just upgraded to D800E, and was slightly afraid the large files will be cumbersome to handle. But no problem at all.

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Reimar Gaertner
Reimar Gaertner Regular Member • Posts: 410
Re: Let's poll it: Do you use CNX2?
5

I have always used Capture, both for the conversion with picture controls and basic editing, including control points. I always end processing (including sharpening) with PS.

Similar to lens investments, one of the things that marries me to Nikon is the post processing software. Their unwillingness to invest in their own software troubles me.

OP rhlpetrus Forum Pro • Posts: 25,823
Will Google update the suite? Re: Probably will use it untill the last...
1

Emil Varadi wrote:

... and then, when it's gone, I'd curse Nikon.

Have been an NX user from the beginning, now NX2, updated to version 2.4.6, with all the possible Nik filters.

Not only the U-point technology will I miss, but also nik's filters.
When Google gobbled up Nik, I was rather pessimistic, and felt the end was coming. And it did.

Yes, I was also thinking about switching to LR, since nik filters with Silver Efex are still avalaible for that, but did not make the move. I tried twice to like LR, but after the NX2 it was such a pain to use.

Also have DXO pro 8, but almost never use it, maybe only to correct geometric distortion...

Just upgraded to D800E, and was slightly afraid the large files will be cumbersome to handle. But no problem at all.

Same here, LR feels so weird and unnatural. Hope Google eventually sells NIK suite to a photo soft business, like DxO, for example, and it stays alive. The way it's going, I doubt Google will keep it alive for much longer.

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mtlr Regular Member • Posts: 294
Re: FWIW, CNX2 runs better than ever in Win 8.1, but there is a catch...

rhlpetrus wrote:

mtlr wrote:

That's very important to me, as a fearless Win 8.1 user, and in light of the ghastly Nikon news that CNX2 will no longer be supported.

I intend to continue using CNX2 for a while, probably at least until Nikon produces a new irresistible new camera that I have to get sometime in the future (or maybe if I get a new non-Nikon camera). That could be a few years down the road, meanwhile I'm relieved that I'll be able to continue happily using CNX2 in Win 8.x, probably meaning a few years from now too. And hopefully Win 9 and beyond will be CNX2-compatible too....

But .. does it run faster than on a Mac? I doubt it. I moved from W7 to a Mac and the difference was impressive, and no freezing, ever.

I don't know, Renato, as I have never tried and compared CNX2 speeds in a Mac vs. a Win 8.1 PC. You surely know a lot more than me about that and will happily take your word for it.

My point was just that CNX2 speed I currently get at my fairly standard Win notebook (i7, 8GB RAM) is quite OK for me, I hardly ever have to wait for opening/saving NEFs and edits and haven't had any CNX2 freezes for a long time now. It seems PCs, Win and CNX2 itself evolved a lot during the last couple of years and work together much better than before.

But there is a catch, related to CNX2 demise: After reading Thom's article here http://www.dslrbodies.com/accessories/software-for-nikon-dslrs/software-news/the-embedded-adjustments.HTML , I may opt for his suggestion #2, the dedicated and isolated CNX2 PC, as it may be the only way to have ongoing access to thousands and thousands of NEFs with CNX2 edits that I have accumulated through the years. As Thom says, that sucks, but Nikon is not leaving any better options for us CNX2 users, as switching to any other PP software (i.e. LR5) from now on WILL NOT solve this huge issue.

This is really, really awful, Nikon. Something is simply very wrong here, how come a famously backward compatibility commited company couldn't work out a better transition path for CNX2 users, specially while owning 40% of NIK? Never though I would say something this harsh about Nikon but, sadly, I feel this time it's deserved: Totally unaceptable.

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FrankG Senior Member • Posts: 1,859
Re: Speedtest

Steve Bingham wrote:

1w12q312qw1 wrote:

Steve Bingham wrote:

Really? Take a raw file from a D610 - convert it to 16 bit tiff. Using ACR that takes me 1 second (3 year old PC). CNX2 takes many times longer! I guess fast is a relative term. Having run many speed tests I tend to disagree with your statement. I respect your opinion, I just don't agree with it.

Steve,

My PC and NX2 can convert a RAW 24MB file into 16-bit TIFF in less than a second. ACR is the same, so I cannot explain why you have such a lag with the software.

Here is a Photoshop speedtest posted over at PC-Talk that may help compare everyone's processing time:

Hightail Speedtest

It is very RAM-intensive so max out available RAM in your PS preferences. PS 64-bit usually will run faster. FWIW, my time was 39 seconds.

IN MY HONEST OPINION, that is.

Yes, I have a time posted here - somewhere - but it was slower than 39 seconds - maybe 59 or something. I mean your time is quick! My computer is 3 years old but I run at 3.2 with i7 with 16 gb of ram. Tried overclocking to 3.8 but lost the stability.Perhaps newer versions of CNX2 does a faster job. I haven't tested it in two years so perhaps I am mistaken . . . I was getting 5-6 seconds. I pretty much use ACR and PS CS6 99.9% of the time. I do notice that the Nic plug-ins are a little slow loading. (I have the full package which might explain it).

Your claims of CNX2 lack of speed seem quite exagerrated in my experience.

I am still running it on a 5 year old (or so) Win XP machine (albeit with a quad core AMD Phenom processor) running just the 32bit version of Windows XP with a modest 4Gb RAM.  In general it's not a particularly fast machine by today's standards and in fact it now probably needs a rebuild.  I am currently running the latest release (2.4.6) of CNX2.  Even on this old machine CNX2 loads and fully renders a typical full size, previously unmodified, 36 Mb D800 NEF file in typically around 2.5 seconds.  That's quite acceptable performance although faster would be nice but it's far from terrible!  I would expect much better performance with a new machine with an i7 processor running a 64bit OS with 16Gb RAM (which I intend to install CNX2 to fairly soon).

Of course as with any PC many other things going on such as performance (or otherwise) of other background apps, Antivirus system(s), possible malware infections.  Optimisation of use of disk space will always make a difference with CNX2 (use of separate physical drives for NX2 cache and temp drives for example) ...

Frank

JJ10 Senior Member • Posts: 1,077
Re: Let's poll it: Do you use CNX2?
1

I have used CNX1 & 2 ever since their inception and have built up a wealth of know how to get the files I want.

Tonight I downloaded and had a play with the new beta software.

The power and the passion is gone from this new offering, it is dumbed down to the point of sheer frustration and it has me thinking of signing up to the Photoshop cloud thing just to get the updates to ACR. I only have PS V5 and that did not bother me as I used CNX2 to do most of my edits and converted to tiff files. At least I have a very good knowledge of Photoshop so it will not be a big learning curve for me.

Thanks Nikon, this is just another kick to my loyalty to your system.

OP rhlpetrus Forum Pro • Posts: 25,823
Re: FWIW, CNX2 runs better than ever in Win 8.1, but there is a catch...

mtlr wrote:

But there is a catch, related to CNX2 demise: After reading Thom's article here http://www.dslrbodies.com/accessories/software-for-nikon-dslrs/software-news/the-embedded-adjustments.HTML , I may opt for his suggestion #2, the dedicated and isolated CNX2 PC, as it may be the only way to have ongoing access to thousands and thousands of NEFs with CNX2 edits that I have accumulated through the years. As Thom says, that sucks, but Nikon is not leaving any better options for us CNX2 users, as switching to any other PP software (i.e. LR5) from now on WILL NOT solve this huge issue.

I think that would do for many of us, but what  horrible solution to a problem that should not be there. I may keep my current iMac and present OS for as long as they work to be able to run CNX2 as you say, but, thinking about how many home computers I have had in the last 15 years, they are many more than cameras, and usually the issue is re other aspects, like other applications, OS maintenance, etc. I have to save space for it in my home office ...

This is really, really awful, Nikon. Something is simply very wrong here, how come a famously backward compatibility commited company couldn't work out a better transition path for CNX2 users, specially while owning 40% of NIK? Never though I would say something this harsh about Nikon but, sadly, I feel this time it's deserved: Totally unaceptable.

It is very troubling, and to me it indicates Nikon is having a lot of trouble financially, otherwise they could have spent a little money to keep it going, if not full updates, at least for the newer cameras and minor tweaks. As you say, CNX2 is very stable and mature now as a product, more than most need for their conversion/PPing, except for real pixel editing (like cloning, etc), but that was never the thing with CNX2, just full control of local luminosity, saturation, contrast, exactly like one did under a very good darkroom routine.

Oh dear, time to think about the future in terms of saving files, etc. I already have everything on an outside hard disk to prevent losses, now have to think how to organize the few K saved edited NEFs.

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sandy b
sandy b Veteran Member • Posts: 9,228
Re: FWIW, CNX2 runs better than ever in Win 8.1, but there is a catch...

Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't they have no option? Google pulled the software. Nikon has no recourse with the eisting software? Software that rather sucked compared to any number of readily available programs that cost very little, I might add.

I know its very fashionable right now to pile on Nikon though.

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sandy b
sandy b Veteran Member • Posts: 9,228
why blame Nikon.

I really don't get it.

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twamers Senior Member • Posts: 1,294
Re: FWIW, CNX2 runs better than ever in Win 8.1, but there is a catch...

Your possibly right about that (google) from what I've read.

However my experience of other software that is cheaper (e.g. PSE) is that it's much harder to get good results from and it does not run as well.  CNX2 is fast and reliable on my PC even when I changed operating systems and frankly knocks spots of PSE.  I wouldn't pay for Photoshop and have tried LR - didn't like.  CNX2 is so easy to get good results from.  This is just based on my experience.

It's also possible that some users simply feel Nikon could have done a bit more with the new offering even if they had no choice with the overall decision - and I don't think that would be an unreasonable view.

M Lammerse
M Lammerse Forum Pro • Posts: 11,429
Re: Let's poll it: Do you use CNX2?

Yes,

Yes, almost on a daily basis.
I use Nikon Capture since version 3 (started using it with the D70 and D100)

Michel

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