Both RAW and JPEG files appear similar when downloaded from the camera. JPEG files have received some processing at the moment of image capture and they usually look better than RAW files, which can often appear quite dull and flat. Newcomers to digital photography are often quite disturbed the first time they see their RAW files looking so lacklustre, but one must remember that this is the effect of retaining all the data in an unprocessed format.

It is a fact that the majority of professional and enthusiastic photographers both on land and underwater choose the RAW format over JPEG. From my experience the primary reasons are two fold:

1. To capture and retain the highest amount of data an image has to offer. JPEG image compression discards the majority of data in the picture, which means that we are unable to make any aggressive adjustments when editing the photo.

2. In the event of errors being made by the user in relation to exposure or white balance settings, more aggressive corrections can be made without too much degradation of quality to the RAW file.

Let's look at some practical examples of my own. If I had taken these photos perfectly then I would have had no problem at all, but I didn't — I made mistakes, which fortunately I could recover because I shot in RAW.

For any serious photography both on land or underwater then shoot RAW. For snaps and practice shoot JPEG by all means.

1 ightroom ? Catalog

- Ariohe Photoshop I ightroom - Develop

- # x 1

P4s tdt Ocwfcp F+oto

ScWngf Vrtrdaw Hefcj

tMartin 'Edge

Library ! Develop 1 Slrdeshnw 1 Print W<-:;

Histogram t

Mart's Bush Cebu 17.NEF

21/03/2008 16:16:16 1/250 sec at// 11, ISO 100

Exposure + 2.10


■■■'■.'■ -■' / . W 1

Basic ▼

M / 1

Treatment: Color Grayicale


If v —

Tint -*-- -2

Recovery 0 Fill Light 0 Blacks - B

ConHmt 4 to

Clarity 4 40 Vibran« "J'~ " Sam ration *—O

-\ Tone Curve ▼


□ DD ■ ***** ■■■■ «- -» ►


Previous 1 Reset

FIG. 1.28 These four Lightroom screen prints (Figs 1.28—1.31) illustrate why I use RAW over JPEG and why I recommend RAW to you. Whilst I work hard to get the best possible capture in camera at the time of shooting, I make mistakes. Everyone does! (As you can see from the exposure corrections which I have had to make in these four examples.)

m Lightroom 2 Catalog - Adobe Photoshop Lightroom - Develop

Martin 'Edge


21/10/2007 12:05i46 1/45 sec at//S.0, ISO200

Library I Develop 51ldeshow Print Web

Photoshop CS Mastery

Photoshop CS Mastery

Artists, photographers, graphic artists and designers. In fact anyone needing a top-notch solution for picture management and editing. Set Your Photographic Creativity Free. Master Adobe Photoshop Once and For All - Create Flawless, Dramatic Images Using The Tools The Professionals Choose. Get My Video Tutorials and Retain More Information About Adobe Photoshop.

Get My Free Videos

Post a comment