my raw files are darker
I set my camera to save raw+jpeg and it's fairly obvious that when I view them side-by-side (in picasa), the raw files have a grey-ish tint to them. What's up with this? Is this to be expected?.

I have no 'filters' set on my camera (e.g. saturation, whatever) it's just set to "N" normal..

*************Nikon D40 + 18-55 kit lens55-200 VR..

Comments (5)

Grey isn't a tint, so I assume the title is a good description of the issue. The RAW files don't incorporate most of the settings on the camera. It is a representation of what hit the sensor while the shutter was open. The JPEG started with the same data, but processed it with the camera settings. JPEG has the advantages of being ready to use right out of the camera IF you and the camera chose good settings. RAW has the advantage of being able to recover from poor choice of settings or tweaking the settings away from "normal" for effect or emphasis..

Normally RAW images are darker...

Comment #1

When you take a photograph, your camera creates the file you find on your memory card by reading the light intensity values from each sensor location. This is the raw data, which the camera can save straight to the memory card. In order to make a JPEG file, it must process the raw data, using internal algorithms to convert that raw data into tonal values. How it does this is very dependent on the processing hardware and software in the camera, and what settings you've selected in the menus. A normal setting is pretty arbitrary, and will vary from one model to another, and especially among different camera manufacturers..

When you open up your raw file in Picasa, it "develops" the raw data using very different algorithms and settings than your own camera does. Software running on a computer has much more processing power available to it than a DSLR. For that reason, it may (depending on the software you've chosen) process that raw data in a totally different way. You also have much more control over how the software renders tonal values on your computer, so it would really be highly unlikely that the software on your PC uses the same settings as your camera and therefore renders an identical JPEG file..

In short, yes, it's very normal for that to be the case. In fact this is one of the benefits of using raw files. You get to choose exactly how each photograph is rendered..


Comment #2

Amypics wrote:.

It would really be highlyunlikely that the software on your PC uses the same settings as yourcamera and therefore renders an identical JPEG file..

In the case of Picasa or some other third-party software I agree..

If the camera manufacturer's own software is used to process the RAW file, the result should be very similar to the jpeg from the camera - (using the software default settings). But it should of course offer the possibility to change the various settings as desired.Regards,Peter..

Comment #3

I just read a really good article at cambridgeincolour, which - potentially answers the question a different way..

Raw image.

Image control:Zoom outZoom 100%Zoom inExpand AllOpen in new window.

Raw image with demosaiced white balance.

Image control:Zoom outZoom 100%Zoom inExpand AllOpen in new window.

More adjustments applied: Tone Curves, Contrast, Color Saturation, Sharpening.

Image control:Zoom outZoom 100%Zoom inExpand AllOpen in new window.

"Demoisaicing and white balance involve interpreting and converting the bayer array into an image with all three colors at each pixel, and occur in the same step. The bayer array is what makes the first image appear more pixelated than the other two, and gives the image a greenish tint..

Our eyes perceive differences in lightness logarithmically, and so when light intensity quadruples we only perceive this as a doubling in the amount of light. A digital camera, on the other hand, records differences in lightness linearly twice the light intensity produces twice the response in the camera sensor. This is why the first and second images above look so much darker than the third. In order for the numbers recorded within a digital camera to be shown as we perceive them, tone curves need to be applied. "..

Comment #4

I use Picasa2, PSCS3, Bridge and ACR for RAW..

In my experience, Picasa2 does not have a very good RAW conversion program and it's default settings are not customizable, or I have just never been able to find it if it does..

Other programs work much better with RAW files..


Comment #5

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