Alongside Aperture 3, Apple also updated its software for handling a range of raw photo formats this week with support for two out of three of Panasonic's Micro Four Thirds compact cameras and some other models.
Bibble Labs has released the long-awaited version 5 of its software for editing and managing the raw photos higher-end cameras can take.
Also new is the price. The Pro version of Bibble 5 costs $199.95, up from $129.95 for Bibble 4 Pro; those who bought Bibble 4 Pro after September 1, 2006, however, get a free upgrade. Bibble 5 Lite hasn't been released yet, but the company said Bibble 4 … Read more
Adobe Systems released an update to its Photoshop and Lightroom products on Thursday night to support raw images from a raft of newer cameras from Canon, Nikon, Sony, and others.
Raw image formats, which record the unprocessed image sensor data from various higher-end cameras, offer higher quality and more flexibility than JPEGs but require more processing and take up more space. Adobe, Apple, and others write their own modules to decode the proprietary formats.
Adobe's update supports several newer SLRs from Canon, Nikon, Pentax, and Sony; compact cameras from Olympus, Panasonic, and Canon; and several medium-format camera models from … Read more
Apple released one of its routine Mac OS X updates on Wednesday to let its computers handle raw images from a handful of new Nikon and Canon SLRs as well as from Canon's newer high-end PowerShot G11 compact camera.
The update lets Mac OS X 10.6 as well as Apple's iPhoto and Aperture software handle the raw image files taken directly from the camera's sensors without in-camera processing. Raw photo formats offer more quality and flexibility at the cost of convenience and file size.
The update supports Canon's new professional EOS-1D Mark IV and high-end … Read more
If you enjoy photography, don't make the mistake I did.
Using my then-new SLR in 2005 and 2006, I photographed everything from my new son to otherworldly canyons we visited in Utah. The only problem: the photos were taken only in JPEG format.
JPEG is fine as far as it goes, and indeed for most folks it will suffice. But having rediscovered my enjoyment of photography in the digital era, I wish I'd used the raw image format that comes with SLRs and higher-end compact cameras.
My initial regret was from the realization that raw photos, although taking up about three times the storage space as a JPEG and requiring manual processing, offer higher quality and more flexibility. But what I've come to understand since then is a second advantage of raw: because processing software improves over time, raw photos in effect can get better with age.
For that reason, I've begun recommending friends who show some enthusiasm for photography that they should think about shooting important events in raw format alongside JPEG. You don't have to mess with the raw files today, but if it's an important event like a wedding, you might want them for later.
I've included below some samples of a noisy image shot in near-darkness at ISO 25,600 from my SLR. They may not convince you that shooting raw is a miracle cure for photo quality, but they do illustrate some differences with the camera's JPEG and that the raw-processing software isn't standing still. … Read more
DxO Labs announced a new version of its raw image editing software Tuesday that sports what the company says is a streamlined, more adaptable interface and an ability to extract a better ultimate image from those that begin with lots of noise.
DxO Optics Pro is designed for the sometimes laborious process of converting raw images that come from higher-end digital cameras into more easily viewed and handled formats such as JPEG. Although it takes work, using raw images can provide more flexibility and quality than using JPEGs straight from the camera--and with the new DxO Optics Pro, lower noise at high ISO settings, the company said.
Specifically, the noise reduction technology in DxO Optics Pro version 6 can reduce noise well enough to effectively give a photographer one more usable F-stop out of a camera than the previous version did, said Cyrille de La Chesnais, director of sales and marketing for photography at the Paris-based company. That means a photographer could shoot at a faster shutter speed or in dimmer conditions.
That can be useful especially with modern SLRs; Canon's 5D Mark II and Nikon's D700 can both shoot at an extreme ISO of 25,600, and Canon's new 1D Mark IV and Nikon's new D3S can shoot at a whopping ISO 102,400. The images are extremely noisy in those cases, but noise reduction can help extract a more useful image. However, raw processing software can be slow even on machines with abundant processing power.
Getting a one F-stop improvement means a photographer could use ISO 25,600 instead of holding the line at 12,800. Alternatively, for a camera such as Canon's G10 high-end compact that tops out at ISO 1,600, photographers can effectively shoot at ISO 3,200 by underexposing the image by a full stop then brightening it later in software. … Read more
Adobe Systems released the first Lightroom 3.0 beta only last week, but already people are adapting the software for their own ends. In Sean McCormack's case, time-lapse video.
Time-lapse photography, for those unfamiliar with it, compresses a sequence of still images into a movie that appears to speed up the passage of time. It's how nature documentaries get those clouds scudding over the mountains and the sun racing across the sky.
Most of us use just a small fraction of what our software can do, but McCormack is one of those people at the other end of the spectrum who figures out how to push software well beyond the built-in feature set. In Lightroom's case he took advantage of its ability to export a sequence of shots as a video, a feature designed to let photographers create easily shared slideshows. … Read more
With the release of its first beta version of Photoshop Lightroom 3.0 on Wednesday night, Adobe Systems is trying to improve the heart of the photographic editing and cataloging software.
"With Lightroom 3, we're looking at a performance and image quality rearchitecture," said Product Manager Tom Hogarty. Those two goals are in opposition, since better image quality demands more computing horsepower. But Hogarty said the software is more responsive when moving among photos, and images look better with new noise reduction and sharpening abilities.
There are other changes, too, though: a revamped import process for importing photos into the software catalog; built-in connections to upload photos to online services and keep them in sync; a more flexible mechanism for laying out photos to be printed; new abilities for stamping watermarks onto photos; and the ability to export photos and music as a video file. … Read more