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Author Topic: Any advantage of not converting to DNG?  (Read 23120 times)
DarkPenguin
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« Reply #20 on: April 06, 2009, 03:03:25 PM »
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Quote from: terence_patrick
I've regretted converting my CR2 files into DNG since I'm now using C1 as my raw converter. C1, while it does work with DNG files, does not treat a CR2 converted DNG the same as a it does a standard CR2. The file appears much flatter and when a specific camera's profile is applied to the DNG, the results lead to too much saturation usually. If Adobe is your main converter there's probably no harm in converting to DNG, but if using C1, I'd say keep the native raw file as is.

The problem is that you don't know if Adobe will be your main converter tomorrow.
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NikosR
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« Reply #21 on: April 07, 2009, 03:31:11 AM »
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I think it should be fairly obvious to everybody that, whatever one's workflow is,  it's not a good idea to throw away the original raw file.

I personally see no good reason in converting to DNG so I don't, but even if I did, I would never get rid of the original.
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Nikos
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« Reply #22 on: April 07, 2009, 05:26:53 AM »
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Quote from: NikosR
I think it should be fairly obvious to everybody that, whatever one's workflow is,  it's not a good idea to throw away the original raw file.

I personally see no good reason in converting to DNG so I don't, but even if I did, I would never get rid of the original.

I'm very much the same opinion NikosR, I also see no advantage for DNG in my workflow, so I make the conversion edits on the original and back it up together with the sidecar.

On top of that I do a monthly back-up to DVD of the original raw and then on a different DVD the same files converted to DNG. Sofar I've never even opened or used the DNG's, it's just in case that in the future I have one more option to try and open a file when the OS of my computer doesn't support the heritage native raw format anymore.
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pieter, aka pegelli
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« Reply #23 on: April 07, 2009, 01:48:07 PM »
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Quote from: NikosR
I think it should be fairly obvious to everybody that, whatever one's workflow is,  it's not a good idea to throw away the original raw file.

I personally see no good reason in converting to DNG so I don't, but even if I did, I would never get rid of the original.

The trouble is, people do think that going DNG means throwing away your original raws. As you say, it's not so. I take the opposite view to you, in that DNG permits a much better multi-application workflow (similar reasons to Nick plus metadata portability) and is a better long term bet than mystery meat raw formats, but I wouldn't dream of chucking away the raw files. You have them, so you may as well keep them as another backup in another format, just in case.
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Guillermo Luijk
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« Reply #24 on: April 07, 2009, 02:49:23 PM »
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Quote from: nubins
is any "real" advantage of not converting to DNG.
I think this is a quite strange way to ask a question. Not doing ANY action in life, has the obvious advantage of not doing it, i.e. saving time, effort, resources,... depending on the subject discussed.

You could ask if the advantages of converting to DNG are worth, and then a lot could be discussed. But to the question if there is some advantage in not converting to DNG, I just have to say the obvious answer: yes, there is the advantage of not doing it.

BR
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Panopeeper
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« Reply #25 on: April 07, 2009, 02:55:46 PM »
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Quote from: GLuijk
I think this is a quite strange way to ask a question
LOL Guillermo, exactly this was my idea when reading the first post, but then I thought I what the hell... why should not nubins do something simply for the sake of doing it?
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Gabor
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« Reply #26 on: April 07, 2009, 03:07:21 PM »
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The question was quite simple I thought. Why should I waste disk space with two versions of essentially the same file if there was no 'real' advantage.  
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #27 on: April 07, 2009, 03:11:21 PM »
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Hi,

My take on this is:

DNG: good
anything but DNG: bad

There is no really good argument for raw formats to be around for a long time. We need a raw format to rally around and DNG is IMHO the nearest thing to it. Do you think that Nikon and Canon will support CR2 and NRF in twenty years?

I'm not really in favor of the DNG but I guess that DNG is the closest thing to a documented, multivendor and reasonably open standard we have right now.

Best regards
Erik


Quote from: DarkPenguin
The problem is that you don't know if Adobe will be your main converter tomorrow.
« Last Edit: April 07, 2009, 03:38:12 PM by ErikKaffehr » Logged

Panopeeper
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« Reply #28 on: April 07, 2009, 04:01:14 PM »
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Quote from: ErikKaffehr
There is no really good argument for raw formats to be around for a long time
I disagree, but this is not the issue of this thread. The issue is, as a few of us see it, if there is any reason to convert the native raw file in DNG format.

There can be valid reasons:

- if the native format is not supported by your favourite raw processor

- if the native format is uncompressed or very inefficiently compressed (this is not the case with Canons, nor with newer Nikons).

However, the question if Nikon's or Canon's own raw processors will be around in some time is irrelevant here, for you don't want to use that (if you wanted to, then converting toi DNG would not be an option anyway). The question of preservation for the future is rather so:

- will the independent raw processors stop supporting the old native formats?

- if the above is "yes": will the DNG converter stop converting the old native raw formats?

- if the above is "yes": will the old DNG converter stop running due to old age or what?

As long as not all the above conditions are fulfilled, there is no loss with sticking to the native raw format.
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Gabor
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« Reply #29 on: April 07, 2009, 04:27:52 PM »
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Quote from: nubins
The question was quite simple I thought. Why should I waste disk space with two versions of essentially the same file if there was no 'real' advantage.  
I know the question was simple, and as such it was answered. What I pointed is the question was strange.
And again a simple answer to your new question: Why should I waste disk space with two versions of essentially the same file. Just don't do it, keep only the original RAW file and don't waste your time in converting to DNG.

BR


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Nick Rains
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« Reply #30 on: April 07, 2009, 05:11:42 PM »
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Quote from: Panopeeper
I disagree, but this is not the issue of this thread. The issue is, as a few of us see it, if there is any reason to convert the native raw file in DNG format.

There can be valid reasons:

- if the native format is not supported by your favourite raw processor

- if the native format is uncompressed or very inefficiently compressed (this is not the case with Canons, nor with newer Nikons).

I agree that there is not necessarily any downside to sticking to native RAW and sidecars - in principle. The issue of software becoming incompatible does not worry me - I'm not going to wake up one morning to find that ACR17.2 has expired and 18.0 does not support my original RAWs. It will be an incremental process and one which we will see coming.

For me it's down to these points:

1. Might I need to use DPP or C1 Pro  etc to process my files just in case they do a better job on certain images? Maybe.
2. Do I want to have to process out jpegs every time I want a colour accurate web gallery or be stuck with the RAW processor's own web generator (C1Pro 4.7 is woeful in this regard, although it's amazingly fast). No.
3. Do I want to worry about losing sidecar files and thus all adjustments. No.
4. Do I want my DAM application to show me inaccurate thumbs rather than the corrected image. No.

These are the practical issues that affect my workflow and thus I choose to convert to DNG for day to day stuff and archive the original CR2 files onto DVD just in case of 1 above.

I see this as a win-win and see no reason not to convert to DNG, so I can reap it's benefits.

As a practical example, I use Expressions Media as a DAM and a calendar client of mine wants to see a huge selection of images, over 4000. I'm going to send him a xmedia catalog with the free reader app so he can peruse the whole catalog. The thing is, if I had cataloged my CR2 files the thumbnail and preview images he would see would be generated from the in-camera RAW previews and would look quite dull. Using DNGs means that my whole catalog looks as it should, and this translates to good sales. Would you show an uncorrected CR2 file straight out of the camera? I suspect not, and if you catalog CR2s in Portfolio, xMedia etc and show a client a web gallery or a contact sheet then that's what you are doing.


BTW, I'm just looking at C1Pro 4.7. It will open and save DNGs but what a joke - if you save out a RAW as a DNG none of your settings stay with the file, there's no adjusted preview image and if you open a previously saved DNG none of the embedded settings appear! That defeats the whole purpose of DNG so C1Pro are merely paying lip service to the concept. I don't know what happens with out-of-camera DNGs.
« Last Edit: April 08, 2009, 05:21:39 AM by Nick Rains » Logged

Nick Rains
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« Reply #31 on: April 07, 2009, 05:20:47 PM »
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Quote from: GLuijk
]Why should I waste disk space with two versions of essentially the same file[/i].
BR

You're not.

If you archive your files, as you should,  then you have at least two copies anyway, and DNGs are actually slightly smaller if space is that tight. If you don't have two copies then you are completely mad, so why not have a CR2 and a DNG and so get the best of both worlds?
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Nick Rains
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john beardsworth
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« Reply #32 on: April 08, 2009, 01:27:27 AM »
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Quote from: Nick Rains
For me it's down to these points:

1. Might I need to use DPP or C1 Pro  etc to process my files just in case they do a better job on certain images? Maybe.
2. Do I want to have to process out jpegs every time I want a colour accurate web gallery or be stuck with the RAW processor's own web generator (C1Pro 4.7 is woeful in this regard, although it's amazingly fast). No.
3. Do I want to worry about loosing (?) sidecar files and thus all adjustments. No.
4. Do I want my DAM application to show me inaccurate thumbs rather than the corrected image. No.
Along those lines:
5. Do I want to spend time re-entering metadata because C1 or whatever won't read sidecars: No
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image66
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« Reply #33 on: April 15, 2009, 11:40:10 AM »
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Quote from: terence_patrick
I've regretted converting my CR2 files into DNG since I'm now using C1 as my raw converter. C1, while it does work with DNG files, does not treat a CR2 converted DNG the same as a it does a standard CR2. The file appears much flatter and when a specific camera's profile is applied to the DNG, the results lead to too much saturation usually. If Adobe is your main converter there's probably no harm in converting to DNG, but if using C1, I'd say keep the native raw file as is.


DNG to me is the equivalent of getting an "Adobe Forever" tattoo. Frankly, I'm still not sure what true advantages there are to it because every pro-level camera RAW file is still supported.  I figure that if and when that changes, I'll run the batch file converter when necessary.  Meanwhile, I haven't encountered a single situation yet where I needed to convert to a DNG format to get something done.

Until Nikon and Canon convert to DNG in-camera, I have no confidence in the long-term viability of the format.  C1, Nikon and Canon all make converters which have inherent advantages over other third-party converters (Adobe, DCRAW basec converters) and they don't support DNG.  So, to the OP's question, yes there are huge advantages to keeping the files in native format and only converting that which is necessary without deleting the original source files.
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NikosR
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« Reply #34 on: April 15, 2009, 01:32:09 PM »
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I see people listing quite a few advantages for DNG (and I am not referring to theoretical advantages of the like of 'if all 3rd parties agreed on DNG and threw away proprietary formats the world would be a better place') but practical advantages in one's workflow as of TODAY.

I can see their point of view but ONLY if one limits oneself to an Adobe centric workflow. Prime but not the only example: For better or for worse, Nikon NEF's (or Canon raws) can be read and processed by more raw converters than DNGs can. The support for DNG from non-Adobe products is missing altogether or is half-baked and poorly documented in most cases.

People who use DNG at present thinking they are buying some safety for the future should think again. DNG might become (or not) a universal and future proof format someday but IT IS NOT AS OF NOW. I feel that as things stand at present, one exchanges being 'tied' up with a camera manufacturers format with being tied up with Adobe.

There's no lack of support for the manufacturer's raws and,  in case you are a Nikon NEF user you can do many things with NEFs (and Nikon's converter) that most people think you can only do with DNGs (like storing both the raw file and the edit metadata in a NEF) plus a few things that I think you can't do with a DNG (like storing different metadata based edit versions in a NEF).

So, for the time being, I see no advantage in my workflow in converting to DNGs so I don't. The Adobe products work happily with my NEF's and I can use either those or a multitude of other products to convert and manage my files. Lots of non-Adobe DAM and file browser programs (like Photo Mechanic which I use) can read and display the NEF embedded jpg (which gets updated if one uses NEF to save ones edits) so I'm a happy camper.

Your mileage can vary.
« Last Edit: April 15, 2009, 01:50:38 PM by NikosR » Logged

Nikos
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« Reply #35 on: April 15, 2009, 05:41:14 PM »
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Quote from: NikosR
So, for the time being, I see no advantage in my workflow in converting to DNGs so I don't. The Adobe products work happily with my NEF's and I can use either those or a multitude of other products to convert and manage my files. Lots of non-Adobe DAM and file browser programs (like Photo Mechanic which I use) can read and display the NEF embedded jpg (which gets updated if one uses NEF to save ones edits) so I'm a happy camper.

Your mileage can vary.

All this is true, and I must admit I didn't know that NX2 adds a proper embedded preview reflecting edits to the NEF. Good one Nikon. However, this commits you to a NX-centric RAW workflow in that only NX2 can see the edit history and if you opened it in LR or something you are back to the beginning again. NEF for Nikon - DNG for Adobe. Same pros and cons for both really. At least DNG is fully documented.
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Nick Rains
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« Reply #36 on: April 15, 2009, 06:22:56 PM »
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Quote from: Nick Rains
However, this commits you to a NX-centric RAW workflow in that only NX2 can see the edit history and if you opened it in LR or something you are back to the beginning again
Nick, Do you mind listing those raw converters, which mutually recognize their adjustments?
« Last Edit: April 15, 2009, 06:23:44 PM by Panopeeper » Logged

Gabor
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« Reply #37 on: April 15, 2009, 08:44:27 PM »
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Quote from: Panopeeper
Nick, Do you mind listing those raw converters, which mutually recognize their adjustments?
Um, not sure what you mean, AFAIK there are none that do this. DPP and NX only work with their own adjustments, although at least NX embeds this info plus metadata and a preview  in a single file. DNG effectively only works with ACR - C1 Pro will 'see' the DNGs but cannot read any embedded adjustments.

So you have to commit to one software path no matter what you choose. As a Canon user I choose Adobe, but if I was with Nikon I might very well stick with NX.
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Nick Rains
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« Reply #38 on: April 15, 2009, 09:30:28 PM »
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Quote from: Nick Rains
Um, not sure what you mean
You listed this commits you to a NX-centric RAW workflow as a disadvantage of working with NX2. However, this is true regarding all raw converters, AFAIK. Thus this aspect is not a consideration.
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Gabor
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« Reply #39 on: April 15, 2009, 09:51:55 PM »
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Quote from: Panopeeper
You listed this commits you to a NX-centric RAW workflow as a disadvantage of working with NX2. However, this is true regarding all raw converters, AFAIK. Thus this aspect is not a consideration.
I was responding to NikosR's post. I did not say it was a disadvantage, merely that it was the same limitation as the DNG limitations pointed out by others.

As you say, it's not a consideration in this respect - but you still have to commit to a manufacturer specific workflow whether you use a camera manufacturer format or Adobe's format. It's this aspect that has people concerned.
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Nick Rains
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