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OEM Raw Converters vs. Adobe Camera Raw

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Old 12-10-2010, 09:11 AM
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Doug Nelson Doug Nelson is offline
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OEM Raw Converters vs. Adobe Camera Raw

One of the surprises I've had while experimenting with my new Nikon D7000 is how much better the Nikon software is at converting the NEF files than Adobe Camera Raw. I'm only using the freebie View NX software, but there was a marked difference in grain and moire between the two. A bit of googling shows this isn't news to many.

My question is: is this unique to Nikon, or do the other manufacturer's own converters generally work better with their own files than ACR?
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Old 12-10-2010, 09:55 AM
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Re: OEM Raw Converters vs. Adobe Camera Raw

Doug, most camera manufacturers are in a better position to effect better conversions than Adobe because of the extra proprietary information they have on sensor profiles and A/D output. Whether or not they take advantage of that info as Nikon does is unkown to me as I only use Nikon DSLRs. As far as PS conversions of NEF files, in addition to the two items you mentioned, I would also suggest you compare the bright highlights. I find that PS is prone to blow out the highlights / generate less detail noticeably more than View NX at the default settings. In PS the data is usually recoverable by reducing slightly the Exposure slider in RAW. For architecture photos this is a very important factor.
Regards, Murray
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Old 12-11-2010, 03:56 AM
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Re: OEM Raw Converters vs. Adobe Camera Raw

No Adobe Camera RAW is basically not as good. If you use Capture One, for example, not just on Canon files, you will find that tonal transitions and colors are more naturalistic, and less damaged. With CS5 they have tried to improve things. But I'm afraid there is still something fundamentally wrong with the way that Adobe Camera RAW interprets RAW images, compared to other products.
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Old 12-11-2010, 05:00 AM
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Re: OEM Raw Converters vs. Adobe Camera Raw

Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug Nelson View Post
My question is: is this unique to Nikon, or do the other manufacturer's own converters generally work better with their own files than ACR?
This has been my experience with Canon DPP as well. So no, not unique to Nikon.
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Old 12-11-2010, 05:36 AM
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Re: OEM Raw Converters vs. Adobe Camera Raw

I've been doing tests at various ISO speeds, and even at ISO100 and all sharpening turned off, there is a remarkable difference in the noise. In my particular instance, lowering the ISO eliminated the moire, so there's that.

Now I'm peeved at Nikon for requiring me to spend $130 for their software after spending over $2000 on their gear. As I understand it, that IS unique to Nikon.
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