April 2011
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5 Photo Tips – some insights into using RAW files for your photography (contd..)

Tip 891 (RAW image contains a wider color gamut than final image): When a camera captures images and saves it as a RAW format (irrespective of the format of the RAW), in a number of cases the saved RAW image will have a wider color gamut / wider dyanmic range than the final image into which it will be converted into. Typically, the RAW files store information in 12-14 bits of data, while JPEG uses 8 bits of data.

Tip 892 (Worry about formats getting older): For many photographers, there is a concern that mirrors those experienced by people who stored information in floppy disks (which are mostly not readable now since there are no floppy disk readers), or even stored in earlier versions of the PDF format (where there is a worry that as the PDF format changes, earlier documents may not be readable anymore in later versions); the worry is that as RAW formats change and new ones come in, software may treat much older RAW formats as unreadable and hence those files would be lost.

Tip 893 (DNG format): The DNG format was introduced as an effort to introduce consistency in terms of RAW formats. The DNG format attempts to form an alternative to the various different RAW formats, and some camera makers (not too many though) directly output their RAW images in the DNG format. The DNG format is compatible with the ISO standard raw image format ISO 12234-2, TIFF/EP.

Tip 894 (RAW files are using lossless compression): Typically, when files are saved as JPEG directly out of the camera, any further editing of those images results in a decrease in image quality; this is because the JPEG format typically uses a lossy compression format. If the output from the camera is a RAW file, the RAW format uses a lossless compression format.

Tip 895 (Non-destructive testing): One of the major advantages of using RAW formats in your photography is that editing when using a RAW Editor is non-destructive. When you make modifications to the contrast or exposure or numerous other area, the metadata gets changed rendering changes in the picture, but the original data remains the same.

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