On Editing a RAW File to Look Like the JPEG

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Zeiss 25mm f2 Batis review sample photos (27 of 29)ISO 4001-200 sec at f - 2.5

“Shoot in RAW! It’s what the pros do. It’s what you have to do to create better photos.”

Yes, in some ways this is true, and in some ways it’s not very smart to limit your own capabilities when it comes to creating images. But if you’re a photographer that shoots in RAW and only tries to edit the images to look like the JPEGs, then you’re pretty much just wasting your time.

RAW files are capable of doing so much more, and in some ways this situation is like purchasing a Canon 1D X when what you need is a Rebel.

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Review: EyeFi Mobi Pro

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer EyeFi Mobi Pro card product photos (3 of 4)ISO 2001-1600 sec at f - 1.4

The EyeFi Mobi Pro was announced a couple of days ago, and to be honest it almost seemed like their company was facing opposition on all sides. With pretty much every camera out there offering WiFi connectivity, why bother using an EyeFi Card? If you have an older camera, sure–we get it. But why otherwise? EyeFi Mobi offers seamless transfers to your phone, but most folks are very selective to begin with.

Then came along EyeFi Mobi Pro–a total integration of their Mobi and EyeFi Pro cards. The new EyeFi Mobi Pro allows you to transfer RAWs and JPEGs to your mobile devices and your computers. Additionally, Mobi Pro and the EyeFi Mobi app can show and read the RAW files on your phone.

Seems perfect if you’re all about a mobile workflow, right? Well, it is for the most part.

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Useful Photography Tip #136: How to Make Your RAW Photos Look Like the JPEGs

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You know that you’ve all had this problem–you shoot in RAW, but the image looks nowhere as good as the JPEG preview on the back of your camera’s LCD screen. So you go through the basic adjustments panel in Adobe Lightroom and with lots of disappointment, realize that you can’t make the image look like the JPEG.

We’re not going to tell you to shoot in JPEG (though there is no real problem with that) so what you should do is scroll down the the Camera Calibration section of Adobe Lightroom’s Develop panel and click on Profile. When you do this, you’ll get the camera profiles and even some of your own if you’ve bought them.

Own a Fujifilm camera? Velvia and Astia are finally yours…digitally that is!

But that’s not the end. You need to go in and sharpen the image, maybe kill some image noise, add a bit more contrast, boost the clarity and maybe mess with the exposure a bit. Then you’ve got an image that’s ready to go.

Go give it a shot.

The Phoblographer’s Introductory Guide to the Histogram


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Before we begin this article, we want to explain that any photographer should always prioritize being artistic and having a creative vision above any technical aspect. But the two can work together very well if you have the right ideas. Photographers wanting to become more serious about their photos and photo editing should realize that one of the biggest ways to do this is to learn to read histograms. While you focus on making sure that you get as much as you can in the camera, what you get out of the camera will surely determine your post-production process.

For the beginner, here is our Guide to the Histogram.

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This is Why I Won’t Give You My RAW Files

julius motal film photography high schools It was in the photography subreddit that a fellow asked if it’s unreasonable to want the wedding photographer to hand over the RAW files. It’s no surprise that there was widespread opposition to the person’s query, but the poster, a self-identified amateur photographer, persisted in questioning all those who said, “Ha, fat chance.” While I am not a wedding photographer, I am a photographer who shoots RAW, and I’ve been in situations where people have asked me for those files. The quick answer to, “Can I have them?” is “No.” Here’s the longer answer. Continue reading…

First Image Samples from the Fujifilm X30

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Fujifilm X30 first image samples (1 of 28)ISO 4001-80 sec at f - 2.8

This weekend, we got a lot of gear in for review. But from what we saw on our Instagram, many of you are really interested in seeing results from the new Fujifilm X30. We just got the camera in yesterday and so far it has been impressing us quite a bit. The image quality is very good overall, though the RAW files aren’t supported as of the publishing of this article. Instead, we’re relying on the JPEG output which tends to render images a bit too cool for our liking–but still offers nice colors overall.

Using the camera is a bit weird. At f2, you can’t shoot at above 1/1000th and instead you’ll need to stop the lens down. We wish that the control ring around the lens had clicks as you turn it so you can intuitively feel how many stops you are manipulating. Instead, it is really smooth. The back exposure wheel feels great, but we instead believe that this camera should have had a dedicated shutter dial. When using it in aperture priority though, you won’t pay most of this any mind.

We love the EVF, though sometimes it can stutter to switch from the LCD screen to the EVF. For my eyes though, I wish that the diopter went deeper into the negative range. However, this won’t really matter because of the relatively small sensor and the fast autofocusing. Additionally, you can increase or decrease the size of the focusing point.

Other than that, the WiFi transmission is smooth and simple. More photos from the camera are after the jump.

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Review: Western Digital My Passport Wireless 1TB

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Western Digital My Passport Wireless review images (1 of 7)ISO 4001-40 sec at f - 6.3

Every photographer would love their own personal storage cloud. And in a way, Western Digital is giving that to photographers. The latest entry to their My Passport line is the My Passport Wireless, which is a step below their My Cloud drives. The advantage of the Cloud option is that you can access your images from anywhere as long as the drive is on. But with the My Passport Wireless drive, photographers get a different experience.

Hypothetical situation: you’re with a client, showing them some examples of work that you’ve done for engagement shoots. But they want to see more and you only have around two loaded onto your iPad. Simply boot up your Western Digital My Passport and access any of them that you’d like.

For photographers, security is important–and having your own hybrid of a server, cloud, and hard drive in one is more or less a godsend.

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The Argument for Shooting JPEGS over RAWs in the Modern Photo World

Chris Gampat The Phoblographer Sony A7r review photos brooklyn bridge reddit walk (4 of 14)ISO 1001-800 sec at f - 3.2

Shoot Raw. Always shoot Raw. Only shoot Raw: this is the mantra that many, many photographers live by. They swear by it. We swear by it here at the Phoblographer. I swear by it as a photojournalist, commercial and portrait photographer for years. Why? So that we can get a better result in post. So that we can differentiate ourselves from the plebeians and peasants that would rather shoot in just JPEG and be happy with their results. Yes, reader: we are the higher class of citizens that stick our noses and in the air and would rather accept death than shoot in JPEG.

Or at least that’s how it’s been for years. As time has gone on and I’ve reviewed camera after camera and the technology has become better and better, I (we, actually) have seen that JPEG quality has improved tremendously. We even dare to say that it is now so much so to the point where that if you know what you’re doing in the first place with your camera that you won’t need to shoot in RAW. Indeed, many of the photos for the Phoblographer’s Instagram are shot in JPEG with an Olympus OMD EM5, Sony A7, or Sony NEX 6 then transferred right over to my phone or iPad and added to our feed. How much post-production goes into them? Basically, it’s not much more than some sharpening and contrast fixes in Instagram, VSCO or EyeEm.

And guess what.

The images are good enough for our over 4,000 followers on Instagram and usually just fine for our over 250,000 Facebook followers.

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Malware Infected Kitty Photos Prove Nothing on the Internet is Just Fun Anymore


Cat photos. They’re all so adorable and potentially full of malware. Main Street reports that a new British mobile network study has discovered some of the kitty pictures that the Internet loves so much are actually carrying a Trojan that will steal money from your bank account. French security researcher Xylitol sniffed out the Zeus or Zbot Trojan malware, a malicious bit of software that hides in JPEG files using steganography.

Also known as ZeusVM, the Trojan malware sits in the user’s computer undetected and invisible. The malware is programmed with a database of bank addresses and once the users loads into one. From here ZeusVM infects your web browser and triggers invisible transactions.

This vulnerability has already been spotted in one image of a cat laying in money and photographs of rainbows, but there could be many more infected images out there. However, this is an easily avoidable problem by simply immediately deleting emails from complete strangers with subjects like “click to see a cute cat” or “check it out, double rainbow.” In general it’s just commonsense to avoid emails with attachments from people you don’t know.

Via PetaPixel

Useful Photography Tip #95: Don’t Forget to Set Your New Camera to RAW Immediately

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New cameras often bring with them a bevy of new features that can at times feel overwhelming. Whether it’s swanky built-in Wi-Fi or split-image focusing, there’s a great deal to explore, but the core functions are often the same across cameras. Out of the box, that new camera of yours is set to save images as JPEGs.

If you’re serious about your photography, mosey on over to the menu, and set your camera to save your images as RAW files. For those who don’t know, RAW images have loads more information than JPEGs, and more can be done with them in Lightroom and other editing platforms. JPEGs don’t have that much latitude in post-production. With a RAW file, you can save an image that would otherwise be thrown in the trash. So, setting your camera to RAW straight out-of-the-box means the difference between an image that can be salvaged and one that can’t.

Granted, you’ll have less shots to work with, but you can always buy another SD card.


The Basics of Photography: J for JPEG


Today, we continue our series covering the Basics of Photography with the letter J, and which subject would be more fitting than everyone’s favorite file format, JPEG. The file format which is commonplace in digital cameras, on the internet and in image editing software is used by millions of people around the world each day. But as with so many things that we use on a daily basis, we often know little about them. In this article, we’re going to talk about what JPEG actually is, how it works, and when and when not to use the format.

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JPEG Standard Receives Update, Now Supports up to 12-Bit Color Depth


The Independent JPEG Group at the Leipzig Institute for Applied Informatics, which is responsible for defining the JPEG standard, has just released version 9.1 of the ‘libjpeg’ library. The updated software library now supports color depths of up to 12-bit for JPEG images, although these will probably not be supported by most mainstream softwares or camera makers any time soon. However, the press release states that the update may prove useful for professional applications such as printing or output on displays or projectors with a wide color gamut.

Additionally, the latest version of libjpeg supports new scaling functions as well as new compression options, including completely lossless compression. This part is especially interesting for photographers, as it means that the JPEG file format can now be used as an alternative to both raw and TIFF files for archiving images. For future versions of libjpeg, the IJG promises the support of HDR, though the press release does not mention anything specifically.

It’s good to see that the JPEG standard, which was first introduced 23 years ago in 1991, is still being updated continuously, despite its age. Considering that the file format is used in so many applications, photographic and otherwise, it’s safe to assume that the standard will remain relevant for a long time.

Via photoscala

Eye-Fi Introduces the 32GB Mobi Card


Eye-Fi introduced the Mobi card a while ago that works flawlessly with many cameras and even earned an Editor’s Choice rating from us. And today, they’re letting users be even more careless about filling up their SD cards. The Mobi will now come in a 32GB version and still offer all the same features. To refresh, the Mobi requires a two step activation process and automatically sends JPEGs to your phone using its own router build into the card. To do this, you’ll need to pair the card with the app for iOS or Android. It won’t send RAWs though, for that you’ll need their Pro cards.

The new card will set you back $99.99; which really isn’t so bad if you never delete images from your card.

JPEGmini, the Tool That Shrinks Your JPEGs, Is Now Available for Windows

JPEGmini website screenshot

JPEGmini has been around for a while now, as a web-interface as well as a standalone app for Mac OS. The clever software that shrinks your JPEG files up to five times from their original size without compromising image quality ist now available as a standalone app for Windows as well. The great thing about JPEGmini is that it creates 100% compatible JPEG files, but uses a special compression algorithm to reduce file size even further, without degrading perceptional image quality. We’re not sure what wizardry they’re using, but you can learn more about it on their website.

JPEGmini can be purchased for US-$ 19.99 via the JPEGmini website or from B&H Photo.

Via SLR lounge

Creating “Faux-DRs” From Single RAW Files In Lightroom (Or Any Other RAW Software)

In his recent post on HDR photography, Andy mentions the possibility to create HDR images from single RAW files by developing them with different exposure levels. This way, an image with enhanced dynamic range can be achieved from a single exposure — which is handy when you don’t have a tripod with you, or your scene features moving objects. But you still need an HDR software to merge the three files you get from your original RAW image. This made me think: isn’t there an easier way? Why yes, there is. I call it “faux-DR” (from French “faux” = false), and it is a simple technique that can be done with most RAW developing softwares — in this post, I will use Adobe Lightroom exemplary.

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Apple Aperture 3: Importing & Managing Images

As you import your images from your camera, it is important to organize them. This makes it easier in the future when you want to edit, store, and eventually archive photos. This is especially important when you have clients. You never want to be in a situation where you’ve lost or can’t find a client’s images. This article and tutorial video will show you how to import files, and help you decide where your files will “live” on your computer or storage media.

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Field Review: Olympus EPL-2 (Day 2)

In Day 1, I got my hands dirty with the EPL-2. For the most part, it is so far living up to my expectations. The EPL-2 and I went along the street of NYC and into cafes with my friend Sal from Geek.com. And for once, I shot nothing else but JPEGs. Keep in mind that this review is being done in the viewpoint of a professional looking for a small, carry-around camera. So why JPEGs then? Less work in the end, that’s why!

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