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Photography Question 
Irene Troy
BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/27/2004
 

Shooting Raw - Why JPEG files?


For some time now I have been shooting in RAW format; however, I have always also saved a JPEG copy of each image. When I download to Photoshop, I rarely use the JPEG file, but I have heard that you should keep those files anyway. But, I really have no idea why it is important (or if it is important at all) to either save in a duplicate format or to save the JPEG file. It seems a waste of space to me, but I am uncertain why I read that you need to always save to the Jpeg even if you shoot Raw. Can someone set me straight about this? Thanks!


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8/29/2006 1:14:17 PM

 
Sharon  Day
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/27/2004
Contact Sharon
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  The only reason I like to keep JPEGs is because if I want a quick look-see at my photos, it only takes an instant to open a jpeg compared to a Raw image that can take several seconds if not longer. There may be other reasons, but that's why I like having a JPEG copy.


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8/29/2006 1:26:11 PM

 
Jagadeesh Dev
BetterPhoto Member Since: 11/30/2005
  Irene, in a recent workflow article in one of the mags I subscribe to, this was done so an image could be immediately sent to the client (i.e., bride, mother of the bride, etc.) as a proof without having to convert and resize. That's the only reason I've ever heard of or seen that was given as to why to shoot JPEG + Raw.


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8/29/2006 1:26:27 PM

 
Pete H
BetterPhoto Member Since: 8/9/2005
  Hello, Irene,
When I shoot Raw images, I set my camera to make a copy in JPEG format as well. Depending on the camera, one can save in a hi-res mode or low-res. I opt for the low res (faster write times). I can't see a reason to save it in hi-res - after all, I'm shooting Raw for a reason. LOL
In answer to your question, the reason is pretty simple... Once you have several hundred Raw files saved to a hard drive or DVD or whatever you use, many indexing programs will not display a thumbnail of the Raw image.
All you might see is "dsc_001.nef" and have no idea what the image is without taking the time (a lot of time) to open it.
With a Raw image married to the JPEG, it is far easier and faster to sort thru your images.
All the best,
Pete


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8/29/2006 2:28:39 PM

 
Irene Troy
BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/27/2004
  Sharon, Sipho and Pete - thank you for responding so quickly! I can see that the main reason for keeping a Jpeg file is that of speed in viewing or in sending a quick (unedited) proof to a client for review. I currently save a low rez Jpeg for my images along with the RAW file. I'm not that worried about space on my CF card; however, I am concerned about storage space post shoot. I already have way too many images stored and need to cull some and am trying to find a quick way to eliminate the image by image editing process. Now in PS-CS2 I can view both RAW and Jpeg files in Bridge and select the image for editing. On my system it goes fairly quickly, but as I get more work and get busier I can see that my work flow habits have got to get much more efficient.


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8/29/2006 3:01:15 PM

 
Margie Hurwich
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/16/2005
margiehurwichphotography.com
  Irene, one other reason that I have found is that my JPEG file shows the camera settings. So many times I end up going back to a shot to see what settings I used. The RAW file doesn't show any camera settings.


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8/29/2006 3:39:46 PM

 
Irene Troy
BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/27/2004
  Hi Margie - that's odd, Photoshop CS2 shows RAW data as well as Jpeg and all my settings are saved and displayed as needed. I wonder if this is camera specfic - I use a Canon 5D.


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8/29/2006 4:03:00 PM

 
Margie Hurwich
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/16/2005
margiehurwichphotography.com
  I have a Canon Rebel XT...but only have the Canon RAW converter and Paint Shop Pro. Paint Shop Pro doesn't show the data...this is yet another reason why I am asking Santa for Photoshop!!!


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8/29/2006 4:37:49 PM

 
Danielle E. Rutter
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/4/2006
  I've been wondering the same thing, Irene. I also shoot both JPEG and RAW and then rarely ever touch the JPEG. But I do usually take the RAW, play with the file a bit, and save it as a JPEG. I have no reason or need to be able to quickly access the files and my computer does load RAW thumbnails. In this case, do you guys think it would be harmless to stop shooting in JPEG initially? Thanks!


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8/30/2006 5:17:25 AM

 
Jagadeesh Dev
BetterPhoto Member Since: 11/30/2005
  Margie - I use PSP X and once you've converted to tiff from raw, PSP will show your EXIF information. Just click on "Image Information". I shoot a Nikon, so Canon may be different....


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8/30/2006 5:35:19 AM

 
Margie Hurwich
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/16/2005
margiehurwichphotography.com
  Thanks, Sipho. I think it may be the Canon converter. I can't figure out how to get it to show. Oh well...Christmas is coming soon!


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8/30/2006 6:15:45 AM

 
Christopher A. Vedros
BetterPhoto Member Since: 3/14/2005
  I think I'm the only person here that ever suggests using anything made by Microsoft. I swear Gates doesn't have me on the payroll!

There's a free download for Windows XP that would greatly simplify life for most RAW shooters. The MS RAW Image Thumbnailer and Viewer
installs seamlessly into XP. Open any folder in Windows Explorer and you can view thumbnails of RAW images side-by-side with JPEGs or other formats. Double-click on a RAW image and it will open in the Viewer. You can zoom in & out, rotate (just the preview, not the image), delete bad shots, etc. Click the left & right arrows and you can scroll thru every RAW image in the directory - BEFORE converting anything. You can even preview RAW images while they are still on a memory card.

Oh, and it will let you read most of the EXIF data from the RAW file.

So far, I think it only handles RAW images from Canon & Nikon, but that covers most of us, doesn't it?

Chris A. Vedros
www.cavphotos.com


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8/30/2006 8:20:42 AM

 
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