Capture NX2 v DxO optics Pro v8

crisscrosscrisscross Posts: 2Member
edited February 2013 in Nikon Software
For many years I was a dedicated user of Nikon Capture NX2, indeed advocated and provided intro tips on pbase.com. A year ago I upgraded from D80 to D7000 and at about the same time DxO optics did some rapid upgrade work to v7 and shortly after to v8.

For the D80, there was not much in it, but for the D7000, DxO v8 wins hands down, even taking into account that separate editing of parts of the image is no longer possible. Unfortunately my MacBook Pro 15" (24gh 2008 with 4GB RAM) won't handle both programmes at once (and of course all the other essential ones).

The D7000, and I imagine other Nikons of similar vintage, captures an exposure range well beyond what can be handled at once. The DxO exposure compensation and 'virtual' lighting make use of this in a manner similar to HDR progs, but without any of the artificial effects associated with HDR and with full user control. NX2 just doesn't seem to have the reach and, with hindsight, leaves a risk of obvious boundaries between different masks/steps

It seems tragic that Nikon can't do for its own processors what a 3rd party does by body & lens testing and an NX3 is urgently needed

BTW I have never been able to cope with the mish-mash interface of any Adobe progs and didn't think Aperture any better when I last tried it. Unfortunately one has to go there for serious cloning, the DxO heal being very weak and NX2 a bit hit and miss. NX2 totally lacks correction of verticals, which DxO does brilliantly.

Ny observations?

Comments

  • JJ_SOJJ_SO Posts: 1,158Member
    It's not so easy to decide for a RAW converter for me. Basically, I'm too lazy to move away from Aperture, I'm used to it, tried others but didn't feel it worth to make the cut. I miss some things in AA and I'd miss as well some things in each of the others. DxO is no exception - some really cool and useful features, but no face recognition, no GPS and the pictures must be managed in an old manner.

    Have you tried Capture1? They also have a neat perspective correction, but a poor lens correction database.
  • warprintswarprints Posts: 61Member
    Used both NX/NX2 and LR/2/3 for quite a while, but have abandoned NX2 now. Maybe nikon feels its not worth competing with DXO, lR and such..
  • crisscrosscrisscross Posts: 2Member
    I am looking at CNX2 and DxO as total editing solutions, not just RAW converters. Apart from anything else, they actually make conversion un-necessary except in the case where some serious cloning is essential as you can print direct from the nef & don't need to store vast .tif files, much less .psd. Unless of course you really need some more complex functions for which only CS will do

    It would be a great pity if Nikon were to give up, but it is beginning to look that way
  • JJ_SOJJ_SO Posts: 1,158Member
    At the moment the only software able to develop RAW from D7100 are ARC7 for CS6 and Nikon. Just found out, that ViewNX2 saves changings into the NEF files. I never expected a raw-converter to do something that stupid, I've to say. :( But the other 3, C1, DxO and Apple Aperture are still in deep winter sleep
  • TriShooterTriShooter Posts: 219Member
    edited March 2013
    Nikon's NX2 with its sampling of NIK filters is a decent offering at a moderate place price. I have the latest version of DXO, and think it is has a lot of functionality, and also use Lightroom. But prefer using Adobe Release Candidate 7.4r1 with Adobe CS6 for my own image processing.

    Nevertheless, I dislike the Adobe Standard RGB, so use plugins to replace it that let each of my various Nikon cameras render similar DX2 like colors, which I still prefer over the D3. Adobe CS6 takes a serious amount of time to learn, and expensive, but it has so many good features it is worth learning.

    The good news now is that if you do not want to go through the long learning curve with CS6 there are many seriously good plugins out there for CS6 from companies like NIK, Topaz, OnOne, Alien Skin, Vertus, and many others that make using Adobe CS6 pretty painless for a more casual user. They are relatively expensive too, but they will enable almost anything anyone might want to do with an image from editing it right up to preparing the image for printing.

    Adobe now offers a package that includes all their latest version of programs like CS6, Lightroom, and a large mix of their other software for web publishing, along with some space for a handful of websites for about $50 bucks a month which is not a bad deal. Just food for thought.

    Post edited by TriShooter on
  • JJ_SOJJ_SO Posts: 1,158Member
    Thank you for your reply, TriShooter. I use Photoshop since the late nineties - in the office at my "money for photgraphy earning"-job, and most of it's features are familiar to me. At home I prefer not to use Adobe software and so far I managed to keep that line. I also prefer to work as long as possible with RAW, making as few import/export moves as possible. That excludes some Add-ins, Plug-Ins and so on. But I learnt, these can cause problems, are time consuming to learn and improve on and increase the time you have to wait after updates to restabilize the workflow.

    So, I try to use as less products as possible and keep it as simple as possible. I downloaded the test version of Capture NX2 and if by the end of next week Apple still has no RAW-update out (as well as DxO and C1 are not providing support for D7100) I'll start testing if I could get used to another workflow. So far I was a happy Aperture user (okay, with some ignoring of the partly much better features of other converters) and I would like to stay in this Aperture world - but Apple is nearly as bad as Nikon when it comes to not listening to customers 8-|
  • adamzadamz Posts: 842Moderator
    JJ_SO - I think Apple is worser than Nikon when it comes to Aperture :(
  • TriShooterTriShooter Posts: 219Member
    @JJ_SO. I appreciate your comments on plugins and some of the problems associated with using them. I have also experienced changes in CS that have suddenly disabled a plugin, or plugins, at an inconvenient point in time, and had to wait for a fix. Being too dependent on a plugin is not smart, as clearly understand. That is good advice for all of us.

    Camera Raw has become such a powerful tool in its newer versions that it has become my editor of choice for most circumstances. Most of my pictures are ready for formatting to the printer after using Camera Raw, especially with being able to swap out color profiles to match the camera and image type.

    I understand your comments on Apple, and Aperture. Big companies are scary to deal with because they move at their own pace with their agenda which too often seems to be odds with their users' issues. I knew Nikon had something to do with the venture capital, or the financing of NIK, but still experienced heart palpitations when Nikon actually bought NIK.

    As I tell my paranoid friends; always remember that being paranoid does not eliminate the possibility that they may really be after you.
  • JJ_SOJJ_SO Posts: 1,158Member
    :D At the office, we're waiting for some server software to run an update of our working software. The IT guy told us they are buying it directly in the US because of the price difference is huge. Both of us could not help to grin "hope, you get the right version from NSA..." "... with all the Chinese trojans in". We don't want to complicate life too much for those guys.

    I thought NIK was bought by Google lately? Which makes sense, because Nikon cameras will be in some Android phones and Nikon's WLAN app with on of the first cheap transmitters for D5200 supported Android first.

    And Apple? Since Aperture's not running on iPhones, who cares at them? Now, another good news was: a friend mailed me, D7100 is already supported by rawtherapee and darktable (never heard of that darktable). So, I can use even more time for evaluations while my innermost, naïve hopes gain another time before they get disappointed by Apple. Sometimes pessimism can be a Chinese Big Wall but I know, one day they will come for me. Whoever. @-)
  • In LR import as DNG and you are camera independent.
    Those who say it can't be done, should not interrupt those doing it!
  • obajobaobajoba Posts: 206Member

    I thought NIK was bought by Google lately? Which makes sense, because Nikon cameras will be in some Android phones and Nikon's WLAN app with on of the first cheap transmitters for D5200 supported Android first.
    I think SnapSeed was probably the big reason for Google to buy NIK though I don't know that for sure. They killed the Desktop version of SnapSeed when they killed Reader a few weeks back. I would guess that the NIK plug-ins will continue on based on some blogs I've read from beta testers and others.

    Apple just wants to push iPhoto (ugh.)

    I use LR4 with the NIK plug-ins and I am pretty happy, haven't found much reason to try Capture NX2 or DxO. Are there any benefits to using DxO aside from preference? I don't often shoot jpeg and LR4 seems to do an acceptable job of matching up to Nikon's picture modes.

    D4 | 70-200 2.8 VR | 24-70 2.8 | TC-17e II
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 4,335Member
    edited March 2013

    Apple just wants to push iPhoto (ugh.)
    The current version of iPhoto, version 9 (released 2009) is even older than Aperture 3 ( released 2010), so I'm not sure where you got that idea.
    Post edited by PB_PM on
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • AdeAde Posts: 1,071Member
    iPhoto 9 was first released in October 2010, while Aperture 3 was first released in February 2010. Both have had significant updates since then.

    Last summer, Apple took some steps to unify both platforms, starting with a common photo library file structure (shared between iPhoto 9.3 and Aperture 3.3).
  • JJ_SOJJ_SO Posts: 1,158Member

    Apple just wants to push iPhoto (ugh.)
    The current version of iPhoto, version 9 (released 2009) is even older than Aperture 3 ( released 2010), so I'm not sure where you got that idea.
    Ask obajoba, not me, and please take care, who is quoted by you.

    Btw. Ade is right and I think, Apple will furtheron discontinue Aperture, most users seems to run away to LR.

  • AdeAde Posts: 1,071Member
    edited March 2013
    I think simplistically we have four markets, from largest to smallest, based on the user type:

    1. Casual user. Mainly uses camera phones + P&S cameras, super-zooms and some DSLRs. Want easy importing, simple picture selection, basic corrections (exposure, red-eye). Basic organization needs (mostly chronological). Likes effects like B&W, sepia, vignette. Basic printing (local and exporting to Walgreens, CostCo, etc.). Social media integration (especially Facebook) is a big plus. Appreciate features like slideshows, picture books, face recognition -- though not often used.

    2. Advanced user. More demanding than casual users. Needs ability to do more type of corrections (brushes, levels/curves). More complex organization, based on projects, ratings, location (with GPS support). Want to be able to customize anything (slideshows, picture books, etc.). Integration to dedicated photo sites like Flickr. May or may not shoot RAW.

    3. Enthusiast. Demands the highest image quality. Typically a DSLR user. Regularly fine-tunes all parameters, from initial RAW conversion to final output. Uses various plug-ins (such as for HDR) and may have multiple-versions of images. May work in a fully-calibrated, color-managed workflow. Performs custom printing using advanced photo printers with a variety of papers. Wants anything and everything to enhance image quality, such as the latest RAW algorithms, the best noise handling, miracle-level highlight & shadow recovery, advanced lens and perspective correction, etc.

    4. Professional. Similar needs to the enthusiast, but with an eye to factors which affect the bottom line. Batch processing with high-quality presets (time equals money.) Full IPTC & EXIF metadata support including quick captioning and key wording. Extensive digital asset management workflow with backup, backup, backup. Professional templates for client slideshows and galleries. Solid tethering functions including LiveView. Support for medium format backs and technical cameras.

    * * *

    iPhoto will always be targeted for the Casual user.

    Aperture. In the past it has been targeted at the line between Enthusiast and Professional. In the future? Who knows? Maybe Apple will re-focus Aperture mainly towards the Advanced user market while maintaining key enthusiast features. Or maybe Aperture will be updated squarely within the Enthusiast range. But it's less likely that Aperture will focus on true professional needs, however.

    - The press photographer will stick with Photo Mechanic with Adobe Bridge and Photoshop.

    - The wedding photographer will name his first born "Lightroom" and be joined by the majority of other professional photographers.

    - The high-end specialist might adopt Capture One.

    Other tools (including DxO, Capture NX2) will find niche uses among the pros.

    My $0.02.
    Post edited by Ade on
  • obajobaobajoba Posts: 206Member
    @JJ_SO and @PB_BM - I should have been more specific, Apple pushes iPhoto for iOS devices and thus they haven't released any "advanced user" software for iOS (that I am aware of.) They want to push the "your photos automatically on every one of your devices" philosophy, IMO.
    D4 | 70-200 2.8 VR | 24-70 2.8 | TC-17e II
  • JJ_SOJJ_SO Posts: 1,158Member
    Yes, and Apple abandoned the Mac Pro as well.

    Anyway: CaptureOne now supports D7100. I just updated my 6 Pro to 7 Pro Version and try to get used to that interface. DxO also announced to support D7100, certain features in April, others were about to be expected. Fact is, my testversion still has no clue about the NEF and I don't find it in the profile pack or whatever they call it.
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