RAW workflow only?

I have been using a combined RAW and JPG workflow for years. Using my D800 and D810, I have been using two cards (RAW on CF and JPG on SD), all maxed out, 14-bit, lossless compression. Moving the files onto my NAS, I have imported (with reference) files into LR, into two separate catalogs (one for RAW and one for JPG).

Drawbacks are of course that this uses lots of storage space on my NAS, and I have two catalogs in my MR to maintain...

I just got my D850, and I am thinking of moving to a RAW only workflow, shooting RAW on the primary card, and using the secondary for backup or overflow. I guess I would move files to my NAS still, importing (with reference) files into LR.

I like having the JPGs around, they were a both easier to work with, and I can export them easily to SmugMug, FaceBook, etc. But, I guess I can do that with export in LR also.

What do the rest of you do? And to the RAW only folks, are you missing the JPGs at all?
«1

Comments

  • Rx4PhotoRx4Photo Posts: 1,176Member
    edited September 22
    My RAWs go on compact flash, JPGs go on secure digital. I only edit the RAWs. Once I've edited all my keeper raw files, I delete all jpegs. No need for them anymore, to me anyway. I do it as a backup while I'm shooting only.

    The one time I used every JPG file was at a wedding where the groom wanted unedited files the very next day. I gave him the JPG card. I kept the RAWs for my editing then later gave him a CD full of edited RAWs.
    To clarify, my JPGs rarely make it onto the hard drive.

    All that said, if I go out and shoot a few point and shoot snaps, I might just use the JPG and be done.
    There was an intense Creative Live episode about this workflow some time ago.
    Post edited by Rx4Photo on
    D800 | D7000 | Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8 | 24-70mm f/2.8 | 70-200mm f/2.8 | 35mm f/1.8G | 85mm f/1.4G | Sigma 35mm f/1.4 Art | Sigma 50mm f/1.4 Art | Sigma 50mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM | Zeiss 100mm Makro-Planar ZF.2 | Flash controllers: Phottix Odin TTL

  • starralaznstarralazn Posts: 198Member
    I think it depends how much you shoot. It depends on what you do with the photos. Do you ever really display unedited work? If you don't, then raw should be fine, otherwise... (Sorry haven't really followed your work, ahah)
    For me, I shoot raw only, and was able to keep up with delivering photos in a reasonable time, but if you're shooting every weekend... that backlog comes quick.

    i don't regret shooting raw only though. even if i only use 10% of a raw files potential most of the time i'm grateful when i do need it.
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 699Member
    I am a serious amateur, who sometimes get paid to shoot events, baptisms, portraits, confirmations, etc. I coordinated the volunteer photographers at Arctic Winter Games 2016, as well as the year leading up to that event. My favorite is landscape photography and I have been fortunate enough to have a few shots published in various magazines:) I shoot an awful lot of pictures, so a quick and polished workflow is key...

    I just cleared out my primary NAS of a lot of JPGs, consolidated my LR catalogs, and will try for a while to shot RAW only. I am still working on the default development settings in LR, but it’s closer than ever before.

    Now if only Adobe could get LR updated to handle RAW files from the D850.
  • starralaznstarralazn Posts: 198Member
    edited September 23
    I think one of the great things about editing is it allows you to have a consistent color balance. I think thats something a serious amateur can appreciate. A white card is nice and simplistic to carry around... but if you're shooting events, non studio work, then its v important(although to be fair it can be hard to maintain a single temperature accross multiple light sources in challenging conditions even with editing :lol: )

    good luck in your endeavor, i think as amateurs, we should put everything that we have into making a result that we are satisfied with, creatively and technically, so extra time spent getting a finalized product from shooting only in raw is justified for our own artistic endeavors.
    Post edited by starralazn on
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 3,474Member
    edited September 23
    Never shoot anything other than RAW, since moving to a DSLR. Never got the point of RAW+JPEG shooting, since all the modern bodies have in camera conversion if that is needed for some reason.
    Post edited by PB_PM on
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • kanuckkanuck Posts: 1,233Member
    I am with you Bob I shot RAW + Jpeg for years and am thinking of going just RAW now with the D850 as it makes more sense because I process through Adobe anyways...
  • kanuckkanuck Posts: 1,233Member
    PB_PM said:

    Never shoot anything other than RAW, since moving to a DSLR. Never got the point of RAW+JPEG shooting, since all the modern bodies have in camera conversion if that is needed for some reason.

    I think the RAW + JPEG shooting allows for you to view an in body picture in the camera during playback to see what kind of potential a shot may have. I think everyone shoots in RAW now anyways...
  • starralaznstarralazn Posts: 198Member
    kanuck, by in body do you mean viewable on the back screen of the camera? cause raw does that. or do you mean viewable with adjustments that will be made in jpeg?
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 3,474Member
    kanuck said:

    PB_PM said:

    Never shoot anything other than RAW, since moving to a DSLR. Never got the point of RAW+JPEG shooting, since all the modern bodies have in camera conversion if that is needed for some reason.

    I think the RAW + JPEG shooting allows for you to view an in body picture in the camera during playback to see what kind of potential a shot may have. I think everyone shoots in RAW now anyways...
    Huh? You can view RAW files on the camera, which applies all the picture controls etc anyways. Unless you use Nikon software to edit your photos, the on camera preview isn't useful for anything other than composition and sharpness checking.
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • ggbutcherggbutcher Posts: 179Member
    First-off ,my shooting is purely amateur, so professional considerations aren't present in my missive...

    I messed around with various approaches, OOC JPEG only, raw+JPEG, and different workflows in each, and I finally have found my sweet-spot workflow this past summer, demonstrated on our vacation. I shoot raw only, and I batch PP to 800xAspect images each evening for posting. Later, I go and find images that I like (or need to rework for things like red-eye) and work them individually; I'll replace the 800xA image in the album, and sometimes spit out a full-sized rendition for my satisfaction.

    Our home picture library dates back to 2005; until this year I've stored the full-sized JPEGs, and the raw files when I shot them. The family will go there to reminisce, and sometimes to pull images for Christmas cards, Facebook nostalgia posts, and such. I've found they're just as happy with the 800x images for these uses. So now, I store in each 'event directory' a full set of 800x JPEGs that the family can enjoy, and in a NEFs subfolder I put the raw files. The 800xA images are also so much easier to pass around and upload to web albums.

    I messed a bit with using the JPEG image and/or thumbnail available in the Nikon NEF, but I really don't like any camera processing I configure as much as just doing a 'contrast-stretch' curve in the batch run to scale the exposure across the 16-bit range. I even put a tool in my homebrew image software that does this specific operation. Your mileage will certainly vary here...
  • paulrpaulr Posts: 922Member
    Killerbob Maybe you can use the Small Raw file in the D850 still have raw without the massive file size?
    Camera, Lens and Tripod and a few other Bits
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 699Member
    I am actually not worried about file sizes. I just want an easy and fast workflow, and with the D850 I am starting to care about FPS. Switching to RAW only helps with this...
  • PistnbrokePistnbroke Posts: 1,167Member
    I have shot JPEG basic only for years at weddings with D700/7100 now D810 and recently started doing RAW onto the CF slot ( 128 gb SD in an adaptor) as a back up. While problems are rare and usually caused by finger trouble (keep those dials taped up !) We have found nothing that could not be corrected in JPEG. Every image is run through perfectly clear /lightroom, photoshop when neccessary with every shot cropped to perfection.
    So I say why not drop the RAW and just do JPEG
  • snakebunksnakebunk Posts: 677Member
    I have always photographed in raw only. But when I have edited my images I export the best ones as 2560x1440 jpgs, to a folder structure (folders are called things like iceland_2017), then I have quick access if I want to bring a set of photographs to a friend or something.
  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 2,256Member


    So I say why not drop the RAW and just do JPEG

    If you and I had the same customers, then I would shoot in JPEG to. But my customer's (me) expectations can only be met by custom processing every image. I suspect that your customers would not know the difference and/or be willing to pay and/or be willing to wait.
  • KillerbobKillerbob Posts: 699Member
    I think it would be a pity to have such a good camera like the D8x series, and only have it shoot JPGs. Too much data is simply lost in that format. That's like having a Ferrari in Greenland, with only 350km roads in Nuuk, and no way to go anywhere else.
  • vtc2002vtc2002 Posts: 308Member
    I have two different RAW workflows, one for work and one for personal photos.
    For work, if I have a client that wants to see the photos as soon as possible I will view the photos on my computer (Windows 10 can display RAW files) and pick the photos that the client requested or the ones that look the best to me. I will place those files in a folder on my computer and Import them to Lightroom. I have several custom presets that are applied to the photos. I review the photos and make any additional adjustments in Lightroom or import into Photoshop for adjustments if necessary. I export the files to a folder for that client. I will upload the finished photos to Dropbox or their website for viewing. I return to the photos that I did not select and will upload those into Lightroom and make adjustments and export to a separate folder for the client to view. In the end I have three or four folders on my NAS. One for the RAW files, one for Large JPEG's, one for Small (website sized) JPEG's and one for the Client Requested photos. I have used DXO and NIK Collection on occasions instead of or in addition to Photoshop.
    If the client does not want images as soon as possible I basically will view the files in Windows and cull photos that I do not want to process, upload to Lightroom with applied presets, make any additional adjustments in Lightroom or Photoshop and export to NAS using the RAW, Large and Small folder structure. I use this workflow for personal photos.


    I am sure you have Googled the Pros and Cons of shooting RAW versus JPEG's.
    For me the reason I shoot RAW is that it captures all of the information from the sensory. This gives me the highest quality file to work from whereas the camera does it’s own processing to convert the RAW information into a JPEG. I had rather be in control of that process.

    Another reason is that RAW files captures more bit. JPEG captures in 8 bit, and RAW is either 12 bit or 14 bit. This lets me make more adjustments (exposure, blacks, recovering shadows, contrast, brightness,..) to my image without a significant reduction of image quality, because I have more bit to work with. This is a slippery slope if you start with a crappy image and push things to far your final image quality will suffer.

    The RAW file allows for adjustments to the White Balance that cannot be easily adjusted in a JPEG file. This goes back to the RAW file having more data. White Balance is recorded with the RAW and JPEG files but the extra data allows you the ability to change the white balance in the RAW file.

    For me Nikon skin tones are not what I want and I cannot make the adjustments to the JPEG files to get them where I want them whereas the RAW file I can make the adjustments.
  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 2,256Member
    If you are buying a top of the line camera I usually assume that you are pursuing top IQ - though I imagine that there might be some exceptions.

    The IQ difference between a D850 and a D610 is one of nuances (but you may not see the difference as a nuance if you are pixel peeping).

    So if someone is shooting JPEGs and sees the difference between JPEG and raw as merely a nuance, then they should probably be shooting a D610.

    Probably why you have a scene control on a D610 - for JPEG shooters.

    And don't get me started on someone who buys a D850 and slaps a superzoom on it.
  • PistnbrokePistnbroke Posts: 1,167Member
    Well if I bought an 850 it would have the 28-300 on it because Nikon does not make a suitable wedding lens ...oh yes JPEG basic
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 3,474Member
    Ken Rockwell is that you? How's your D40 doing? :expressionless:
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • PistnbrokePistnbroke Posts: 1,167Member
    HA HA..If I was rocky I would not have bought a grey 810 a few months back to replace my wifes 7100 I would be like the angry photographer and buy 3 x 850 !!!
    I carry two cameras on with 15mm for wide shots and so what do I put on the other ??? Nothing availabe except the 28=300
  • rmprmp Posts: 370Member
    Until the D850 I shot raw only and post-processed in LR, and if necessary some image editing in PS. I exported to jpg for web postings and tiff for printing. Now, with the D850, I am considering using the jpgs from the camera.

    The jpg in-camera processing (in-camera Artificial Intelligence or AI) is getting better and better with each camera-body generation.

    At some camera-generation the in-camera AI will exceeded my ability to post-process. For some pros that camera-generation may be far in the future. For me, that camera-generation is getting closer.
    Robert M. Poston: D4, D810, V3, 14-24 F2.8, 24-70 f2.8, 70-200 f2.8, 80-400, 105 macro.
  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 2,256Member
    Exceed your ability to post process RMP? Are you processing everything the same? What will you do when you shoot 10 different scenes and want to post process 10 different ways? Change the setting each time? What happens when you change your mind and you no longer have the raw file?

  • PistnbrokePistnbroke Posts: 1,167Member
    I also have the greatest difficulty seeing any difference between basic normal and fine JPEG..........the larger they are the bigger the memory stick I have to buy to send to the customers ...thats $$$$$$
  • rmprmp Posts: 370Member
    WestEnd, I guess the difference between the words "exceed my ability" and "exceed my willingness" might come into play here. Could I do better? Probably. Would I do better? Possibly, sometimes. Would the in-camera post-processing be "good enough"? I think it might be good enough on many occasions.

    Once in a 100 images or so, one will hit me and I go all out in post proceeding. 5-to-10 images out of 100, I will crop a little, worry about white-points, adjust black points, then make a few other adjustments. Maybe another 5 or 10, I think I would accept as jpg's out of the camera. Another 5-10 would not be deleted, but I will probably never use, but they are not deleted. The remaining 60-70 get deleted.

    That, really is the limit of my post processing.

    I'm not a pro. I am just playing. So, I simply do not work at it as hard as some others.
    Robert M. Poston: D4, D810, V3, 14-24 F2.8, 24-70 f2.8, 70-200 f2.8, 80-400, 105 macro.
Sign In or Register to comment.