Bewildered.

Hello, new to the forum and new to Digital SLR cameras. Please bear with me. I recently bought a Nikon D3400 and downloaded the software applications as recommended in the manual.
I'm trying to first of all adjust my photos with a view to saving the adjusted pics to a new folder on my PC.
I've been at this for days looking at video tutorials, reading etc but I just can't seem to get various things to work. It seems to be beyond me.
For example, I don't even know if I should be using View Nx-i or Picture Control Utility 2 or Capture NX-D to tinker with my images, which one should I use ? Once I know which one I should be using then what is the purpose of the other two ?
In Picture Control Utility 2 I keep seeing this image (see screenshot) which is not mine, so what is Picture Control Utility for ?
In View NX-i I accidently clicked on the 'Pictures' folder on my PC and now I've ended up with the images from that folder instead of my own pics which were there before (see screenshot) having been transferred from the camera using Nikon Transfer 2.
After numerous attempts at adjusting and altering pics I don't see how to save those adjustments to a folder of my choice. How do I do that ?
I do realise that there are a lot of questions here and I'm sorry about that.
Also, after typing in 'see screenshot' I don't see anywhere to upload screenshots.
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Comments

  • KnockKnockKnockKnock Posts: 359Member
    edited August 20
    If you're set on using the Nikon tools, Nikon Transfer can be set up to pull pictures off your SD-card. Then I like NX-D. It depends on Windows folders, so you have to manually manage the file structure yourself, but the tools are okay.

    I think most people who get serious about photography use a full photo management tool, like Adobe Lightroom, but that's not free. Nikon has not very well kept up with the times. Google Photos is more in the modern concept. Upload your images to their cloud, (using their google backup tool) so they're all available on any device. Any edits you do are done on their servers with you pushing buttons on the web browser interface. Adobe has their cloud. Amazon theirs. Apple, another.

    The traditionalist likes to just work with pictures on their PC, so if you're not doing a ton of post-production (photo editing), NX-D would suffice.
    Post edited by KnockKnock on
    D7100, D60, 35mm f/1.8 DX, 50mm f/1.4, 18-105mm DX, 18-55mm VR II, Sony RX-100 ii
  • mhedgesmhedges Posts: 564Member
    I can’t see your screenshot(s). I personally use View NX-i for most of my editing. It’s pretty basic in what it can do, but for the most part it does what I want. If you also have capture NX-D installed you can jump right over to that to do more involved stuff, but I find the interface for that program to be much more intimidating.

    Can any of the cloud based services (other than Adobe) handle NEF (raw) files? AFAIK they can’t but I’m not sure.

    As far as you’re problems with losing your folder -that just sounds like a browsing/navigation issue. Should be pretty easy to go back to the correct one.
  • Wallace1297Wallace1297 Posts: 6Member
    Yes, but how do I do that ? How do I get back to the correct one if I don't know where the photos are ? As for not being able to see my screenshots - as I said in my original post I don't see any provision for adding screenshots.
  • Wallace1297Wallace1297 Posts: 6Member
    OK found the photos. But now I can't seem to alter the photos. When I try to use the features nothing happens. I click on 'White Balance' or 'Exposure Compensation' for example but the sliders are locked, can't use them. Why ?
  • spraynprayspraynpray Posts: 5,874Moderator
    You can use windows explorer and select 'my computer' and a file name of one of your pix to see where they all are. (usually my pictures). Get the file name from the images on your SD card. failing that, just pick a number a few back from a test shot you take now.
    Always learning.
  • mhedgesmhedges Posts: 564Member

    OK found the photos. But now I can't seem to alter the photos. When I try to use the features nothing happens. I click on 'White Balance' or 'Exposure Compensation' for example but the sliders are locked, can't use them. Why ?

    Those options are only available if you shoot in RAW. You should be able to adjust contrast, brightness, etc. though.
  • Wallace1297Wallace1297 Posts: 6Member
    Ah I see. So in future how do I set about shooting in Raw ?
  • mhedgesmhedges Posts: 564Member
    Its a setting in the Shooting menu. But to be honest I'm not sure I would worry about that yet. And the 3400 can only do 12 bit compressed RAW I think
  • spraynprayspraynpray Posts: 5,874Moderator
    @Wallace1297 - I strongly suggest you join a camera/photography club with a good attitude towards beginners. You will learn quickly there. The other options are RTFM and use YouTube.

    Your questions are likely to stop getting answered here soon because you are asking such basic questions, and one question is just leading to another.

    Hope that helps.
    Always learning.
  • Wallace1297Wallace1297 Posts: 6Member
    I thought THIS was the place to come for help.
  • sportsport Posts: 100Member
    Go to Nikonians for these types of questions. They have all of these types of questions answered and you will see lots of other questions you haven't thought of yet.

    Don't worry so much about editing yet and go take more photos. Learn about exposure and reading the lighting of a scene. Realize that it took a lot of time for most of us just to get comfortable with editing photos. Trying to understand all of it up front is a lot to take in.
  • Wallace1297Wallace1297 Posts: 6Member
    Where is Nikonians then ?
  • sportsport Posts: 100Member
    Nikonians.org

    You might want to learn how to search, it will be a lot faster finding answers than asking questions for each step.
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 3,809Member
    Nikonians is nice, but requires a subscription, not a place I'd send a newbie.
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • mhedgesmhedges Posts: 564Member
    There are some good YouTube guides out there. I’d maybe start with this one:
  • sportsport Posts: 100Member
    A basic subscription is free and he will have access to the forums. They will be nicer to him with basic questions and it is Nikon focused.
  • PistnbrokePistnbroke Posts: 1,609Member
    Why would you want to adjust brightness colour etc .If the camera is set right the pictures will be fine. I think you are trying to run before you can walk . just use P mode to start with , up the sharpness in the picture controls to 9 and go take some photos. Open the pics in file manager and you can adjust everything you need ..by clicking on the image.
  • AndrewzAndrewz Posts: 122Member
    @Wallace1297 I second @spraynpray suggestion. Photo clubs are a great place to get information from other photo enthusiast face to face and usually free. Many clubs have dedicated new user classes.

    I'd also say ditch the Nikon software and get an Adobe lightroom/photoshop subscription.
    D750, P7000, F100 80-200 f2.8 AF-S, 24-120 f4, 50 f1.8D, 85 f1.8G, 14-24 f2.8

    Old friends now gone -D200, D300, 80-200 f2.3/D, 18-200, 35 f1.8G, 180 f2.8D, F, FM2, MD-12, 50 f1.4 Ais, 50 f1.8 Ais, 105 f2.5 Ais, 24 f2.8 Ais, 180 f2.8 ED Ais
  • DenverShooterDenverShooter Posts: 318Member
    If you don't want to drink the Adobe Koolaide Capture One 11 is a really solid program.



    Denver Shooter
  • AndrewzAndrewz Posts: 122Member
    Hey I say download all the free trials you want and see what you think! I didn't like the way capture One limits some of their adjustments.

    I like taking a RAW file and seeing what I can get out of the shadows in different processing software. So far the ACR engine is the best IMHO :-)

    Either way don't use the Nikon software!
    D750, P7000, F100 80-200 f2.8 AF-S, 24-120 f4, 50 f1.8D, 85 f1.8G, 14-24 f2.8

    Old friends now gone -D200, D300, 80-200 f2.3/D, 18-200, 35 f1.8G, 180 f2.8D, F, FM2, MD-12, 50 f1.4 Ais, 50 f1.8 Ais, 105 f2.5 Ais, 24 f2.8 Ais, 180 f2.8 ED Ais
  • mhedgesmhedges Posts: 564Member
    Andrewz said:



    Either way don't use the Nikon software!

    Can I ask what’s so bad about the Nikon software? I mean, I understand that it’s not suitable for pro’s. Is Adobe that much better for basic edits (WB, contrast, shadow recovery, etc)?
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 3,809Member
    edited August 26
    Nikon's software doesn't even have basic tools like spot removal. Other than basic exposure changes, white balance and picture control settings it doesn't do much. Might as well use in camera RAW processing if you are going to use Nikon software, since it's actually faster. Nikon also doesn't support it very well, it takes 6 months or more for updates to come out after OS updates for example.
    Post edited by PB_PM on
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • AndrewzAndrewz Posts: 122Member
    Yes Adobe is better but then again most other software is better than Nikons.
    D750, P7000, F100 80-200 f2.8 AF-S, 24-120 f4, 50 f1.8D, 85 f1.8G, 14-24 f2.8

    Old friends now gone -D200, D300, 80-200 f2.3/D, 18-200, 35 f1.8G, 180 f2.8D, F, FM2, MD-12, 50 f1.4 Ais, 50 f1.8 Ais, 105 f2.5 Ais, 24 f2.8 Ais, 180 f2.8 ED Ais
  • sportsport Posts: 100Member
    I do not think it is that bad. The software does what most consumers want like adjusting levels and sharpening. The big drawback for it is how user unfriendly it is. For seasoned users it can be used but it is clear that Nikon does not invest much money in the software.

    The problem I have is more with how Nikon treats new users. In this instance the user is clearly trying to get the most out of their images. Nikon (not just them by the way), always glosses over the photo process. The marketing team makes it look like the images shown are straight from the camera.
  • mhedgesmhedges Posts: 564Member
    Capture NX-D is not user friendly at all. It doesn’t even give you a simple way to make sure it saved your edits. View NX-I isn’t that bad, IMO. I wish it had some simple filters or effects options. And grid lines when straightening images.

    Sounds like I shouldn’t expect updates for handling Z6/Z7 RAW files to be available on day one, huh?
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