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Author Topic: Aperture & DNG  (Read 18950 times)
Mike Guilbault
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« on: September 29, 2006, 05:18:57 AM »

I'm now considering Aperture with the recent update to 1.5 (but eagerly waiting on Peter's review) because of it's hopefully total workflow solution.  But a couple of questions.
It 'loads' the original image as the Master and I suppose that it doesn't matter if it's NEF, jpg, tif or whatever, but since I'm working with NEF that's what I'm interested in.  If I understand it correctly, when I make corrections/adjustments to the NEF and save it, it's saved as a Version (with the instructions saved separately, in something like a sidecar I'm assuming) along side of the Master.  Is this version still a NEF?  If you select the original, are the adjustments seen?  And, if after the adjustments are made and the image is converted to DNG, can this become the Master rather than a version and are the adjustments applied for the preview?
« Last Edit: October 10, 2006, 03:39:45 AM by peterkrogh » Logged

peterkrogh
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« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2006, 12:56:30 PM »

Aperture keeps the NEF as a NEF, and stores instructions and renderings separately.

It will not currently make DNG files.

You can export a TIFF, JPEG,  or PSD from aperture, and they will look like the adjustments you made.

Peter
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Mike Guilbault
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« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2006, 07:31:37 PM »

>Aperture keeps the NEF as a NEF, and stores instructions and renderings separately.

Do you mean that there is only the one NEF with different 'sets' of instructions for each adjusment made?  In other words, if I create a B&W version and a highly saturated colour version, will I now have three NEFs, or one with two additional versions (actual images that I can view on the screen)?  Will the two extras be actual NEFs?

>You can export a TIFF, JPEG,  or PSD from aperture, and they will look like the adjustments you made.

Is 'exporting' the same as 'Save As'?  So if I make RAW adjustments within Aperture, then export this file as a tif (for example), does it show up in the Library?

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peterkrogh
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« Reply #3 on: October 03, 2006, 02:58:09 AM »

There will only be one copy of the NEF.  Other renderings are built from that.

As to the other question, I am not familiar enough with the application to say.
Peter
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Mike Guilbault
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« Reply #4 on: October 03, 2006, 04:21:24 AM »

Thanks Peter... and as to the other question, from what I understand from the Apple forums, it does show in the Library as a version that can be 'stacked' with the original.  Kinda kool.
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peterkrogh
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« Reply #5 on: October 03, 2006, 07:39:28 AM »

Very cool, actually.  Hopefully we will se this in Lightroom v1 as well.
It's one of the great benefits of Metadata Based Imaging.
Peter
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Rick McCleary
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« Reply #6 on: October 09, 2006, 08:05:43 AM »

I understand that Aperture does not currently support DNG output.  That's a problem.  I agree that the value of the full-size color-adjusted embedded jpeg is too high to abandon any workflow that supports it (such as the current Bridge/ACR.)

So what happens if you run your RAW files through Aperture, apply RAW adjustments, and then run those same files through the Adobe DNG Converter?  How are the adjustment instructions handled by Aperture?  Will those RAW adjustments get picked up by the DNG Converter? 

I haven't actually worked with Aperture, but the concept seems great.  If the DNG creation issue could be solved, I'd consider switching over.
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peterkrogh
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« Reply #7 on: October 09, 2006, 10:15:00 AM »

Rick,
I agree that if Apple switched over, I would consider it a very good solution.   I'd need to investigate the file handling issues a bit more.  Having lost an iTunes library once, I don't have complete connfidence in any solution that is all done in the background with no ability for the user to confirm that everything is cool.

That said, back to DNG.  It's important to understand that *no* program's adjustment instructions will be understood by other programs.  So changes you make in Aperture are unreadable by Adobe software and visa-versa.  This is one of the most important arguments for attaching a rendering to the images file - predictability of rendering across multiple applications and over time.

I suggest that users need the ability to attach a fixed rendering to the RAW file data and take it with themselves wherever they go.  The DNG spec allows this not for a single rendering in one application (although the XMP space in a DNG *would* allow other programs to attach their renderings currently, it will be better once the spec has actually been designed to do that in an orderly manner...stay tuned...)

There *is* a possibility of a translation hack.  For instance, Adobe will provide something to translate RSP settings to Lightroom, but it will never be perfect, since the rendering engines do things in different ways.
Peter
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Rick McCleary
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« Reply #8 on: October 09, 2006, 10:29:11 AM »

Peter,

Is it possible to do a full-fledged Rube Goldberg hack in which you'd create the full-size jpeg in Aperture, and then somehow insert that into the DNG?  This would bypass any conversion issues altogether.
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peterkrogh
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« Reply #9 on: October 09, 2006, 11:25:26 AM »

Rick,
Well, the first answer is that, while possible, the much better solution would be for Apple to support DNG.

The second response would be that I expect future versions of the DNG spec to be able to support multiple embedded previews, from multiple applications.  So in these cases, it would certainly be possible for someone to create software to insert standalone fixed renderings (a JPEG that Aperture creates, for instance) into DNG files.  I expect, however, that the DNG spec would call for the settings used to create the preview image to be attached to the preview.  In order to get those settings, the application would have to go into the Aperture database and find the settings.

While all of that is doable, it's a very long way around a small problem.  It would take lots of engineering for someone to create this tool that helps Apple in spite of its intransigence.

You may be more likely to see a C1Pro/iView integration than Apple supporting DNG files - sooner, at least.  Or you may sooner see a Lightroom implementation that you like better than Aperture.

There are also a number of important file handling tools that are missing from Aperture (Find Missing Items, for one).  And the fact that they are missing is tied to the same world-view that keeps them from adopting DNG so far.  This perspective is in Apple's DNA.  It will be a significant turn of events if Apple were to fully embrace open architecture, although certainly the steps taken in 1.5 are moving in the right direction.

Peter
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Rick McCleary
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« Reply #10 on: October 09, 2006, 11:41:44 AM »

Peter -

Thanks for your patient and generous view of the world.  I guess that's a required trait if you are to keep your sanity while standing in the middle of real evolution taking place.

Needless to say, I'm anxious (as are we all) for the next step.
« Last Edit: October 09, 2006, 12:39:53 PM by Rick McCleary » Logged
jpringle
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« Reply #11 on: November 03, 2006, 11:57:42 AM »

Quote
That said, back to DNG.  It's important to understand that *no* program's adjustment instructions will be understood by other programs.  So changes you make in Aperture are unreadable by Adobe software and visa-versa.  This is one of the most important arguments for attaching a rendering to the images file - predictability of rendering across multiple applications and over time.

I don't quite get how this helps, or I'm misunderstanding what you mean by and attached rendering.

Assuming attached rendering = JPEG resulting from applying adjustment instructions (ie embedded preview), then all this can do is give me a target for attempting to recreate the adustments manually in another application, and perhaps allow printing by an application that understands how to extract the preview.

But as you said, instructions from ACR aren't understood by Aperture, so exactly how would I benefit from attaching an ACR rendering to a file and then editing that file in Aperture (or any other raw converter)?

--Jason Pringle
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--Jason
chrisgreen
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« Reply #12 on: November 08, 2006, 09:49:32 AM »

I've been fooling around with the Aperture trial. It seems as if a DNG saved out of ACR won't open in Aperture. I get an 'Unsupported File Format' message. However, a DNG made with the DNG Converter seems to open just fine in Aperture. Settings for ACR and the converter are the same.
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peterkrogh
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« Reply #13 on: November 08, 2006, 11:30:15 AM »

Jason,
So this embedded rendering would only be useful for printing, web galleries, on-screen display, email, quicktime movies...

Hmmm, that seems pretty useful to me...

Chris, Aperture looks at the RAW data, nit the embedded preview, and only supports DNGs for cameras it supports natively. What camera are these from? Are they saved as linearized DNGs?
Peter
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chrisgreen
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« Reply #14 on: November 08, 2006, 11:35:53 AM »

Files are from Nikon D200. DNG's are not converted to linear.
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