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Peter and others -- Which is better
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dheaton
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« on: September 17, 2008, 11:24:53 AM »

I know this question has been asked before but with new additions to software I am asking again.
Which is better for a full dam catalog system - LR2 or Expression Media 2?  I am going to get one of them and would like to do it right the first time. 
I am a portrait photographer and have been shooting Digital for about 7 years now.  I have allot of files and have been using another software program but I am not really happy with it so I want to change.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you

David
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ScottBuckel
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« Reply #1 on: September 17, 2008, 01:27:11 PM »

David -

I think the answer to your question is "it depends".  Maybe if you told us why you do not like your curent software that will help people make suggestions.  The best software for me, may be the worst software for others depnding on needs and how one wants to work.

There is a protrait photographer near me that uses Lightroom exclusively and thinks it is great for his needs.  There is another portrait photographer I was talking to at PSW that thinks Expression Media is the best DAM solution for her workflow as Lightroom does not do everything she sees that needs to be done.  While Peter suggests that there are some features that Lightroom does not have to make it a fully capable DAM software - he posted to a thread a few weeks ago with this info and I can not find it at this moment to post a link.

Scott
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Scott Buckel
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dheaton
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« Reply #2 on: September 17, 2008, 03:50:07 PM »

Thanks Scott for the reply.

I must not understand all the ins and outs of DAM.  I have Peters book and it has helped.
Basically the things that I am unhappy about my current software is.
1.  It has problems reading some images mostly psd files but not all of them
2.  It is confusing to work with originals and dirivitives
3.  When ever I need to find an image it takes me too long to do it.

I do portrait work and also alot of landscapes.  I need a system that will be able to bring up the images when I need them without looking in each folder.  I have many images on external HD and would like to be able to see the full previews  when the HD is off line.
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Dierk
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« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2008, 12:29:36 AM »

Sounds like you want a real DAM. For your specific question: xMedia.


PS: I urge to have a look at IDimager [if you are on Windows], which has a brilliant implementation of versioning and stacking - an area xMedia is sorely lacking.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2008, 12:31:28 AM by Dierk » Logged

Dierk

IDimager on Windows XP/SP2; 3.2 GHz, 2 GB RAM, loads of storage space.
Other: Nikon D2x, Nikon D200, Capture NX 2, Adobe Creative Suite 3
johnbeardy
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« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2008, 12:32:57 AM »

David

Either program will "bring up the images when I need them without looking in each folder" and let you "see the full previews when the HD is off line". Regarding the latter, one issue is that EM can comfortably contain lots of thumbnails but including previews runs you up against the 2Gb file size limit. On the other hand, EM can catalogue lots of other files which might relate to your work - eg Word or PDF invoices, sound clips. Also CMYK and Lab images.

John
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peterkrogh
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« Reply #5 on: September 18, 2008, 06:53:36 AM »

David,
In addition to the other good advice here:Also, if you saved PSD files without a composite preview, no program other than Photoshop (or Bridge) will be able to display them correctly.  I suggest that you don't do this, and that you resave important PSD files with a composite preview if they don't have one.
Peter
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peterkrogh
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« Reply #6 on: September 18, 2008, 07:24:20 PM »

David,
I've split your questions into a new thread.  Have a little patience, and fire them out one or two at a time.
Peter
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David Emberling
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« Reply #7 on: November 18, 2008, 09:44:42 AM »

Dear Peter,
I just read your reply about saving PSD files with composite previews. I checked in Photoshop Help to see how to do this, and there was no mention of it. (I'm on CS3, Mac OSX). Could you explain how to do this? My goal is to be able to show PSD files with layers and alpha channels properly in XP media catalogs. Thanks.
--David Emberling
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peterkrogh
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« Reply #8 on: November 18, 2008, 12:29:35 PM »

David,
It's the Maximize Compatibility in the save routine for layered PSD files.
Peter
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David Emberling
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« Reply #9 on: November 20, 2008, 09:13:39 AM »

Dear Peter,
Thanks for replying. Unfortunately, I'm still having a problem. I just did a test as follows: I opened a PSD file which contains both layers and one alpha channel. In PHotoshop Preferences, the box for Maximize Compatibility is set to "Always". I saved a version of the file on my desktop. I imported this new file into  an Expressions Media Catalog. The thumbnail looked normal, but when I clicked on Media, I saw a yellow and black version of the alpha channel, not the image. I'm running PHotoshop CS3 on a Mac G5, system OS 10.4.11. Is this just a limitation of all catalog software, and I basically just have to live with it? If so, does anyone have a good system for handling this problem?
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peterkrogh
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« Reply #10 on: November 20, 2008, 09:39:06 PM »

David,
Is "Use Alpha Channel" checked in the Media Rendering preference of Expression Media?  does unchecking it help?
Peter
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David Emberling
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« Reply #11 on: November 22, 2008, 11:17:34 AM »

Dear Peter,
 Unchecking  "Use Alpha Channel" worked like a charm. Thanks so much.
--David Emberling
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danaltick
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« Reply #12 on: December 26, 2008, 07:45:29 AM »

I've also discovered that PSD's in Lab mode will not show in EM either.  There is a way to get around it though.  Select all the layers of your PSD, convert them to a Smart Object, then change your image mode back to RGB before saving the file.  When you edit the Smart Object, it will still be in Lab mode, but the outside layer will be in RGB.  It works great and the fidelity loss is negligable.  If you're working in Lab this is a good thing to do anyway at the end of your editing because you want it back in RGB for outputing.  Also some operations, like Lens Correction, only work in RGB mode.

Dan
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WindowsXP, ImageIngester Pro, RapidFixer, IVMP 3, ACR4, Photoshop CS4, Controlled Keyword Catalog, Canon EOS50D
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