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1  Software Discussions / iView MediaPro / Re: iView + DxO Bundle for $229 on: December 12, 2006, 08:09:25 PM
Simon,
Bibble has had a very interesting converter, but without the ability to embed a preview it's not as useful from a total workflow perspective.

The Bibble Labs people demonstrate raw conversion workflow.......even showing capture from camera.  But it all comes undone after you do your raw edits.  If you make a derivative (e.g., TIFF or JPEG) from every raw file you keep, I guess that's ok for you then.  They conveniently avoid the whole archive and catalog part of the problem.  And it seems most of their power users on their forum use iMatch.

Personally, I don't take all my shots to derivative images so it gets clumsy for me to see all my raw edits in IVMP if Bibble cannot update the preview.  Plus, the instability of the interface (redraws not always happening, etc.) was finally too much for me to handle.  A pity too since you can rip through raw edits very quickly in Bibble.  And the tool set in the application is very nice.

Bibble 5 is supposed to be quite an improvement along many fronts.  But I have elected to stay with Bridge and ACR as well as buy Capture NX for certain uses.  With either of these I can have embedded previews and metadata (DNG and modified NEF, respectively)

Every now and then I get some queer artifacts in ACR that I don't get in NX.  That's why I have it around.  But in most cases I'm hard pressed to tell the difference when you do a true apple-to-apples comparison.  Lightroom appears to be victim to the same artifacts in beta 4.1 as well.

Best Regards,
Michael S.
2  Software Discussions / Lightroom / Re: Will Adobe replace ACR with Lightroom? on: October 26, 2006, 08:41:53 PM
I knew he was an early tester and gives feedback to Adobe.  It's quite obvious that he's in the "club".  But last I knew he was not on the payroll with an Adobe badge.  So I thought there was some new change in his status.  I'm a very literal person, so that's why I was asking.

I can't imaging Adobe making a photoapplication without his input; or Jeff Schewe's for that matter.
Furthermore, I agree with Bruce's past recommendations and concerns about Lightroom.  Local editing is needed if you want LR to leverage it's printing capabilities effectively.

Finally, I'm a huge fan of Bruce.  He and Peter are the two people who have had the most influence on my photography.  I have his ACR and Sharpening books, as well as the Color Management and Photoshop books for which he is a co-author.  That's another reason why I was interested if he changed into a dedicated Adobe employee.  I'm a bit of a Bruce Fraser groupie at times.  Wish he had a regular blog somewhere..... Smiley

--Michael

Anyway, I'm always interested in how this unfolds and I'll watch like the rest of us.  But for the moment, I'm more interested in an imagined ACR 4 with iView than Lightroom Beta 4.1.  But this is all theatre of the mind in many respects.
3  Software Discussions / Lightroom / Re: Will Adobe replace ACR with Lightroom? on: October 26, 2006, 07:46:13 PM
My earlier competition comment was about an ACR 4 competing or splitting the market with Lightroom 1.

Dan,
Where are you seeing that Bruce is on the Lightroom team?  Does he have a personal web site?  Good to get the news, but I would like to keep up to date myself in the future.  Thank you for the pointer.

--Michael
4  Software Discussions / Lightroom / Re: Will Adobe replace ACR with Lightroom? on: October 26, 2006, 01:04:36 PM
Peter,
Thanks for the reply.  What you state is what I understood.  But that link made some business sense if you take a negative view of Adobe.  It would seem there could be competition between ACR 4 and LR 1.

I appreciate the Lightroom results but the workflow in all the betas, so far, has left me cold.  I'm not interested in anything other than the Develop module so far.

I'll stop worrying and wait to see how this all unfolds.  But I will admit I am impatient to get on with the future of raw conversion.  Grin

--Michael S.
5  Software Discussions / Lightroom / Will Adobe replace ACR with Lightroom? on: October 25, 2006, 04:03:34 AM
Hello Everyone, thanks for reading,

I haven't been listening to the Lightroom podcasts since Peter returned from Iceland.  Maybe Adobe give more information there.  If so I apologize.

I know many individuals have discussed using Lightroom as a replacement for the Bridge/ACR combination.  That would be a personal decision.  But has anyone heard more ideas from Adobe on what they intend to do?  Would they make that decision 'for us', and squash ACR as a separate plug-in?

I ask because this blogger here (http://blog.taospace.com/2006/09/the_status_of_t.html) is of the opinion that Adobe will have to set ACR aside to prevent self-competition with Lightroom.  Personally, i would be very sad if that were the case.  I already bought IVMP so the Collection & Shoot paradigm of Lightroom's Library module are more a hindrance to me (very frustrating to be honest).  It's just another layer that gets in the way.  Maybe that's because I'm not a full-time or professional photographer.  But I already have an excellent cataloging application, thank you.  The Library module feels redundant to me.

Thus, for how I imagine my workflow, I really would only want LR for raw conversion with an occasional print or web gallery thrown in.  No need for Library or Slide Show.

Will ACR ever make it to 4.0 with the nice controls like we see in LR beta 4.x?  I look forward to the various opinions on the forum.

Thank youi,
Michael S.
6  DAM Stuff / Software Discussions / Re: Encryption options on: October 24, 2006, 03:00:00 AM
My knee-jerk response is try something from PGP.  http://www.pgp.com/index.html

If they don't have what you want then hopefully some blogs or chat boards mention them with their clostest competitors.

Good Luck,
Michael S.
7  Software Discussions / RAW File Converters / Re: It's Official! Capture One v4 supports DNG on: October 19, 2006, 02:02:21 AM
Thanks Rick,
Excellent point, but I'm purely a PC user.  So my limited platform selection colored my post.

--Michael S.
8  Software Discussions / RAW File Converters / Re: It's Official! Capture One v4 supports DNG on: October 19, 2006, 01:10:49 AM
Hi Everyone,

So how many choices do we have for DNG today, that will continue in some fashion? (meaning ignore the soon-to-be-deceased RawShooter family)
  • Adobe Camera Raw 3.x
  • Lightroom Beta 4
  • SilkyPix (hope I have this right)

And sometime in 2007 we will have:
  • Adobe Camera Raw 4.x (I hope rumors of its demise are unfounded. That makes no sense.)
  • Lightroom v1.0
  • SilkyPix
  • Capture One LE 4 (then Pro v4 later in 2007)

That makes only two major and one minor player in the DNG world.  Although, it is true that Adobe is the 800 pound gorilla of the photo world.  And, Capture One has a strong and loyal following.  Anyone have any ideas on image quality?  How does C1 3.7.5 compare to LR b4 for quality?  I burned up my C1 trial time before LR b4 came out so I don't have many comparison shots to use.

Will the trend to more metadata editing (instead of pixel pushing) continue in many products in 2007?  Seems like the direction we are headed, but I'd love to hear more informed opinions than my own.

Thanks,
Michael S.
9  Software Discussions / Lightroom / Re: Pricing, release date, and influence on upcoming ACR on: October 14, 2006, 12:11:04 AM
Hello Peter,
I cannot think of a statement with more truth than yours. Smiley
But the guessing numbers I am seeing are cause for concern.  Although it may be misplaced.

Anyway, the Lightroom Develop module is very nice.  But I don't see that I'll use the other Lightroom modules very much at all.  I do way too much precise sharpening in Photoshop CS2 for the Print module to matter much in its current state.  I hope the raw conversion portion of the technology shows up soon in ACR, as implied by podcasts and Adobe statements elsewhere.  I guess it will be ACR 4.0.

All this makes my teeth grind so I may just put my head down with Bridge/ACR/Photoshop/IVMP and try to ignore all this.  Awwww, who am I fooling.  I know I can't resist playing iwth all these converters to find a new technical edge!  But I really shouldn't......

--Michael S.
10  Software Discussions / Lightroom / Pricing, release date, and influence on upcoming ACR on: October 13, 2006, 06:05:27 PM
Hello everyone,
A question set for the group.  What are the latest estimates or guesses about the following:
  • Planned List Price of Lightroom?
  • Release date for Lightroom v1?
  • When will we see Adobe Camera Raw incorporate the new Develop tools seem in Lightroom Beta 4 (Fill Light, Vibrance, etc.)?

I was alarmed to see a post at Adobe Labs forum that Lightroom might be $400.  I'm not taking a hit like that! Shocked

So far I like the results from the Develop Module, but doubt I would use the Print module much.  And the Library module can't hold a candle to my iView.  Slide Show is helpful but not a critical need for me.  Thus, I'm more interested in an expanded ACR feature set.  I hope they aren't holding out until Creative Suite 3.  But the more I look at the calendar the more likely that seems.   Sad

Thanks for any insights.

--Michael S.
11  Software Discussions / Bridge/ Camera Raw / Re: Crtl/Cmd selections in Bridge: A tip on: August 30, 2006, 11:02:19 PM
Charlie,
Thank you for sharing the tip.  I had not noticed the behavior in Bridge before.
Good luck with your new system.

--Michael S.
12  DAM Stuff / DNG / Re: Imbed RAW in DNG? Delete original RAW? on: August 30, 2006, 03:50:38 PM
Hello Again,
I hate flogging a dead horse, but I wanted to clarify my comments since I feel they were taken out of context.

I think Adobe's acquisition of Pixmantec's assets makes sense to me ("It's logical Captain") now that I see how they are incorporating the technology into the ACR code base.

I'll admit at first I did not understand why they bought it all and then why it seemed like Raw Shooter Premium was taken out behind the barn and shot dead.  But with Michael J. full-time with Thomas Knoll and the ACR team there isn't enough time to support or develop any more RSP stuff.

I also agree that Raw Shooter Essentials was a loss leader for RSP sales -- nothing wrong with that.

Adobe wanted some raw conversion technology to augment their product line.  Pixmantec was willing to sell.  Now the founders are working at Adobe.  That seems to be a good thing to me.  If ACR improves, then Photoshop Elements and on up improve.  Our hypothetical "comman man" (or woman) can benefit greatly.

My use of the phrase "transcends logic" was meant to be limited to the quasi-emotional way most of us approach risk management with the rapid and sometimes unexpected course of raw technology change.  At first I was bafled by the Pixmantec purchase.  Now it seems very clear and sensible.  Any Adobe users stand to benefit.  I would also make the case that Pixmantec customers will benefit as well; it may take more time for that to become as clear.

Best Regards,
Michael S.

PS -- I'll be making my buckets this weekend and archiving those NEFs to DVD-R Smiley
13  DAM Stuff / DNG / Re: Imbed RAW in DNG? Delete original RAW? on: August 30, 2006, 02:30:11 AM
Hello Gloria,
From my perspective the worst case is being locked into a smaller group of raw converters than I might like.

If I throw away my original Nikon raw files (NEF) that means I cannot use the current versions of:
  • Bibble Pro or Lite
  • DxO Optics Pro either the curent v3.55 or the upcoming v4
  • Capture One (expected to change by year's end)
  • Nikon Capture 4.x or NX 1.0
  • and others I don't follow or care much about

The list of DNG ingesting raw converters is small but growing.

Also, the camera maker may be putting something secret but important in the maker notes that have to get moved around and placed in the part of the DNG file that is set aside to hold such stuff.  A tiny risk in my mind, but for some it seems more important.

Currently I keep all my raws as NEF with sidecar XMP.  But once I get my storage hardware properly purchased and configured, I intend on making DNG buckets on my hard disks and then doing an archive move of my original NEF files to DVD-R; no copies "live and local" on my disks.  One DVD-R copy will stay at my home.  Another DVD-R copy will be sent to my friend's house in south central Pennsylvania.  I happen to live in North Carolina, so that's way off site for me!

The evolution of the Adobe Camera Raw code base appears to be going in a very solid and appealing direction, so I'm out only a few dollars to keep my NEF in case I need to make a huge change away from Adobe programs.  That's not likely; but the DVD and mailing costs are a very reasonable price to pay for such insurance.

For me, the ability to have embedded previews that actually reflect my edits and having the XMP metadata embedded in the DNG file is a huge advantage.  But I'm a computer archive storage professional by day; amateur phtographer at nights and on weekends.  That's why I prefer DNG as my active archive file format.  I expect my optical archive NEFs will most likely be fine examples of WORN data......Write Once, Read Never.

I hope this is helpful to you.  Honestly, I think this issue transcends logic.  We are in the realm of how people "feel" about perceived risk and the future of raw conversion technologies.  I think Adobe applications and DNG-capable converters will likely win the day.  But I'm making a small hedge in case that's not true for my circumstances and needs.

Warmest Regards,
Michael S.
14  Software Discussions / Aperture / Re: Three hours with Aperture on: August 24, 2006, 04:28:08 PM
Rick,
I'll wade in uninvited on this one.  In recent posts Peter has talked about how the upcoming Lightroom Beta 4 has some new converting tools.  I think the buzz has been around Vibrance (localized saturation) and some form of Fill Light.

Based on earlier Lightroom podcasts it seems clear that the Pixmantec acquisition is causing changes/improvements in the ACR codebase.  Putting all these references together it seems that Adobe may be using the Lightroom betas as a way to test-drive some ACR changes before baking them into the shipping version.  Adobe staff were clear in the podcasts that they want a common ACR codebase that can be used across multiple applications. So if any application would need to render raw files it would be consistent across all Adobe platforms.

I apologize for butting into the conversation.  I think Peter's enthusiasm has become infectious!!  His confirmation of what I gleaned from the Lightroom podcasts is exciting.

Best Regards to All,
Michael S.
15  Software Discussions / Bridge/ Camera Raw / Re: Problem with opening DNGs and some other things on: August 14, 2006, 03:00:57 AM
Per-Gunnar,
As Marc mentioned, please be sure you have the most recent version of all your Adobe applications.  I have Bridge 1.0.4 and I find it to be very stable and useful, even with folders of 500 or more raw files.  As part of that, get the Adobe Camera Raw 3.4 and DNG Converter 3.4 downloads.  Be sure to follow the short but required directions as to how to install them properly.  ACR needs to be in a very specific place in your file system.

Definitely turn off the "Auto" seetings for ACR.

And if you want to use ACR, I cannot recommend enough that you get "Real World Camera Raw with Adobe Photoshop CS2" by Bruce Fraser.  Don't walk, run to your nearest book store and buy it.  Don't wait for someone to ship it to you.  It's really the ACR manual that was never written.  And getting it 2 days sooner is worth any extra price in a book store, in my opinion.

I used to carry that book and Peter's book on every business trip for months.  Each of the books gets you started but reading them again and again reveals more than before.  This is especially true as you implement the ideas in each book and can compare your results and experience with what the authors recommend.

Best Regards,
Michael
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