There’s a lot of noise about the Nikon D850 right now but few direct comparisons. One problem I have with some early reports is that new D850 owners are most likely to be existing D810 or perhaps D750 or D5 owners. Any comparisons are therefore being made with earlier Nikon sensors.
Recently a Nikon ambassador whom I respect greatly placed some .NEF raw files into a Dropbox for fellow professionals to examine. Since this article effectively criticises Nikon, I will not reproduce anything recognisable. I naturally grabbed the files and processed them with my usual care in Adobe Camera Raw. This includes making adjustments to the Sharpness and Noise Reduction settings depending on the ISO used. My standard with Sony, Nikon and most other files is to reduce the radius for sharpening to the minimum (0.5) leaving the basic settings of 25 for sharpness and 25 for detail untouched, with no masking. I also don’t touch the Colour Noise controls at all, and usually only adjust the first Luminance control leaving Luminance Contrast and Luminance Detail at default. This first Luminance control tends to set to zero for ISO 100 (or the minimum for a given camera), 10 to 15 around 400 to 800, 25 at 1000 to 2000, 30 to 35 at 2500 to 4000, 50 at 6400 and never above this level.
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Adobe has announced the Lightroom 3.2 and Camera Raw 6.2 Release Candidates, available for immediate download on Adobe Labs. The updates extend raw file support to 12 new popular camera models including the Sony NEX-3 and NEX-5, Alpha 290 and 390; improve on several of the lens correction profiles introduced as part of the Lightroom 3 and Camera Raw 6.1 releases; and add over 50 new lens profiles to help photographers automatically correct for undesirable distortion and aberration effects.
But they let Sony down in a big way by only including the 18-55mm OSS lens for NEX, omitting the 16mm which must be very simple to profile (after all folks, there are only TWO officially available lenses for NEX right now – you found time to profile no fewer than 15 lenses for the Pentax AF645, for the benefit of all two dozen worldwide users of this outstandingly popular digital option…)
For ACR 3.2 Release Candidate download – http://labs.adobe.com/wiki/index.php/Camera_Raw_6.2
For LR 3.2 Release Candidate download – http://labs.adobe.com/wiki/index.php/Lightroom_3.2
In addition, the Lightroom 3.2 Release Candidate now allows Lightroom 3 customers the ability to publish their photos directly to Facebook from within the application, and addresses issues reported by customers on the Lightroom 3.0 release. Adobe continues to encourage the community to provide feedback on the updates so it can ensure the highest quality experience for customers working on a variety of hardware and software configurations.
Pricing and Availability
The Lightroom 3.2 Release Candidate is available as a free download for Lightroom 3 customers, and the Photoshop Camera Raw 6.2 Release Candidate is available as a free download for Photoshop CS5 customers. For more information and to test out the updates visit http://labs.adobe.com. Feedback can be provided on the Adobe User to User forum at http://forums.adobe.com.
*Please visit the Lightroom Journal for more information on these Release Candidates and a full list of the improved and newly added lens profiles: http://blogs.adobe.com/lightroomjournal
Newly Supported Camera Models
Panasonic DMC-FZ100, Panasonic DMC-FZ40 (FZ45), Panasonic DMC-LX5, Pentax 645D, Samsung NX10, Samsung TL500 (EX1), Sony A290, Sony A390, Sony Alpha NEX-3, Sony Alpha NEX-5
Also, this update improves the colour and noise profiles for the following cameras that utilise the DNG raw file format already supported in previous versions of Lightroom and Camera Raw: Casio EXILIM EX-FH100 (DNG) and Leica S2 (DNG).
Adobe’s Camera Raw Release Candidate 5.5, which introduces global corrections for all Bayer sensor cameras requiring a differential value treatment between the two Green channels, has a visible effect on the colour of Sony Alpha file conversions.
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Adobe has added the latest Alpha model support to Lightroom and ACR before the cameras have become fully available worldwide – as they did with the original Alpha 100. Lightroom 2.4 and Adobe Camera Raw 5.4 final releases include raw conversion for the Alpha 230, 300 and 380.
To download the latest utilities (including DNG Converter, which converts the raw files to a form which earlier versions of Photoshop CS can process) visit:
The updates are free but you must have recent versions of authorised software installed to benefit from them. The ACR Plug-In will also update Adobe Elements 7 (PC) or 6 (Macintosh) to work with the full range of Sony Alpha DSLRs.
We have run comparison ACR conversions on Alpha 900 files using 5.4 and the earlier Release Candidate (beta) version – there is no difference, output is bit for bit identical.
Portrait Professional, the downloadable software from Anthropics which resculpts face shapes while smoothing out skin imperfections and signs of ageing, has been updated to Version 8 and launched for Apple Mac as well as Windows PC. We tested it briefly as a first look in our magazine Master Photo>Digital.
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Here’s a question which came in to my email just now:
“Could I process a RAW file in Photoshop to achieve a similar effect as if I had used a Polaroid lens filter?
Or would I be better just using the Polaroid filter?”
The answer is that you can never imitate the effect of polarizing light (which changes the way reflective surfaces look, and deepens or lightens the sky blue according to the zone of the sky relative to the sun’s position. But you can use Adobe Camera Raw (CS3 versions) to deepen skies you never thought could be rescued.
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Paris, France – February 29, 2007 – DxO Labs announces today the addition of 10 new lenses, including popular zooms and fish-eyes, to its library of lens correction modules for DxO Optics Pro v5. Continue reading »
Apple’s Aperture 2.0 is a tedious program to test, with all its creation of ‘projects’ and ‘libraries’, ‘albums’, ‘vaults’ and nonstandard GUI, and it isn’t fast in processing files or passing them to Photoshop (which it does in 16-bit form, just another step to reverse before saving as far as I’m concerned). However, it’s handling Alpha 700 raw quite well. And it does things differently, with non-destructive raw editing, stacks of image versions, and so on. Continue reading »