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Thread: Raw Processing Software

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    Account Closed dph's Avatar
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    Raw Processing Software

    What is your favorite or you believe to be the best raw software for Nikon?

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    The Cap'n o' this ship ricktas's Avatar
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    "It is one thing to make a picture of what a person looks like, it is another thing to make a portrait of who they are" - Paul Caponigro

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    It depends on the determination of the term 'best'.

    (short answer): On the topics of ease of use and quality of output, I think Nikon's own CaptureNX2 is the best.


    (long answer): But there are features in other software that CNX2 can't approach in terms of usability or even in having them available.

    As an example of where CNX2 lacks, is the clone/heal tool. It's bordering on quite hopeless in terms of usability. There is no option at all to set what section of the image you want to clone to the applied area!

    That is, you may be cloning out a few dust spots in a clear section of sky, and there may be a power pole a few cm away from this point. The developer of this clone heal tool has it set so that CNX2 automatically determines what is to be cloned over the dust spot! .. sometimes this may be a nice clear patch of blue sky, other times it clones the power pole into the area!
    When it works for 'ya, it's as good as it gets .. but this is a rare sight to behold!

    But in terms of editing .. it doesn't get any easier than colour control points.

    If you want layering, HDR stitching and so forth ... there is no option! Adobe's CS software is the only way to go.

    Wayyy way back, I had to get Lightroom too myself and only for the purpose of editing noise reduction into a raw file(not many NR software works well(if at all) on a raw file, and LR did a great job of it, where CNX2's noise reduction was pretty basic. But now they've updated it and it works as well if not better .. although still not as good as a dedicated NR software. But it's become so much more able, that I haven't opened any of the other software I used to for NR at all.

    I only use LR now on non Nikon raw files.

    In terms of speed(on my machine) LR is woefully slow ... no idea why, but many people refer to LR and talk of it's speed.
    Whereas most folks talk of Nikon's software tardiness, and I only see swiftness.
    I am odd tho in that I do tend to prefer AMD powered PC's.

    I've tried many others, many of the free raw converters out there based on the DCRaw engine, and basically they're all pretty much unusable too(IMO only!).
    Other's use these software quite successfully, but I've never managed to do so. Usually its about speed, but sometimes it's about trying to figure out basic editing methods.

    The reason I've tried so many is that, the way this is currently panning out, it looks as tho Nikon have 'given up' on CNX2. There seems to have been a bit of a bun fight between the folks that actually created the software and Nikon, and the folks that created CNX2(Nik Software) have also been bought out by Google .. so the future development of CNX2 could be in question.
    That is, it could be a dead end in terms of possible future enhancements to it's feature set.

    Nikon did this many moons ago with Nikon Capture, which ended at v4, and from which point CaptureNX took over(and yay for that) and is now at CNX2.

    We've been waiting for an update from CNX2 to CNX3 for years now, while LR has gone from v1 to v4 in a shorter time frame!

    So at the moment I think CNX2 is in limbo(or Nikon have been working on it's replacement) hence I've been trying other options.
    Note tho that Nikon do maintain the required updates for it .. and occasionally throw in the odd feature enhancement(usually with no announcement of it).

    Note that whilst my preference for using CNX2 is based on this Colour Control Point method of working, you can get a plugin for other raw editors to achieve the same workflow method .. but it cost a packet and a half .. which is about the cost of CNX2 to begin with! .. then there's the cost of updating for every new version.
    I'm not about to waste money on stuff I can get 'for free' .. that is pay for software only to realise that you have to pay for more software to make the software you paid for usable, when you could have paid for the right software to begin with!
    Nikon D800E, D300, D70s
    {Nikon} -> 50/1.2 : 500/8(CPU'd) : 105/2.8VR Micro : 180/2.8ais : 105mm f/1.8ais : 24mm/2ais
    {Sigma}; ->10-20/4-5.6 : 50/1.4 : 12-24/4.5-5.6II : 150-600mm|S
    {Tamron}; -> 17-50/2.8 : 28-75/2.8 : 70-200/2.8 : 300/2.8 SP MF : 24-70/2.8VC

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