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Thread: FREE RAW Processing Software for Nikon - Capture NX-D

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    FREE RAW Processing Software for Nikon - Capture NX-D

    Nikon has just released a FREE RAW processing program to support Nikon cameras. They claim it is the ONLY such software Nikon owners will need. Here is a link to the site for FREE download. (Downloading my copy as I write this)

    http://www.nikon-asia.com/en_Asia/pr...e/capture-nx-d
    Waz
    Be who you are and say what you mean, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind - Dr. Seuss...
    D700 | D7000 | Nikkor AF-S 18-55 DX 1:3.5-5.6G | Nikkor AF-S 55-300 DX 1:4.5-5.6 G ED | Nikkor AF 50 f/1.8D | Optex OPM2930 tripod/monopod | Enthusiasm ...
    My Flickr images ...

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    FWIW:

    This software, while it's more feature rich than the current ViewNX2 is, ViewnNX2 seems to operate a lot better on my current PC.
    Nikon are claiming that NX-D is a replacement for Capture NX2, and if this is so, is 10 steps back into the past(in terms of features) compared to CaptureNX2.

    Their software progression has been from Nikon Capture, to CaptureNX to Capture NX2, of which NX2 was the better package overall .. and NX-D is about what the original Nikon Capture was ... 8 years ago!



    Some strange thinking at Nikon, who's management really seem to have no idea of what to do next!

    While the software itself produces images with that Nikon look to them, as those of us used to Nikon software have expected over the years ... the software is below par in terms of features.
    And I'm not referring to super cool features that a lot of modern software seem to have .. really basic stuff like adding keywords/ITPC/metadata info into images!

    The rendering engine in CNX-D produces images that are similar in appearance to both ViewNX2 and Capture NX2.
    But CNX-D on my PC is both slow and a bit buggy. Although the slow comment may be my own fault for still using the onboard graphics chip instead of a dedicated and higher powered graphics card.

    Of course there may also be the possibility that this is just the beginning of a new line of software products from Nikon, where we may see a more feature rich version with modern image editing tools available.
    ie. this (NX-D) could be a future replacement for ViewNX2 ... and a more 'Pro' like version of NX-D may be made available for purchase with tools that modern photographers want/need.

    of course the still big issue is how to deal with masses of images that have been edited with either of the CaptureNX programs over the years.
    In CNX-D, you can see the edits as have been made by the CNX'es on raw images ... but you can't do anything other than just view those images as they have been edited.
    You can't convert them via CNX-D, and hence need the old software to convert them to a usable format.
    Problem is Nikon will now have completely ceased support for CNX2, which means it's now tied to Windows7/8 for installation(and whatever current equivalent Apple OSes)
    In the years to come with later versions of OSes that wont allow CNX2 to install .. all those edited raw files are borked.

    I'm going to (partly) persevere with it for a bit longer, although my usage of it is more about curiosity, rather than any sense of desire or pleasure.
    But every time I open it to view a new image, I get this feeling of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.
    And that's the best way to describe Capture NX-D.

    Did I mention Nikon management appear to have their heads firmly planted into their ar....?


    The other annoying aspect of it all ... I still can't get used to that Lr look to any image I try to open. Very quickly after opening the raw file with Lr .. I shut LR down and open the image in CNX2!
    Nikon D800E, D300, D70s
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    {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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    Quote Originally Posted by arthurking83 View Post
    I still can't get used to that Lr look to any image I try to open. Very quickly after opening the raw file with Lr .. I shut LR down and open the image in CNX2!
    I think it's really just about giving the masses a way of accessing RAW data files before processing in whatever is their preferred software. I use (and enjoy) LR, because I never got around to purchasing and installing CNX2. (Look who's laughing now, AK)

    Pentax have a similar piece of software that ships with their cameras, and seemed to me to be the only raw processing software that handled PEF files correctly.

    That said, I sure hope (for your sake, if not mine) that this isn't the end of the exercise and there is an updated version of CNX2 in the pipe. I agree the interface is cheap, nasty and dated compared to more sophisticated non-FREE tools. It may be all that some people need though, and you can't beat the price.

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    Moderately Underexposed I @ M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WhoDo View Post
    I think it's really just about giving the masses a way of accessing RAW data files before processing in whatever is their preferred software.
    They already had that in View NX!

    Quote Originally Posted by WhoDo View Post
    That said, I sure hope (for your sake, if not mine) that this isn't the end of the exercise and there is an updated version of CNX2 in the pipe.
    I am almost certain that CNX2 is DEAD, defunct, discontinued and now dodo status. ( note the prevalence of the letter d in that line, it just happens to be the letter of the new software )

    Quote Originally Posted by WhoDo View Post
    I agree the interface is cheap, nasty and dated compared to more sophisticated non-FREE tools. It may be all that some people need though, and you can't beat the price.
    As in most things, you get what you pay for and in this case you are being given a free version of sillypix silkypix and that is possibly because no one has actually paid for that program in the past. I tried it ( the paid version ) for Fuji files and it was the most god awful thing I have ever seen on a 'puter.


    I am not even going to waste bandwidth downloading Capture NX-Dereliction.
    Andrew
    Nikon, Fuji, Nikkor, Sigma, Tamron, Tokina and too many other bits and pieces to list.



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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Andrew is right, that Nikon have ViewNX2 as their freely available raw processing software already, and CNX-D's tools are much better than VNX2's tools .. which are so basic that it's ironic to call ViewNX2 a raw editor! It's more of a converter and file viewer/sorter than an editor.
    But VNX2 works a lot better than NX-D does.

    Had to give it(NX-D) another chance last night to see what I could do with a few images I got yesterday, and while I prefer the tools it has to VNX2 to get images looking a touch nicer, it was so slow in loading up, slow to load the film strip thumbnails, then slow to load the preview image of the first image in the folder .. then it took about 2mins to load up the preview of the file I wanted to edit.
    So, from clicking onto the thumbnail of the file I wanted to have a go at(which VNX2 was useless at 'editing' due to it's lack of tools .. I waited a few seconds .. then went into the kitchen poured my coffee into the cup, popped it in the special box to Nuke it for 2mins .. came back to the PC quickly .. still hadn't loaded the preview image ... went back into the kitchen got the milk .... etc.

    My PC certainly isn't fast, but it's not slow either and Nikon don't specify a min requirement for graphics hardware(meaning that it's obviously not a graphics card intensive bit of software).
    I checked it's resources uses, and CPU usage on loading and displaying files is very low when it then spikes up briefly when it tries to load the preview image, about 0.5sec at 50% CPU which then stops just as quickly as it starts. RAM usage is about the same as ViewNX2 in the same situation.

    Then, once it settles down and (what seems to be) build up it's thumbnail database you can get some reaction from it as you browse through your images.
    Using the arrow keys to quickly navigate through the film strip, after quickly flicking through 5 images, it seems to baulk at the next image and no amount of arrow pressing will get it to switch to the next thumbnail. Then it decides to work again of it's own accord .. until it baulks again.
    Flicking quickly from image to image, it takes over a second or so.. maybe two to properly display the preview image. It shows a blurry rendering and a short while later will then render it sharply.
    On the other hand, using this method with ViewNX2(on my pc) is instant!
    I use this method to flick from image to image if for example trying to determine an image in a series that looks better or maybe sharper than the other, when sorting files out.
    Because of the delay in loading the images, using NX-D in that manner is not an option.(on a side note, Lr does the same thing on my PC, so I can't use that workflow to sort images).

    The multi window tool is only handy if you're just comparing two images .. but not useful if you're comparing more.

    As already said, NX-D could be a good replacement for ViewNX2 .. but a major step backwards from CaptureNX2 .. as Nikon have indicated it is.

    And as for CaptureNX2, support should have ceased for it as Nikon have claimed they would when CNX-D went into official status.
    D810 is not supported in CaptureNX2 as of now.
    ViewNX2 does support it(via V2.10.0), and with the recent update for VNX2 Nikon also updated Pictrure Control Utility to v2 status which supports the new Picture Control methods on the D810
    The new Picture Control steps are not available in older cameras.

    And I still get the annoying "Capture NX-D has stopped working" error every now and then on trying to start it up! I get that maybe every three attempts to load it.
    I close the msg box, and try again and it loads fine. Very annoying .. and if it were still beta status it could be forgiven. But now that it's official .. this kind of bad programming is unforgivable.

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    Quote Originally Posted by arthurking83 View Post
    it was so slow in loading up, slow to load the film strip thumbnails, then slow to load the preview image of the first image in the folder .. then it took about 2mins to load up the preview of the file I wanted to edit. ------------------------------------- unforgivable.
    Yep, that is typical sillypix silkypix quality.

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    Still in the Circle of Confusion Cage's Avatar
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    I've downloaded it to have a look.

    Just about everything I tried is as slow as a wet week, and while my computer isn't the latest and fastest, it isn't exactly a slug either.
    Cheers
    Kev

    D600 : D7200 and too much stuff to list

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    A question:
    Is the Fuji version of SilkyPix dedicated to Fuji, or is it the generic version of it.

    Tamron have a Silkypix for Tamron version which ships with some new Tammy lenses.
    Had to load it back onto the PC to compare again.
    Updated to the later version, which is v4.0.5(up from 4.0.2 when I first loaded it) and one thing that stands out is that the Tammy version is definitely faster overall.
    It loads up quicker, loads images quicker, effects alterations quicker .. etc, etc.
    it still has the same annoyingly slow switch from image to image issue tho.

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    Quote Originally Posted by arthurking83 View Post
    A question:
    Is the Fuji version of SilkyPix dedicated to Fuji, or is it the generic version of it.
    It is an all encompassing piece of xxxx software but they have worked with Fuji, Tamron ( and now Nikon cos it already supports the D810 ) etc etc

    http://www.isl.co.jp/SILKYPIX/english/

    I downloaded it at the time because it was one of the few programs that would render the Fuji raw files but then thankfully, Photo Ninja came along.

    It did a horrible job of Nikon files and even trying it with 6 and 10 mp files it was unbearably slow.
    Last edited by I @ M; 20-07-2014 at 1:00pm.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    OH! .. and to make matters even worse.

    I just found that Nikon have stuffed something up with the way the new side car file editing system works.
    They've warned that files edited with the beta version will not translate to the new software .. which doesn't bother me at all.

    But what they didn't say is that they have now stuffed up the side car file system so that when you make any edits to your raw files, they don't seem to hold if you close the program down unless you remake those edits all over again after reopening the program.

    Awesome!

    I edited an image last night as a trial again(hope springs eternal, huh? ) and saved it as a jpg. So I opened the raw file again now to compare with the rendering differences with the Tammy version of SP, and find that the settings I made on the raw file don't seem to hold on the raw file in a strange way.
    The edit I made to vignetting setting seems to be there, but has been deactivated.
    I don't ever remember this being an issue with the beta version of -D, but looking back on the other images I also edited indicates the same issue.

    In fact, playing with it a bit more .. it seems to be a bug only with the vignette control tool, and no other, that I can see.
    The value added into the number box stays as altered, but the checkbox to activate the tool itself resets to off after closing the program.

    - - - Updated - - -

    So, which version of SP do you have access too? Is it v4, or v5 or 6 Pro?

    The Tammy version doesn't support D810 files as yet, but did notice that v4 of DSP does now.

    I don't reckon I have the patience to trial the standalone version of SP .. but reading up on what features they have in their latest top version, DSP Pro6 .. this could be a basis for proper CaptureNX2 replacement.
    I think!! .. it has dodge and burn tools, HDR like functions, spot removal(which Nikon says NX-D will get soon) and a few other features that could be useful.

    This is why I reckon NX-D is the basis for a future plan to dump VNX2, and Nikon to have plans to also offer a paid for, more Pro, version of NX-D.
    It sort of makes sense really, and Nikon would be typically stupid not too!
    This isn't to say DSP6 is good software, and will almost certainly not have CCPs to play with .. but as a replacement for CNX2 .. the current NX-D falls short whereas a NX-D Pro(ie based on DSP6) would give Nikon photographers the bare tools that are expected in photo editing software.

    I didn't try hard, but I can't get the Tammy version of Developer Studio to render any raw file as does Nikon's software.
    I can't say the likelyhood of this happening to be very high either.

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    Who let the rabble in? Lance B's Avatar
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    Capture NX-2 was purchased from Nikon by Google, I do think. This is why Nikon has dropped it as their RAW converter of choice.

    Whatever, Capture NX-D is not very good and View NX-2 is even worse. I am now using Adobe Camera RAW for the D810 until my RAW converter of choice, Capture One Pro 7 gets the D810 RAW working. Adobe Camera RAW results are actually quite good, but the workflow is awful compared to Capture One Pro 7.

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    Moderately Underexposed I @ M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lance B View Post
    Capture NX-2 was purchased from Nikon by Google, I do think. This is why Nikon has dropped it as their RAW converter of choice
    Google bought Nik Software who were the ones who developed CNX in conjunction with Nikon. The control point functions within CNX were a Nik invention and I guess that Nikon failed to license them from Nik before google bought the company.

    Arthur, I had the latest version at the time ( about 12 months ago now ) and I can't remember what it was because I removed it from the 'puter never to be returned. I downloaded it fro the sillypix site as a trial version and if I remember correctly I was "allowed" to buy it at the end of the trial for a "special" price of about $200.00 because I had the give away version supplied by Fuji with the camera. Pffffft, that is more than CNX 2 cost me with all the years of free updates that they have supplied.
    To save you the frustration, I would strongly recommend that you don't have anything to do with the POS that it is. I simply think that Nikon have aligned with that company because they are Japanese and the executives of each company can sit down to drinks together and talk the same language, I think too much saki has already been consumed consummating the marriage ----

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    Who let the rabble in? Lance B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by I @ M View Post
    Google bought Nik Software who were the ones who developed CNX in conjunction with Nikon. The control point functions within CNX were a Nik invention and I guess that Nikon failed to license them from Nik before google bought the company. -
    Thank you for the clarification. I couldn't remember the exact facts of how it all went together (or fell apart), but now that you mention it, I now remember it.
    Last edited by Lance B; 20-07-2014 at 2:59pm.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lance B View Post
    .....

    Whatever, Capture NX-D is not very good and View NX-2 is even worse.......
    I suppose it depends on what you mean by "not very good" and "worse".

    In terms of speed, I'm yet to come across any NEF viewer or converter that is as quick to browse through raw files, or convert then to tiff than what ViewNX2 can achieve.
    It takes ViewNX2 longer to convert to jpg, than to convert to tiff.

    I suppose everyone's computer will run software slightly differently relative to each other, but this is how I see it on my PC, with it's very modest specs now.

    If you rate software by it's features .. then ViewNX2 definitely sits at the bottom of the pile!
    It's not really meant to be anything other than a basic and free way to view NEF files as you get them on your camera.
    Although over the years, Nikon have added very basic editing ability .. we even got a cropping tool a couple of years ago!

    But what it did well was sort through a series of files, allow you to quickly rate them, sort them and do basic quick edits like WB exposure compensation adjustments, and then send any files that needed further work into Capture NX2 .. as an NEF file.

    And now Nikon has broken this routine with CNX-D .. where it doesn't cooperate with either ViewNX2(which Nikon still support) nor CaptureNX2(which Nikon have no ceased).

    BUT!! the strange thing is that if the workflow is to initially use VNX2, do quick basic edits and then open an edited file in CNX-D .. CNX-D recognises the VNX2 edits!

    Nikon have monumentally botched the software side of their business, to the point where it doesn't even achieve an amateur ranking in the way it all works now .. it's just outright idiotic.

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    Who let the rabble in? Lance B's Avatar
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    The beauty of Capture One Pro 7 is that the RAW files are there displayed in a tab for you to see and you can very quickly look through them, see which you want to keep or delete at a glance and the tab with the image folder stays there so you can scroll through the images whilst you work on an image, or you can work on a number of images at once. You can bulk save whilst you do other work, and the ease of the workflow is the best I've used as is the inuitiveness of the whole system and as such the speed of conversions is much faster than with any other RAW converter I have used. You can do global changes to a multitude of images very easily. You can customise the working tabs you work in by adding whatever particular aspect or "tool" you want to work on into that tab. So, you may have each of the following "tools" - "exposure", "WB", "contrast", "highlight", "shadow" "saturation" on a tab that you are working on, but in that tab you can add any of the 40 or so other "tools" onto that tab that you use the most. You might want to add "lens correction" and "keystone" tools into that tab as these may be the things you use most. So, you can customise the tabs to suit your workflow and prefernces. Not only that, I like the IQ of the output.

    I found Capture NX-2 to be quite cumbersome and slow as not untuitive and having to open different tabs for different tools was a pain. Capture NX-D is slooooow and locks up. ACR is very good, but the fact that you don't see each of the images in a panel to scroll through just slows things up. Like Capture One Pro, ACR has tabs as well, with each tab being a group of tools that are associated with each tab, like exposure tab has "exposure", "WB", "highlight", "shadow", "saturation" etc but you can't customise that tab to include say "lens corrections" that you may use a lot and therefore have to jump to the tab with lens corrections in it.

    Anyway, these are just my opinions.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lance B View Post
    .....

    I found Capture NX-2 to be quite cumbersome and slow as not untuitive and having to open different tabs for different tools was a pain. ......
    While I'm not the type to defend the undefendable .. CNX2's viewer/browser/selection process is definitely sub par.
    I think I may have mentioned that I use VNX2 to view and sort my images, make the general global typical raw edits like WB and picture control selection .. and then pass on any images that need more processing on to CNX2.

    In this workflow, I see VNX2 more as Nikon's ACR .. rather than a real 'editor' as such.
    ViewNX's tools are far too rudimentary for it to be classified as an editor .. it's more of a selection/sorting/tagging tool than an editor .. with the ability to export to a raster file type too.

    I'm not entirely sure what you mean by open different tabs for different tools, but the way most folks use CNX2 is to use the tools most readily available in the tool bar.
    The two most liked tools(and why CNX2 has a following .. are colour control points and selection control points.
    Once you learn how to use them .. all other software feels cumbersome and clunky by comparison.
    Of course, CNX2 also has some of the favoured tools other software has, such as brushes and selection masks and so forth, but they feel tedious to use after using CCPs and SCPs.

    But I downloaded and am trialling C1 Pro(v7) and while it's not bad ... it feels a lot more clunky to edit an image in my mind.
    Finding tools isn't easy .. but my most hated workflow process .. opening an image with the annoying 'Import' dialog method is present in C1 .. just as it is in Lr.

    If Lr just allowed you to simply navigate and open an image, I'd probably be using it more often than any other processing software.
    if C1 has a method of doing this, that would be at least 50 points out of 100 that I will gladly add back into it's overall score.
    One really nice touch about C1 tho is the that upon reopening C1 after closing it, it navigates back the last image you had open.
    Not a massive problem in most situations .. but with VNX and CNX-D if I have a hundred files in a folder, and was workign on the last, or 5th last image .. had enough for the night and want to try again the next day(I always go back to my images with 'fresh eyes') .. I have to navigate back to the image that i had in mind I wanted to see again.
    Not painful as such ... but it's nice to know that some nice finishing touches are thought of by some developers.

    But I think PC setup or hardware choices has a lot to do with speed of software.
    I can't see the slowness that many people refer to about CNX2 .. and can't see the problem with ViewNX2(if you consider ViewNX2 as more of an ACR type software .. not a fully fledged editor!)

    I have run some 'speed tests' recently. (would have posted last night if I didn't have trouble loading up AP!!)
    Anyhow, I can't see the speed advantage of C1 .. but for some unknown reason Lr is now loading up quickly for me .. and not only that, but working quickly too!
    (there may be a weird reason for this tho).

    Anyhow, in terms of speed of conversion .. which many people seem to think CNX and VNX are slow to do .... I have a few results on a raw file just converted by a few programs.

    Raw file is not mine .. just a test file I had downloaded.
    D800E NEF file, of 48Mb, opened in each software and just converted to both jpg(100%) and tiff(16bit, no compression) all converted images set to sRGB.

    NEF to jpg:

    VNX2 = 8.4s
    C1 = 20.5s
    CNX-D = 8.3s
    CNX2 = 2.3s
    LR4 = 7.6s

    NEF to tif:

    VNX2 = 7.5s
    C1 = 20.4 (16bit) 17.4s(8bit)
    CNX-D = 6.5
    CNX2 = 1.2s
    Lr4.4 = 6.4s

    All times are three trial runs and averaged out values taking into account my timing errors. Had to do 5 of the CNX2 runs as I know I'm not accurate enough pressing my stop watch and my mouse concurrently.

    The differences between CNX-D, VNX2 and Lr aren't noticeable to any real degree other than for me . now wondering when did Lr4 become so much faster in so many ways.
    I did do an update a while back to v4.4, as instructed and I know I opened LR4 with this new update .. but haven't really dine all that much with it.
    But, what I also did last night(as I regularly do ... but not to this degree) was go into some OS related flotsam repositories and remove unwanted 'stuff'
    My faux pas tho was that I deleted all of my AppData contents .. not the specific directories that I thought I had targeted.
    Al of my software now seems to think I've only just installed it .. and I think this may be where Lr may have got some of it's speed.
    I normally delve into it's myriad of folders in the AppData labyrinth and delete only some of the garbage it creates(catalog, and other stuff like that) but this time I deleted all of the folders in AppData!

    C1 is a fresh install, so I can't understand it's 'slowness'. It's glacial to start up, but this isn't entirely fair as I only have the trial, and one part fo the start process is to tell it that every time I open it. From hitting the Try button tho, it still takes a good 30 sec or more to fully load. It's not overly slow to operate, other than building the icons for the filmstrip. Takes far too long for that process .. compared to some other software(mainly VNX2 in my case, but not limited to this program). CNX-D is also woeful in the time it takes to build the icon cache for the first time too tho.

    I can't see any advantage of C1's tool structure, you still have to go through too many multiple clicks to effect basic edits.(I think I prefer CNX2's structure).
    It's super annoying in not having a way to turn on/off any edits steps just created .. even free software like VNX2 has this ability.
    I like to see real time changes sometimes to any edits I make and sometimes the ability enable/disable edits is critical to understanding if it's a worthwhile step.
    Anyhow, I'll keep C1 and look into it a bit more.
    I'm about to start the process of freshly reinstalling Win7 soon as it's now a 5 yo installation and has slowly gotten bogged down with much flotsam over those years.
    Hopefully that'll give me another 60 days to trial C1 to give me a better idea on how it can be tweaked.

  17. #17
    Moderately Underexposed I @ M's Avatar
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    It seems that Thom Hogan has some less than complimentary views about NX-D as well. http://www.dslrbodies.com/accessorie...-workflow.html

  18. #18
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    Responses in this thread, while valid and appropriate, pretty much guarantee that I WON'T be posting any more "useful links" for AP members. Sorry. Maybe I'm just too old, or too tired, to appreciate that trying to be helpful can be such a pain in the arse for some people.

  19. #19
    Ausphotography Regular enseth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WhoDo View Post
    Responses in this thread, while valid and appropriate, pretty much guarantee that I WON'T be posting any more "useful links" for AP members. Sorry. Maybe I'm just too old, or too tired, to appreciate that trying to be helpful can be such a pain in the arse for some people.
    I don't think you should take it personally. In fact I'm very grateful for your post. It opened up some very interesting discussion. I learnt a lot. Well done you!

  20. #20
    Photoholic Goatch's Avatar
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    I've got to agree with enseth here WhoDo, don't take any comments personally mate , this has been a very informative thread for people to take from it what they will , isn't it all about learning the craft
    Does a one legged duck swim in an eliptic circle


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