is a bit of a misnomer really.. especially if you shoot in the
If you shoot jpg, then the software used to display the image should, ideally, make no difference.
I've notice this same effect regardless of the thirdparty software used... having used PS, and hence Adobe's ACR directly, and then LR3(whether it uses a version of ACR seamlessly I don't know), and finally Bibble5(trial).
The difference in the way images are rendered in non manufacturer software is almost always going to be different.
I only use software for my images, and the images are rendered exactly as per the camera does, and hence, the foremost important aspect of getting it right in camera is to have your software render the image as you captured in it camera.
Remember this is only for captures.
Jpgs should be rendered the same, in camera and also via any software.
images are not pictures as such, but a collection of data, that needs to be interpreted or decoded by software to produce an image.
I can't imagine that any thirdparty software company will be able to decode the data as well as the manufacturer's own will be... ever!
While thirdparty software can be set to emulate a particular style for your camera, my opinion is that the manufacturer knows a lot more about their own file formats than any generic software maker will.
I've seen this in many trials of other software, but never thought to actually catalogue the differences, and I'm annoyed with myself for not doing so when I had LR3B2 installed as a trial.
Trial now over, and LR3 exorcised from my PC(but not fully I expect! ), and with no intention of ever installing Adobe software on my PC again, I can only explain the recent (distant )memories of my frustrations with LR3.
Bibble was in some ways horrendously inaccurate in rendering the files. I say inaccurate, and that's only compared to the camera's idea of the file, the basic manufacturer's software available( ViewNX), and their more elaborate software.. CaptureNX2.
We all know that embedded into the data is a jpg file, so we know we have a reference image file to judge the by, but for some reason thirdparty manufacturers cannot reproduce the same image from the file(as per the jpg image).
FastStone's FSViewer renders the file exactly as the file should be displayed(judging by the jpg file and the manufacturers software), but in converting the file, it produces the same terrible results as other non manufacturer software does. It only displays the file as the camera does due to the fact that it displays the embedded jpg file by default, but can be set to display the file.
(I've never used it that way, as it apparently slows the program down, and I like it because it's fast )
I have no issues with other software, per se!
For editing and working on non images, there are literally millions of non manufacturer software available that may be better in many ways than the manufacturers software .. so this thread is limited to file rendering/editing/processing.
eg. as an image manipulation processing software, 's CaptureNX is basically terrible. With a very limited feature/tool set when compared even to free programs like the GIMP, or FSViewer. It can't merge images, or HDR, or stitch them together!... nothing but the basics that even MS Paint can probably do!
But the one thing you should be able to rely on... 100%, it's that the manufacturers software should render/display and convert the file exactly as you captured in on the camera.
In a recent discussion on another topic, an ex member explained how the manufacturers only want you to see a nicely rendered image, and that the image is actually not properly exposed!!!
I'm seriously thinking this ex member is totally deluded in this method of reasoning!
That thirdparty software manufacturers know more about the inner workings of another manufacturers proprietary files!!.. was this person serious? Or were they simply looking for an argument where no argument exists?
So the nett results of this line of thinking is:
Camera displays a file in a certain manner.
Camera manufacturer's computer software displays the same file in the same manner as the camera does.
Thirdparty software vendor displays the same file differently ....
therefore the manufacturer must be wrong!
... OK... whatever you think buddy. It's your life... you make the mistakes you need too!
My recent experience with Bibble5, while a great program in itself(fast and well featured), the rendering of images, was horrific!
So much so that if I were totally reliant on it for my image processing needs, I'd either shoot in jpg mode (hahaha!... ) or give it all away, and take up croquet or knitting teacozys, or something easier.
here are some screen shots of how badly thirdparty can make your images look:
First up a direct display of the file in ViewNX, which is 100% identical as I captured it on the camera.
The image itself looks a littel different compared to the image in the camera screen, and that's perfectly normal and expected, as the camera's screen won't show the same level of detail, as a calibrated PC screen. BUT!... the histogram is identical.. to the minutest bump, as per the camera's histogram as per the review screen.
Then I open the file in Bibble5..
and whoa! what happened to my colour!? While the in camera shot is slightly over exposed, that was a deliberate decision, so as to not lose any shadow detail in the pelican's black areas. Turns out that it wasn't required, but as this is one of three exposures in succession, if it didn't work, delete it.. no harm done. Check for on the review screen(D300's screen is more than capable for that purpose, if it looks OK.. keep it and review it later on the PC. But not via thirdparty software!!
I did notice LR3 was similar, but not to the same extent as Bibble5. Where B5 probably needs -1.3Ev compensation to bring it back into line with what the camera saw, from memory I think LR3 needed at least -0.3Ev and maybe -0.7Ev as a general guess... so call it even at -0.5Ev compensation.
But if I shoot with the view to compensate by -0.3 to -0.7 at the time of by slightly blowing the highlights(which are more than easily and accurately recoverable!!), what of these thirdparty software?
LR3 did render all my D300 images with almost zero contrast, so it appeared as though it was rendering more detail in the shadows.. but then again so did B5 too!
OK, I have to admit that I never loaded any camera presets for the D300 with LR3. Didn't know they were there to be honest! But that's another point.. software is supposed to be easy, not difficult and cryptic and involve more work.
I just want to see what the camera did, if I did it wrong, review quickly and delete any stupid mistakes.. before everyone realises that I make billions of mistakes
So we know that these thirdparty software vendors are more than capable because even B5 can render the image exactly as per the camera as long as the image file is a jpg(and I suspect a tiff as well)...
While not 100% the same histogram, the differences in each colour channel is absolutely insignificant and for all intents and purposes considered to be 'the same'.
Why bother with non manufacturer software to do your file to <image format> conversions then?
Beats me... I never would.
If I were(the type of image manipulator) to process an image via a thirdparty software, I would open the file in my manufacturers free software, make any basic adjustments in there.. colour, , contrast.. ie. only basic edits .. and then convert to 16bit uncompressed tiff, for any further enhancements in my thirdparty software.
OK, that's it.
all comments, experiences and screenshots of differences anyone else has noted are welcome too.