Photo editing

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by brian_choong, Jul 2, 2009.

  1. I am using a Dell D630 notebook for my photo editing
    It is with RAM 4GB and XP Pro
    And I am using Nikon D300 with RAW file
    I am facing some problems of the photo editing process
    1. Photo quality
    I am a wedding photographer that mostly shoot wedding and deliver about 1000 photos per assignment
    Because of that, I mostly use the Lightroom 2.2 to edit my photo, reason is, I found that Lightroom is very convenient to use to process photo in batch.
    But, recently I am using the Nikon NX 2 to process some of my photo, I am very surprise that when I export the photo using NX2, the quality is much more better than Lightroom.
    e.g. A head shot with some hair covering the face, if I export with NX2, I can see the hair clearly one by one, but with LR, the hair it is like a line with a little bit of blur.
    I do not make any adjustment on NX2 or LR but just import and then direct export
    Did anyone face the same issue before?
    Or D300 RAW file is that really compatible with LR?
    Or do we have any software that is good for photo batch processing?(I mean at least I can get same or similar result of NX2)
    Because by using NX2 to edit 1000 photos, it is really a slow process if compare to LR
    2. Viewing the photo
    Another thing come to my mind is, if I get a iMac (Apple notebook) with normal range (Because high end iMac is quite expensive, if compare with I get a new LCD IPS Monitor (dell 2209WA) for my notebook Dell Latitude D630
    By viewing photo point of view, this two screen will it give similar result? (assume that both monitor well calibrated and not by compare the processing power of the notebook)
  2. Watch out for cheap TN panels, most low cost LCD monitors have them. They won't display 8 bits of color, only 6 bits and use dithering to look like 8 bits. Terrible. The current iMac 24" model has a good 8 bit display. I am using one right now and it is gorgeous. So if you want true 8 bit color, plan on spending at least $599 on an LCD monitor, or better yet, buy the 24" iMac for $1499, which is a bargain if you ask me.
  3. Thanks Dave, But the monitor that I looking is not TN panel, it is IPS (dell 2209WA), I know iMac is good, but just wonder can I get same result if I get the IPS LCD monitor if compare to iMac?
  4. Brian,
    Overall Capture NX2 does better in terms of color, WB and subtle tones and hints of color because of Nikon's proprietary encoding of WB in their NEF format, however I have found that sharpness is always better with LR/ACR if you use the correct settings, if the convert from LR looks soft compared to NX2 you have probably set sharpening to off or a very low value, default is (25,1,50) for best results try (50-60,0.5,50-60)
    Also all business models (not the glossy shiny consumer models) of HP and Dell screens are IPS panels, the screens with 1600X1200 and 1920X1200 resolution are usually IPS panels from LG/Phillips. The so called "HD" wide screens with 1680X1050 and 1920X1080 resolution from Samsung and Sony are TN including many of the current Mac models.
  5. Capture NX2 can do batch processing. Nikon manages to hide it well, but the option is in there. It still does not make for a speedy experience, but it's there.
    For viewing, give View NX a try. It works really nice with Capture NX2, it can certainly help for workflow which is a bit awkward in Capture NX2. ViewNX runs a lot fast than Capture, and can also do very basic RAW edits, also in batch.
    I agree that Adobe's RAW conversion for D300 files leaves a lot to be desired. Nikons software shows much nicer noise, less noise, and better sharpening (in my opinion).
    As for editing, you might just want to consider a desktop rather than a notebook; you need a good (seperate) monitor anyway, a mouse (glidepads for photo editing...aaargh) and for ergonomy a seperate keyboard is also nicer. The main point is: desktop hard drives are way bigger and way way faster too - and for RAW file editing, both those features can be very benenficial. Get some fast recent 1TB drives (yes, multiple) for some $140 thereabouts, and you'll have enough space for some time to come. Notebook HDDs are 500GB max. right now, and most notebooks can only take one.
    As for Mac versus Windows PC - well, personal preferences. But if you never worked with Mac OS X, don't expect it to be a cure for all you might not like in Windows, or that it does better with colours in any way. Mac OS X is just different, with a different way of working. But to an old-school Windows user (like me), Mac OS is not necessarily easier (I owned an iBook, it just did not work for me ever).
    As for monitors, Samsung and LG high-end monitors tend to have excellent panels (and also the already mentioned Dells). Throw in a Spyder or Huey for calibration and any PC will work well too.
    The iMac is a consumer device, I seriously doubt they put the best LCD panels in there. They will not be better that seperate monitors. So yeah, you get the same results. But with Apple's price premium, I bet you can get a lot more PC for your $/€ than you get iMac. And with Capture NX, you will want 4GB of RAM and as much CPU as your money can buy.

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