RAW or JPEG? What Capturing format?

Capturing Format

Capturing Format

Typical question: Which recording format is actually better? If you are a professional, this is a dispute, because either you are totally important to RAW, you have a shirt “I shoot RAW”, or you do not care, since dogma and photo religion do not mean much.

The short answer, if you are dealing with the fundamentals of photography, take the best both, except you edit each of your pictures, then you can also use only RAW.

What is the difference between RAW and JPEG?

Basically, if you have photographed earlier, there was a movie in your camera. This movie would be the current RAW file. You may have developed this film yourself. This own photo lab is today’s image processing with Lightroom, Photoshop, ACDSee … Often the film was also simply put in a bag and sent to a laboratory. The pictures you picked up from the store at the time are the JPEG pictures. The quality is different from laboratory to laboratory, depends on the paper and what you have done with your camera before. (Except that the photos are easier to print today than when the movie is lost)

If you now only in JPG photographed, then you first all raw data are missing. This may not matter to you – but it should not, because perhaps you want to get some time in the future but more from your pictures, or there are new techniques and programs that even more. Who knows. You miss the chance, if you do not at least RAW + JPEG record.

Today the sensor is like a movie, only you can not exchange it. Previously you bought the movie, which you liked from the colors and the graininess. The camera did not care and you could always have the same colors, no matter what Kamerabody you used. Today you buy the camera whose colors and shots you like. So the colors of the Canon 5D Mark II or the Sony A700 were quite special, even if they were OOC (Out of Cam, so directly from the camera) were. If you find such a camera for you, then you probably photographed also directly in the JPEG.

Is worthwhile RAW?

What is RAW at all? RAW is more work, because RAW must always be developed before you can process it further. But you can usually also get more out of your pictures, for example when it comes to the dynamic capture or just the change of the white balance, since all image data are retained and less changes are made by your camera on the picture. But maybe you just want the look of your camera? RAW files are generally much larger – depending on the megapixel number, there are 25 MB per picture. If you like memory does not matter – what speaks dageben? Always remember, RAW files must be edited first. No more desire to sit in front of the computer – then take up in JPEG.

When to record in RAW?

RAW is the raw data format of your camera, so before anything is boiled, fried or baked and a reduced / optimized by the camera is delivered. RAW is actually pretty good, just as already said labor intensive – and whether this is worthwhile for you depends strongly on whether you earn your money and / or like sitting in front of the computer. You can also automate many workflows, but you can automate more.

RAW is very suitable for:

  • ┬áLong exposures and night shots – the shots you will probably want to edit all, go here on the safe side.
  • If you do not care about space, because RAW consumes when you take a lot of space on your hard disks and needs to be backed up.
  • If you edit any photo on the computer, because the editing capabilities make RAW so attractive.
  • If you’re a professional photographer and would like to see the recordings come from you when the customers get only the JPEG.

As usual in photography, there is no clear right or wrong. There are best practices, but how you must manage it at the end of the day. RAW + JPEG with selective editing of individual photos is a good start


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