• 06-11-2011, 07:13 PM
    Some Questions from a casual XZ-1 User
    Hey all,
    I'm a newcomer to the forums as well as photography and I'm looking for some advice.

    I purchased an XZ-1 a month ago and have been having a blast with it. I live and work on a farm so there's not shortage of subjects.

    After reading a few posts though I'm interested in how beneficial post processing can be for the casual user. So far I've only been using jpeg and I'm quite happy with the results. If I can squeeze even more out of the xz-1 then I would be more than happy shooting RAW+JPEG and potentially post processing the images I want to make prints of or something along those lines.

    Is the Olympus software powerful enough or will I need to cough up the $300 for LR to make it worth doing at all? Or is there a cheaper alternative out there?

    Sorry this post is kind of all over the place but its late =)
  • 06-12-2011, 10:03 AM
    Greg McCary
    Re: Some Questions from a casual XZ-1 User
    First welcome to PR and I hope you stick around.

    Well Olympus Master 2 gets the job done. It is slow but you can't complain with free. Yes you can always get better IQ with RAW files, You can push and pull them correcting exposure, color contrast est. you are just not relying on the cameras computer but your own.
    You might pick up a older copy of PhotoShop. I used PS7 for a long time and unless you are going to get real serious it will do you well.
    If I shoot a ton of pictures and never intend to print large, say a kids ball game or something I shoot Jpeg if I am going to print large, anything bigger than a 4x6 I shoot RAW. So the answer is yes. Download OM2 and try a landscape or two.
    The beauty to post processing is you can crop, straighten and correct any issue before you send to print. Even if you shoot Jpeg.
  • 06-12-2011, 10:19 AM
    Re: Some Questions from a casual XZ-1 User
    Thanks for the reply. I have a feeling it's going to take some getting used to when doing the post processing. I already feel like my photos look pretty good and I don't want to go too far with the editing. Does it just take time to know when your photo looks "correct" or am I just going for what I think looks good?
  • 06-12-2011, 12:51 PM
    Greg McCary
    Re: Some Questions from a casual XZ-1 User
    Yeah it takes time and you are the one end the end that needs to be happy. You can always post in the critiques forum and get loads of help there. Post in the gallery too.
  • 06-13-2011, 05:25 PM
    100% RAW, Here!
    I shoot all RAW, unless the camera is a JPEG-only point-and-shoot. One of the things I like about the XZ-1 is that the RAW processing is faster than other point-and-shoots I've used. In the past I have foregone RAW with compacts because it was too slow. It's no-penalty with the XZ-1, though :)

    I shoot only RAW. My workflow depends on RAW and I have no use for JPEG files. After all, you can just batch process all your RAW files into JPEGs and then you have the RAW and JPEG. The only thing you save by shooting RAW + JPEG is a little time. And you fill up your card faster.

    I have the Olympus software and Lightroom, and like Greg says, the Olympus software gets the job done. Lightroom is a lot more powerful and efficient, though. I wouldn't say you get better results with Lightroom. But it's a significantly more pleasant experience. To start, I'd say stick with the free stuff to get a feel for what RAW has to offer. The main thing is you'll be able to squeeze more detail out of the highlights and shadows - especially the shadows. This means, for example, you can shoot to hold the details in clouds and then recover the detail in the foreground in post-processing. This is mandatory for me. And I think most people wouldn't want to live without that kind of control once they experienced it. Yes, it's a little more work. But your final product will be so much better.

    Congratulations on buying a great camera! The XZ-1 is, in my opinion, the best point-and-shoot on the planet. I don't think I've ever had such a positive emotional response to a camera. Please write a review for your camera. User reviews are the foundation of this site and we need your review :)