Digital Imaging and Computers Forum

Digital Imaging and Computers Forum This forum is for discussing digital photo processing, including RAW image conversion, Photoshop techniques, digital photography workflow, digital image management, and anything else related to digital image processing.
Digital Photography Software Guide >>
Read and Write Photography Software Reviews >>
Read and Write Photo Printer Reviews >>
Computer Reviews >>
Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. #1
    Pentax Forum Moderator
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Platteville, WI, United States
    Posts
    2,043

    Save in Raw vs TIFF

    Hi all,
    I just ordered the Nikon Coolpix 8400. While reading the online manual, before it gets here, I found the section on saving formats. They list RAW, HI, Fine (JPEG), Normal and Basic, gave me a little better understanding of the various modes. It appears by the chart that TIFF saves as larger files than the others. There is a lot of discussion on here about saving in RAW/NEF. So what is best? RAW/NEF or TIFF? I know JPEG is compressed and very popular, but I am wanting to get the highest quality I can and then save in the formats as necessary.
    So, my dilemma, Which is better to save my pictures as. RAW/NEF or TIFF?????
    Thanx...
    Ken
    Ken


    Click these links for the K5 Review Page and the K7 Review Page
    Remember, Reviews help keep our site free!!!

    Your reviews are the foundation of this site - Write A Review!

    The K-Teams Updated Logo CLICK HERE to add a link. Many thanx go to Axle for his hard work.


    Nikon Samurai #20

  2. #2
    News & Rum-or-ator opus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Southeast Wisconsin
    Posts
    2,505

    Re: Save in Raw vs TIFF

    There's been a lot of discussion here about Raw format, if you want to read past threads you can do a search and look for threads with a substantial number of posts to it.

    The short answer is, RAW will give you the most option to change your exposure settings later. TIFF will make those decisions for you based on your camera settings.

    So for instance, if I take an underexposed picture and save it as a TIFF file, my only option for fixing it is using adjustments in photoshop like curves, etc. If I take an underexposed picture and save it as RAW, I can go in and actually tell the file that my exposure settings were two stops more open, and the exposure will fix itself.

    Think of RAW format as a digital negative, where you have all the controls over developing and printing. TIFF would then be the finished print, which if you wanted to fix it you'd have to scan it in and adjust from there.
    Drink Coffee. Do stupid things faster with more energy.


  3. #3
    Learning more with every "click" mjs1973's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Mineral Point, WI, USA
    Posts
    7,562

    Re: Save in Raw vs TIFF

    Hey Ken,

    I think Kelly summed it up pretty good. One other thing to consider is your workflow. RAW files are very large, and take up a lot of space on your hardrive, CD's, DVD's... wherever you plan on storing them. Having the software to process your RAW files is another thing you need to consider. I don't know anything about Nikon so I don't know what type of software they will include with your camrea. I do know that I won't use the software that came with my Canon to process RAW files because it just wasn't as fast as I wanted. That could have more to do with my old PC than their software tho. I didn't start shooting RAW until I knew I had a system that could handle them and since then, it has improved my workflow. I use Adobe RAW along with PS CS2 to handle my files. I'm sure there are other great programs, but this works for me. RAW it great, but it can really slow you down if you don't have a system that can handle the large files.
    Mike

    My website
    Twitter
    Blog


    "I thought that because fewer wolves meant more deer, that no wolves would mean hunters' paradise. But after seeing the green fire die, I sensed that neither the wolf nor the mountain agreed with such a view."
    Aldo Leopold

  4. #4
    don't tase me, bro! Asylum Steve's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Middle Florida
    Posts
    3,667

    Probably the best solution...

    ...would be to shoot RAW, make archives of the RAW files, then convert (either all or edits) and copy as TIFFs. This is the working method most pros use...

    For many, this is as much a disk space and time factor as anything, as this way of working requires mucho storage space as well as time to do all the processing.

    If you absolutely need to create an either-or system, I can tell you that TIFF files (if properly created from the RAW) are very detailed, high-quality lossless images, and are perfectly acceptable to save as master files which can then be copied and edited in more conventional ways.

    And in a slight nod to TIFFs, you could make the case that that file format is still more universally accepted than a single manufacturer's unique RAW format (although that is continually changing as we come closer to the Adobe DNG being a common RAW standard).
    "Riding along on a carousel...tryin' to catch up to you..."

    -Steve
    Studio & Lighting - Photography As Art Forum Moderator

    Running the Photo Asylum, Asylum Steve's blogged brain pipes...
    www.stevenpaulhlavac.com
    www.photoasylum.com

  5. #5
    has-been... another view's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Rockford, IL
    Posts
    7,649

    Re: Save in Raw vs TIFF

    Basically, a TIFF is like a jpeg without compression. If you were to shoot a jpeg, then edit and save it, then edit it again you'd have three different times that compression would happen to the file. In reality, you probably wouldn't see any problems in a print at that point but there is a chance.

    Generally, whether I shoot jpeg or RAW, anything I've done any editing to gets saved as a TIFF as my "master" copy. If I have a print made, then I make a jpeg from that (saving that jpeg with the least compression available) TIFF file. TIFF is a very universal file format, but some labs don't want them because the files are so huge (usually the case with mini-labs, not pro labs). I don't do my own printing, otherwise I'd skip that step and print directly from the "master" TIFF file.

    I don't see any reason for shooting a TIFF file though - they're probably larger files than RAW, and with none of the advantages of it. Take a shot of the same scene with each mode, and compare the file sizes - you'll be surprised. BTW, the "HI" setting is probably for shooting TIFF files. With my Coolpix 5000, I do occasionally shoot RAW but most of the time I use "FINE" jpeg.

  6. #6
    Pentax Forum Moderator
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Platteville, WI, United States
    Posts
    2,043

    Re: Save in Raw vs TIFF

    Thanks everyone...Kelly's reply really put it in perspective. I've read many of the posts about RAW but hadn't really understood the differences. As for AV's comment about the TIFF files being larger...that is what was throwing me off. In my novice mind...a larger file would give me more to work with, but I now understand that...ASKING QUESTIONS IS VERY IMPORTANT TO UNDERSTANDING!!!!
    Again....Thanx everyone!!!
    Ken
    Ken


    Click these links for the K5 Review Page and the K7 Review Page
    Remember, Reviews help keep our site free!!!

    Your reviews are the foundation of this site - Write A Review!

    The K-Teams Updated Logo CLICK HERE to add a link. Many thanx go to Axle for his hard work.


    Nikon Samurai #20

  7. #7
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Salt Lake City, Utah, United States
    Posts
    15,422

    Re: Save in Raw vs TIFF

    Ken-
    I think there might be a couple of holes in what's been posted. First of all, i'ts best to shoot RAW. It gives you the most options because it doesn't do any in-camera processing. The file sizes will be larger than JPEG, but you shouldn't worry about that. Just know that it's worth the extra storage space. And they'll be much smaller than TIFF files.

    If you shoot TIFFs with your camera, there won't be any compression, as there would be with JPEGs. But there will still be in-camera processing. And for the most flexibility, you want to avoid in-camera processing.

    My storage workflow is like this-

    1)Shoot RAW
    2)Transfer RAW files to computer
    3)Convert RAW files and save as layered TIFFs, when I want to use one (only when I want to use one - otherwise leave them in the RAW format)
    4)I have a directory for each event/day I shoot, named for that event; e.g. "seaotter_05"
    5)Within that folder will be all the RAW originals; a "Master" folder with converted, layered TIFF files inside; a "Web" folder for images I post on the Internet, and folders for magazines, print, or any other kind of output I need to create for that even

    Hope that helps
    Photo-John

    Your reviews are the foundation of this site - Write A Review!

  8. #8
    Pentax Forum Moderator
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Platteville, WI, United States
    Posts
    2,043

    Re: Save in Raw vs TIFF

    Quote Originally Posted by Photo-John
    Ken-
    I think there might be a couple of holes in what's been posted. First of all, i'ts best to shoot RAW. It gives you the most options because it doesn't do any in-camera processing. The file sizes will be larger than JPEG, but you shouldn't worry about that. Just know that it's worth the extra storage space. And they'll be much smaller than TIFF files.

    If you shoot TIFFs with your camera, there won't be any compression, as there would be with JPEGs. But there will still be in-camera processing. And for the most flexibility, you want to avoid in-camera processing.

    My storage workflow is like this-

    1)Shoot RAW
    2)Transfer RAW files to computer
    3)Convert RAW files and save as layered TIFFs, when I want to use one (only when I want to use one - otherwise leave them in the RAW format)
    4)I have a directory for each event/day I shoot, named for that event; e.g. "seaotter_05"
    5)Within that folder will be all the RAW originals; a "Master" folder with converted, layered TIFF files inside; a "Web" folder for images I post on the Internet, and folders for magazines, print, or any other kind of output I need to create for that even

    Hope that helps
    Thanks John for the clarifications. I had basically understood what everyone was saying...but you have raised another question...
    What is "layered" TIFF? I understand all of the various extensions, but I'm not sure about the "layered". Does it mean that, like in photoshop, I can work with the various layers of the photo?
    As for organization.........well......hmmmm....I like the idea....but putting it into practice is gonna take some unheard of dedication on my part...but I think I can see an extreme need to have, at least my RAW's, organized like you suggest.
    Thanks,
    Ken
    Ken


    Click these links for the K5 Review Page and the K7 Review Page
    Remember, Reviews help keep our site free!!!

    Your reviews are the foundation of this site - Write A Review!

    The K-Teams Updated Logo CLICK HERE to add a link. Many thanx go to Axle for his hard work.


    Nikon Samurai #20

  9. #9
    has-been... another view's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Rockford, IL
    Posts
    7,649

    Re: Save in Raw vs TIFF

    Quote Originally Posted by ken1953
    Does it mean that, like in photoshop, I can work with the various layers of the photo?
    Yes (I think so...). You can save all the layers in your image so that you can work with them later. Since it's a TIFF it won't give you compression if you resave it, so you can work on it today, come back tomorrow and make sure you still like it and save those changes made without worrying about losing detail. You can do this as much as you want - but be careful about over-processing images too.

    RAW is really great but I have to say that I never really used it until I got Photoshop CS. RAW images require a converter before anything else can be done. This is where you set the white balance and make any exposure correction if needed. From there, you bring the image into Photoshop. I'm not sure if that camera comes with a free separate Nikon program to convert RAW images, but it will be an extra step to do it this way (still worth it, just more work). The advantage of PSCS is that it has it's own converter so you can work much faster. It's not a cheap program but there are many legitimate ways of getting it at a substantial discount (which is how I got it).

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •