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Apple update brings RAW support for 6 new cameras

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
Apple on Tuesday released a system-wide update that adds RAW image support for six new cameras.

The OS X Lion system-level compatibility update allows RAW data from the following digital cameras to be used in editing programs like Aperture 3 and iPhoto '11:
  • Canon EOS-1D X

  • Nikon D800E

  • Nikon D3200

  • Olympus OM-D E-M5

  • Panasonic LUMIX DMC-GF5

  • Sony Alpha SLT-A57

The 8MB Digital Camera RAW Compatibility Update 3.13 requires Mac OS X 10.6.8 or OS X Lion 10.7 or later and can be downloaded via Software Update or through Apple's Support Pages.
post #2 of 24
Still no support for the FUJI X10.... COME ON APPPLE!!!!!
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post #3 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Apple on Tuesday released a system-wide update that adds RAW image support for six new cameras.
The OS X Lion system-level compatibility update allows RAW data from the following digital cameras to be used in editing programs like Aperture 3 and iPhoto '11:
  • Canon EOS-1D X

  • Nikon D800E

  • Nikon D3200

  • Olympus OM-D E-M5

  • Panasonic LUMIX DMC-GF5

  • Sony Alpha SLT-A57

The 8MB Digital Camera RAW Compatibility Update 3.13 requires Mac OS X 10.6.8 or OS X Lion 10.7 or later and can be downloaded via Software Update or through Apple's Support Pages.

The second camera Nikon D800E is going to be my next. I was shooting the eclipse this weekend and wishing I had higher resolution & a longer lens but the medium density filters are difficult to get for large lenses.

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post #4 of 24

Okay, I don't understand RAW… 

 

It's supposed to be a format, right? Why does every single camera require separate support? That's not a format. That's thousands upon thousands of proprietary formats, none of which are compatible with one another.

 

I don't get it. Take a 15MP camera. Shoots in RAW. We know the resolution of 15MP, so every camera that can take 15MP RAW shots should be making the same file every time.

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already fucked.

 

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Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already fucked.

 

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post #5 of 24
Quote:

Okay, I don't understand RAW… 

 

It's supposed to be a format, right? Why does every single camera require separate support?

I can understand formats changing as technology improves, although I agree that RAW seems like a drama-queen among image formats.

 

I don't know if this update requires a reboot, but past RAW updates did and I'll never understand what that was about.

post #6 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Okay, I don't understand RAW… 

 

It's supposed to be a format, right? 

RAW is whatever the camera manufacturer saves their unprocessed image data as. It was never designed as a an ISO file format with standards. Photographers wanted access to the RAW image to do exposure correction before it was saved as a TIF or JPG mostly because it was 16 bits and the camera manufacturers complied. My first experience was with Nikon Capture back in early 2000s. Since that time everyone wanted RAW support but there was no standard so the application developers like Adobe were on the hook to provide it for their customers. Otherwise each camera manufacturer had their proprietary software that came with the camera for accessing the images. Most of that software ran really poorly especially on a Mac.

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post #7 of 24

All of this could be avoided if the camera companies would just adopt Adobe's DNG like Pentax has.

 

No waiting around for Apple to support the K-01 or K30, they already support DNG.

post #8 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by boriscleto View Post
All of this could be avoided if the camera companies would just adopt Adobe's DNG like Pentax has.


Or if a new, open, free standard came on the market.

Originally Posted by Slurpy

There's just a TINY chance that Apple will also be able to figure out payments. Oh wait, they did already… …and you’re already fucked.

 

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post #9 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


Or if a new, open, free standard came on the market.

I would not be surprised if the camera manufacturers are financing most of the expense of developing profiles for photo applications since it is in their best interest. Which also explains why the big companies are the first to have compatibility even when the sales numbers are low like with the 1DX. I also think it is important to understand that RAW was not intended originally to even be a 'saved' file format but instead it was just a data stream on its way to image processing into a standard format.

As it turned out some people discovered that it would be useful since it contained high bit data. Essentially the application like Adobe RAW is sort of hijacking the data and displaying it in a container that can represent it and modify using an XML file with NEF extension but it does not resave the RAW file. It can open the file with the modifications but it does not save as RAW mainly because RAW is not an actual file format that adheres to any particular standard like tif.

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post #10 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by boriscleto View Post

All of this could be avoided if the camera companies would just adopt Adobe's DNG like Pentax has.

 

No waiting around for Apple to support the K-01 or K30, they already support DNG.

 

Hardly. Every device customizes their data packets to differentiate their devices from each other due to each device having a variety of custom image sensors.

 

By supporting DNG you are throwing supporting a subset of the data from any kind of image sensor(s).

 

Not every color space is considered equal and support varies with the hardware chosen to make the device(s).

 

The Technical Summary of DNG:

 

 

Quote:

A DNG file always contains data for one main image, plus metadata, and optionally contains at least one JPEG preview.[2] It normally has the extension "dng" or "DNG".

DNG conforms to TIFF/EP and is structured according to TIFF. DNG supports various formats of metadata, (including Exif metadata, XMP metadata, IPTC metadata), and specifies a set of mandated metadata.[28]

DNG is both a raw image format and a format that supports "non-raw", or partly processed, images.[2] The latter (non-raw) format is known as "Linear DNG".[31] Linear DNG is still scene-referred and can still benefit from many of the operations typically performed by a raw converter, such as white balance, the application of a camera color profile, HDR compositing, etc. All images that can be supported as raw images can also be supported as Linear DNG. Images from the Foveon X3 sensor or similar, hence especially Sigma cameras, can only be supported as Linear DNG.

DNG can contain raw image data from sensors with various configurations of color filter array (CFA). These include: conventional Bayer filters, using 3 colors and rectangular pixels; 4 color CFAs, for example the RGBE filter used in the Sony DSC-F828; rectangular (non-square) pixels, for example as used in the Nikon D1X; and offset sensors (for example with octagonal pixels) such as Super CCD sensors of various types, as used in various Fujifilm cameras. (Or combinations of these if necessary). DNG specifies metadata describing these individual parameters; this is one significant extension to TIFF/EP.

When used in a CinemaDNG movie clip, each frame is encoded using the above DNG image format. The clip's image stream can then be stored in one of two formats: either as video essence using frame-based wrapping in an MXF file, or as a sequence of DNG files in a specified file directory.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raw_image_format

 

It seems rather clear the benefits of RAW far out way the drawbacks and DNG itself is a compromise based upon the TIFF-EP standard submitted by Adobe.

 

 

Quote:

Benefits

Nearly all digital cameras can process the image from the sensor into a JPEG file using settings for white balance, colour saturation, contrast, and sharpness that are either selected automatically or entered by the photographer before taking the picture. Cameras that produce raw files save these settings in the file, but defer the processing. This results in an extra step for the photographer, so raw is normally only used when additional computer processing is intended. However, raw has numerous advantages over JPEG such as:

  • Higher image quality. Because all the calculations (such as applying gamma correction, demosaicing, white balance, brightness, contrast, etc...) used to generate pixel values (in RGB format for most images) are performed in one step on the base data, the resultant pixel values will be more accurate and exhibit less posterization.
  • Bypassing of undesired steps in the camera's processing, including sharpening and noise reduction
  • JPEG images are typically saved using a lossy compression format (though a lossless JPEG compression is now available). Raw formats typically use lossless compression or high quality lossy compression.
  • Finer control. Raw conversion software allows users to manipulate more parameters (such as lightness, white balance, hue, saturation, etc...) and do so with greater variability. For example, the white point can be set to any value, not just discrete preset values like "daylight" or "incandescent". As well, the user can typically see a preview while adjusting these parameters.
  • Camera raw files have 12 or 14 bits of intensity information, not the gamma-compressed 8 bits stored in JPEG files (and typically stored in processed TIFF files); since the data is not yet rendered and clipped to a colour space gamut, more precision may be available in highlights, shadows, and saturated colours.
  • The colour space can be set to whatever is desired.
  • Different demosaicing algorithms can be used, not just the one coded into the camera.
  • The contents of raw files include more information, and potentially higher quality, than the converted results, in which the rendering parameters are fixed, the colour gamut is clipped, and there may be quantization and compression artifacts.
  • Large transformations of the data, such as increasing the exposure of a dramatically under-exposed photo, result in fewer visible artifacts when done from raw data than when done from already rendered image files. Raw data leave more scope for both corrections and artistic manipulations, without resulting in images with visible flaws such as posterization.
  • All the changes made on a RAW image file are non-destructive; that is, only the metadata that controls the rendering is changed to make different output versions, leaving the original data unchanged.
  • To some extent, RAW photography eliminates the need to use the HDRI technique, allowing a much better control over the mapping of the scene intensity range into the output tonal range, compared to the process of automatically mapping to JPEG or other 8-bit representation.

 

 

 

Quote:

Drawbacks

  • Camera raw file size are typically 2–6 times larger than JPEG file size.[12] While use of raw formats avoids the compression artifacts inherent in JPEG, fewer images can fit on a given memory card. However, the large sizes and low prices of modern memory cards mitigate this.
  • Most raw formats implement lossless data compression to reduce the size of the files without affecting image quality. But some others use lossy data compression where quantization and filtering is performed on the image data.[13][14] Several recent Nikon cameras let photographers choose between no compression, lossless compression or lossy compression for their raw images.
  • The standard raw image format (ISO 12234-2, TIFF/EP) is not widely accepted. DNG, the potential candidate for a new standard format, has not been adopted by many major camera companies. (See "Standardization" section). Numerous different raw formats are currently in use and new raw formats keep appearing, while others are abandoned.[15]
  • Because of the lack of widespread adoption of a standard raw format, more specialized software may be required to open raw files than for standardized formats like JPEG or TIFF. Software developers have to frequently update their products to support the raw formats of the latest cameras but open source implementations like dcraw make it easier.
  • The time taken in the image workflow is an important factor when choosing between raw and ready-to-use image formats. With modern photo editing software the additional time needed to process raw images has been greatly reduced but it still requires an extra step in workflow.
post #11 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dlux View Post

I can understand formats changing as technology improves, although I agree that RAW seems like a drama-queen among image formats.

That is hardly the case. Think of RAW as more of a "digital negative" that affords you much more creative control over the image than a JPEG that was already processed by the camera.

Here's a good description from the glossary at dpreview.com

http://www.dpreview.com/learn/?/Glossary/Digital_Imaging/RAW_01.htm
Edited by Rob55 - 5/22/12 at 8:50pm
post #12 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob55 View Post


That is hardly the case. Think of RAW as more of a "digital negative" that affords you much more creative control over the image than a JPEG that was already processed by the camera.

What I meant by 'drama-queen' is how (in the past, at least) you'd check for software updates and the RAW support updates stood out as if they were some sort of special format different from all the regular media formats, complete with the need to reboot. Again, I understand that they provide much more control over the picture than JPEG, TIFF, etc., but in the end they are still just image formats.

 

The camera industry should make an effort to clean this up. It's not as if capturing photons hasn't settled down into a known set of parameters to manage.

post #13 of 24

No Fuji X-Pro 1 support? Damn.

post #14 of 24

And no Fuji Finepix X10 support either...:-(

post #15 of 24

It's ~snappier~ ! (Get it :)

post #16 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by boriscleto View Post

All of this could be avoided if the camera companies would just adopt Adobe's DNG like Pentax has.

 

No waiting around for Apple to support the K-01 or K30, they already support DNG.

I was told by a professional that I should be converting my RAW images (or at least the really important ones) into .dng files to future-proof them.  

post #17 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Conrail View Post

I was told by a professional that I should be converting my RAW images (or at least the really important ones) into .dng files to future-proof them.  

That is solid advise. Although I believe it makes way more sense to disregard RAW altogether. JPG is a widely used standard, looks 'pretty much the same' from displaying device to devise and will be around for as long as you live. A bit like pdf if you will.

RAW does allow one to alter an image after it's taken, with way more 'options' to change than JPG. But the amount of drawbacks with RAW if so great I don't know where to start. Don't take my word for it though; look at a RAW image in iPhoto or Aperture and compare it to the software that came with your camera - straight from the manufacturer who has far more knowledge on this that a software company has.

Or read a nice article by Ken Rockwell (love him or hate him) over here.
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post #18 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

The second camera Nikon D800E is going to be my next. I was shooting the eclipse this weekend and wishing I had higher resolution & a longer lens but the medium density filters are difficult to get for large lenses.

If I may ask, why are you getting the D800E, is the removal of the AA filter ( a ≈ $400 increase) worth it? I read a good comparison article from Lloyd L Chambers over here, and cannot decide...perhaps I shout go back to analog, those became cheap, and I still get my Full Frame.

Thanks,
Phil
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post #19 of 24

Fuji: Fascinating camera designs, disappointing performance. Not surprised RAW support for their cameras is at the end of the to-do list for Adobe.

post #20 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dlux View Post

What I meant by 'drama-queen' is how (in the past, at least) you'd check for software updates and the RAW support updates stood out as if they were some sort of special format different from all the regular media formats, complete with the need to reboot. Again, I understand that they provide much more control over the picture than JPEG, TIFF, etc., but in the end they are still just image formats.

The camera industry should make an effort to clean this up. It's not as if capturing photons hasn't settled down into a known set of parameters to manage.

The thing is that it's the data straight from the sensor, most often without any other processing whatsoever, hence the description used - "raw". The raw converter is basically like a device driver for the sensor. The image program you use will apply its own processing based on the format and give you what it feels is the best effort. Every sensor is different, it's not just the number of pixels, but there is also the pattern of pixels, the bit depth of pixels and other details, all of which can vary.

It's usually only a few months where a brand-new camera's raw files aren't supported.
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

That is solid advise. Although I believe it makes way more sense to disregard RAW altogether. JPG is a widely used standard, looks 'pretty much the same' from displaying device to devise and will be around for as long as you live. A bit like pdf if you will.
RAW does allow one to alter an image after it's taken, with way more 'options' to change than JPG. But the amount of drawbacks with RAW if so great I don't know where to start. Don't take my word for it though; look at a RAW image in iPhoto or Aperture and compare it to the software that came with your camera - straight from the manufacturer who has far more knowledge on this that a software company has.
Or read a nice article by Ken Rockwell (love him or hate him) over here.]

I really don't see a big disadvantage to raw formats, except maybe file sizes. I don't use the camera maker's included computer software as I haven't found one that's any good on the usability front. The quality of output might be great, but they're not very good at other things.

The camera's built-in JPG compression is often inferior to raw + external software even on high end cameras, saving raw very often bypasses softening and edge enhancement that can't be completely turned off in the camera's setup.
Quote:
Originally Posted by tpf1952 View Post

Fuji: Fascinating camera designs, disappointing performance. Not surprised RAW support for their cameras is at the end of the to-do list for Adobe.

Fuji is the odd one out with Apple's support.
post #21 of 24
According to Apple's site, the Fuji X100 is covered.
post #22 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

I really don't see a big disadvantage to raw formats, except maybe file sizes. I don't use the camera maker's included computer software as I haven't found one that's any good on the usability front. The quality of output might be great, but they're not very good at other things.
The camera's built-in JPG compression is often inferior to raw + external software even on high end cameras, saving raw very often bypasses softening and edge enhancement that can't be completely turned off in the camera's setup.

To me, file size is important. I have a managed Aperture library, and because I set my DSLR to JPG, standard, my photos are around 2 MB. If I were to use JPG, fine, that file size would become way larger without giving me much more detail. Only if printed larger than a square meter.

I installed an SSD PCIe card in my Mac, and since it is not cheap file size matters again. Of course if you use a HDD it shouldn't matter, and yes, I could create a referenced lib with all my masters on HDD. But I digress.

I fully agree on the software from the camera manufacturers, as their software tends to be way less usable and polished as the software Apple puts out. On a side note, I really would like for Apple to release an update to Aperture, as it's now over 24 months without an update.

I will however check up on your softening and edge enhancement remark. That could open my mind to rethink my workflow and opinion.

Thanks much.
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post #23 of 24

Here are the official Apple lists of RAW cameras supported going back to Mac OS X 10.5 'Leopard', the operating system introduced in 2007:

 

Official list of supported RAW cameras in Mac OS X 10.7 Lion:

http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4757

 

Official list of supported RAW cameras in Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard:

http://support.apple.com/kb/HT3825

 

Official list of supported RAW cameras in Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard:

http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1475

post #24 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by boriscleto View Post

All of this could be avoided if the camera companies would just adopt Adobe's DNG like Pentax has.

Great idea, throw away half the data and call it an improvement. RAW is used by serious photographers who need the headroom afforded by raw files.
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