[Gllug] OT: Digital camera recommendations

Mike Brodbelt mike at coruscant.demon.co.uk
Tue Jun 13 21:56:04 UTC 2006

will wrote:
> Peter Adamson wrote:
>> Your RAW files coming out of the 350D are 16-bit.

No they're not. Canon DSLR sensors currently record RAW images with
12bit samples (as opposed to some of the older Powershot models, which
had 10-bit RAW). The samples of course have no chrominance data - each
sample represents luminance information for only a single colour
channel. It is the job of the RAW converter (or the camera's DIGIC chip)
do demosaic this data to form a full colour image.

 (So it's a good idea
>> to use something other than the GIMP for software editing.

In practice, it matters very little, as long as your RAW converter can
operate on the full 12 bit sample.

> Any suggestions for software to use?  Photoshop I guess, but it is 
> Windows only, and expensive as I would have to buy windows too :)

As far as free software goes, GIMP with the UFRaw plugin, which uses
dcraw internally. The algorithm used for demosaicing is excellent, and
can produce very high quality output with a little care. Second option
is Cinepaint, however the current release is old, has a very poor
interface, and is clunky as heck. However it supports 16bit/channel, and
it has colour management, which is only just starting to get there in
GIMP 2.4.

Personally, this is somewhere I think commercial software is better.
Bibble (www.bibblelabs.com) produce a native Linux binary that runs fine
 on Debian (they produce .deb, .rpm and .tar.gz), and it is a superb RAW
converter. There's enough control over the image that you won't need to
use GIMP at all, and you get 16bit (if you care), colour management, and
a whole host of other stuff into the bargain. The developers are
committed to their Linux support, and you can download a 14 day free
trial. If you register, you can use it on as many machines as you like.
There's not much commercial software I give disk space to, but Bibble is
worth it. There's nothing else for Linux that can do the job it does
today - the GIMP/dcraw combination, while technically competent, just
doesn't make the cut in terms of workflow.

Gllug mailing list  -  Gllug at gllug.org.uk

More information about the GLLUG mailing list