Raw processing software for dummies?

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Dave
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#1
I'm a committed Lightroom user but I have a friend who wants to start using raw. He's a bit (understatement) of a technophobe and is looking for a non-subscription solution for his Canon and Panasonic raw files as he has either not got or has lost the software the cameras were supplied with. The cameras are a Panasonic G6 and a Canon 7D2, which I think are supported by LR6 - but he might upgrade the G6 hence me looking for an alternative for him.

He definitely doesn't want a regular subscription nor to spend a fortune.

The simpler the software to use, the better too.

TIA
 
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Ed Sutton
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#4
Hi

If he does not want the DAM part of LR, then worth having a look at affinity photo.

https://affinity.serif.com/en-gb/photo/desktop/

There are other free alternatives but I have not used them so cannot comment.

Thank you
Ta. I'll check that out.
The free raw developers that Panasonic and Canon provide are available for download:

https://www.isl.co.jp/SILKYPIX/english/p/
https://www.canon.co.uk/support/consumer_products/software/digital-photo-professional.aspx

But using two entirely different packages may not be ideal for a technophobe!
He's already managed to lose those... :LOL: Hence my thinking of a one-stop solution. But I'll send him the links anyway. Ta.
 
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Clint
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#5
Any RAW processing software is going to need a bit of time to learn otherwise you might as well shoot JPEGs and use the camera’s selection of edits. What budget does he have to spend, there may still be some reduced offers online post Xmas?
 
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Ian
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#6
Is Adobe Camera Raw still a thing? Quick online look shows lots of links. It's the front end to LR and PS so is kept up to date and last I checked it was free. No DAM though.

I know when I last used it it was quite straightforward.
 
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Ed Sutton
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#7
Any RAW processing software is going to need a bit of time to learn otherwise you might as well shoot JPEGs and use the camera’s selection of edits. What budget does he have to spend, there may still be some reduced offers online post Xmas?
Not sure on budget. He's going to give the camera manufacturers' software a try now he has the links to reinstall them. He always has to run before he can walk!
 
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Ed Sutton
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#8
Double post
 
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Ed Sutton
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#9
Is Adobe Camera Raw still a thing? Quick online look shows lots of links. It's the front end to LR and PS so is kept up to date and last I checked it was free. No DAM though.

I know when I last used it it was quite straightforward.
Not sure. I searched for ACR too but couldn't discover much.
 
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#10
Is Adobe Camera Raw still a thing? Quick online look shows lots of links. It's the front end to LR and PS so is kept up to date and last I checked it was free. No DAM though.

I know when I last used it it was quite straightforward.
ACR isn't free. The only free ACR downloads are updates for an existing version you bought as part of an Adobe product. Updates have stopped for the last non-subscription versions of PS and LR, so recent cameras won't be supported. I assume you can still get ACR updates for the current version of Elements.

The DNG converter is free, which allows you to convert between your camera's raw format and Adobe's DNG raw format, which may then work with (e.g.) older versions of ACR that don't otherwise support your camera.
 
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#11
Is Adobe Camera Raw still a thing? Quick online look shows lots of links. It's the front end to LR and PS so is kept up to date and last I checked it was free. No DAM though.

I know when I last used it it was quite straightforward.
Adobe Camera Raw is not, and as never been free. ;) I think you may be thinking of Adobe Bridge, which is a way to preview and organise images, but without Photoshop, you wouldn't get preview thumbnails of RAW files.

Rawtherapee is a free RAW processor. It has been many years since I have tried it though.

For a technophobe, Lightroom is the easiest to learn at a superficial and simple level, but has more depth for those who want over and above just image processing imho, especially with the number of tutorial vids about for Adobe products. But they cost money. ;)
 
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Ed Sutton
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#13
Adobe Camera Raw is not, and as never been free. ;) I think you may be thinking of Adobe Bridge, which is a way to preview and organise images, but without Photoshop, you wouldn't get preview thumbnails of RAW files.

Rawtherapee is a free RAW processor. It has been many years since I have tried it though.

For a technophobe, Lightroom is the easiest to learn at a superficial and simple level, but has more depth for those who want over and above just image processing imho, especially with the number of tutorial vids about for Adobe products. But they cost money. ;)
I tried Rawtherapee some time ago and couldn't get on with it.:(
 
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Ed Sutton
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#14
Luminar may be worth a look:
https://skylum.com/luminar

I use it as a plug-in for Lightroom but the latest version is being marketed as a Lightroom alternative.
There's a free trial...
Cheers. I might try it myself and see what I think.

I do have a horrible feeling that this could all be in vain. I remember showing him what Lightroom does and... :banghead:
:LOL:
 
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#15
I tried Rawtherapee some time ago and couldn't get on with it.:(
Unfortunately one of the things you pay when you buy the software is a (usually) a better designed interface and integrated experience. Some people are willing to put up with a lack of that to save money, you pays your money, or not, and make your choice. ;)

Some people will get on with some software more than others, which is why it is a good idea to take advantage of software trial periods, (if it is a paid software) Adobe may be the big dogs, but doesn't mean they are right for everyone. I myself prefer Adobe Camera Raw and Bridge over Lightroom, but I have tried other software over the years.

Once you are in the mindset of how a certain piece of software works though, if you have been happy with it or not, it may be hard to change to something else if you want to for whatever reason. This is what Adobe have counted upon when moving to their subscription model. Those who were lucky enough to not need or want the new features of Adobe's software but already owned the either or both of Photoshop or Lightroom, were able to carry on using it.
 
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Richard
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#16
Cheers. I might try it myself and see what I think.

I do have a horrible feeling that this could all be in vain. I remember showing him what Lightroom does and... :banghead:
:LOL:
I hope it goes well but in my multiple experiences of people who declare they are technophobes they don’t have the right mind set and as you indicate you will be :banghead::banghead::banghead: Good luck .
View attachment 234933
 
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Ed Sutton
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#17
I hope it goes well but in my multiple experiences of people who declare they are technophobes they don’t have the right mind set and as you indicate you will be :banghead::banghead::banghead: Good luck .
View attachment 234933
I doubt very much I'll be offering any in-depth tutorials this time!
 
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Ed Sutton
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#19
DXO Photolab is likely as highly automated as Optics Pro was, so will give him a good starting point.
Thanks. I'll pass that on.

I think that'll do for the time being folks. I don't want to confuse my mate too much!

Thanks very much. :)
 
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Chris
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#23
Hi Ed I am like your friend and not tech savy. I have the skylum luminar 3 and is very easy to use. I trialled affinity and found it had too much for my needs.
 
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Ed Sutton
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#24
Hi Ed I am like your friend and not tech savy. I have the skylum luminar 3 and is very easy to use. I trialled affinity and found it had too much for my needs.
Thanks for that Chris. I'll bear it in mind. (y)
 
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David
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#25
I'm a committed Lightroom user but I have a friend who wants to start using raw. He's a bit (understatement) of a technophobe and is looking for a non-subscription solution for his Canon and Panasonic raw files as he has either not got or has lost the software the cameras were supplied with. The cameras are a Panasonic G6 and a Canon 7D2, which I think are supported by LR6 - but he might upgrade the G6 hence me looking for an alternative for him.

He definitely doesn't want a regular subscription nor to spend a fortune.

The simpler the software to use, the better too.

TIA
He'll probably find newer Panasonics and newer cameras of any make will come with in-camera raw processing. I've recently acquired a Panasonic GX80 and I've been playing with these tools ... impressive, childs play.

I've been experimenting with shooting jpeg+raw, the jpegs with a bit of PP tweaking are perfect most of time, but one thing I can't do is lift the shadows, so I do that in camera, then convert the raw to jpeg in camera and use that.

... just an idea, a variation on @Mintchocs idea.

Any RAW processing software is going to need a bit of time to learn otherwise you might as well shoot JPEGs and use the camera’s selection of edits.
 
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#26
In order to learn something you have to be willing to persevere and approach things with an open mind. Self declared technophobes are the antithesis of that.

Best of luck.
 
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Ed Sutton
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#27
He'll probably find newer Panasonics and newer cameras of any make will come with in-camera raw processing. I've recently acquired a Panasonic GX80 and I've been playing with these tools ... impressive, childs play.

I've been experimenting with shooting jpeg+raw, the jpegs with a bit of PP tweaking are perfect most of time, but one thing I can't do is lift the shadows, so I do that in camera, then convert the raw to jpeg in camera and use that.

... just an idea, a variation on @Mintchocs idea.
I've used in camera processing a time or two and it has been pretty good. I might suggest it to him. However, see below.

In order to learn something you have to be willing to persevere and approach things with an open mind. Self declared technophobes are the antithesis of that.
Sadly that does appear to be the case. He quickly loses patience when things don't work for him. Whereas I'm the kind of person who doesn't read manuals and starts clicking things and pressing buttons to see what happens!

I think I'll try to determine exactly what he wants to achieve from processing his raw files.
 
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David Bayley
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#28
Gimp is also a free software tool that I first started on before going over to adobe cc. I found it confusing myself but I was much greener at that time.
 
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Ed Sutton
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#29
Gimp is also a free software tool that I first started on before going over to adobe cc. I found it confusing myself but I was much greener at that time.
I use GIMP mostly for graphics and find it clunky and limited for processing photos.
 
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Toni
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#31
I don't think 'free' is the issue here, so much as software suitable for someone who doesn't like to use software. GIMP is almost the diametric opposite, though the most recent versions are much more user-friendly.
 
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#33
I use Gimp for just one tool ...

Shift+P gives you Perspective .... for stretching, I love that, for cityscapes & stuff. And what I also love is ... you just have to copy your pic to your clipboard, paste it into Gimp ... stretch ... then copy and paste it elsewhere, into another editor. (y)
 
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#34
I use it to switch colour channels for processing infrared false colour, but On1 PhotoRaw does everything else more easily and logically.
 
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Simon Everett
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#35
Excuse me - but what is DAM please? Yes I did try typing it into goggle. No, I didn't get any meaningful replies - even using goggle is an art, it would appear. Fine if you know what question to type in.
 
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Kev
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#36
Excuse me - but what is DAM please? Yes I did try typing it into goggle. No, I didn't get any meaningful replies - even using goggle is an art, it would appear. Fine if you know what question to type in.
Morning, DAM is digital asset management.

It is the way LR helps with the organisation and storage of photos.
 
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Richard
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#37
Excuse me - but what is DAM please? Yes I did try typing it into goggle. No, I didn't get any meaningful replies - even using goggle is an art, it would appear. Fine if you know what question to type in.
If you give google some context like “DAM photography” or “DAM software” you are more likely to get a non-watery answer. Actually “DAM software” puts up a definition at the top for me.
 
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Ed Sutton
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#39
I've been using PhotoWorks for some time. I'm still a newb and a fan of raw's, the program is good both for beginners and raw processing. No subscription, no additional plug-ins are needed.
Thanks. Added tp the list. In fact I'm going to give it a try as my PC is goosed and I won't have a new one until Wednesday, so I'm without raw processing on my horrible laptop.
 
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#40
Quickest way to start using RAW for the 7d2 is use DPP its free with your camera. It does an ok job. There are a few free packages already mentioned. We then start on the paid for packages, most of these will give a trial period so its case of try and see what you like. Affinity and elements come to mind and both are good. Give them a try see how you get on.
 
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