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Software for NEF?

Richard Laepple , Jun 18, 2004; 07:49 a.m.

Being rather new to digital with a D70 I have so far only made JPGs. Now I'd like to test the possibilities with RAW/NEF files. I have PS 6.0, 2-3 smaller tools and Nikon View on my PC. My question is: is it worth buying the new Nikon software (Capture or PictureProject) to handle NEF? Ok, I can use Nikon View to create TIFF-files. But maybe NEF compatible software has more advantages? In other words: NEF or TIFF, what's better? I don't want to update on PS CS because of the costs.


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Sergio Ortega , Jun 18, 2004; 08:10 a.m.

I've been trying out the Capture 4.1 (30-day free trial offer, on the PP disk that comes with your D70) and it's very nice to work with. As a Raw editor it's excellent. I also use the PS CS, and it's also very good; I'm used to working with Photoshop and appreciate all the capabilities.

I'm not sure if I'll buy the Nikon software when the trial runs out, every time I use it it reminds me how many days remain. So I have to decide soon.

If it's a matter of cost, go with the Nikon Capture 4.1. It costs about $100. The CS is five-six times more.

Ellis Vener , Jun 18, 2004; 10:02 a.m.

If you can try out Nikon Capture I think that is a very good way to go, after all the algorithms used in th "raw' converter are a custom fit with NEF files.

The ACR (Adobe Camera Raw) portion of Photoshop CS does a very fine job as well. if you have a legal copy of Photoshop 6 the upgrade to CS is about $169.00

Chris Combs , Jun 18, 2004; 12:10 p.m.

or $150 if you're a member of the NPPA :)

Chris Fogel , Jun 18, 2004; 05:12 p.m.

If you are at all familiar with your Photoshop, I find that switching to Capture is a bit of a drag. For this reason, I agree with Ellis that CS is great. If you are unfamiliar with either, I think Capture is a fine and cost-effective solution. But since you already have PS, the upgrade doesn't cost much more than Capture and PS is a far superior app, IMO.

John Koontz , Jun 18, 2004; 05:37 p.m.

You don't really need Capture. PictureProject is free. That being said, I can't stand using PictureProject. A little too limited by my tastes - both in picture manipulation and file management. I bought Capture and enjoy using. Be warned - it's a memory hog.

Michael Erlich , Jun 18, 2004; 07:06 p.m.

I use PS CS. As mentioned, the upgrade is not much more expensive than Nikon Capture. I tried a trial version of Capture, and it works well, but it's sooooooo slow on my Mac G4 it drives me nuts!

Brent Mundie , Jun 20, 2004; 10:35 p.m.

Just convert to Tiff. Its free. NEF is uncompressed... Tiff is uncompressed. No difference in image quality. PS 6 will work with Tiff's, not NEF's. Case Closed.


Richard Laepple , Jun 21, 2004; 07:02 a.m.

Clear answer, thanks Brent. Thanks to you all! Richard

Chris Combs , Jun 23, 2004; 12:45 a.m.

Nikon View installs a Photoshop-compatible NEF reading plugin into your Photoshop plugins directory, which works just fine with 6; I use it.

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