Home > General, Personal > Using RAW files with a digital camera

Using RAW files with a digital camera


Yesterday, I finally started using the option to save images on my Canon EOS350D in RAW format, instead of the more normal JPEG format. At first I thought it was simply to address a shortcoming in the dpi results, but I’ve since learned that this means next to nothing, and begun to realise that using RAW is not an immediate miracle maker, but rather it’s in the more subtle things.

I read somewhere a while ago that it’s best to use RAW, since you can tweak the file to your heart’s content afterwards, whereas with JPEG, you are much more limited. I also learnt that when shooting JPEG, your camera often has to make compromises to create a file in a decent amount of time, or otherwise it would be called slow. This rush to create the picture often leads to poor processing, as the processor in a camera is nowhere near as powerful as what is available in a modern computer.

If you are an amateur photographer, and are using a DSLR camera, switch to using RAW files for your snaps. It will require more storage space, but with flash media so cheap these days, it’s not the issue it once was. If your camera is 8 megapixels for example, the RAW file will be about 8Mb in size, give or take. Contrast this to a JPEG of about 1.3Mb taken at maximum fine setting.

I’m still very much an amateur, but it’s exciting to learn new things about your camera. Now if only I could get some more lenses 🙂

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