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Advantages of RAW format in Photo Editing

We often hear many professional photographers talking about shooting the pictures in RAW format. Even the professional photo editing service providers prefer to work upon the RAW images. You must be wondering what’s in it. What is this RAW format and why it has become a darling of the Photography community? We have got a light to throw upon.

What’s in RAW?

RAW does not stand for anything. It is called so as it stores the ‘raw image information’ that is captured by the camera sensor. The information captured in RAW format is not compressed or lost as in the case of photographs shot in JPEG.

The RAW Advantages:

Get better details: While photo editing a RAW image, you have liberty to sharpen and reduce the Noise up to a considerable level in Lightroom. Minute detailing could be achieved with the RAW images. With the advancement in the technology, scope of achieving more details increases day by day. Very important for the people with an eye for the details.

Non-Destructive photo editing: While editing a RAW file, the original data is not hampered. The edited image is always saved in either JPEG or TIFF format and the original RAW file remains unchanged. The image is not ruined or over-written even accidentally. Peace of Mind!

Quality of the photo: As mentioned above, all the details of the captured image are kept intact by the camera. These details are helpful while photo editing as you have the choice to make adjustments with the details you want and discard the remaining. This helps in achieving the desired quality of the photo and getting closer to your expectations.

White Balance: White Balance is one of the important aspect in photo editing. Shooting an image in RAW helps you adjust the White Balance easily compared to JPEG. In case of JPEG, limited adjustments to the balance is possible. Best quality could be achieved easily by adjusting White balance which is available in RAW format.

Brightness levels: RAW records between 4,096-16,384 levels of Brightness compared to 256 levels in JPEG. It describes the shades from black to white in an image. It is clearly visible that the brightness level could be meticulously adjusted while photo editing in RAW formats compared to JPEGS format.

Correcting ‘Over/Under exposed’ Images: It is perhaps very helpful for the wedding photographers where things are moving fast. With the additional information on the file, one can correct the exposure of the images without hampering the image quality. This is one of the reasons why many professional photo editing service providers prefer the RAW images.

Choice to select color-space: When exporting out the images for photo editing, one can have a choice to select the color-space as well. For the web-upload, one can select the sRGB color-space so as to be compatible with the browsers. In other cases, common RGB color-space could be preferred. Many professional photo editing service providers mention about the color space while exporting the photographs from their clients.

Flip-side

Not everything is a fairy tale when you are shooting in RAW. It does have some downside to it.

RAW files are larger. They can eat up your memory space up to 2-3 times of the JPEG and slows down your camera. But with the progress in processor technology day by day will definitely bring these numbers down.

In case of RAW images, one will always need to do photo editing process on it every time he takes a shot increasing the processing time. On the other hand, even the photographs shot in JPEG format would need photo editing in some way or other. Hence, the overall difference between processing times for RAW and JPEG’s is reduced.

After understanding the RAW advantage, it surely appears that it will be the move ahead in the future with a wide scope of technological innovations and advancements. To learn more contact our professional photo editing experts.