Batch proccessing after CNX edits ?

Discussion in 'Nikon Capture and View NX' started by munchmeister, Aug 11, 2008.

  1. A recent attempt to utilize ViewNX and CaptureNX in my workflow went like this: view photos in ViewNX, rate the selects, then filter ViewNX to show only the selects. Then choose "Edit in Capture NX" to get into CaptureNX and edit, adjust, crop and save the resulting NEF, one by one. Now I have a set of selected photos viewable in ViewNX, with the edits and enhancements visible in ViewX and I want to now batch process these newly enhanced shots (NEFs) into JPGs for uploading to my SmugMug account for viewing by the photo subjects. When I go to do this in ViewNX, using the "Convert files" button/ menu, the menu choice for batch processing the photos is "grayed out" and not available.

    Am I missing something or did I do something wrong or am I just plain wrong in assuming this would work out?


  2. Just plain wrong. :biggrin:

    Seriously, open View NX. Press F1 to access the help screens. Search on "convert files." Select "Convert and Output Files." You'll see a list of situations in which View NX can not convert RAW files, including RAW files that had been saved by Capture NX.

    Not to worry, though. Simply batch process all of the files using Capture NX. I use one process that reduces the file size, adds a small amount of sharpening, converts to JPEG using a compression parameter of my choice, and saves the files to the folder of my choice. Depending on your naming convention, you can include renaming the file in the same process.
  3. Mike, since you use IDImager, is it possible to do this in IDImager, i.e., ingest with IDI, add metadata, keywords and then do the first round of selecting with tags or colors or whatever. Then, still in IDI, open each of those selected, tagged photos and "edit with Capture NX." Do this for each of your selects. When finished, use IDI to convert them as you describe, reducing file size, converting to JPG, etc, to a new folder. As I see it, this workflow would allow saving the edits to the NEF file, but then allowing conversion of the edited NEF to a folder of JPGs which could be uploaded to SmugMug, or made into a slide show... whatever. That is ideally how I would like to work. Is it possible with IDImager?
  4. Yes.

    You can add the metadata as you download from the memory card or you can do it as a batch process later at any point during your workflow. I actually add the metadata absolutely last in my workflow, which I realize is apparently an unusual workflow. That's because by then I have culled so many files that I am then working with far fewer files.

    The real kicker is that using IDimager to batch process that last part about reducing the size, sharpening, saving to a JPEG, etc. is done literally almost ten times as fast as using NX2's batch process. I batched 52 files a couple days ago and it took at least 25 minutes (I didn't time it) using NX2. I batched the exact same files in IDimager later that evening to try it out for the first time. It took a little more than 3 minutes. Yowza!

    By the way, at any point in the workflow that you want to change the filename, you've got flexibility to do that very easily. In fact, IDI provides flexibility that NX2 doesn't, due to a stupid GUI screw up by Nikon. You can also save filenaming conventions and automatically load them, which saves the time of recreating the convention. I use one convention for my files, one for my wife's files, and one for my large JPEG files used for slide shows.

    If you get the impression that I don't have enough good things to say about IDimager, you've got it right. Developing a workflow using IDimager and NX2 is a very powerful combination that rocks!
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 11, 2008
  5. jhwalker


    Jun 10, 2008
    United States
    Thanks, Tom. I was wondering when someone would point this out - since only Nikon software packages actually read the edit steps, etc., one uses in the NX products, IDImager must be extracting / resizing the embedded (and low quality) JPEG if it's producing results that look like NX's.

    If IDImager is producing results that *ignore* the edits you've made in NX, that's another thing entirely and proves it's actually reading the raw data, instead - but then why waste your time editing in NX? ;-)
  6. Tom and John,

    Do either of you use IDimager?

    I gather from IDimager's help screens that the NEF is indeed being converted. I have asked for clarification at IDI's support forum.

    If I instruct the software to display the NEF, it displays the in-camera NEF rather than the edited NEF. However, the so-called conversion from NEF to JPEG displays an image that is consistent with the edited NEF. Whether the edited NEF has been converted or whether the embedded JPEG has been resized is the issue that I will report once I hear from Hert, the author of IDimager.

    For the record, it really doesn't matter to me and I presume will not matter to the OP whether the resulting JPEG is created from the NEF or from the embedded JPEG preview. That's because both of us are intending to view the resulting JPEG on the Internet and/or a computer monitor, which as we know does not reveal much detail. I can not detect any difference between the JPEG created by NX2 and the JPEG created by IDimager.
  7. However it happens, I presume that we are all interested in the edited NEF and what it looks like to clients or anyone viewing our work (in other words, the viewable jpg). In my case, I edit the NEFs in CNX which is my preferred editor. I then want to post these edited files to SmugMug or email them to friends or clients. For a workflow involving dozens or even hundreds of photos, this requires, in my view, an efficient cataloging program (also handy for finding things later, building slideshows, print jobs). ViewNX is not cutting it if you cannot batch process to jpg for uploading. IDI might be a better way to do that, as long as what you get as a result of the batching process is a jpg with all the CNX edits.
  8. Munch, I was probably editing my previous post as you were posting yours. You might want to read my post again, as I addressed the issue as it pertains to my needs, which might be different from yours.
  9. I have received confirmation from one of the very helpful IDI power users that the program uses the embedded JPEG preview, not the NEF, to "convert" JPEGs. His explanation is the same as Tom's and John's explanation.

    If I hear from Hert, the author of IDI, I will report that here.
  10. So I'm still wondering what the implications are of using another program, such as IDI, Elements, Lightroom, etc. with a NEF edited in Capture NX. If the photo is going to be printed, it would seem that converting from within CNX would be best (i.e. to TIF or just printing from CNX). For converting to JPG for emailing, posting on the web, on one's own website or making slide shows or Flash shows, etc., the batching process of ID Imager or other non Nikon program is sufficient and is much faster, converts the CNX edited JPG preview, not to mention allowing powerful cataloging features.

    Does this make sense?

    Mike, I see that you use Elements, as well as IDimager, which presumably is your cataloger of choice. Do you use the cataloging features of Elements, or is it just used for pixel editing?
  11. If you are going to do your own printing, my understanding is that there is no reason not to print directly from the NEF.

    However, I don't know anything about the intricacies of printing from personal experience (and am grateful that I don't need to know), but I couldn't help but notice that my contact, who is in the publishing business, in the IDI forum mentions the following:

    "The only time the embedded full-size JPEG of an NEF may not be enough is when you take a loupe to a print and look at it at dot-level; an 8x-loupe will be enough. OK, there is another: When you need a standard file format for heavy editing in an image processor like Photoshop; that is, for relatively extreme compositing work. Then you need a TIFF."

    That part makes perfect sense to me. I think the acid test is to save a JPEG sized to fit your monitor using both Capture NX and whatever alternatives you have. If one does or does not look inferior to the other, you've got your answer about whether the fast method meets your needs. I can't see any difference between a 1680 x 1050 JPEG created by IDimager and Capture NX. That makes sense to me, based on everything I have read about the limitations of monitors.

    Yes, IDimager is my cataloger. The only other cataloging I have ever done was a limited amount with View NX and Capture NX.

    Now that I have become immersed in Capture NX2, I use Elements only to edit the content, as opposed to adjusting it which I leave entirely up to NX2.
  12. Mike: Thank you very much for your helpful replies. This has been very, very helpful to me. I've been using Elements for some time but, like you, I'm becoming immersed in CNX2 and am looking for a cataloger that complements CNX2, and has more features than Elements. Adobe software is superbly designed but it seems that the focus is on Lightroom. I'd like to stick to one RAW processor and I'm sold on CNX for that purpose and for the tools it has for adjustments. IDimager seems a very worthy complement to CNX.

    Again, thanks to you and Tom and others for your replies.
  13. I have now heard from Hert, the author of IDimager, and he confirms that the program uses the embedded preview, not the NEF.

    John, you mentioned that the embedded preview is a low quality image. Hert disagrees with you. He explicitly calls it a "high quality" JPEG.