Best end result for processing NEFs. ACR with camera profile or NX2?

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Apr 5, 2008
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I presently shoot Raw using ACR. I have a beautiful script that I made when I first got my D300/D3, and have never looked back. Was wondering if any out there have made a really nice camera profile to place in the camera calibration tab in ACR as I did, and compared your final output to that of a nicely processed image using NX2?

I am happy with my present results and workflow. But often see stunning results from NX2, and wonder if I am missing anything by not using NX2.

much appreciated,

Mike
 
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Jun 4, 2009
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Kentucky
Oh, one more thing. You have to go down about 3/4 of the way on that page before you see the discussion begin.

Jim
 
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Just out of curiosity, how do you handle WB for images shot under different lighting? In my short trials with ACR, before I went back to ViewNX, I found that I needed to tweak WB more than I liked. With ViewNX, I can either use the camera's WB, or switch it to the right WB for the situation and rarely have to tweak. Since WB is the most important step in getting colors to be correct, I am rather attached to ViewNX. I also like to preserve the in-camera Picture Controls (custom curves). For me, it's ViewNX, convert to 16-bit TIF, then do final edits in PSPX2.
 
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Pic Controls are a great help. The cyan tinted skies and soft fine details like tree branches remain. NX gets colors right straight from the camera. You spend your time being creative rather than being a fault fixer.

I can easily adjust skies and other areas with NX2 without making time consuming masks in photoshop using U-Point controls. I know how to do all the fancy masking in CS, but it way too complicated. NX symplifies things.

NX does not do HDR and I can not put type on a photo with NX. There are some things where I must go to CS. CS would be my sole program if I could have only one, but file-open with - opens any photo as a TIFF in CS.

$119 at Cameta Camera will get you a copy. CS4 is multi hundreds and you are buying other programs bundled with it you probably will never use unless you are into graphic arts where you MUST have it. Then the upgrades for when you get a new camera cost more than what NX2 or NX3 or NX4 new.
 
Joined
Apr 5, 2008
Messages
2,847
Location
Middletown, NY
Just out of curiosity, how do you handle WB for images shot under different lighting? In my short trials with ACR, before I went back to ViewNX, I found that I needed to tweak WB more than I liked. With ViewNX, I can either use the camera's WB, or switch it to the right WB for the situation and rarely have to tweak. Since WB is the most important step in getting colors to be correct, I am rather attached to ViewNX. I also like to preserve the in-camera Picture Controls (custom curves). For me, it's ViewNX, convert to 16-bit TIF, then do final edits in PSPX2.
WhiBal.

http://whibalhost.com/_Tutorials/WhiBal/01/
 
Joined
Apr 5, 2008
Messages
2,847
Location
Middletown, NY
Pic Controls are a great help. The cyan tinted skies and soft fine details like tree branches remain. NX gets colors right straight from the camera. You spend your time being creative rather than being a fault fixer.

I can easily adjust skies and other areas with NX2 without making time consuming masks in photoshop using U-Point controls. I know how to do all the fancy masking in CS, but it way too complicated. NX symplifies things.

NX does not do HDR and I can not put type on a photo with NX. There are some things where I must go to CS. CS would be my sole program if I could have only one, but file-open with - opens any photo as a TIFF in CS.

$119 at Cameta Camera will get you a copy. CS4 is multi hundreds and you are buying other programs bundled with it you probably will never use unless you are into graphic arts where you MUST have it. Then the upgrades for when you get a new camera cost more than what NX2 or NX3 or NX4 new.
"NX gets colors right straight from the camera."

Quite frankly, I don't find Nikon color very accurate. They do indeed look pleasing, especially using an in-house converter like NX. It is the pleasing look that Capture NX seems to give, that I am finding more appealing than color acuracy. But I find that making a proper custom camera profile to use in the color calibration tab in ACR, the delta error in color accuracy is far less.

Have you ever noticed how far off Nikon reds are? Have a good look at some images, and compare to real world shots.

http://www.imaging-resource.com/PRODS/D300/D300IMATEST.HTM

When you make a camera profile, using a script made by shooting the gretag Macbeth card, you can get the inner box colors to better match the outside box color...see the gretag Macbeth chart from the above link.

mike
 

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