15 Replies Latest reply on Jun 7, 2014 5:14 PM by userp123fsd

    Support for E-M10 - What's the difference between ACR 8.4 and 8.5?

    userp123fsd

      When ACR 8.4 was released, Adobe announced support for the Olympus OM-D E-M10 but with a footnote mentioning 'preliminary support'.

      Now that ACR 8.5 is released, Adobe re-announces the support for the camera without indicating 'preliminary support'.

       

      I'm wondering what the difference is for an E-M10 shooter. Is it related to resolution? CA correction? built-in calibration (color) profiles?

       

      I have many files processed with ACR 8.4 and I don't know if I should expect a visible improvement by re-processing them with ACR 8.5. It's hard to tell based on single images because sometimes they don't show the issues that were improved and I have no idea where to look.

       

      Thanks!

        • 1. Re: Support for E-M10 - What's the difference between ACR 8.4 and 8.5?
          Level 5

          It simply means that the preliminary support for that camera has passed muster and is now the same as what you're going to get in relation to that camera to get when 8.5 becomes final.

          • 2. Re: Support for E-M10 - What's the difference between ACR 8.4 and 8.5?
            Level 5

            Oh, as far as improvements and bug fixes in each ACR dot release update, they mostly go unannounced and unspecified.

            • 3. Re: Support for E-M10 - What's the difference between ACR 8.4 and 8.5?
              userp123fsd Level 1

              Thanks, I understand what you mean, but what I try to understand is whether 8.5 handles the E-M10's raw files differently than 8.4. And if it does, in which respects it would affect the developed image.

              • 4. Re: Support for E-M10 - What's the difference between ACR 8.4 and 8.5?
                ssprengel Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                In the past “preliminary support” has sometimes meant that Adobe has not created a camera profile for the specific model of camera but is pretending it is a predecessor with a similar sensor, but with full support they have actually created camera profiles.  If this occurred, here, then the colors may have been slightly different during the preliminary support phase compared to now.  Of course ACR 8.5 is still an RC at the moment so perhaps something will change, again with the final release.

                • 5. Re: Support for E-M10 - What's the difference between ACR 8.4 and 8.5?
                  userp123fsd Level 1

                  I see, thanks. ACR 8.4 already came with a color profile for this camera and even with profiles that try to mimic the camera's built-in picture modes (i.e. vivid, portrait, natural, muted). The profiles work quite nicely and I haven't found an issue with them.

                   

                  I'll wait for 8.5' final release to compare an image developed with the same settings under 8.4 and 8.5 in an attempt to spot differences.

                  • 6. Re: Support for E-M10 - What's the difference between ACR 8.4 and 8.5?
                    Level 5

                    userp123fsd wrote:

                     

                    Thanks, I understand what you mean, but what I try to understand is whether 8.5 handles the E-M10's raw files differently than 8.4. And if it does, in which respects it would affect the developed image.

                     

                    I understood your question; but my reply implied that unless you have files from such a camera processed with a previous ACR version, there's no way to check that, as Adobe won't tell you.

                     

                    I don't know how popular that camera is among other forums users; I myself don't have Fuji digital cameras, only one film Fuji camera.

                    • 7. Re: Support for E-M10 - What's the difference between ACR 8.4 and 8.5?
                      userp123fsd Level 1

                      Thanks. Yeah, I understand, it's a bit unfortunate that Adobe doesn't clarify what's the difference between 'preliminary support' and 'full support'.

                      It's an Olympus camera that I already use for about a month. I was traveling with it so I have hundreds of pictures processed with 8.4. I guess I'll have to re-process some of them with 8.5 (final version) and then check if I see some difference.

                      • 8. Re: Support for E-M10 - What's the difference between ACR 8.4 and 8.5?
                        Level 5

                        userp123fsd wrote:

                         

                        …I have hundreds of pictures processed with 8.4. I guess I'll have to re-process some of them with 8.5 (final version) and then check if I see some difference.

                         

                        Bingo! 

                         

                        Yes, it's a bit annoying to have to find out for yourself, but on the other hand, it would be very time-consuming for Adobe to have to specify the changes for each of the hundreds of cameras supported by ACR with each update, which happens 3 or 4 times per year.

                        • 9. Re: Support for E-M10 - What's the difference between ACR 8.4 and 8.5?
                          Level 5

                          userp123fsd wrote:

                           

                          …it's a bit unfortunate that Adobe doesn't clarify what's the difference between 'preliminary support' and 'full support'…

                           

                          Oh, Adobe has clarified that in no uncertain times over the years. (Now, don't ask me where you can look that up; just Google it.) "Full support" means exactly that, the support for that particular camera model has been tested to the ACR Team's full satisfaction.

                           

                          "Preliminary support" means the ACR Team has generated a profile for that camera model that appears to be working fine, but the ACR Team and Adobe feel that a little more testing and some customer feedback is highly desirable before they can give it a formal stamp of approval.

                           

                          That's a separate question from beta RC (release candidate) or GM (gold master) status of the application or plug-in.   GM status is indicated simply by removing the beta or RC suffix from the version numbers.

                           

                          I feel more than a little awkward appearing to be "defending" Adobe, but I have so few opportunities to stand up for them, that I just jump in when I perceive that their actions are being misunderstood.

                          • 10. Re: Support for E-M10 - What's the difference between ACR 8.4 and 8.5?
                            Level 5

                            Finally, always keep in mind that the ACR team is led by none other than the creator of ACR and of Photoshop itself.  Over the years they have amply earned my full confidence—in sharp contrast to the elephantine and unresponsive Adobe bureaucracy as a  whole.

                            • 11. Re: Support for E-M10 - What's the difference between ACR 8.4 and 8.5?
                              userp123fsd Level 1

                              I disagree regarding publishing a release notes. It's a common practice in software release to publish a change log, even if it's a very minimalist one. I'm only asking for an indication whether there's any point in reprocessing with 8.5 files that have been developed with 8.4. A simple hint in the release notes will do the trick. If it's only a matter of completing the testing phase and no change to the code/profiles - then that's a pretty simple thing to report. Not publishing this kind of information means shifting the burden of testing to the users - which is totally inefficient given that the information is already available to ACR developers and that the users don't even know which differences to look for. Btw, I don't think that it's very time-consuming for Adobe. It's a matter of passing information from R&D to customer interfacing departments. The feature list of every release is anyway being characterized and tested by a QA team. So why reporting it (even in a minimal fashion) to the users is so time consuming? it's definitely extremely time consuming for the masses to start reprocessing their files and searching for differences blindly.

                              • 12. Re: Support for E-M10 - What's the difference between ACR 8.4 and 8.5?
                                ssprengel Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                Doing a byte-for-byte binary compare between the ACR 8.4 and the ACR 8.5RC Adobe Standard .dcp files for the E-M10 there is nothing different.  I didn’t test the other four CameraXXXXX profiles to see if they were also identical, but obviously the OP could.

                                 

                                I was able to have both sets of profiles to compare by renaming the ProgramData\Adobe\CameraRaw\CameraProfiles folder (which contained ACR 8.5RC profiles) to something else then re-installed the DNG Converter 8.4 to get the 8.4 version of the profiles in CameraProfiles.

                                 

                                Raw Engineer Eric Chan has said that besides the profiles there is almost always coding that occurs for each camera model, in addition to the profiles, so even if the profiles were all identical—the OP can test this, themselves, it is possible that the coding behind the profiles is slightly different—the strengths of the noise-reduction for each ISO, for example.

                                 

                                It is also possible that there is nothing different.  A way to test this would be to take an image, with ACR 8.4 plug-in and corresponding profiles as and do a conversion to TIF, then manually install the ACR 8.5RC plug-in and its profiles and do the same conversion to TIF, then load each TIF as a layer in PS and do a Difference layer blend option, create a new composite layer of this, and then move the white slider of the Levels operator down as low as possible and see if anything other than black shows up, meaning that there was some difference.  You might want to do this dual conversion with photos of both low and high ISO settings in the camera in case that is where the difference is.  It could also be some sharpness parameters that are different.

                                 

                                The hardest part of this process would be to swap the ACR plug-ins around, but this should be possible because we have a downloaded file containing the ACR 8.5RC of the Camera Raw.8bi file, and there is also a direct download link to the ACR 8.4 plug-in installer files at:

                                 

                                http://blogs.adobe.com/crawlspace/2011/03/keeping-photoshop-up-to-date.html#notconnected

                                 

                                If nothing whatsoever has changed, then perhaps all that is different is things were tested a bit more rigorously and certified to be correct.  If that is the situation, then it would be nice to have a note that said nothing changed from 8.4, but if something actually has, then the lack of an asterisk with the note of “preliminary support” may be all Adobe can say, easily.

                                • 13. Re: Support for E-M10 - What's the difference between ACR 8.4 and 8.5?
                                  Level 5

                                  userp123fsd wrote:

                                   

                                  I disagree regarding publishing a release notes. It's a common practice in software release to publish a change log…

                                   

                                  That has never bothered Adobe.

                                  • 14. Re: Support for E-M10 - What's the difference between ACR 8.4 and 8.5?
                                    Level 5

                                    ssprengel wrote:

                                     

                                    …It is also possible that there is nothing different…

                                     

                                    …as is very often the case.

                                    • 15. Re: Support for E-M10 - What's the difference between ACR 8.4 and 8.5?
                                      userp123fsd Level 1

                                      Thanks ssprengel for taking the trouble to compare the profiles and for suggesting the layers method for comparing developments with 8.4 and 8.5.

                                      I'll do the check in a few days and then report back.Thanks also to station_two for explaining to me the situation.