17 Replies Latest reply on Jul 21, 2017 3:46 AM by dj_paige

    DNG conversion and loss of original RAW file ?

    20conor

      I was guided to set up my import structure so that Lightroom would take my Canon .CR2 files and convert them to DNG on import. Now I find that for a major competition they want to see the original RAW file but whilst in the Preferences pane I had "Embed Fast Load data" ticked , I had not ticked the "Embed original RAW file" box. So, is it impossible for me to now produce the original RAW file ?

       

      If I do tick the embed original raw file box what are the implications for file sizes and hard disk space ?

        • 1. Re: DNG conversion and loss of original RAW file ?
          dj_paige Level 9

          If you haven't made a copy of your original RAW somewhere, then it is gone.

           

          Embedding the original inside the DNG increases the file size and takes up more disk space.

          • 2. Re: DNG conversion and loss of original RAW file ?
            20conor Level 1

            Thank you, its would seem sensible therefore to revert to keeping my files as .CR2 but I can't see where to go to do this ? Also, when you say it increases the file size - does it double the file size ? Grateful for your help.

            • 3. Re: DNG conversion and loss of original RAW file ?
              dj_paige Level 9

              It increases the file size by the size of the original RAW photo.

               

              As far as I know, once you convert to DNG and you don't embed the RAW in the DNG, there is no way to convert those photos back to a RAW. For future imports, you would import by selecting COPY and not COPY as DNG

              • 4. Re: DNG conversion and loss of original RAW file ?
                20conor Level 1

                Ok, thank you, last question, I simply can't see where I go to to change the import instruction away from DNG ?

                • 5. Re: DNG conversion and loss of original RAW file ?
                  dj_paige Level 9

                  It's in the Import dialog box, top middle

                  • 6. Re: DNG conversion and loss of original RAW file ?
                    99jon Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                    After you click Import there are choices across the top of the import dialog. If your photos are being imported from camera or camera card choose Copy. If the CR2 files are already in a folder on your computer choose Add. LR will bring in the original CR2 files and create an XMP sidecar for each one.

                    • 7. Re: DNG conversion and loss of original RAW file ?
                      dj_paige Level 9

                      99jon wrote:

                       

                      After you click Import there are choices across the top of the import dialog. If your photos are being imported from camera or camera card choose Copy. If the CR2 files are already in a folder on your computer choose Add. LR will bring in the original CR2 files and create an XMP sidecar for each one.

                      Creating an XMP file does not happen by default. You have to instruct Lightroom to do so by turning on an option or using a command. Some people never use XMP sidecar files.

                      • 9. Re: DNG conversion and loss of original RAW file ?
                        99jon Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                        Yes of course it's possible to use the catalog without writing to XMP, but that option is regularly used with DNG because of the nature of DNG.

                        • 10. Re: DNG conversion and loss of original RAW file ?
                          20conor Level 1

                          Is there no "best way" of importing. Do people mostly use DNG and embed the original RAW file or do they mostly just copy the native file from the camera ?

                          • 11. Re: DNG conversion and loss of original RAW file ?
                            dj_paige Level 9

                            20conor wrote:

                             

                            Is there no "best way" of importing. Do people mostly use DNG and embed the original RAW file or do they mostly just copy the native file from the camera ?

                            There is no "best way" of importing. You choose the options that best meets your needs.

                             

                            I don't use DNG at all. Other people use DNG exclusively. Other people use DNG but save the RAW. It's up to you.

                            • 12. Re: DNG conversion and loss of original RAW file ?
                              ssprengel Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                              I don’t use DNG because I don’t want to lose the ability to process my photos with other software. 

                               

                              Other people like DNG because their Adobe conversion recipe can be stored in the file, itself, instead of in a sidecar that might get separated.

                               

                              To me DNGs are too Adobe-centric, and even though Adobe software might be what I use, now, sometime in the future it may not exist, anymore, and I’d like to have other options.

                              • 13. Re: DNG conversion and loss of original RAW file ?
                                DdeGannes Level 5

                                DNG Pros, Cons and Myths | Photoshop Blog by Adobe

                                Quote "Is there no "best way" of importing. Do people mostly use DNG and embed the original RAW file or do they mostly just copy the native file from the camera ?"


                                The link above will provide pros and cons of using DNG files.

                                • 14. Re: DNG conversion and loss of original RAW file ?
                                  99jon Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                                  I always convert my CR2 to DNG because I use Adobe software exclusively in preference to Canon DPP and DNG is a more efficient file, not needing to access the camera raw cache, if fast load data is embedded. But if you are doing competition work, you don’t want to throw away your CR2 files.

                                   

                                  As Paige says, it's a personal choice.

                                  • 15. Re: DNG conversion and loss of original RAW file ?
                                    20conor Level 1

                                    Thank you, that was very useful.

                                    • 16. Re: DNG conversion and loss of original RAW file ?
                                      merkk Level 1

                                      ssprengel  wrote

                                       

                                      I don’t use DNG because I don’t want to lose the ability to process my photos with other software. 

                                       

                                      Other people like DNG because their Adobe conversion recipe can be stored in the file, itself, instead of in a sidecar that might get separated.

                                       

                                      To me DNGs are too Adobe-centric, and even though Adobe software might be what I use, now, sometime in the future it may not exist, anymore, and I’d like to have other options.

                                      I hope no one minds me replying to a thread that's over a year old. But the original question raised an issue for me i wasn't aware of.

                                       

                                      If i convert my CR2 files to DNG, and some place asks for the raw files from my photos, the DNG's might not be considered the raw files? Is this common? For example - i once asked about how I could prove I shot a photo if someone copied it without permission, and they said I could prove i took it by producing the raw file. Would the DNG not be considered proof in that case?

                                       

                                      Also, specifically regarding what ssprengel wrote - can't those same arguments be used against storing your photos in whatever raw format your camera uses? I have a canon camera - is there more support for CR2 files vs DNG files? Plus since DNG is an open source standard, it seems more likely that DNG would stick around longer vs CR2 which i assume is not an open standard?
                                      Thanks

                                      • 17. Re: DNG conversion and loss of original RAW file ?
                                        dj_paige Level 9

                                        If you have DNG and someone wants your original RAW, it depends on what they want. Some information in the header of the file, provided by the camera (commonly called EXIF information) may not be transferred to the DNG. The image itself should be unchanged. Also, most camera manufacturer's can add in-camera developments to the appearance of the RAW photo (for example, if you chose to increase saturation and contrast and sharpness using in-camera settings), but the same manufacturer's software can't do this to the DNG (because that info isn't in the DNG file).

                                         

                                        Regarding open-source "outliving" the manufacturer's RAW format, I think this is nonsense, there's no way Adobe or it's competitors are someday going to stop supporting CR2 or NEF, even if Canon or Nikon switch to another format. Why? Plenty of reasons. First, the software manufacturer's like Adobe have already developed the software to work with CR2 and NEF, it costs them nothing to keep the code in the software. Secondly, if any software manufacturer were to stop supporting NEF (for example), they would lose business as any who owned a camera (or has photos from previous cameras) that takes NEF photos would then find this software no longer useful, and would switch to another software manufacturer. In other words, it costs nothing to continue the support, and it would lose customers to discontinue support.