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Can you open any of those 33 files directly in Camera Raw? Typically, if they fail in the DNG converter there is some level of file corruption. If you can open them in CR, try saving a new DNG version from there. As for why it happens, could be any number of things, bad download from the card, issues with your hard drive, etc...
Also, the current version for the DNG converter is 4.3.1
Greg: Thanks for your quick response.
I tried opening one of the files in Photoshop and received an error that the file format was not recognized. I received the same error in Photoshop Elements. The only application that opens the file thus far is Apple Preview. Once there I could re-save the image as a .TIFF.
Given the possibilities you describe re-saving as a .TIFF looks like my only option. The original CF card has been reformatted and reused many times since the original image was taken and backups of the original .CRW from 2 DVD's yielded the same results. .TIFF to the rescue.
As for version of the DNG converter, I am using v3.7 because I am still using Photoshop CS2. Last time I checked DNG plug-in v4.3.7 did not work with CS2 so I will be using the v3.7 converter until I can make the upgrade to CS3. Right now my budget is still recovering from the expense of hardware upgrades (desktop and laptop).
Thanks again for your help. The images lost were not critical ones so there is no significant loss. But this exercise does show that if I am going to use .DNG as I plan to do I need to use it as early in my workflow as possible so I can reload .CRW from the CF card if a bad transfer has occurred.
Definitely sounds like youve got some bad files.
The image you get from Preview is most likely the imbedded JEPG preview rather than the actual raw data. So what youre saving out is going to be a TIF based on the preview. Better than nothing but just so you realize it wont be the full quality of the original data.
On the converter, you can use the most up-to-date version, the DNGs are backward compatible with CS2. The advantage being that you can convert files from cameras that are not supported by 3.7 and also pick up any bug fixes that have happened since then.
Greg: I downloaded v4.3.1 (correction to prior posts where I called it v4.3.7) and converted a folder, then was able to successfully open the v4.3.1 .DNG in Photoshop CS2. I'm actually quite pleased that the newer .DNG can be processed by CS2. I had tried the plug-in first, which did not work, and assumed that the stand-alone converter would produce .DNG that required the newer plug-in. I'm happy to find out I was mistaken: Thank you again.
The two .CRW in that folder that gave me problems before continue to do so. Again, I can recover what I can using Preview. The really important .CRW have already been processed as .PSD.
Since there are only a couple of thousand .CRW to convert and the .DNG have not been burned to DVD's, I will erase the older .DNG files and convert the .CRW again using the v4.3.1 converter. I will maintain current .DNG on my hard disk and keep backups of them on DVD, remove the .CRW from my hard disk to save space and place them too on DVD's.
The different versions of DNG converters and backward compatibility bring up another question:
For .DNG is there a compelling reason to re-convert .CRW files when new versions of the DNG converter are released? I understand the backward compatibility now but would like to know if re-converting should be added to my archival maintenance.
I think under most situations, there wouldnt be a real advantage that Im aware of and you can actually re-DNG existing DNGs. But there is a very compelling reason to consider upgrading to CS3, that being the major improvements to CR version 4.x (and of course Photoshop itself). Youre really missing out on some very cool stuff feature-wise, along with all of the other under the hood fixes and enhancements (of which there have been many). Ive seen significant improvement in older images that Ive gone back and reprocessed in the latest version of CR.
Greg: Thanks for the advice. I did download a trial version of CS3 and concur that CS3 is a dramatic improvement over CS2. Non-destructive filters alone is worth the price of the upgrade.
To say I'm on a tight budget is an understatement. I only recently upgraded my Macs when the addition of a Wacom Intuos 3 crushed my aged G4. One thing at a time. CS3 will follow later this year. Until then there is plenty for me to work with in CS2.