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A high end camera is only as good as its RAW-converter. In this part I'll show how Nikon Capture NX fares compared to CaptureOne and Adobe Camera RAW.
To start with the last one: the results I can publish here now, are very preliminary. I used ACR beta 6.7 to make both a DNG and a TIFF file, and processed the DNG-file in CS6 with ACR process 2012. The latter was slightly better so I really am curious to see the final version, especially with the moiré filter.
Then I used CaptureOne, in combination with their moiré filter. CaptureOne is intended to work with files from PhaseOne digital camera’s and digital backs. I expected this software to be very good at processing files made with camera’s without AA-filter, but judge for yourself. Finally I processed the RAW files again with Nikon Capture NX, now with moiré filter at ‘normal’, more about that in part four. I also checked whether I set the NR to 0, since even with 100 ISO files Capture NX introduces a tiny amount of NR. Nikon also advises to switch this off if you want maximum sharpness. Note that D800E without sharpening is as sharp as D800 with. This also means that for all practical purposes the D800E has less noise! All files except the second were sharpened a second time in Photoshop CS6 with the same settings. Sharpening settings in CaptureOne are similar to those in NX, so that total sharpening can be considered equal. More on noise and moiré in the next parts. I'll also add more information on diffraction (there are no diffraction limited camera's!) , noise and lenses.

Nikon D800 and D800E: which one suits you best (3)?

^ D800E ACR beta 67 + slight sharpening in CS6

^ D800E NX standard plus NO sharpening in Photoshop CS6

^ D800 NX standard plus slight sharpening in Photoshop CS6
^ D800E NX standard plus slight sharpening in Photoshop CS6
^ D800E ACR beta 67processed to DNG and processed further in CS6 + slight sharpening in CS6
^ D800E CaptureOne + slight sharpening in CS6

Nikonreflex.com

Nikonreflex.com

 

 

 

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on Nikon cameras, Nikon lenses and lenses with Nikon-fitting, software and more
by Dré de Man, photographer, journalist and author of more than twenty books on digital photography and Nikon cameras and one about IT