Posts Tagged ‘RAW’

Lightroom Support for Canon EOS-7D

November 21, 2009

At last! Adobe have released “Release Candidates” for the software needed to support the Canon EOS-7D in Lightroom and Photoshop. That will be a relief to many photographers who have been waiting for it since they purchased their 7D.

Adobe are careful to describe a Release Candidate:

The ‘release candidate’ label indicates that this update is well tested but would benefit from additional community testing before it is distributed automatically to all of our customers. The Lightroom team would like the community to help verify the quality of this update through normal usage as this will ensure that the application is tested on a diversity of hardware and software configurations not available internally at Adobe.

That’s far better than using the “Beta” label. It’s interesting how these terms have changed over time. When I worked at HP we referred to what’s now called a Beta as an Alpha. For us Beta is what Adobe are calling a Release Candidate. I think the RC usage is consistent with the Microsoft terminology.

I don’t have a 7D and I have only just updated to Lightroom 2.6 so I think I’ll wait until Adobe release the software officially.

I have seen it written many times that Adobe does a better job of rendering Camera RAW data than Canon’s own Digital Photo Professional. I find this amazing given that the DPP engineers should have access to all the inside information and to the people who designed the sensor and firmware. Maybe it is that the best software engineers want to work for a software company rather than be second-class citizens in a hardware focused company like Canon.

Where have I heard that before?

Capture One Version 5

October 29, 2009

Phase One has an interesting interview with Phase One’s Vice President of Research and Development, Claus Mølgaard. It’s got more content than the usual product introduction interview. You can read it here.

I’m fascinated by the idea of the Focus Mask. It’s puts a mask (in Photoshop terms) over your picture where (I guess) the opacity is related to how much the picture is in focus.

Here’s a screen grab from the Phase One Web site which is the best I could find.


Focus Mask in Capture One 5

Focus Mask


I guess it works in a similar manner to the autofocus on the camera – a contrast detection algorithm. However, that is the limit of my knowledge.

When we examine a picture I think everyone would agree what parts of it are in focus. But I don’t know how you measure that at the pixel level.

I have not used Capture One. I wonder if they will release the Focus Mask technology as an addin for Photoshop or Lightroom. It’s a classic software company problem. They could reach a larger market and make more revenue in the short-term by enhancing the dominant tools in the business. But they would lose a competitive advantage for their software. It’s a hard call for a company.

It is also interesting to try and read between the lines as Claus discusses their handling of Raw files from different manufacturers. Phase One (the makers of Capture One) compete in some ways as they also make camera hardware and lenses. I bet they have some interesting stories to tell of their relationships with the major vendors. “Coopetition” is a complicated thing.