RAW Processing with Canon

Do you need expensive software?

Most camera manufacturers supply some kind of raw conversion software with their cameras. With Caonn, this software is called Digital Photo Professional (DPP). This program comes free with every Canon camera and can also be downloaded and updated via the canon homepage. I recently updated mine to version 4.7.20 and wanted to see what’s what.

I use lightroom for most of my edits because of the added flexibility. There are however some benefits of using the manufacturers raw software. The benefits are:

  • you get the exact same colors as if your shot was taken in jpg
  • have access to perfectly matched correction of lens errors (color fringes, distortion, vignetting)
  • have a much simpler (and faster) user interface compared to lighroom – that means less time spent editing
  • a simpler interface means less to go wrong – you wont be as likely to mess up your edit

I have had trouble getting a shot right while editing in lightroom. Refering to DPP often helped in these occasions. The more advanced raw converters offer so many adjustments that it can be tricky to get them all right. Having a basic alternative can be a relief.

That said more advanced converters like lightroom and capture one offer you the full flexibility when you know exactly how you want the image to look. Their advanced algorythms offer superior sharpness and detail rendition and allow precise control over sharpening and noise reduction.

Previously edited in DPP without the highlight and shadow adjustments. Foreground still too dark for my taste.

Brighter foreground thanks to the new and refined highlight and shadow adjustments.

What’s new and amazing in the recent update?

  • Canon added support for the Canon EOS 350D
    Previously I had to refer to the old DPP 3.xx if I wanted to edit some of my old shots. Having the added features of version 4.x to refine my old files is a huge benefit. I was able to get some of the old shots to really shine with the new version!
  • Refined contrast, shadows and highlights adjustments.
    The sliders for adjusting shadows and highlights have been refined. Pushing the shadows and highlights results in much more natural looking images that look far less artificial than previously.
  • Canons lens optimizer feature became really smart.
    This feature corrects your lens faults. It knows for instance if your lens has soft corners and applies specific sharpening only to the corners to help balance the overall sharpness and appearence. With the recent update this feature became much more refined and now produces some really beautiful results.

To me the recent update came as a real surprise. If you’re shooting Canon you should definately check it out. It’s free and might save you some time, help with editing your most tricky shots or put a smile on your face when you see your soft lenses recieveing a digital facelift.