Sunday, 22 January 2017

On Phone Camera Processing just got better


Using the computing power (and beautiful screen colour rendition) of your phones to process RAW images taken with your actual digital camera (not just the phones cam) is an attractive idea. In an earlier post late last year (here) I explored using Snapseed to process the RAW files from my Panasonic camera on my phone (an Oppo F1). But as it turned out there was a problem for me in getting the Panasonic RAW files to play with Snapseed, it only works with DNG files, not the RW2 produced by the camera (no such problems with iPhone versions now nor dcraw for Android BTW). As I like the way that Snapseed works (its interface) I have wanted a way to get this happening on my Android devices.

Well now there is an app for Android called raw2dng (playstore) which does exactly that step for me.

So I now:

  1. pull the SD card from my Camera
  2. plug it into the SD reader 
  3. plug that SD reader into a USB OTG cable
  4. open the app and select the images I want, save
  5. Open the new DNG images in Snapseed and process 
I think that its not actually any slower than any other process because it is still constrained by the requirement to read the RAW from the SD card and then process and write the data to the DNG. Its faster than using the PC (which you may not have) as an intermediary step as it saves an extra cycle of read / write.


A sample: this RAW file was (I was a bit agressive on EV compensation) set to -1 EV as I was worried about snow being washed out on the kids head. This is the JPG extracted from the RAW file:

while on that point it boggles my mind that people are still wasting camera space by picking RAW + JPG when all RAW files include an embedded JPG anyway (so you can see it on your camera).

Then running that through Snapseed I just did a quick and dirty of develop (no compensation) and HDRI (held back a bit in strength and picked "Nature" filter)

which isn't bad when you consider it.

Of course if I just wanted to pull the JPG's out of the RAW files on the card I could have used DCRAW for Android (which is a bit clunky, but quite powerful) to save the embedded thumbnails to my phone.

For reference, this is an attempt with Snapseed to just pull up the exposure +1EV and hold the highlights back a tad

also quite good, but missing the details of fallen leaves in the grass over there on the left ... which is why I like to tonemap (and always did a little doge and burn when I was printing negatives back in the wet process days).

So there you go ... make better use of your camera with your Phone (if you have Android, dunno how that goes on iPhone)

1 comment:

Noons said...

Interesting! Thanks for that.
The Oly em5m2 can dump files in my iphone via wifi,
I'll definitely need to investigate this a bit further!