NEWweb1067x600P1120602NXIt’s common knowledge – amongst some, anyway – that I’m not one to spend ages ‘post-processing’ images, although I do spend some time on each of my photographs. None are straight from the camera, but for several months, I thought LX3 RAW files to be unnecessary, and enjoyed ‘multi-film’ mode and the immediacy of the jpegs, with just a few levels, contrast, colour and sharpening mods to get them how I wanted them to look.

More recently, in my interest to gain as much quality and flexibility from the LX3 as possible, I’ve shot RAW files, and used the supplied SilkyPix software for initial processing, finally saving each file as a 25MB tiff.

Shot this evening at dusk, I’d missed the best of the evening light, but came across this scene as I walked from the car park near to a local lake. With signs of a decent sunset – which I enhanced later in Capture NX – this RAW file has given a better result than a couple of earlier attempts in Photomatix HDR software.

Although not necessarily aiming for a typical high-dynamic-range style, I was pleasantly surprised at the amount of latitude available from the RAW file from my LX3. The final version is again testament to this stunning camera that is fast replacing my SLRs for everyday shooting where portability, convenience and file quality all count.

As usual, there’s much more to see at http://nickbland.zenfolio.com, where you’ll find many LX3 galleries, most separated into subjects, for ease of use. Feel free to leave a comment on here or on the zenfolio site – I’d be interested to know of your own experience with your LX3.

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Comments
  1. Julian says:

    Very interesting. I’ve had the LX3 for nearly a year now and use it almost daily. A number of times I’ve compared the jpg and raw output of the camera, however I’ve never found much a difference between the two, unlike e.g. with my DLSR. This could be because the jpg engine and the dynamic range of the LX3 are already excellent. Out of curiosity, what have you found to be the main benefit(s) of shooting raw with the LX3?

    • nickbland says:

      Julian,
      Thanks for leaving a note. I find these days, when I want to squeeze maximum quality out of an LX3 file, that the RAW does give more … dynamic range, latitude …. and gives me the flexibility to go back, maybe at some point in the future when software has even further improved, to an original file that will respond best to new processing, without typical compression artefacts or any other loss of quality along the way.
      It’s ‘taking care of the negs (‘negatives’) in film-speak, and remains valid, especially as technological progress is rapid and relentless.
      All the best,
      Nick

  2. Commutant says:

    How accurate is the LX3’s A-to-D converter? Looking at the properties of a RAW file in PHOTOfunSTUDIO, it shows “colour: 24 bit”. I’ve been wondering if there isn’t a lot of difference between the RAW and JPG images because they are both 8 bits per colour channel.

    • nickbland says:

      Not familiar with that software, but I do find there’s a difference on the LX3, although not as pronounced as on some models … please see above reply to Julian as to why I’m using RAW these days !
      All the best,
      Nick

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    thanks for your very good blog,very useful…in fact i was thinking of creating such a thing myself…but yours is what i was looking for.i sometimes go and see
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    concerning my “experience” about lx3 raw files, i agree that you get a bit more than jpg but i found it very “heavy ” to work both jpg/raw plus tif (from raw) so i work the last 2 months to get jpg as close as possible to raw and i’m quite satisfied with it .
    i use smooth (fluide) program +bw dynamic and chose my own settings (my jpg don’t need any accentuation for prints)
    0 +1 0 -2
    for high iso (400 not more) i put +1/3 for exposure and use DENOISE …working alright.
    in the settings i chose dynamic compensation(“intelligent exposure”) at +2
    i worked too on white balance with professional charts that gives me a little bit more red +yellow for sunny in PROVENCE
    for macro, i always use the AI program…very quick and nice

    that ‘ll be all for the day
    i can show you picture test by mail

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