undo auto raw conversion
Is there any way, or can a way be added, to undo the automatic raw file tuning? Using fill light and highlights on the auto tuned (darkened) image just doesn't look as good as the original in this case.
I shot raw+jpeg for a while and found it to be a pain having to decide to tune the raw or the jpeg in picasa and then scrolling through double of every photo and then selecting which ones to upload to picasaweb out of the doubles. Shooting only raw has been much better for me.
Since everything done in picasa can be undone, the raw auto correction should add an undo point as well.
Picasa is just going to take the basic raw data and do its best take on conversion to JPEG.
Remember, Picasa's support of raws is heavily tilted towards "ease of use" - it's fully automatic. This means that you can easily post raws to the Picasa Web Albums site because Picasa will automatically create a JPEG from the raw (much like your camera would do if you shot JPEGs rather than raws).
If you need to get involved in the conversion to raw (e.g., you don't like the default conversion making your main subject dark), you need to do what you've done (edit in a "real" raw processing program) and then have that program save a JPEG. Picasa will then work with the JPEG and you'll be seeing exactly what you did during the raw processing.
Save your raws... but generate JPEGs with your "real" raw tool if you don't like the default conversion that Picasa does....
Picasa is definitely seeing the changes I make in Nikon's ViewNX raw editor, right after I save the changes in viewNX, picasa pops up an "updating thumbnails" box for the image that I edited, and for a brief moment I see the results of the edit in the picasa thumbnail, and then a moment later picasa updates the thumbnail back to how picasa thinks the auto correction should have turned out.
Don't get me wrong, in many cases picasa does a pretty good job; but occasionally it tries so hard to preserve some small blown highlight that it makes the entire image dark and unusable, so I would just like to be able to tell picasa to undo it's auto correction - i.e. convert the image as is with no correction.
And yeah... Picasa's default conversion to JPEG is probably pretty similar to a camera's default conversion to JPEG - which is what happens if you shoot JPEGs in your camera.
You can't really "undo" the default conversion, though... A raw has to be converted to be displayed... the raws are in various weird formats. And they're generally using 12-bit or 14-bit values for each color rather than the 8-bits per color that JPEGs (and video displays?) use. So Picasa has to do SOME sort of conversion to display the photo.
I think what you'd like is something like this: Picasa would learn to understand the "sidecar" editing instructions that the varous raw converters use. And it'd use that data in its "default" conversion. That way, if you did some work in a real raw conversion tool, Picasa could use that same info in its rendering of the raw into a JPEG.
This would probably be pretty nice. But it might be pretty tricky, too... A raw processing progrm would add some new feature and the sidecar file would have new editing instructions that Picasa wouldn't understand... and we'd be having issues with this that parallel the "Picasa doesn't understand the raw from my new camera!!!" problems. And I have no idea if somethign like this is on their "things to do" list for Picasa. :-)
If they want picasa to be of any use than better they sit and fix it now.
I, too, wish there were some way to tell Picasa to just import the images without changing them. Or at least give me an option of turning this feature off (like an 'I'm feeling UNlucky' botton!
The good news is that you won't actually "lose" anything when Picasa does something arbitrary and wrong to one of your RAW images. It's just changing metadata that can be changed to the correct levels in the RAW converter software that comes with any camera that can shoot RAW, or with any recent version of Photoshop or Lightroom.
The bottom line as far as I can tell, it that there isn't a way currently to "turn off" RAW file auto color management in Picasa. I only shoot RAW and this is a real pain. If you need to manage lots and lots of color images at a time, Lightroom is a great tool to color manage a lot of images at once. Photoshop, is more limited but gives you more other stuff on a single image editing level. Both allow you to do large-scale RAW to JPEG conversions if you want to (like me) use Picasa as a photo album viewer/web album uploader.
Again- Picasa won't "hurt" your RAWs- it will just insist on changing them as it sees fit.
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