Board index Photography Technical Questions Adobe Camera RAW vs. Canon DPP

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Adobe Camera RAW vs. Canon DPP

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Posts: 2276

Adobe Camera RAW vs. Canon DPP

Post Mon Sep 29, 2008 12:39 am

For those Canon folks that shoot RAW, the Canon Digital Photo Professional (DPP) software has done the most accurate color renditions, particularly the red channel and to some extent in yellow. DPP has improved in terms of workflow, but PhotoShop (Adobe Camera Raw + PS) is commonly used by many photogs, myself included. Working around the differences in red & yellow conversion in ACR is a bit bothersome. Adobe Labs released a beta version of camera profiles in July for Canon that improve the accuracy of the conversion.

These shots are straight out of the camera, no adjusting or processing.

ACR without the beta camera profile

ACR with the beta camera profile. Note - this what the colors should look like

The red in the above examples is extreme, but it illustrates how large the difference is. Naturally any color that contains red, and to a lesser extent yellow, is effected.

There is also a beta DNG editor for those that want to edit/create their own camera profile. The camera profiles only work in ACR 4.5 or later, and only in Lightroom 2.0.

Posts: 1303

Re: Adobe Camera RAW vs. Canon DPP

Post Thu Oct 02, 2008 10:05 pm

Thanks for the heads up, Doug. Will check it out.

Sheila Smart
Canon 5D Mark III; 17-40L; 24-70 f/2.8L; 70-300 f.4-5.6 L USM; 135 f/2L; 100 f/2.8 macro; 8-15 f/4 L fisheye


Posts: 352

Re: Adobe Camera RAW vs. Canon DPP

Post Fri Oct 03, 2008 2:39 am

Fantastic information Doug.

Thanks for taking the time to share this with the rest of us.


Posts: 2276

Re: Adobe Camera RAW vs. Canon DPP

Post Fri Oct 03, 2008 4:05 am

It makes a visible difference, it's worth a try for those PS users. I've read that other RAW converters, e.g. Bibble, etc., don't have the same issues. I wouldn't be surprised to see ACR 4.6 & the beta camera profiles never reach the final, release stage, I hope I'm wrong. I expect Adobe will finalize this is their ACR 5.0 converter, which they are starting to preview. And I bet they'll hold the ACR 5.0 release until they start shipping CS4 & a new Elements, and users will be forced to buy the upgrade.

Posts: 912

Re: Adobe Camera RAW vs. Canon DPP

Post Sun Oct 05, 2008 12:16 am

Thanks Doug and a wonderful illustration of the differences. I've monkeyed around with several RAW converters and it's amazing the variations in color from them, with both Canon and Olympus (and probably others). Even with Olympus in PhotoshopCS there are two separate ways to get RAW (orf) files in. One is with a plugin available on the Olympus site (for my 8080) and requires an 'import' much as a scanner. The other is the regular ACR. The difference between the two ways is amazing with certain colors. One of the more color true ones I've found is the free Faststone viewer, but it has such limited options in editing and saving. I've found DPP to be quite a lot better than the previous ACR with the Canon. Glad that Adobe has finally listened to people on this. I bet too that it will not come in a 'free' patch for existing versions :)
Last edited by madlights on Sun Oct 05, 2008 10:04 am, edited 1 time in total.

Posts: 106

Re: Adobe Camera RAW vs. Canon DPP

Post Sun Oct 05, 2008 8:25 am

Thanks for the update on this, it sort of helps me understand that I am not completely mad :)

Forgive me but colour profiling is still a dark art as far as I am concerned but I have (and am suffering from effects as shown in the example). Currently my work flow is all in CS3.
My question I guess is should I continue to try and refine my camera profile in this or should I be considering other options?

I appreciate that there may not be a definitive answer to such an open question but would appreciate any thoughts and guidance that may assist my judgement.

Thanks in advance


Posts: 2276

Re: Adobe Camera RAW vs. Canon DPP

Post Mon Oct 06, 2008 12:30 am

As Barri (madlights) mentioned, there can be significant differences between RAW converters, not just DPP & ACR.

I used to underestimate the RAW conversion step, heck it's only a conversion & all converters must be about the same, right? The whole process of going from a RAW file in the camera to a finished photo is 2 very different & distinct steps in my mind - RAW conversion & post processing. FWIW, I like the workflow in CS3 and do most of the post-RAW conversion processing with it. ACR is easy to work with, but the red & yellow from Canon RAW files have required adjustment, so the choices for me in the past were to do the RAW conversion in ACR and then correct the red & yellow, or perform the conversion with a different program, like DPP. There are pros & cons for each of these, and either can produce the same results. The improvements Adobe is making might eliminate the need for separate programs, I'm currently using the beta ACR & camera profile as I mentioned before.

Both Canon & Adobe (& others probably as well) have been improving their converters and adding enhancements & new capabilities. Gone are the days that you did white balance correction & maybe rudimentary dynamic range expansion in the converter. Adobe needs to keep improving in order to get folks to buy upgrades, the preview of ACR 5.0 looks interesting, almost a stand alone program for 90% of the RAW & post processing needs.

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