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Digital Image Quality/Size

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Unread 08-23-2007, 01:04 PM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Idaho Falls, Idaho
Posts: 44
Digital Image Quality/Size

As more and more of us start using digital single lens reflex (DSLR) cameras, the question of what settings should be used to capture/store that prized photo. I would like to hear your opinions or recommendations on the files you save. Even though I consider myself as an amature, there lurking in the back of my mind is the idea that just possibly I may shoot some photos that I could sell if captured at the appropriate size/quality. So just what is that appropriate level?

I have just moved up from a D70 Nikon to a D200 Nikon. I set the new camera to store two images of each shot, the first in RAW, and the second as a JPEG-Fine (1:4 compression). With these settings, a 4GB memory card will hold 133 of the double immages. Well, what do you think?

Thanks, Craig Dodd
in SE Idaho
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    Unread 08-23-2007, 10:31 PM
    Gold Member
    Join Date: Nov 2005
    Location: Oregon
    Posts: 953
    I'm no expert, but I have been reading a lot, and it seems to me that the "best" way to shoot is in RAW. with the jpeg/raw combo I don't think you can go wrong.
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    Unread 08-24-2007, 07:24 AM
    Join Date: May 2001
    Posts: 6,520
    Well for print use, editors want the image to be 300 pixels per side. So for let's say, a 5x7 size in a magazine the math is:


    This is the same as 3.15 megapixels. Remember that if you crop the original image in your computer to make the elk bigger in the final scene or to make the composition better, you lose quite a few pixels.

    And yes, I also always shoot in RAW/JPG combo. The JPG's are faster to load in my image browsing software than the RAW. The RAW are much higher in quality, so that's the one that I edit for use. I could never have pulled all the detailed color out of the sky from the JPG version in this shot.
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    Last edited by Len Backus; 08-24-2007 at 07:29 AM.
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    Unread 08-24-2007, 10:19 AM
    Bronze Member
    Join Date: Mar 2005
    Location: Idaho Falls, Idaho
    Posts: 44
    Thanks for the replies, I had assumed that the RAW/JPEG combo way the way to go. However, we all know what they say about assumptions...

    Memory cards, while not exactly inexpensive, are cheep in comparison to the cost of getting there and the time involved in capturing the photo. I can see the need for at least one more if not two 4GB cards. This is sort of like using premium bullets in our long range rifles, not the place to skimp on quality.

    Thanks, Craig Dodd
    in SE Idaho
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