Re: RAW files, a gimmick trick...?
Another thought occurred to me on this subject as I tried to sleep last night,.. (I lay awake contemplating pellet towers and airstrikes)
How I have witnessed so many of these similar discussions for so long and not seen this fundamental truth before I can not explain,.
...it is so obvious.
Why is it that no one questions or argues why we chose not to let our cameras do all the thinking at the time the photo is taken, but so many chose to question our need to take control after the photo is taken. What is different here?
When shooting, I do not use the "green Box".. I know better than the camera what aperture to chose, what shutter speed, what focus point, what ISO, what overall exposure, be it set manually or with AV/TV and EC,. so naturally I make these decisions.
Truthfully, any photographer worthy of the name would do the same.
Yet all of this stuff can be automated by the camera, we can set it to green and shoot and let the camera decide Aperture, Exposure, Shutter speed, ISO (in some cases) etc..
Yet we rarely if ever see threads knocking us for eschewing these auto controls.
When we do, it's a post of complete and utter naivety, one that comes from ignorance (in the real meaning, not to be insulting) of the benefits of taking control of your shooting situation and equipment.
And yet when it comes to the very next step of the same photography process, that of processing the image, so many can not grasp the need/desire for the same sense of control, for the same total hands on approach to the creative process involved with making the image.
Every step we take from the moment we put the camera into our hands is a step that we take to give ourselves the potential for doing a better job, making a better image than either the automated can, or we could last year, or even "the next guy" can. We strive for perfection.
In my mind, questioning the need/desire for us to have total control of the post processing workflow and adjustments, is just as naive and (sorry again) ignorant as questioning why I would not just allow the camera to shoot a portrait in Green box at f/8 instead of manually shooting open @ f/2
Of course I'm going to set the aperture to get the DOF I want, and would never trust the camera to make a better decision automatically.
Likewise, of course I am going to shoot in RAW and post process the image to my standards, and never trust the camera to make better decisions automatically.
Why does the Macro shooter use manual focus or rails when the lens is an autofocus lens? Because the Macro shooter knows they can set the focus more precisely when set manually. The Macro shooter can do it better.
Just as the Camera is simply NOT CAPABLE of bettering me with it's auto settings, it is likewise NOT CAPABLE of processing an image as well as I can with the tools I have at hand.
None of this should be surprising.
We will never likely see a camera with a green box mode that is superior in it's auto choices to those choices a photographer would make when setting up the shoot.
We will never see a camera with an automatically output file that is superior to the choices made by a studied photographer working on there own images in post.