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Photoshop® Elements 8 After the Shoot by Mark Fitzgerald

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Chapter 8. Working with Raw Files

If I had been writing this book a couple of years ago, I would most likely not have included a chapter on raw. That's because at the time most of the people shooting raw were pro photographers. Today that's all changed as more and more people are seeing the value of this file format. In this chapter, I explain exactly what raw is and how to handle raw files in Photoshop Elements (PSE). If you've been shooting raw, this chapter should help you get a better understanding of raw and how to get the best results possible from your raw files. If you haven't begun to shoot raw just yet — or even if your camera isn't capable of shooting raw — I recommend that you read this chapter so you understand why so many photographers have made the switch to raw.

What Is Raw?

When I point my digital single lens reflex (dSLR) camera at a scene and click the shutter, the camera's sensor captures a huge amount of information. If I have the camera set to capture JPEG files, the camera's onboard processor processes the captured information into a compressed JPEG file, using the image settings I have dialed into my camera.

This resulting file contains only a fraction of the available information. Any information that isn't used to create the JPEG file is discarded.

The JPEG capture process seems the obvious choice because the camera automatically processes files quickly. However, it leaves something to be desired for photographers looking to maximize the quality of their images. ...

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