I am beginner and I made a mistake. I wanted to have the best quality and I saved photos only as raw files (arw). (I have a Sony DSC-RX100 IV).

I have 1000 photos and I would like to save them as jpeg (or tiff). Now, I have no time and skills to do that manually. I think my camera should do this better but I did not do that.

Could you recommend the software (for Linux, eventually Windows) that helps me to have similar effect like auto in my camera (convert arw into jpeg)? I want software to do that and I want to have jpegs as good as camera can process. I want the software that can choose proper settings like the camera does.

  • you can use a photoshop batch to convert them, or one of many tools, often built-in to photo software. – dandavis Feb 4 '19 at 22:20
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    @dandavis Most photo processing software, including all Adobe products such as Photoshop, will apply their own default raw processing settings rather than use the settings active in-camera at the time the image was captured. Sometimes there's not much difference, sometimes there's quite a bit of difference. It all depends on the contents of the scene, the type of light, the camera model and in-camera settings, and the default settings of the off-camera application. – Michael C Feb 6 '19 at 13:52
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    If you want JPEGs on par with what the camera produces, why not just shoot JPEGs or, if you still want a raw copy have the camera save both? – Blrfl Feb 10 '19 at 11:10
  • One good reason: extra storage space needed.... – rackandboneman May 8 '19 at 14:17

Have you tried using Sony's "Imaging Edge" software?

Most manufacturers' raw developing software opens raw images with the in-camera settings at the time the image was captured applied by default. Canon's Digital Photo Professional and Nikon's Capture NX-D both certainly do.

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I recently found myself in the same situation, took some RAW shots, not RAW + Jpeg, and now have a ton of photos that I need to improve in order to show anyone.

I've tried a small handful of programs so far- Imaging Edge, Fotor, FastStone Image Viewer.

Here's what I've found-

Imaging Edge works very well. It's made by Sony and going by the logic that "Sony knows Sony", I trust that it knows how to work with it's own camera's images. And the results look pretty good. It's also reasonably fast, 500 pictures took around 30-40 minutes.

FastStone Viewer was nearly as good. I used the "Quality = 100" setting, everything else default. It was as fast, or nearly as fast, as Imaging Edge. The quality was nearly indistinguishable. The jpeg file sizes were much larger, around double the size. FastStone has some other options that could be tweaked that might make more of a difference, but I didn't play with them.

Fotor was not very good. It was VERY slow, taking about 24 hours to convert the photos (it's hard to tell exactly how long, because my laptop kept sleeping after a few hours, and I'm not sure the processing was working in the background.) Also, the resulting photos were very 'noisy'. Some looked ok at the regular size, but when I zoomed in on the photo, there were a LOT of extra color and pixels that distracted from the image. Would not recommend this one.

So, as Michael C says, try the Sony program and see what happens. Imaging Edge is actually three programs (viewer, editor and camera remote control). It's the viewer that I used to batch-output my photos.

Hope that helps.

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For Linux, the following all have GUIs you can use to adjust settings and CLI you can script for batch conversion.

  • UFRaw
  • RawTherapee
  • DarkTable

You may also consider trying the camera manufacturer's software with WINE.

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Unfortunately, I have been unable to find a tool that creates JPGs similar to what the camera creates.

The issue is noise. Most annoying noise is chroma noise, the second most annoying noise is luma noise.

One option to reduce chroma noise is to do a L+A+B channel decomposition of the image, apply gaussian blur to the A+B channels and combine again. Unfortunately, this is a lot of manual work unless you write a script to do it, and the chroma resolution will be severely affected. The JPG created does not have as good chroma resolution as the ones produced by the camera.

Another option is the profiled denoise module of the open-source software called 'darktable'. It uses noise measured from the camera sensor (that's why it's called profiled), and has options for non-local means or wavelet noise reduction. The wavelet one according to my tests is way too aggressive, reducing the resolution of fine details. The non-local means is by far the best noise reduction algorithm I have found in open-source software. Unfortunately, for high ISO sensitivities, when cropping a small 1500x1000 area from a 24 megapixel 6000x4000 image, the profiled non-local means algorithm may give a slightly painting-like appearance which the noise reduction algorithms in the camera do not do. On the other hand, non-local means will remove more luma noise than what the camera does.

If you don't shoot at high ISO sensitivities using a high-megapixel sensor and subsequently crop a small area from the image (effectively using 'digital zoom'), this issue probably doesn't affect you.

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For Linux you could use exiftool:

exiftool -b -PreviewImage -w _preview.jpg -ext arw <directory>

It treats all arw files in the directory. With an extra -r parameter it also does the sub-directories. The files will have the same name as the arw files but _preview.jpg will be added.

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    How is that going to apply the in-camera settings to a conversion from raw to jpeg? Many jpeg preview images are lower resolution (half or even quarter the resolution of the image file). – Michael C Feb 4 '19 at 16:48
  • It is a preview that is in the RAW. I guess that it is processed according to the camera settings the same way as when you store the picture as RAW and JPG on your camera. I must admit that I have not tried it myself. I just stumbled upon this option when I was looking for something else. – Marco Feb 6 '19 at 12:54
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    The jpeg previews will, of course use the in-camera processing settings, but depending on the specific camera, may not be at full resolution. Many jpeg preview images are lower resolution (half or even quarter the resolution of the image file). – Michael C Feb 6 '19 at 13:49
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    I just tested this with some sample RAW images from the Sony DSC-RX100 IV, and the preview images are 1616×1080, or about 1/11th of full size. ImageMagick identifies it as JPEG quality 95, which is not awful but also not particularly high — although really given the loss of resolution merely an academic concern. – Please Read My Profile Feb 8 '19 at 12:47

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