53

You could edit your photos with an old burned CRT black and white monitor and it still is the same matter: the additional bits count. Here is a simulation of a 14 bits histogram (A) and an 8-bit one (B). Both are over a blue grid that simulates an 8-bit display or 8bit file format. In B, all the lines coincide. (8-bit format is good enough because is close ...


41

Higher bit depths give you more options for editing without losing data. Don't make the mistake of tying the representation of an image with how it is rendered. Editing yields the best quality results when you operate on the representation, where the underlying data has the highest resolution. It just so happens that your monitor provides a lower resolution ...


21

Basically, life color information is like a box of chocolates crayons... Color information is stored in integers, not analog values — there are a discrete, countable number of colors that can be described at a certain bit depth. Think of the color space like a box of crayons of different colors. A color space describes the types of crayons that are ...


20

Raw files don't really store any colors per pixel. They only store a single brightness value per pixel. It is true that with a Bayer mask over each pixel the light is filtered with either a Red, Green, or Blue filter¹ over each pixel well. But there's no hard cutoff where only green light gets through to a green filtered pixel or only red light gets through ...


13

Bit depth and color space are not the same thing, and neither are they mutually exclusive. They are different things that exist simultaneously. For a particularly simple explanation: Bit depth determines the fineness with which each distinct color is graded. Color space determines the extent within which those colors are distributed. Let's take sRGB and ...


10

Snapsort is using DxOMark for its sensor data, and DxOMark explain here what each of their scores mean. Specifically for Color Depth, they say: Maximum color sensitivity reports, in bits, the number of colors that the sensor is able to distinguish. i.e. DxOMark claim that the 5D Mark III can distinguish 2^24 = 16.8 million colours, while the D7000 can ...


8

Yes, it exists and it is called pseudo-gray.


6

To start with, the sensor doesn't output any color. Each pixel only records a single value: how much light struck the sensor. The number of bits determines how fine the steps between each brightness level can be. That's why a 12-bit or 14-bit file can record much finer gradations of lightness than an 8-bit file. But raw files are also compressed, just ...


6

When you work in 16 bits mode, the pixel data have 16 bits/channel, thus 65536 shades per channel. Your display has 8 or 10 bits/channel, thus 256 or 1024 shades per channel. The way you convert the source data to the display is by resizing the color space. You have different strategies called render intent. The more simple, the perceptive intent, is a ...


5

The reasons why 8 bit TIFF is acceptable are: raw files are typically linear and most used profiles (including AdobeRGB, sRGB, ProPhoto and whatnot) use gamma-encoding. Read more about it here. 8 bit gamma 2.2 encoding is roughly same as 16 bit linear when taking human vision as a reference debayered/demosaiced image is having redundant information compared ...


5

The only advantages to saving your RAW files as 8-bit is for memory conservation or if certain tools only work with 8-bit images. There is no advantage from a quality point of view, if you're going to do a lot of editing especially in a wide colour space then you may get posterisation when working with only 8 bits. Regarding colour spaces, it is advisable ...


5

Considering that an average monitor has about 6-bit per channel color depth (8 bit minus the dithering), I guess 10-bit is for color proofing/professional DTP/digital cinema. And higher than 8 bit per channel has another challenges: Video card: the video card needs to support color outputs more than 8 bits per channel. Considering that DVI supports only 8 ...


5

Nearly all image file formats worth speaking of are compressed in some way. The mechanism for doing this varies depending on the file format you're using - but the files which you see will have been compressed. This is also why not all the files are the same size, despite having the same number of pixels in them.


5

The number of bits tells how many values are possible per color component. This specifies bit-depth as BPC (bits-per-component) which is what Photoshop uses. Windows on the other hand uses BPP (bits-per-pixel) which is why you will see 24-bit colors which is the same since there are 3 color-components: Red, Green and Blue. An 8bit file therefore allows 256 ...


5

The 16-bits used to record raw data and the 16-bits (per color channel) used to record a demosaiced and gamma corrected TIFF or PSD are not used to represent the same exact thing in the same exact way. Expecting a 16-bit TIFF to be the same as a 16-bit raw file is a bit like expecting a 16-bit WAV audio file to be the same as a 16-bit WMA file. They both ...


5

You have already pointed out the exact reason this wouldn't be worth the effort of implementing. The slight tint shouldn't be noticeable. The minute differences in brightness wouldn't be noticeable either. For example, can you read the text in this image? It has two neighboring 8-bit grayscale values. If you can see it, it isn't your eyes... your ...


5

You can use the 0..100 scale: This is a percentage with one decimal digit, so in high precision modes, it is mapped to 1000 different values, and therefore about 10 bits. To edit in 16-bit set the image to a high precision mode (Image > Precision). Technically, there is no point in using 16-bit precision in Gimp unless you are very RAM-constrained. The ...


4

Ken is right in the claim you quote — sort of. It is correct that digital cameras today (with the exception of those with Sigma's Foveon sensors) work by using a Bayer matrix, and sensor resolution is quoted as the size of the matrix. Your example image represents a "36 pixel" sensor. However, it's important to recognize that cameras turn this into a full ...


4

Short answer: You are probably confusing the sensor bit depth with the output file bit depth. There are two completely different and mostly unrelated bit depths: There is the bit per pixel of the sensor and the raw file (in your case 14 bits) this does not relate the the color space in any way because those values are before the demosaicing algorthem turns ...


4

These are independent things. Color-space represents all possible colors and is a continuous space. Digital devices require a discretization of the space. This means the steps at each they can represent colors that are within the color space. Here is a simple analogy: Thing about the height between two floors as a color-space. That is the space between the ...


4

14bit Raw does not correlate to your monitor's bit depth. Raw is a format that is minimally processed. See Raw Image Format. Raw format allows post processing software such as Lightroom and Photoshop to make fine adjustments to images that would not be possible with JPEG files. As far as the monitor, wide-gamut monitors are usually 10bit and have an ...


4

As written in the comments (see http://rawtherapee.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=5406) the issue is not intrinsic to 12 bits, but it is caused by a wrong interpretation of the RAW data by dcraw (the common RAW decoder used in most Linux software). The link above provides a temporary solution (set black point to -450) while waiting for an updated dcraw (...


4

Yes, internally Photoshop converts 16 bit tiffs to 15 bits where 0:32768 is the same range as 0:255 in 8 bits. Adobe's Chris Cox confirms it here: https://forums.adobe.com/thread/792212 And I have verified it by creating 16 bit tiffs in Matlab and examining how Photoshop reads the. Note that Photoshop expands it back to 16 bits when saving tiff files by ...


3

There's an important difference in 32 bit vs. 16 bit images (as applies to PS): A 32 bit HDR uses 32 bit floating point numbers for each colour channel, 16 and 8 bit image formats use integers. That has a huge impact on available dynamic range, HDR formats trade practically unlimited DR for precision. It's not just "2^16 vs 2^32 colours".


3

I have written a bad answer and deleted it, here is another attempt. -4 -D -T preserves RAW numbers and writes them to 16 bit file while using only one fourth of values for 14 bit images and only one sixteenth of values for 12 bit images. You will never see white if you use -D, only gray. It is intended to be used this way, it is not incorrect for any bit ...


3

Lets try a simple example. Lets say we have a color space called "rainbow". It contains the colors of a rainbow, so it is made up of red, orange, yellow, green, blue and violet. The color space describes a range of colors that are covered by the gamut. Bit depth on the other hand defines how many distinct colors we can make within that space. If we only ...


3

RAW files are 12 ~ 14 bits. I'm pretty sure he knows that. Why an 8 bit TIFF? This was a given for him, so I'm puzzled. The higher bit depth is certainly safer for major corrections of exposure, contrast etc. I would especially be cautious when using ProPhoto RGB that may have tendency to posterization in 8 bit. But 8 bit may be enough for his type of ...


3

8bit RGB means that you have 8 bits to represent each of the colour channels (Red, Green, and Blue). 8 bits can encode 256 different states, so you can have 256 different shades of each of the three colours or 256^3 = 16.777.216 colours overall. 16bit RGB uses 16 bit to encode each channel, so you have 65.536 shades of each colour. Note that you don't get ...


3

The well depth is a property of the sensor. In your example, the incident photons are converted into electrons with a ratio corresponding to the quantum efficiency and when the pixel has accumulated 17 273e-, the generated extra e- are not accepted anymore in the "fully booked" pixel. ADC and gain are properties of the camera electronics design and are ...


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