NX2 support - should we hold our breath
there has been an active discussion (among many) about a specific NX2 problem introduced by TiggerGTO. since that conversation seemed to be drifting a bit into whether Nikon was supporting its software or not, i thought it would be interesting to ask the question more formally - what is your experience with Nikon and are they meeting expectations in terms of software support??
i have had an open issue with them for some time about the memory leak problem, which mostly has been characterized by long periods of silence from them. i was especially discouraged by TiggerGTO's latest response on this topic: "Don't hold your breath about software development doing anything..." i have given them multiple references to links in this forum in hopes of illustrating the broad and multiple needs of the community (of course, they probably follow these entries already) - today I received this from Nikon support: "I am sorry but we can not comment on internet postings. We respond to each customer that contacts Nikon directly. All information has been forwarded to the software engineers." this feels like being blown off - the distinct impression that others seem to have garnered as well. i admit i had been a bit more optimistic - but i'm feeling less so these days.
i have never really been a PS user, but i am strongly considering a switch if things don't improve...(plus it integrates silver efex pro)
R Mark Burke
#1. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 0
TiggerGTO Nikonian since 22nd Feb 2006Thu 11-Mar-10 10:46 PM
My purpose for starting the thread about my NX2 color management problem was to see if I could get help finding a solution. It has turned into a long drawn out thread because I've been trying to keep people updated on my progress. I apologize if I have been overly negative or verbose about my problems with Nikon software support.
Having said that...
I think we would be much better off if all aspects of the software were placed primarily in Nik's hands. Let the software company design, develop, market and service the software. Let Nikon do what it knows how to do well which is make wonderful cameras and lenses.
Anything we can say hare about Nikon's level of commitment to their current software offerings is mostly speculation and guesswork. It would be great if somebody from Nikon or Nik would actively participate here. But, without some sort of official word from Nikon, we're just basing this discussion on some reports about bad service experiences.
I don't want to start bashing Nikon service. I really do like NX2, and want it to succeed and improve. However, I have been extremely frustrated and disappointed by the poor software support I have gotten from Nikon. I am eagerly awaiting the release of Capture NX3, but I probably will not be one of the first to get it.
A Nikonian in North Carolina
#2. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 1
sevtcard Nikonian since 05th Mar 2009Thu 11-Mar-10 11:59 PM | edited Fri 12-Mar-10 12:23 AM by sevtcard
i couldn't agree with you more that this topic might engender speculative answers (which almost kept me from posting this thread), but the fact is, for a service provider, reputation is mostly based upon rumor, innuendo, word-of-mouth and speculation...you have expressed legitimate exasperation at their service...i think Nikon/Nik needs to hear the rumors or speculations and complaints, as those may directly affect their sales and might also have an impact on their product delivery and support to us, the end users...and to the extent that i, you and others have used their products and accessed their support, they are less than satisfactory in their performance. that will no doubt have a bearing on our collective future purchasing decisions...if they get that message, they might also improve their response and their product...or they might not...in which case, my decision is made...
R Mark Burke
#3. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 2
Doug M Registered since 26th Jan 2009Fri 12-Mar-10 01:40 AM
"i have never really been a PS user, but i am strongly considering a switch if things don't improve"
The reason I bought Capture NX2 was because the support for PS was so bad.PS does allot more but NX2 is better for my needs.I use it 90% of the time and use PS when NX2 does not do what I need. Doug M
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#4. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 0
Having recently purchased a new 64-bit Windows 7 system for image editing, I was thinking I would be upgrading from Capture NX to Capture NX2. However, in the absence of any form of vision statement from Nikon regarding their NX product line (such as support expectations and future release expectations), and because of the problems others have been describing here trying to use NX2 on Windows 7, I have decided to hold off any plans to upgrade.
I have now installed Capture NX on my 64-bit Windows 7 system and will use it until Nikon provides some motivation for changing. I don't use Capture NX for much - mostly just for it's RAW editing capabilities of my D3 NEF files - before switching to Photoshop for the bulk of my editing. That much, at least, seems to work fine on Windows 7. I don't know if I would have problems if I tried using Capture NX for all of my image editing needs.
#6. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 4
robsb Nikonian since 23rd Aug 2006Fri 12-Mar-10 10:29 PM
Jim there is such a vast difference in performance and power between NX and NX2, most of us have found we don't need to go to Photoshop at all. I think you are misreading the amount of problems with Win 7 64 bit. Aside from Danny's problem, which is hardware specific, the only issue seems to be a memory leak which I think has been there for a very long time. This is not a constant problem and closing the program occasionally takes care of it. I have encountered it a very few times in all the hours I spend in NX2. Yes a new version will probably come out this year, but I am sure owners of NX2 will get a better upgrade break than NX owners.
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#9. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 6
Pursuit Nikonian since 04th Jan 2003Sat 13-Mar-10 08:11 AM
That's a good point Bob. I have gotten into a rut and maybe I should consider taking the time to get out of it. I am very proficient in Photoshop, but I like Capture NX's raw conversion better than Adobe's ACR. So I only tend to use Capture NX for raw conversion and then jump to Photoshop. I played around with the 60-day trial of NX2 and didn't see a big advantage in the one step that I perform there. I had really only considered spending the money for NX2 because I thought NX wouldn't run on 64-bit Windows 7. When I found I could install Capture NX and run it just fine I decided to stick with what I know.
#17. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 9
ericbowles Nikonian since 25th Nov 2005Mon 15-Mar-10 06:51 PM
The functionality of NX2 is far superior to NX even if you are simply doing RAW conversions. The main new function is Picture Controls, but there are other functions that are useful. I've also seen a demonstration of Protect Highlights that recovered detail in a RAW image that I could not recover later using other tools.
I'm in essentially the same boat as Bob - I use NX2 for almost all my editing. I've found that it can handle 95% of what I could do in Photoshop in a fraction of the time and with better file economy.
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#7. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 0
It is a bit difficult to comment on "speculation" - and links that no longer work.
As a starting point Nikon DSLR's do not have the widest colour gamut - which restricts the ability of any post process system or printer to produce some colours accurate.
Mac support is slow to implement - but that is true of many other hardware producers. Surely those upgrading operating systems on "day 1" availability should expect teething problems! If you are a computer nerd by all means upgrade instantly - if you are passionate about photography hold back until hardware manufacturers catch up - which is getting close for Windows 7.
Why "full PS"?
Current Elements, PaintShop Pro and NX2 do just about everything and advanced post processor needs except specialist actions like focus stacking.
NX2 performs extremely well for moderate and medium file quantity shooters, and is priced significantly lower in UK than Nik's competing products.
Nikon UK have said the next incarnation of NX2 is likely to have video editing as a function - which makes sense.
Photography is a bit like archery. A technically better camera, lens or arrow may not hit the target as often as it could if the photographer or archer does not practice enough.
#8. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 7
Sat 13-Mar-10 06:54 AM | edited Sat 13-Mar-10 09:44 PM by sidewinder
>As a starting point Nikon DSLR's do not have the widest colour gamut- which restricts the ability of any post process system or printer to
>produce some colours accurate.
What does this mean? A RAW file has no color gamut. Most, if not all, of the Nikon dSLR cameras support both sRGB and Adobe RGB. What cameras support a color gamut wider than Adobe RGB?
#10. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 8
expat Nikonian since 09th Mar 2010Sat 13-Mar-10 11:39 AM
I have always been pleased with the speed and helpfulness of support from Nikon Europe but now very dissapointed that they have no interest in the Nikon NEF codec which does not work for Win 7 64 bit.
I have downloaded an independent codec but that should not have been neccasary considering all the Nikon / NX users in the world. This is especially annoying as where I live anyway I think all new laptops are 64 bit (not up to date with desktops)
#11. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 8
Sun 14-Mar-10 03:43 AM
Actually, the raw file does have a color gamut, which is the extent of the colors that the camera can manage, but it does not have an assigned color space such as sRGB or aRGB. Digital cameras can only detect the amount of color that their sensors can measure and this is limited by technology (the space is getting larger as time permits better technologies to develop).
Color Spaces such as sRGB, aRGB or ProPhoto RGB define Red, Blue and Green (colors cameras are designed to measure) as the primary colors which will be mixed to produce other colors and define limits to the size of the color space so that the size may be broken up into different amounts of Red, Blue or Green to be mixed. The limits set by the color spaces were established to allow the camera's data to be easily interpreted by software and to cover the space the camera could measure. Better measurement allowed larger color spaces; hence the progression to larger color spaces (sRGB -> aRGB -> ProPhoto RGB).
You, the user of the RAW file, may assign the color space of your choice if your editing software and printer will handle it. Larger color spaces allow you to show more colors if the camera has been able to measure those contained in the space and if your monitor and printer can produce them. Problems arise when this is not true, so you can play it safe with sRGB, potentially have more color detail in aRGB, or even more detail if you don't hit (or can cover) problem areas in ProPhoto.
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#12. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 11
Sun 14-Mar-10 04:54 AM
Okay. Is the RAW file gamut size controlled by the bit depth it is recorded at? Where is this defined? Is a 12-bit RAW file color gamut larger or smaller than Adobe RGB or ProPhoto RGB? 14-bit?
#13. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 12
Sun 14-Mar-10 01:33 PM
12-bit => 4,096 hues of a color, 14-bit => 16,384 hues. What do you think?
Here's a little teaser for you. Does 14-bit imply a larger color space or is the space the same size but more dense with detail.
How about doing a little research and reporting back to us. Here's a good place to start:
Have fun! There is a lot of stuff to know.
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#14. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 13
Mon 15-Mar-10 12:06 AM
I read that link prior to my last post. Frankly, it created more questions that it answered. I found this too:
Very interesting reading.
Unfortunately, I can find nothing that definitely says that the color space for a 12-bit or 14-bit image is different or the same. I do know that 14-bit allows for more granularity in the colors used.
Nor can I find any details on the size of the color space supported by Nikon cameras.
This was interesting but didn't really answer the camera color space question either:
Any more hints or enlightening links or information for me?
The bottom line is I can find nothing that suggests the Nikon camera color space is a limiting factor as Len seemed to suggest.
#15. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 14
Mon 15-Mar-10 03:26 PM
Scott, I agree that your references are very interesting and that a definitive answer regarding any difference in 12 or 14-bit color space is difficult to find. Bob Johnson wrote a couple of articles comparing 12 and 14-bit resolution. Start with this URL and continue to his subsequent write-up by selecting "NEXT" at the bottom of the article:
Caveat to the following: I am not an "Expert" and have only limited credentials.
I've done a lot of research on the topic and have synthesized my opinion. Here are my conclusions:
1. The camera's gamut is fixed for any image it produces. The image's gamut may vary with lighting conditions or use of HDR techniques.
2. The camera's gamut exceeds the size of an sRGB, and probably an aRGB, color space for recent high-quality cameras (generally any that offer 14-bit resolution).
3. 14-bit resolution provides more detail (better color resolution) within the camera's gamut than does 12-bit.
4. The size of the camera's gamut is not affected by choice of 12 or 14-bit resolution.
So how do my conclusions affect my choices?
A. I shoot 14-bit RAW unless I need re-focusing speed with continuous shooting, e.g., for birds in flight.
B. I process in the ProPhoto color space, softproof for out-of-gamut colors and correct as I can (use black point compensation, alter highlight protection, etc.)
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#16. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 15
Mon 15-Mar-10 04:48 PM
Thank you. I came to the same conclusions you did for 1, 3, and 4. I do as you do in regards to A and B.
Yes, I did find those Bob Johnson articles too. They solidified my choice to shoot 14-bit RAW when FPS was not required. But, they did not answer these questions I have: What is the Nikon camera (D300s, D700, D3) color space and how does it compare in size to sRGB, Adobe RGB and ProPhoto RGB? Is the Nikon color space a limiting factor for viewing or printing?
I am still on the hunt...
#19. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 16
Tue 16-Mar-10 01:00 PM
Please see my message to Mark about diverging a bit from his original questions. I have some answers for you that should be substantiated with a lengthy discussion, so I'll start a new thread this afternoon discussing the Camera Color Space.
For now, without supporting data, I'll state that a RAW file from a D700 inhabits a color space very slightly larger than Adobe RGB, much larger than sRGB, and much smaller than ProPhoto RGB. It is generally larger than most printer's color space.
Here's a hint at substantiation:
The ghost image image represents the color space allocated by NX2 to an image from my D700. The color image represents the print profile of an Epson 3880 printer using glossy photo paper (relatively large color space).
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Attachment #1, (jpg file)
#18. "RE: NX2 support - should we hold our breath" | In response to Reply # 0
I apologize for sort of hijacking this thread for a discussion of gamuts and color spaces with Scott. I'll start a new thread on that topic this afternoon.
To respond to your original question, Nikon has not met my expectations in terms of software support. I have had much the same experience as you; they have recently informed me that my issues have been passed on to Nikon - Japan.
That said, Adobe has not provided much better support to me on an issue I had with Photoshop (it was not automatically updating). They did finally get it fixed, however.
Regarding your comment that your issue with NX2 involved a memory leak; I opened another thread to discuss that topic. I looked at memory usage during an edit session and concluded that NX2 did not have a true memory leak. On the other hand, it is a memory hog.
I guess the bottom line for me is that I think NX2 is workable and handles editing of NEF files far better than anything else. I'd like to see it improved (there is an NX3 wish list thread currently running) and will try to work with NIK/Nikon Support if they will let me.
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