Hi, I currently have the free software, ViewNx, that came with my D5000. Can someone explain what's in the Tiff data? As I understand tiff is not compressed unlike jpg. After I make changes in ViewNx and export as tiff, what do I lose since it's obviously not raw anymore? There's a choice of 8 bit or 16 bit but my camera only captures 12 bit so it seems that 16 bit is adequate.
#1. "RE: ViewNx Exporting Tiff" In response to Reply # 0
Welcome to the Nikonians, yes you are right that you don’t lose any quality of your picture saving as a TIFF file. The conversion doesn’t lose anything it is all there. But you can only save JPEG files as 8 bits because of it file structure. So that means that if you shoot in JPEG mode in your camera you will only be able to save it as an 8 bit TIFF file. If you shoot in RAW format or RAW + JPEG it is not a problem as you can save the RAW file in 8 or 16 bit TIFF file or an 8 bit JPEG. Editing a JPEG you lose some quality of the picture, and lose more each time you edit and save that picture again. Most of the time you would never notice the difference but it is happening.
The reason you want to save as a 16 bit TIFF file is that you don’t lose the quality of your picture when you are editing that file just like you don’t lose any editing a RAW NEF file from you camera. So the best way is to edit a copy of the RAW NEF file from your camera and change it to a format that you want when you want to use that picture. So if you use Nikon View NX 2 to edit your pictures and shoot in RAW NEF mode in your camera, just save them as a RAW file until you want to use them and then change them into a format you want to use. A NEF file is a much smaller file to keep than keeping TIFF file or even a NEF + a JPEG file. A JPEG is great if you not going to edit it any more, or to send it on the internet and even print it out. A JPEG is a nice small file compared to a large TIFF file that can be five times as big or more.
But I you’re going to edit in one of the aftermarket editors like Nik Software, Topaz, OnOne, or any others out there that can’t use your RAW NEF file then change it to a 16 bit TIFF file for editing so you don’t lose any quality of your picture. I hope you understand all this and I know that this is more than you asked for. Just edit your RAW NEF files and save them, and change to JPEG when you want to print or send then them.