"Best workflow to have ViewNX do lens distortion and then simply output new .nef"
The great thing about the jpg options is that they include the lens correction. If you use RAW, however, you have to apply lens distortion yourself.
I use Apple Aperture and there is not lens correction filter built-in. You can add the PTLens plugin but that is an external plugin which means that if you apply it, Aperture writes a new TIFF file with the correction baked in. If you also want to do some image corrections such as saturation, white balance, etc..., you should do that first while the image is still in raw format. But if you also want to do some cropping and straightening, you need to do that AFTER PTLens because the plugin assumes it is working with an original image. So then you must wait for the plugin work to be done and then apply final cropping and straightening. If you then need to make a change to saturation or highlights or whatever, you have to go all the way back to square one, then re-run the plugin which saves another TIFF file and then redo the cropping and straightening.
If you are dealing with a couple of images, that is not a big deal. But if you have a set of 100+ images, this becomes incredibly tedious.
After doing a little bit of research, it appears that Nikon's ViewNX should be able to apply the lens correction and save out a new .nef file. I could then bring that into Aperture and do all standard correction at once. I tried to do this but it seems that ViewNX is incredibly clumsy and crumbles very quickly under the weight of any large number of raw files. It has frozen my machine with a spinning "Processing" message numerous times even though I did not ask it to "process" anything.
Does anyone have a good workflow to automate this lens correction process over a large (150) number of files in ViewNX? Or is there a better way to do this?
#2. "RE: Best workflow to have ViewNX do lens distortion and then simply output new .nef" In response to Reply # 1 Mon 17-Dec-12 10:28 AM by mklass
As Clive says, Capture NX2 does lens correction. In fact, if you have a recent Nikon DSLR that has automatic lens correction for Nikon lenses, CNX2 will automatically apply it when you open the file. If you are using a body without Auto Lens Correction, CNX will apply it by running your images through a batch process. Non-Nikon lens would require manual correction.
However, saving the NEF and opening it in Aperture (or any other raw processor) will do you no good. None of them reads the Nikon specific instructions in the NEF, so the lens correction will be ignored.
So, short of switching to CNX completely, or using ACR in Lightroom or Photoship, I think you are stuck with a 3rd party correction tool, and a non-NEF format. PTLens is a good tool.
#3. "RE: Best workflow to have ViewNX do lens distortion and then simply output new .nef" In response to Reply # 2
Thank you very much Clive and Mick. Excellent info.
So evidently I was in the mistaken impression that VNX did lens distortion. To be honest, I am rather amazed that it does not. Since this is available on the in-camera jpg corrections, I would have thought this to be part of a basic image software package. But now that you mention it, I remember looking for some mention of it when I tried to make some use of VNX and could not find it. I thought it was just buried someplace that I could not see.
Mick, interesting info about non nikon software being able to read the lens correction info added to a .nef file. I suppose that makes sense. They have decoded the "standard" set of raw instructions and this added bit would not be part of what they are ready to interpret.
Yes, I think your last line probably indicates the right way to go. Actually I am tempted to run PTLens first on the images that need it and then doing all the H & S work on that converted TIFF 16.