Given that the Adobe Camera Raw plugin is specific to handling RAW (NEF) files (as well as JPEG 2000 of course) and that you don't have a camear that produces NEF files, and that Adobe charges $99 for the plugin (and does not offer a trial version) that is reported to be on the list for inclusion in the next upgrade to Photoshop anyway, I too am puzzled as to what the interest is. Could you explain, if for nothing else just to satisfy mrdinh's and my curiosity?
Finally back here and I'm going to satisfy your curiosity.
I borrowed the Adobe plugin from a friend and installed it. Also I'm planning to buy a 5700 (or its succesor) or a D100 by fall, as I have heard many advantages of working with NEF, I just want to take advance and to see by myself what can I do with them. It's just my curiosity too...
You can get a good idea on what can be done with a NEF by using Editor that comes with NV 6. You can change exposure, color balance etc.
And, you can still open a NEF file in PS elements 1 or 2 it just doesn't support the bit depth but will read them at 8 bit. So you can see the picture.
My personal opinion is that PS plug in for pro's (particuarly in the studio) who want to reduce their workflow by bringing the raw image straight into PS and bypassing Nikon s/w. I'm not sure it is useful for amatuers or semi pros. I'm even less sure it is of any use to someone without a D camera.
>My personal opinion is that PS plug in for pro's >(particuarly in the studio) who want to reduce their >workflow by bringing the raw image straight into PS and >bypassing Nikon s/w. I'm not sure it is useful for amatuers >or semi pros. I'm even less sure it is of any use to someone >without a D camera.
I do have PS 7 and the Raw plugin but don't have Nikon Capture. Also, a D100 will be coming soon to my hands. I just want to satisfy my curiosity about what I can do with NEF files while my D camera arrives... many people learn to drive a car many time before that owning a car
Are NEFs useful only for Pros? I don't think so. I know many pros that shoot on JPEG and many amateurs and semi-pros that shoots on NEF or RAW. Reasons? These Pros are mostly photojournalists who need very fast recording of their files and fast workflow while delivering their pics. Advanced amateurs and semi-pros have more time to spend in front of a computer postprocessing our images as our customers are not in a hurry...
I am what one might call a "semi-pro" using a D100 with the PS raw plug-in. For me it boiled down to the fact that I was already familiar with Photoshop and did not want to learn yet another application and I needed the flexibility of RAW. If you are not a professional photographer or not well seasoned, and I am not experienced, the RAW file format gives you a level of forgiveness with exposure and white balance so that you can shoot now and adjust later. If you know Photoshop and use Photoshop for your image post, the RAW plug-in is a natural extension for processing these files with a small learning curve.
I do not know how many bad JPG I shot because I did not set my WB properly for the conditions for the D100. Once I'm a better photographer than I am today, I will surely switch back to JPG for most shots because of its increased speed and smaller file sizes. But for now, I'm RAW all of the time. Thusly, I believe that RAW with the PS plug-in is quite appropriate for the armature or semi-pro that uses Photoshop.