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Affinity software for Windows

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A friend recommended this recently for images of tabletop tableaux - not true macro but pretty close to it. He said this software works well for focus stacking. I wonder if this process is relatively straight-forward using Affinity? I'd be using RAW images from an X-T1, probably the 60mm XF and Lightroom 5.7 on a Mac. I'm not, however, particularly skilled with anything more than basic post-processing in LR. 

Any advice most welcome.

Chris

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LR 5.7 won't process XT1 files but Adobe offer a discounted upgrade to LR6.7 - just check at the final payment - page next to the total is the only place you'll see the option to upgrade rather than buy.

However, I'm pretty sure Affinity is standalone and focus stacking is pretty much automated in modern editors. In any case you can try before you buy the Mac version https://affinity.serif.com/en-gb/signup/trial/designer/

If you do get it. please let us know what you think after a fair trial.

Vic

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I've just got Affinity, and it converts Fuji X-Trans RAF's. The software seems nicely laid out. It's a layering system, so you retain the original. It comes with lots of tutorials etc.

Obviously, it's as complex in it's own way as PS, or Lr, and I haven't actually done much with it yet.

Iridient, which is highly rated, have released a RAW file converter, for Windows : https://www.aevansphoto.com/quick-review-iridient-x-transformer-beta/

This will convert Fuji RAF files into DNG's, which can then be edited in Lr, or PS.

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Thank you both. LR5.7 is fine with my X-T1 RAW files, Vic, but I know it won't accept X-T2 RAWs. It's one of the reasons I've resisted upgrading to an X-T2 so far. I'll look at the route to an LR upgrade that you've mentioned.

Regards

Chris

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I've tried to download the free trial of Affinity but the link they sent just jams up my iMac. I've had to do a forced quit and unplug everything. I think I'll be giving Affinity a miss. 

Thank you both for your comments and suggestions.

Regards

Chris

 

 

 

 

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I will second the Affinity Photo recommendation for most edits that one would do. And the price is right for amateurs, which I like. Also, Affinity supports XT2 raw files, so that is another bonus. 

 

Chris, I hope you find the right solution for your circumstance, though I must say I am surprised that you would hold off on a 1600$ purchase that you (may) deem to be an upgrade in your arsenal on account of a 150$ software. 

All the best with your research!

 

 

 

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19 hours ago, ChrisPoole said:

Thank you both. LR5.7 is fine with my X-T1 RAW files, Vic, but I know it won't accept X-T2 RAWs. It's one of the reasons I've resisted upgrading to an X-T2 so far. I'll look at the route to an LR upgrade that you've mentioned.

Regards

Chris

or use Adobe bridge to batch convert the new camera files to DNG rae format to use in your existing version of Lightroom.

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I take your point ragamuffin. I think my hesitation about an X-T2 comes from several peripheral costs, not just the LR upgrade. Vertical grip, batteries, whether my Mac OS will handle the larger files and so on. But I agree this may seem irrational.

Regards

Chris

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Chris, 

I use an XT2 both raw (compressed raw) as well as jpg on a MacBook Pro. If I can answer any questions for you, please feel free to ask.

I may not be able to answer questions like, "Will a Fuji Raw to DNG conversion finish while my kettle boils?" since I don't have a kettle :) 

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I take your point ragamuffin. I think my hesitation about an X-T2 comes from several peripheral costs, not just the LR upgrade. Vertical grip, batteries, whether my Mac OS will handle the larger files and so on. But I agree this may seem irrational.

Regards

Chris

Sorry, I'm not sure why my previous post has just repeated itself.

With some trepidation I did buy and download Affinity without mishap directly from their site. I've been working my way through the tutorial videos which are very good in my view. One issue eludes me though.

My main reason for wanting to use Focus Stacking was to prepare images for picture libraries such as Alamy. They require images which have been converted from RAW to TIFF to JPEG. I've been doing this using LR for a number of years. My whole 30,000 image archive is RAWs. An experimental merge with a few RAWs using Affinity has produced an image with no indication of what format its in. And LR won't open it.

I'm sure I'm missing something obvious but any tips would be most welcome.

Chris

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Chris, 

I haven't done much Focus Stacking, I presume created a new file and merged the others into this new file, or perhaps you used the focus merge function? 

In any event, without knowing how you saved it (if you used the save button on the file menu for example), I typically use the export button to save files as jpg/tiff. This is under the file menu. From there you can choose the format you want to save the file in. 

 

Screen Shot 2017-01-19 at 10.19.39 AM.pngHope this works for you. 

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It did work. Thank you. Despite my faltering start with Affinity I'm starting to appreciate how impressive it is. Once I'd mastered exporting in a LR recognisable format I was amazed at how easy focus stacking is with Affinity.

 

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On ‎19‎/‎01‎/‎2017 at 6:24 AM, ChrisPoole said:

 

 

My main reason for wanting to use Focus Stacking was to prepare images for picture libraries such as Alamy. They require images which have been converted from RAW to TIFF to JPEG. I've been doing this using LR for a number of years. My whole 30,000 image archive is RAWs. An experimental merge with a few RAWs using Affinity has produced an image with no indication of what format its in. And LR won't open it.

I'm sure I'm missing something obvious but any tips would be most welcome.

Chris

Alamy have no such requirement that I am aware regarding raw->tif->jpeg

I submit jpegs from raw and some jpegs straight out of camera and they have never been rejected.

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I started submitting to Alamy about 10 years ago. In those days they did suggest working from RAW to TIFF to JPEG in order to achieve the required standard. That's how I've done it ever since without questioning the need to do so now that images from cameras have improved. Thank you for pointing out that things have changed. I'll see if I can simplify my workflow.

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Slightly off topic - or rather off software - I've always processed from raw to tiff - which becomes my base print file and thence to JPG for screen and web. I rarely print now but I still work the same way and in the meantime hard disc storage has become very cheap so no problem. I'm now using Iridient X Transformer which produces a DNG file into LR 6.9 and exporting the tiff to PS CC 2015 and Nik filters (goodness knows how I managed with only early PS Elements), where I then save the finished tiff and 1 or 2 sizes of JPG.

A portrait format 6000x4000 24mp X-T20 RAF file is around 50MB, Iridient DNG output 44MB, Exported Tiff 137MB and JPG 8MB. JPG sized for screen 1200X800 @ 96ppi - 448kb. For landscape format I will keep 2 or 3 different sizes (and compression) for screen/web. I will also often keep B&W tiffs and jpgs (I convert to BW in Nik silver FX) and this particular image I did as an Acros sim was another 137mm tiff. Including B&W tiff versions and 2 uncompressed full sized (BW+COL) JPGS - a total of 392MB for this single file which was a downloaded test example RAF from the new 24MP sensor (X-T20). Isn't it a good thing storage is cheap!

The Acros version from a test file supplied by DPReview.

fujifilm_x_t20_15c.jpg

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storage is cheap... But not that cheap... Almost 0.5gb for one image VJC!?

If you don't intend to edit, there is really no issue with exporting a jpeg directly from raw. I often export jpegs and perform simple edits and it produces no issues (I mean literally editing, not adjustments which are always best done from raw). Jpeg although lossy typically gives issues if saved many times. Tiffs have better bit depth and no compression but that may only be an advantage if adjusting files (e.g. Exposure contrast colour etc) which is much better done from raw directly if possible. I'm not saying tiffs aren't better but for simple edits and then printing I doubt anyone will see any difference. If every image I worked on needed almost 0.5gb of storage then I would need a 30TB disc rather than a 3Tb one...

and of course many labs can't print tiff files anyway, and if they can they need to be 8-bit files... so the data ends up similar to an uncompressed jpeg anyway!

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I have close to 8TB of HD storage in use plus a couple with old film scans on. I often redo images in different ways and using the tiffs allows me make further changes non destructively. The extra 40gb of DNG file is new but I don't have a 24MP sensor yet. I cull quite ruthlessly now and also go over files at the end of each month and do a re-cull before moving them from my PC drive on to external drives. I'm now firmly in the IXT DNG/LR tiff groove but I want to try different settings in IXT before I decide toI let the RAFs go.

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