Question about DNG file format

Explorer ,
May 06, 2021 May 06, 2021

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I know that DNG is based on the TIF file format, and that in a DNG file the main IFD typically contains a low resolution preview image, while a sub-IFD contains the actual full resolution raw image. I'm writing my own software that will generate test images in DNG format, and I was wondering if for the sake of keeping things as simple as possible, if it would be possible to make a valid DNG file with no preview image, and no sub-IFD, and instead store the raw image in the main IFD? Would such a configuration be a valid DNG file? Or would that violate the DNG specification?

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Enthusiast ,
May 06, 2021 May 06, 2021

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It's not recommended. If you're going into the teritory of "not recommended", you would need to look at exactly which DNG readers you need your images to be read by. Some will only handle fully compliant DNG files.

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Community Expert ,
May 06, 2021 May 06, 2021

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I don't know what your custom software will do, but I'd suggest having that preview (which doesn't at all have to be low resolution JPEG). There's lots of advantages to this data if you want to go there. 

Author “Color Management for Photographers" & "Photoshop CC Color Management/pluralsight"

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New Here ,
May 10, 2021 May 10, 2021

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Although recommended, the preview is not required by the DNG spec, your single IFD file will be valid (as far as the spec goes).

 

See bottom of page 11 of the 1.5.0.0 spec PDF.

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