Camera Raw / Lightroom Settings embedded in Nikon Z6/Z7 Nef-Files?

Community Beginner ,
Jan 10, 2019 Jan 10, 2019

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When downloading Nikon Z6-Raw Files from here: Nikon Z6 sample gallery: Digital Photography Review

and importing them in Lightroom (without Preset) I realized that it was not like usual with all settings on standard values and camera profile on Adobe Standard but that the development settings were somehow imported also.

As I never experienced this behaviour before with Nikon NEFs I checked the file and searched for "Adobe", realizing that the development settings were embedded in the file as follows:


"<crd:Exposure2012>0.00</crd:Exposure2012><crd:Highlight2012>-7</crd:Highlight2012><crd:Shadows2012>10</crd:Shadows2012><crd:LuminanceSmoothing>36</crd:LuminanceSmoothing><crd:LuminanceNoiseReductionDetail>75</crd:LuminanceNoiseReductionDetail>"
(Part of the embedded settings)


Same with the Nefs of the Z7-Sample Gallery.

I'm quite confused, how is this possible, I always thought metadata incl. development settings is just embedded in DNG-Files?

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Adobe Community Professional , Jan 10, 2019 Jan 10, 2019

The normal procedure for camera manufacturers is to include camera settings in a proprietary format that only their own raw converters can understand. I don't use any Nikon software, but maybe Capture NX-D hasn't been updated to be able to read XMP settings.

If you open a NEF from the camera in Capture NX-D before importing it to Lightroom, you should still see the XMP settings – they are not created by Lightroom. See also Are Adobe and Nikon Cooperating? | Sans Mirror | Thom Hogan

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LEGEND ,
Jan 10, 2019 Jan 10, 2019

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New, unadvertised feature for those two Nikons. So far only for those two cameras.

Many are not happy.

I do not have that camera, so I can not test. I would assume, that upon import you can apply the Lightroom Classic-General Preset "zeroed" to eliminate those mods.

Follw-up, downloaded a couple of samples, works well in LR, I see no new option to not accept this, can use zeroed on it.

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 10, 2019 Jan 10, 2019

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I definitely prefer XMP-Files as my Raw-Files are synced with my dropbox, which would mean that with every change the NEF would have to be uploaded, instead of the much smaller XMP-File.

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LEGEND ,
Jan 10, 2019 Jan 10, 2019

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This is not a problem. Lightroom is just reading the metadata in the files, and applying settings that were made in camera. You can change all of that by editing the various sliders. Or if you really really hate it, just apply the preset during import (zeroed), Then the image will show up in Lightroom with Adobe Standard Profile applied, what ever WB is as shot, and nothing else.

If you do want some mods that LR makes, either those it would make to non Z6/7 (like sharpening) , or some you want to come along (like Chromatic abberiation, Profiles, sharpening, etc) then set a sample image up, and crete a preset of your own to apply during import.

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 10, 2019 Jan 10, 2019

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I checked the Nefs in Capture NX-D, these settings are definitely not made in camera as they just don't exist in the Nikon camera or raw converter settings.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 10, 2019 Jan 10, 2019

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michaelr49053166  wrote

I definitely prefer XMP-Files as my Raw-Files are synced with my dropbox, which would mean that with every change the NEF would have to be uploaded, instead of the much smaller XMP-File.

Lightroom will create XMP files for the edits you do in Lightroom, as long as you have Automatically write changes into XMP checked in the catalog settings.

When this setting is unchecked (which it is by default), the changes are only written to the catalog, and no XMP files are created.

And Lightroom only writes changes directly to DNG files, tiffs, PSDs and jpgs. It never touches proprietary raw files like NEF.

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 10, 2019 Jan 10, 2019

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Yeah, this is what I always was thinking. But check yourself, download the NEF of this photo:

Nikon Z6 sample gallery: Digital Photography Review

or with Direct Link to File:

https://s3.amazonaws.com/files.dpreview.com/sample_galleries/8048435192/0409960300.nef?AWSAccessKeyI...


import it in lightroom without preset or open it in Camera Raw and you will see:
Camera Profile will be on Standard
Exposure +0.33
Contrast -12
Shadows +10

Saturation +4

How is this possible if LR never touches NEFs?

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 10, 2019 Jan 10, 2019

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This is settings written to XMP by the camera – not by Lightroom.

As far as I know, the Nikon Z cameras are the only ones that do this.

I got the Z7 two days ago, and I have created a default setting for this camera that zeroes all settings.

To do this, open a file from the camera in Develop, then manually set all settings that the camera has changed to zero/default (or whatever value you want).

Then go to Develop > Set Default settings, and click Update to current settings, and now all files you import from this camera will open with these settings in Develop.

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 10, 2019 Jan 10, 2019

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Sorry, but as mentioned before, that's not possible. How a camera can write Exposure Compensation of +0.33 to a Raw File? It will instead adjust the exposure during the photo, and as mentioned before these settings don't show in Nikons own Raw Converter Capture NX-D! I checked this photo also with Capture NX-D, and Exposure Compensation is on Zero!

The embedded Settings start like this:

<?xpacket begin="" id="W5M0MpCehiHzreSzNTczkc9d"?><x:xmpmeta xmlns:x="adobe:ns:meta/"><rdf:RDF xmlns:rdf="http://www.w3.org/1999/02/22-rdf-syntax-ns#"><rdf:Description rdf:about="" xmlns:xmp="http://ns.adobe.com/xap/1.0/">

So these are Adobe Metadata but not Nikon Makernotes.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 10, 2019 Jan 10, 2019

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The normal procedure for camera manufacturers is to include camera settings in a proprietary format that only their own raw converters can understand. I don't use any Nikon software, but maybe Capture NX-D hasn't been updated to be able to read XMP settings.

If you open a NEF from the camera in Capture NX-D before importing it to Lightroom, you should still see the XMP settings – they are not created by Lightroom. See also Are Adobe and Nikon Cooperating? | Sans Mirror | Thom Hogan

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 11, 2019 Jan 11, 2019

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https://forums.adobe.com/people/Per+Berntsen  wrote

The normal procedure for camera manufacturers is to include camera settings in a proprietary format that only their own raw converters can understand. I don't use any Nikon software, but maybe Capture NX-D hasn't been updated to be able to read XMP settings.

Another explanation is that Capture NX-D isn't supposed to read these settings. They are specific for Adobe's raw-engine, and so they do not necessarily match Capture NX-D settings.

-- Johan W. Elzenga

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Jan 10, 2019 Jan 10, 2019

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michaelr49053166  wrote

Sorry, but as mentioned before, that's not possible. How a camera can write Exposure Compensation of +0.33 to a Raw File? It will instead adjust the exposure during the photo, and as mentioned before these settings don't show in Nikons own Raw Converter Capture NX-D! I checked this photo also with Capture NX-D, and Exposure Compensation is on Zero!

The embedded Settings start like this:

<?xpacket begin="" id="W5M0MpCehiHzreSzNTczkc9d"?><x:xmpmeta xmlns:x="adobe:ns:meta/"><rdf:RDF xmlns:rdf="http://www.w3.org/1999/02/22-rdf-syntax-ns#"><rdf:Description rdf:about="" xmlns:xmp="http://ns.adobe.com/xap/1.0/">

So these are Adobe Metadata but not Nikon Makernotes.

I think that is easy to check. Shoot a raw image, download it to your hard disk using Windows Explorer or Macintosh Finder, so it is not touched by any Adobe software and then check the metadata. If these data are there, then the camera is the only one that could have do that. I don't have a Nikon camera, but as far as I understand this is indeed written in the RAW file by the camera.

How could the camera have done this? Easy: the built-in software that also creates the JPEG can conclude that the image is a bit too dark, so that an exposure correction of +0.33 would have been appropriate (but wasn't used during the shot). And so it writes this in the metadata.

-- Johan W. Elzenga

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 11, 2019 Jan 11, 2019

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Thanks! Unfortunately I don't own a Nikon Z-Camera, otherwise I would have already checked. But I found other sources in the web for Z-Nefs. Not in all the basic development settings (Exposure, Contrast...) were changed, but in all:
Camera Profile
Noise Reduction
Sharpness

were already set - so indeed Nikon seems to support Adobe in this.

Will be interesting whether Nikon delivers this also to other cameras by Firmware updates. As you said the basic settings are easy to set on zero on import, so there is a workaround for this. But Noise reduction is an interesting feature, as this is always some work to set as standard on new cameras for all possible ISO values. At least it's interesting to learn from the Z-Files for own presets. I shoot much sports on a D5/D4/D500 but always had the impression that Capture One got me better results for High ISO shots regarding noise reduction and sharpness - might be as I wasn't trying enough to get the same results in LR, so the Nikon settings of the Z-Files are a good starting point. I think the sensors might be comparable, at least from full frame to full rame.

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Enthusiast ,
Jan 11, 2019 Jan 11, 2019

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The following screen capture from ExiftoolGUI shows each of the ACR/LR items that the new "XMP-crd" metadata section has for Nikon Z 6/7 files:

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Community Beginner ,
Jan 11, 2019 Jan 11, 2019

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Still wondering why Nikon suddenly is so cooperative regarding their Nef-Files, but it's definitely a good thing.

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New Here ,
Mar 23, 2019 Mar 23, 2019

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Here is a chart of the default settings from the embedded XMP files for the Z6.  This is just for the Profile and Detail settings.

Test - Lightroom Sharpening Default Settings - Nikon Z6.jpg

This chart shows how the Detail settings change with ISO.

Test - Lightroom Sharpening Default Settings - Nikon Z6 - Standard.jpg

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New Here ,
Jan 31, 2019 Jan 31, 2019

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Thanks for the fix Per - that was bugging me!

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Mar 23, 2019 Mar 23, 2019

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While I think it is great that Nikon shows fledgling signs of glasnost and finally acknowledges people use other software than NX-D, it's annoying that the cameras do this by using crd tags. It should be using crs (settings instead of default). Using crd makes the reset button in Lightroom always go back to the camera-written settings instead of a real zeroed state. Also annoying that it uses the insane sharpening radius of 2.0 which creates ugly haloes. Like others here I simply created a preset to apply at import.

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Community Beginner ,
Dec 12, 2021 Dec 12, 2021

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Just rented a Z6ii to try it out.  was very disappointed with RAW files and gave it back.

Then I realised the over exposure was due to every shot having +0.33 on exposure and +10 on shadows and what looked like random Luminance settings.  When I corrected these, things looked much better.  

Apologies for being a LR newbie - but how do I set up the presets to zero on import?  Is there a weblink / youtube someone can post for me?  I am having trouble working out what exactly I need to do?

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LEGEND ,
Dec 12, 2021 Dec 12, 2021

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See this help article for how to set your own default settings for that camera model:

https://helpx.adobe.com/lightroom-classic/help/raw-defaults.html#Setrawdefaultsspecifictocameramodel

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Community Beginner ,
Dec 13, 2021 Dec 13, 2021

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Thank you @johnrellis   Set up a new default preset for import and now the Z6 NEF files are coming in as shot - brilliant!!

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