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Will Adobe ever support X-Trans properly? Everyone else does...

Contributor ,
Jun 10, 2014 Jun 10, 2014

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This is getting crazy now - Lightroom is the only RAW editor that still messes up Fuji X-Trans files. Why?

We have smaller, less finaced businesses and even individuals producing RAW convertors that can do this, why is Adobe struggling so badly?

Iridient Developer

Photo Ninja

LightZone

Capture One

SilkyPix

Raw Therapee

Aperture

All of these produce much better results and leave Lightroom looking very under par.

I can't see any reason for this. I have invested a lot of money in Lightroom (and the Creative Suite set of Adobe tools) over my entire professional life, and I did this becasue I came to expect Adobe to be at the forefront of developing up to date tools with innovative features and supporting the latest hardware. But sadly, this seems to no longer be the case and they are left looking third rate compare to far smaller developers.

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replies 223 Replies 223
Explorer ,
Sep 26, 2014 Sep 26, 2014

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Sharpening noise and bokeh just to try and reach other raw processor output is actually the nonsense here, but hey whatever works for you. 

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Sep 26, 2014 Sep 26, 2014

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I guess we will not see a resolution for an improvement to the processing of X-trans files until a new "Process Version" is introduced. Hopefully LR 6 with Process Version 2015.

Regards, Denis: iMac mid-2015, 5K 27”, GPU 2GB, Ram 24GB, HDD 3TB, macOS 11.6.1, LrC 11.0.1, Lr 5, Ps 23.0,; Camera OM-D E-M1.

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Community Beginner ,
Sep 26, 2014 Sep 26, 2014

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@pinoguin...

If you take a look at the guy's lapel, you will see that ID is doing a great job precisely at that: sharpening noise!

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Explorer ,
Sep 26, 2014 Sep 26, 2014

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ID doesn't have a decent noise reduction yet (plus default sharpening is too much for portraits), that's why I chose C1 (I love it's color) plus a few external apps ... and I do not EVER sharpen that ridiculous amount to try and reach ID details. What works for you will not work for everyone here.

Try minimal sharpening with LR. I've even tried masking, slider detail above 50 and there's always this swirly false detail on the skin that keeps popping up as you go further. Oversharpened base is unacceptable for retouchers. Your end result even has that rough painterly feel.

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Explorer ,
Sep 26, 2014 Sep 26, 2014

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My 5dmkiii files do not even need that much sharpening to begin with, all we ask here is to make x-trans rendering the same quality as the rest. That's all. It's a waste of time trying to make it work by introducing more issues with that workflow.

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Community Beginner ,
Sep 27, 2014 Sep 27, 2014

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I totally agree with pinoguin. I do not over sharpen faces myself as well, but I was trying to reproduce the effect on the ID version.

I personally have an X-E1 and I have tried to reproduce all the effects stated above to no avail. The difference I observe between raw developer, capture one and LR are in my case minimal.

Example:

LR render 100% detail                              Capture render 100% detail                    Raw developer 100% detail

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Community Beginner ,
Sep 27, 2014 Sep 27, 2014

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More comparisons from my X-E1 - this time foliage

LR render 100% detail                                    Capture 1 100% detail                              Raw Developer 100% detail

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Explorer ,
Sep 27, 2014 Sep 27, 2014

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I made my own comparisons from trial versions of ID and others as well, both default and optimized but chose C1 in the end. (All in raw)

I pretty much came to the same conclusion as this reviewer from fujivsfuji (sept2014)

Best X-Trans RAW Converter — Fuji vs. Fuji

beard.png

We will just have to wait and see when adobe will come up with something for x-trans, I do not hate lightroom I actually find it the best in brushes and usability. C1 interface is still an alien world to me. I'm showing support to get LR fixed because I care for it's x-trans output for my work.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Sep 27, 2014 Sep 27, 2014

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Unable to make a comment simply because I do not know what I am looking at.

Regards, Denis: iMac mid-2015, 5K 27”, GPU 2GB, Ram 24GB, HDD 3TB, macOS 11.6.1, LrC 11.0.1, Lr 5, Ps 23.0,; Camera OM-D E-M1.

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Community Beginner ,
Sep 28, 2014 Sep 28, 2014

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I think it can be summarized as follows:

1- This post is stating that LR is clearly inferior in rendering X-trans raw files compared to other software packages.

2- Apparently the key issue is the resolution of detail.

3- I own a Fuji X-E1 and LR 5.6. Concerned by what I read, I tried to reproduce the issues stated. This means, to me, that on a double-blind experiment a statistically significant amount of people would prefer an 18"x12" print of the same image with one app vs the other. I failed... normal people seeing prints produced (by myself) in Photo Ninja, Raw Developer, Capture One Pro and Out of Camera (OOC) jpegs have been unable to consistently identify LR as an inferior application to develop my Fuji X-E1 files.

4- Here goes an example:

Raw file: Dropbox - DSCF2487.RAF

Out of Camera JPEG: Dropbox - DSCF2487-OOC.JPG

LR 5.6 Render (Provia profile): Dropbox - DSCF2487 LR5.6.jpg

5- I am looking for anybody who can produce a file rendered by any software (maintaining to a reasonable level the tone, levels and colors of the original JPEG) that presented on an 18"x12" print (I can't print bigger...), or a 32" 3840x2160 monitor, can be consistently selected as a superior rendering in blind comparisons)

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Mentor ,
Apr 20, 2015 Apr 20, 2015

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diego.lythgoe wrote:

I think it can be summarized as follows:

1- This post is stating that LR is clearly inferior in rendering X-trans raw files compared to other software packages.

2- Apparently the key issue is the resolution of detail.

3- I own a Fuji X-E1 and LR 5.6. Concerned by what I read, I tried to reproduce the issues stated. This means, to me, that on a double-blind experiment a statistically significant amount of people would prefer an 18"x12" print of the same image with one app vs the other. I failed... normal people seeing prints produced (by myself) in Photo Ninja, Raw Developer, Capture One Pro and Out of Camera (OOC) jpegs have been unable to consistently identify LR as an inferior application to develop my Fuji X-E1 files.

4- Here goes an example:

Raw file: Dropbox - DSCF2487.RAF

Out of Camera JPEG: Dropbox - DSCF2487-OOC.JPG

LR 5.6 Render (Provia profile): Dropbox - DSCF2487 LR5.6.jpg

5- I am looking for anybody who can produce a file rendered by any software (maintaining to a reasonable level the tone, levels and colors of the original JPEG) that presented on an 18"x12" print (I can't print bigger...), or a 32" 3840x2160 monitor, can be consistently selected as a superior rendering in blind comparisons)

I opened your file in Raw Therapee 4.2.74, and I think it answers your fifth question quite conclusively in favour of Raw Therapee - but I wonder how you developed the file in Lightroom, because the colours seem murky and the contrast too much and blown out. Details are all gone!

Surely the LR render can be improved by bounds and leaps? Because the Lightroom produced jpg looks terrible in terms of details. Even zoomed out at 50% on my 27" 2560x1440 screens the RT version is superior looking. At 100% there is no question about it at all. At 200% the amount of detail loss in the LR developed version is staggering.

My version is a straight out conversion in RT - I did switch to RL Deconvolution with default settings.

I do not own Lightroom. It would be a fairer comparison when someone here redid the Lightroom version, since the Provia profile used by the OP is quite lacking in quality. Here is a 50% render:

comparison.jpg

For a 200% comparison between the lightroom version and the RT version, a WebP image is available here:

http://www.estructor.altervista.org/links/comparison.webp

(Why WebP still is not supported by all the browser vendors is mind-boggling. Far superior image quality versus much smaller file sizes, compared to jpg, makes it a no-brainer. To view the file, drag to or open in Chrome.)

Here is the RT develop file for those who wish to compare directly with my settings.

http://www.estructor.altervista.org/links/DSCF2487.tif.out.pp3

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LEGEND ,
Apr 20, 2015 Apr 20, 2015

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Here is my 200% comparison between Adobe and RawTherapee - No Sharpening, No Luminance NR, No Color NR, only False Color Suppression in RT.

This is not an optimal conversion, but a non-cooked conversion to compare the demosaicing detail:

I do actually prefer the Adobe colors, and the CA, but the detail isn't there.

BTW, the webp URL doesn't do anything in Chrome, either, for me, so you must have some plug-in that is interpreting it.

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Mentor ,
Apr 20, 2015 Apr 20, 2015

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ssprengel wrote:

Here is my 200% comparison between Adobe and RawTherapee - No Sharpening, No Luminance NR, No Color NR, only False Color Suppression in RT.

This is not an optimal conversion, but a non-cooked conversion to compare the demosaicing detail:

I do actually prefer the Adobe colors, and the CA, but the detail isn't there.

BTW, the webp URL doesn't do anything in Chrome, either, for me, so you must have some plug-in that is interpreting it.

In short, there is a demosaicing issue.

The webp url does work: the server does not understand the webp headers, but you can download the file and drag it into Chrome for viewing.

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LEGEND ,
Apr 20, 2015 Apr 20, 2015

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The webp webpage does "work", but that just downloads a file, and if I try to open the file, Chrome starts up MS Word and I see garbage, so Chrome doesn't know what to do with the file, at least on my Windows machine:

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Mentor ,
Apr 20, 2015 Apr 20, 2015

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That probably means your windows mime settings are different for webp files.

Webp files ought to be linked to Chrome (seeing it is a Google invented image file format).

Alternatively install Google's Webp codec for Windows - which adds Webp thumbnails and previews to Windows.

https://developers.google.com/speed/webp/docs/webp_codec

Works really well - even the Windows Preview can display those webp files then.

I am diverting from the thread topic here, but the two example files which are included demonstrate the "power" of WebP: the jpg version is 972kb, while the WebP version is a mere 270kb - identical quality.

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Explorer ,
Apr 20, 2015 Apr 20, 2015

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Screen Shot 2015-04-20 at 10.56.01 AM.png

Pretty much consistent with the tests I've done a long time ago, even with the new version of LR it's still the same.

LR playing catch-up (sharpening/detail sliders) just to match the jpegs brings out these horrific squiggly lines. Instead of the actual detail these lines are brought up so that it 'appears' sharper ... what do you call these? this is shot at base iso, these are fake details that weren't there. Very terrible for skin and cropping.

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Mentor ,
Apr 20, 2015 Apr 20, 2015

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61474464.jpg

I dedicate this to all the Lightroom Squiggels everywhere.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Apr 22, 2015 Apr 22, 2015

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Anyone checked LR 6/CC with an X-Trans RAF file?

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Contributor ,
Apr 22, 2015 Apr 22, 2015

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Adobe didn't really add much - in fact the rendering engine hasn't changed or been improved at all, instead they added iPhoto style face recognition and instagram style uploads - they are targeting the masses and ignoring the professionals. I guess that's more money for Adobe so makes sense.

For anyone Fuji, I think this is the nail in the coffin for Lightroom.

In fact as long time Adobe user Keith Reeder says - Lightroom isn't the best for any camera, not just Fuji, so perhaps it's time for us all to migrate away. C1 Pro seems to be the logical step for professionals these days.

I think this thread can be closed now. All hope is gone.



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LEGEND ,
Apr 22, 2015 Apr 22, 2015

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No change in X-Trans conversion in LR CC/6 vs ACR 8.x:

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Apr 22, 2015 Apr 22, 2015

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ssprengel wrote:

No change in X-Trans conversion in LR CC/6 vs ACR 8.x:

My findings as well. It may require a major overhaul of the ACR processing engine (i.e. new PV). Adobe engineering staff would have difficulty getting project approval if all it did was improve X-Trans image processing. There is a possibility that the Adobe DNG Converter can be updated to include X-Trans specific processing to "fix" the current issues. Something like an X-Trans to Bayer RGB data conversion. The DNG would then process like a "normal" Bayer sensor camera image file. The downside is that the original X-Trans sensor data is lost in the event better processing becomes available in the future. You would need to archive or keep the RAF files with the DNGs for future proofing.

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LEGEND ,
Apr 22, 2015 Apr 22, 2015

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If Adobe knew how to use the DNG Converter to do XTransToBayer then they'd know how to do XTransToRGB like happens now in ACR and LR.

That is what they were originally doing, making a linear-DNG, which baked in the demosaicing with their very first attempt at X-Trans, and so when they improved their algorithm in ACR 7.4/LR 4.4, people who'd converted to DNG before 7.4/4.4 had poorly demosaiced files they couldn't improve upon with the newer X-Trans engine, whereas if they'd saved their RAFs then things would look improved.

I agree it'll take a new PV and special PM approval for such a task, but with LR6 only having Elements-already technology added and GPU-based performance enhancements, maybe it's about time for a new PV where Adobe revisits some failings of their current engine, which besides X-Trans, is making a new mathematical model for DNG Profiles that handle extreme lighting conditions better by not oversaturating blues for example.

The amount of resources a PM can assign to the task backlog might be somewhat related to how many people sign up for LR CC for $120/year as opposed to merely buying the upgrade for $80/major-version.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Apr 22, 2015 Apr 22, 2015

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Agreed. There's room for improvement across the board, not just X-Trans.

ssprengel wrote

The amount of resources a PM can assign to the task backlog might be somewhat related to how many people sign up for LR CC for $120/year as opposed to merely buying the upgrade for $80/major-version.

I'm sure Adobe is also hoping a lot of users will sign up for the $600/year 'Complete' plan, which includes PS CC and LR CC. The Photography plan is a bargain and probably not helping Adobe's bottom-line nearly as much as the Complete plan.

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New Here ,
Apr 27, 2015 Apr 27, 2015

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Just to add another voice begging Adobe to get X-Trans demosaicing sorted out. I'm not going to go right through this thread with the various examples (some of which seem to have been done by people who haven't a clue how to get the best out of LR) but I have spent many a happy hour trying everything to get Adobe results with my Fuii X-E1 to show anything like the clean detail I get routinely with Photo Ninja. It is not, I repeat, not possible and clearly LR6 has changed nothing.

So why does this bother me? Simply because there are many things I love about Lightroom and still use it for DAM, touching up, printing, exporting to web and so on. Of course it can be useful to have a different RAW developer on hand for certain images anyway as no one application does everything right but the problem is that Lightroom is supposedly primarily a RAW developer I thought and it simply isn't terribly good at it which means that you're pretty well forced to use another application if detail is important -- forget for the moment those who say the difference isn't that important.

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Explorer ,
Sep 28, 2014 Sep 28, 2014

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You do not have to understand it if you are perfectly fine with whatever software you are working with. There are just some workflows that relies deeply in detail before any final sharpening is done. Pixel-level retouchers can achieve incredible work with the skin, to try and mess up it's detail and they will lose the look that they want.. you can't edit detail that's already gone or you can't even lift with the tool you have. These subtle improvements are much more incredible in print.

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