Lightroom DNG Processing vs. JPEG Preview

New Here ,
Feb 10, 2021 Feb 10, 2021

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Hi,

I have seen this brought up a few times by people who don't understand who LR processes RAW files and the difference between the RAW and the JPEG preview. I should preface by saying I am fully aware of how it works... the thing is, I was recently trying to finish working on some photos I took in the fall and I was really disliking how they looked nomatter what I did.

 

I decided to look back at the original DNG files, and low and behold, they looked great. The LR processing made the image look much harsher, made the reds yellow, the greens blue, and the overall color balance was completely different. I tried over and over again to get the RAW file to look at least as good as the JPEG preview, but failed at least ten times, because I had to keep going back and forth and using screenshots to compare, making tweaks each time. I did eventually find a combination of calibration, color,  and exposure adjustments that emulate the JPEG preview, but it wasn't easy.

 

Does anyone have a way to circumnavigate this? I tried pasting my adjustments from the first photo into others, but they did not have the same effect across multiple photos in terms of getting the colors right. Are there any profiles I could import? The camera in this case is the DJI Mavic 2 Zoom. Ideally, there'd be some way to match the colors automatically, but I doubt there's something like that...

 

In the video, see the top of the screen to keep track of which is which -- the first is the DJI JPEG preview, and then it flips back and forth with the LR DNG original render, then my two best edits. Depending on your screen it may not be easy to tell between them but it is very obvious on mine, a recent 15" MBP. 

 

Thanks!

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FAQ, How to, Mac, Presets or profiles

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Engaged ,
Feb 11, 2021 Feb 11, 2021

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I'm having problems following your workflow.

  • How are you getting the DNG's from your DJI Mavic 2 Zoom drone?
  • How are you getting the JPG previews from the drone and how are you viewing the JPG's for comparison?

When you say "The LR processing made the image look much harsher, made the reds yellow, the greens blue, and the overall color balance was completely different." what are you doing in terms of adjustments? If you use AUTO in the Develop Module, LRc will use it's algorithms to make adjustments but that does not prevent you from making your own changes. If image is not pleasing, how have you tried to correct the color balance? 

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New Here ,
Feb 11, 2021 Feb 11, 2021

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Sorry if I was unclear. I should put it this way: it is much more difficult for me to achieve a correct color balance when working with my drone Dangs than with my Nikon DSLR's NEFs.

I sometimes choose to play with the calibration settings on my Nikon images, but I have learned that often with my drone photos, its either calibrate or delete the photo because the colors are all wrong.

In the example in the video, it was just a photo of some fall colors. But where there had been reds in real life they turned to yellows, there was too much yellow in the image overall, and the preview was much softer without being low contrasted. When I first looked at the image and started playing with calibration I assumed it would be quick to get it to how it should look, but it in fact required a lot of going back and forth with the reference image preview and it seemed no matter what I did I couldn't even get it to look as good as the preview! It started feeling like only a profile could fix it, not adjustments.

To answer your question of how I view the previews, I believe MacOS doesn't render RAW files so when you click on it it shows you that preview.

I get the DNGs by simply telling my drone to capture RAW files. I import them with no settings applied.

I compare by screen-shotting the photo in LR and looking back and forth between that and the DNG preview in Finder. I could achieve the same results by importing a screenshot of the DNG preview.

Now maybe I’m missing that this is expected behavior, and that I should be just better at changing the calibration and colors. But if so that's why I’m here!

Thanks!

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Engaged ,
Feb 11, 2021 Feb 11, 2021

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Thanks for the additional points. I'm not a MAC user and cannot comment on what a MAC displays except some versions seem to able to display RAW.

 

Before we go any further, I want to make sure you understand a RAW file, like DNG, is not really an image but just a collection of sensor information. They camera will create a JPG but that is in-camera processing of the sensor information. In LR, you need to apply the processing you want. Looking at the RAW DNG picture in Develop with no settings will look completely different than viewing a JPG of it.

 

You are using a DJI Mavic 2 Zoom drone. Unless I'm reading this wrong, this means you are using a camera called L1D-20c camera, co-developed with Haaselblad. Haaselblad uses its Hasselblad Natural Color Solution with this camera. It looks like that could affect the DNG conversion.

 

The Hasselblad L1D-20c is not listed as one of the supported RAW camera formats for LR. I understand you can import the DNG but not sure if the lack of listing support that could be part of the issue and the need for selecting a different Color Profile.

 

I found this review which states "As part of the Hasselblad collaboration in the design of the DJI Mavic 2, the L1D-20c camera uses Hasselblad’s Pro Natural Colour Solution (HNCS). I wonder if anyone has ever heard of this before, I certainly have not. It’s true that Hasselblad is know for their quite neutral and realistic color rendition, so perhaps they’ve made up a name for it now. In regards to “neutral color” however, I’m sure you’ll be disappointed too. Auto white balance in general does not seem too far off, but even at lower ISO’s, the colors do need a lot of work in post processing to look neutral and realistic. A pity."

 

If found this post in a Hasslebland Digital Forum. You likely should go there to ask questions about the HNCS L1D-20c camera posting processing with Lightroom. 

 

However, I suspect if you spend some time selecting color profiles, and playing around with adjustments, 

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Engaged ,
Mar 16, 2021 Mar 16, 2021

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Lightroom 10.2 was just released and is suppose to provide support for the "Hasselblad DJI Mavic 2 Pro (Hasselblad L1D-20c)". Hopefully this will fix your problem if you upgrade.

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