View Full Version : Photo software failure

12-31-2012, 09:54 AM
Started using a Nikon D7000 where I have always used Pentax K10D in the past and my first thing was to set to take in RAW. This was the start of my problems CS4 even with RAW 5.7 will not open the files. I can't unlike the Pentax find how to change the RAW format to DNG in the camera. Loads of converters which will convert to jpeg but really that loses the whole point of taking in RAW in first place may as well set camera to save as jpeg.

Details below and PC is old so CS5 is just too much for the old girl.

Most stuff works A1 but ViewNX 2, and Hugin both refuse to run on my PC. ViewNX 2 opens then disappears again and Hugin has encountered a problem and needs to close. The latest version Adobe DNG Converter also failed but an earlier version worked OK.

I am running Windows XP Professional Version 2002 Service Pack 3. The computer AMD Athlon(tm)XP 1.75 Ghz, 960 MB of RAM.

OK it is a little old but does the job for most of what I want and I can't afford a new one.

I can work around these failures using IrfanView, Adobe DNG Converter Version 6.3, and Photoshop CS4 but wondered if others also have problems with this software or is it just me?

I do have a higher spec laptop but really like using the desktop. I just wonder if it's something I have done wrong or just the girls too old. Does anyone else run this software on an old PC?

One plus is I found IrfanView which can be used very like Bridge but more powerful. I have set it so I can batch convert NEF to DNG using Adobe DNG Converter and unlike Bridge CS4 it will let me see thumbnails of the NEF files. The Nikon D7000 was inherited I would not have bought it myself but seems a lot better spec than old Pentax however think the Pentax will still be used for years to come. So much easier than the D7000 to use.

12-31-2012, 02:09 PM
I also use Windows XP for my software. I use CS3, but I'm not able to use it to open RAW. I have a Canon 60D, so their RAW are called CR2. The one way that works for me that I am happy with is to use the software that came with the camera. Not sure what Nikon does, but with the Canon software I can change a good number of things, then I save them as a TIFF of JPEG. I find that if I need to do more extensive editing I will open the TIFF with Photoshop. Also I am not able to preview the RAW in Windows Explorer, so I shoot RAW + small JPEG so I have the JPEG as a preview. Not sure if that helps, but this is my workaround and I find it pretty good for me.

12-31-2012, 06:10 PM
Also I am not able to preview the RAW in Windows Explorer, so I shoot RAW + small JPEG so I have the JPEG as a preview

You can view raw files with windows explorer if you install the Microsoft Camera Codec Pack. That way you don't need the jpeg file. Here's the link;

Download Microsoft Camera Codec Pack from Official Microsoft Download Center (http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=26829)

12-31-2012, 06:31 PM
Also I am not able to preview the RAW in Windows Explorer, so I shoot RAW + small JPEG so I have the JPEG as a preview

You can view raw files with windows explorer if you install the Microsoft Camera Codec Pack. That way you don't need the jpeg file. Here's the link;

Download Microsoft Camera Codec Pack from Official Microsoft Download Center (http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=26829)

Thanks for the link, works great on my laptop, but my desktop is XP so it didn't work. Think I may have to look into updating that.

01-01-2013, 12:12 AM
Ericmark, I think it's you and it's not you. I'm fascinated by software problems people create for themselves. I'm an offender too, having refused to buy Microsoft Office for many years for my home computer and struggling to find workarounds when I had to read a file from work at home. Realistically, you can't expect 10 year old software like Windows XP to run more recent programs or apps. As you know, the camera companies have a slightly different RAW format for each of their cameras, and the software has to be updated for each new version of RAW, for every new RAW-capable camera that comes on the market.
In your case, CS4 only works with Adobe Camera Raw up to Version 5.7, which does not include your new camera, the Nikon. You would have to be running CS5 and Camera Raw 6.2 I believe to include your camera. But you can't run CS5 or CS6 on Windows XP anyway, and you don't have the minimum hardware to run Windows 7, let alone Windows 8. So you are not going to be able to use simple, straightforward tools like CS5 or CS6, or Lightroom 4, unless you upgrade your hardware and software. You might be able to get away with simply adding more memory, since Windows 7, 32-bit, requires at a minimum 1 GB of RAM. Depends on your motherboard. You would still have to upgrade your OS.
But, having said that, you and millions like you, have found very admirable, brilliant work-arounds. Indeed Irfanview is a brilliant piece of software that has solved numerous problems for me with incompatibilities and file conversions. So in my view, while this takes a little more time for you, and involves many more steps, it's the price you pay for not upgrading your hardware and/or software. In my opinion, the free ride you have now is as good as it gets.:wall-an:

01-01-2013, 05:08 AM
Have you downloaded the Nikon codec? You should be able to see your Nef files on your computer once downloaded. Not sure if that will help at all?

Nikon Imaging | Global Site | NEF Codec Download (http://www.nikonimglib.com/nefcodec/)

01-01-2013, 08:46 AM
Thank you for replies. Nikon codec works great I can see thumbnails of pictures. I was directed to LensAlign - WhiBal (http://www.michaeltapesdesign.com) and it does work well. 16634 very simple. I may help "Realist" viewing pictures. I stopped taking Jpeg and RAW with Pentax as the camera would stall after fewer pictures as it was writing to card. I would guess with two cards this would not be a problem with Nikon. I can't afford either PC or Software upgrade got CS4 while in college. The Nikon was not bought by me I can't do anything with it except use it. The Nikon software ViewNX 2 will not run on my PC but the work around means I don't really need it. What I am considering is what to delete.

I tried taking DNG with Pentax K10D and I decided this was not a good idea as the files were larger and any adjustments are held within the DNG not with a sidecar so you have to open in Photoshop to return to as taken. However with Nikon the DNG is smaller than the NEF file and with the problems opening the NEF may be better to keep DNG and delete the NEF?

However still trying to get a Codec to view DNG files. So which way will depend on how that goes.

01-01-2013, 09:50 AM
Found a Codec for DNG files with XP.
Get DNG file extension support for Windows Vista - DNG CODEC Download (http://www.ardfry.com/dng-codec/Download.htm)
So I think I will be deleting the NEF files once converted to DNG.
The link given for Canon Codex clearly says "Supported operating systems: Windows 7, Windows Vista Service Pack 2" so seems it will not work with XP?
It would seem that pack also does Pentax so I need to use Bridge, IrfanView, or FastStone to view Pentax files.

01-01-2013, 11:36 PM
I'm with mbrager on this one I think. I'm in the same boat... my laptop is 5 1/2 years old and I'm worried it won't last much longer. Still running XP Pro as well. I've been fighting the move to LightRoom by using Picasa (free), Gimp (free) and ufRAW (free). But I think you need to stay as current as possible if your in the digital photography world. Technology moves fast. :)

I'll soon have to get a new laptop and I think I may end up moving to LightRoom in the not to distant future too.

Good luck with your issues. You might want to check Gimp and ufRAW though since they seem to open quite a lot of stuff.

01-02-2013, 05:23 AM
You are correct that Gimp with UFraw will handle the NEF files. Gimp is a good program however UFraw very like the program that came with the Pentax seems to work solely with curves. So unlike Photoshop CS4 with RAW 5.7 when I can use the brush tool to lighten or darken areas of the image to do the same with UFraw I need to make multi-copies then load them into layers and blend together. Yes can be done but more messing about.

Not found the Apply tool in Gimp. Sure it exists with some other name but not found. Using Apply with Photoshop CS4 one can with the masks auto blend layers together. I use it instead of the HDR tool. Again other tools will likely do same job Picturenaut will likely blend the layers very well.

It would certainly be an interesting exercise to see how same work can be done with free software. I blame the British Government as the only software loaded onto the college Apple Mac computers to work with images was Photoshop CS4 so even if Picturenaut did a better job still had to use CS4. After 2 years training to use the software to move to another make is a really big move. In fact even moving to lightroom would mean starting again from scratch. Never used lightroom but when I asked about it I was told it would not do many of the functions I use with CS4.

I am now reasonable satisfied with the work around. I use the DNG converter to transfer the files from the card to the lan hard drive so from the point they arrive on the PC they are DNG files. With the Codec that means I can see at a glance what the files are so better then when I used the Pentax. Bridge can also see the DNG files so the only change is instead of straight copy and paste I use the DNG converter.

Not sure what happens if I try to take a movie? Not tried that option yet. I use the card reader built into printer which is slow. How much down to card reader and how much down to DNG converter I don't know. But waiting for transfer is like watching paint dry so a case of set running then walk away and watch TV. 3/4 hour for 100 pictures.

01-10-2013, 02:13 AM
I think your biggest problem is memory and possibly processor speed. I ran XP Pro, 32-bit, service pack3, until this last weekend. It ran ViewNX without any problems and Photoshop Elements 9 was sometimes a little slow. A lot slow, if I had other programs up and running, especially a browser. PSE has roughly the same minimum requirements as CS 3, according to Adobe's website. You're running just at the minimum memory requirement, and just over the processor requirement. My box is running 4gb memory and a 2.7ghz processor.

How tight is your budget? If you have a little hole-in-the-wall computer shop in the area, or something like this (http://reuseum.com/), you might be able to pick up memory sticks for anywhere from $3 to $10 each. I've done it. The main thing is you have to know what you're looking at. I got a couple of sticks of server memory from Reuseum that my local PC shop was, fortunately, willing to take off my hands (the particular type is a bit hard to find, and there's a market for it). You might also be able to replace just the CPU. If you go for something of a similar vintage but faster, it shouldn't be too much. This assumes you're comfortable doing some of your own tech support. The staff at the hole-in-the-wall place should be able to guide you in what to get and how to install it.

If none of that is viable, then the other thing is to free up as much memory as you can when you're processing photos. One program at a time. Unplug from the 'net and shut down the firewall and virus scanner. If you don't have CCleaner, download it (it's free). Take a look under Tools -> Startup. You'd be amazed how many programs figure you want some form of quick start or updater loaded at boot time. Disable anything like that (you can re-enable it after you're done) and reboot. That might give you a little more memory to work with. I don't know if CS uses a scratch disk; if it does, take a look at the size. Same with Windows' swap file. You might get a little more wiggle room by increasing those.

USB card readers are under $25. Might be worth picking one up. It should be faster.

If those don't help, well, maybe someone knows of other photo processing programs that are lighter on resources. Good luck.

01-22-2013, 03:41 PM
Budget very tight but things have moved on. Connected the D7000 to PC with USB lead and it gave me option to download pictures with the Nikon software which worked and faster then with printer whose card slot had been used before. Once completed it gave option to view and this time it worked. Also gave option for upgrade which also worked.

So Nikon software now up and running. Still need to convert the DNG to load into Photoshop CS4 but no great deal it works. Still having problems with the camera it seems to have a mind of its own. Did a test with the Pentax taking back-up shots in the snow and worked great.

So took Nikon alone to next set of shots set to programme mode as fully auto seems to want to open flash on every shot. Took a series only to find on return it had set an extremely high ISO and all pictures rather grainy. I have not a clue why but have altered setting now to limit the auto ISO it can select.

Clearly the D7000 is not a camera for beginners it has just too many settings there is no way this camera can be considered as a point and shoot even in auto mode.

Lucky I own a Pentax which has taught me what to expect and eased me into the DSLR camera. Had I started with the D7000 by now I would have given up.

Don't get me wrong it's a great camera but I now understand why my late sister never had good results as it not a beginners camera it really does need some technical understanding to get the results from this beast.

01-23-2013, 09:19 AM
Glad to hear you are making headway. I hope the success continues!

01-23-2013, 12:13 PM
I will have to say it is a great camera. Today I went out to take photos of the snow. Selected Snow mode on camera still waiting for conversion to DNG to see how well it has done. But there are so many bells and whistles on it one needs a degree in Nikon to work it all out.

I thought my Pentax K10 was quite hard to get ones head around but nothing like the Nikon D7000. Slowly I am learning but clearly not a point and shoot camera. It has two huge advantages over the Pentax K10 one is the lens fitted the Tamron 18 - 270 mm is a fantastic lens. And second the ISO I can shoot hand held where before had to us a tripod. But as to ease of use the Pentax K10D wins hands down. No kids, sports or snow modes but it took photos without hassle and is a great camera. But the advantages of the Nikon D7000 mean it is worth the hassle learning how to use it. Well I hope it is.

All best Eric

01-29-2013, 02:18 AM
Unless you want to work from DNG, why not do minimal adjustments in the Nikon software, then convert to tiff? It allows 16-bit conversions, if retaining as much range as possible is a concern. Then you can edit the tiffs in CS3.

02-16-2013, 09:46 PM
I tried the tiff route. Interesting but file sizes are silly so will continue with DNG as far smaller files. New camera club task is macro and close-up so Nikon has been put away for a while as all the lens reversing, bellows, and filters are for the Pentax and it is handy to have one camera set for close-up and other for rest of the stuff.

I need to do same with Nikon as I did with Pentax and work out what is the usable ISO range. Although the Pentax has 1600 ISO setting my experiment showed that a picture taken at 800 ISO and under exposed by one stop and one taken at 1600 ISO correctly exposed i.e. the shutter speed and aperture same for both gave once loaded into Photoshop the same results. So in real terms the 1600 ISO setting was only any benefit when recording images in jpeg format in RAW the 800 ISO was the highest worth using.

The Nikon likely is similar and I need to run tests to find what the limits are. My big mistake was to think I could just pick up this new camera and use it just like my old one. The focus system is also causing me problems and I have started to use mirror up mode to manually adjust focus and I start to wonder why we still use reflex mirrors. I like the idea of the 4/3rds camera just can't see how mirror helps? I note a marked difference in sound between the two cameras the Nikon sounds as if the mirror is moving faster than the Pentax. Never considered mirror speed.

Both Pentax and Nikon have refused to take pictures with Pentax I can see why either anti-shake or focus causes the problem and turning off the auto focus and anti-shake will ensure shots not missed although can get blurred results. But there are so many controls on the Nikon I have not worked out why is stalls. The having to use two controls to switch off auto focus on lens and on camera do make it harder to quickly swap between manual and auto however must admit the auto focus is very good. Not even found how to turn off anti-shake yet again seems to be both on lens and in camera.

When at college I could not understand why people could not use camera in manual mode. So easy with Pentax now I realise why the Nikon has so many bits which need turning off to go into manual that although one can use manual it's not quick to switch between the two.

I also worry about battery level. The Pentax main problem is the battery lasts that long you forget to charge it. Going out with both cameras and returning with idea of going out again next day I put both batteries to charge returning an hour latter Pentax fully charged but Nikon still charging 3 hours latter. I will assume all the lens motors are taking far more out of the battery then with the Pentax? As yet not been caught with a discharged battery but spare battery is on my wish list. At least the Nikon charger will also work in the car.

02-17-2013, 02:45 AM
If there's some equivalent of Batteries Plus, take a look at the prices of different 3rd party brands. Batteries Plus is selling mostly RayoVacs, which hasn't caused me any problems. I don't know if the charge is as long as the official Nikon ones, but I haven't had any problems with them running out quickly either. They seem to charge in about the same amount of time. I don't know if the total life is as long, but if they're cheap enough, the life is long enough, and the brand isn't some company you've never heard of, it might be a reasonable compromise.

02-17-2013, 07:00 AM
Yes do need to look into having a spare as I do for the Pentax. There is so much drawing power from the battery.

02-17-2013, 04:08 PM
Clearly the D7000 is not a camera for beginners it has just too many settings there is no way this camera can be considered as a point and shoot even in auto mode.

Seems to me that you need to really apply yourself to the manual that came in the box with the D7000. Not trying to be a smarta$$ mind you, but I see things in your postings that indicate that you don't have a thorough understanding of what are really just basic controls. (you can turn that flash off with the press of a button and turn of a dial) Anything you might have trouble grasping can usually be found and explained on Youtube. Get one of Tom Hogans ebooks. As a last resort, I'd recommend the writings of Ken Rockwell. His info is usually factual, but unless you shot exactly as he does, he considers you stupid. He says a much, repeatedly.

02-05-2014, 08:33 PM
Well time has changed things main thing was I was given a laptop and desktop died so now can use CS5 and view and process RAW files from both cameras. However realise that RawThrapee would have cured my problems. Also I could have produced multi-jpegs in camera and blended them with layers and masks.

The problem is those who know how to get around the problems don't have to they have the right equipment in the first place.

02-21-2014, 03:17 PM
Well an upgrade. I was asked to demonstrate free software at the local club in Mold Flintshire. I found Rawtherapee very good and Gimp had also moved on with it's own format saving layers and masks.

DNG I would use with Pentax but with Nikon no way. The Pentax uses 14 bit RAW files but Nikon uses 14 bit so moving to DNG means losing two bits.

As to apply with Gimp not really required the add mask gives a "Greyscale copy of layer" which does the same thing.