View Full Version : Any good raw workflow tools for Mac users?

03-16-2005, 10:26
I really want to use my R-D 1 for studio as well as action shooting, but I'm still struggling to find a way to handle the files.

So you'll know what I want to do, here's the way I work in the studio with my other digital camera, a Nikon D100:

-- I shoot the raw files on the the camera's memory card. (I like this better than tethering the camera to the laptop, because the transfer is faster and doesn't stop the momentum of a session.)

-- As I finish a batch of shots, I move the card to the card reader and let the files transfer as I continue shooting on another card.

-- As the files transfer, they're cataloged automatically by iView MediaPro, which also can display thumbnails of Nikon NEF files.

-- I look at the thumbnails during the shooting session to make sure I like what I'm getting, and to provide direction for the models. When the session is over, I refer to them to pick which images to convert and open in Photoshop.


I can't work this way with the R-D 1, because:

-- iView doesn't natively recognize the Epson raw file format. I can add it as a custom file type, which allows it to display the filenames in a catalog, but it still won't display the thumbnails -- which I need to see for reference while shooting. I don't know of any other cataloger for MacOS X that does show thumbnails for Epson raw files.

-- I can't use the alternative of batch-converting the incoming raw files to JPEG for display purposes, because I don't know of a batch conversion utility that handles Epson raw files AND runs on MacOS X.

Anybody got an answer for this?

As an aside, I've also considered buying one of those slick Epson P-2000 photo viewers and using it during studio sessions instead of a laptop. But they seem to be out of stock and on backorder everywhere! Has anyone actually succeeded in buying one of these gizmos at retail?!?

03-16-2005, 12:25
I have the P2000 and its a revelation. Thoroughly reccomend buying one. Don't be tempted to get an alternative and be patient because there is no other storage device at the moment which is anywhere near as good as the p2000. Got mine from Park Cameras UK. I also use mac but can't find a viewer to show the thumbs of ERF either, which is a pain. Hopefully something will come along soon to remedy this or some clever dick can help point us in the right direction!!)

03-16-2005, 15:02
How come you don't just open the files in the PSCS browser? The latest Adobe RAW Converter plug-in supports the RD-1 files.

03-16-2005, 16:38
If Adobe raw recognizes Epson RAW files, just create an action to convert them to jpegs.


03-16-2005, 16:47
Email iView MediaPro, and provide them with a raw file from the RD-1. They have been very receptive in the past to upgrade their software to make the RD-1 raw images visible on the desktop.


David Kieltyka
03-16-2005, 18:25
IMO Adobe's converter does a mediocre job on R-D1 files. Epson's own converter is much better. You can use Epson's plug-in version on the Mac with Photoshop or Photoshop Elements. It's a bit cumbersome, though...you must open the RAW files with Open As under the File menu and then choose Epson RAW Plug-in as the format. You can't see the image before you open it either unless you preview it with the Browser.


03-16-2005, 19:24
Thanks for all the suggestions! A few comments, in case they help anyone else on a similar quest:

-- Long-term, I think the answer is to buy a P-2000, but there don't seem to be ANY in the US right now! (Even the Epson online store is sold out.) I'm on the list at B&H to be notified when they get some more, but I've been on that list since January!

-- I've already sent iView some Epson raw files at their request, but (not surprisingly) they couldn't make any promises about when or if they might add support. They did tell me how to create a custom importer that will let iView catalog the files... but it won't display the thumbnails.

Interestingly, iView WILL display the thumbnails and dimensions if I change the files' extensions from .ERF to .DNG before importing them -- which suggests that adding support may not be too difficult. I can't use that as a workaround, though, because once I change the extensions, Photoshop gets confused and won't open them.

-- I'm still using Photoshop 7 rather than CS, and 7 won't allow me to create an Action to batch-convert raw files. It brings up the Epson converter plug-in, but the plug-in won't convert the files unless I manually click OK.

Meanwhile, I've also found that the Adobe DNG Converter WILL batch-process Epson RAW files, and iView does import Adobe DNG files. So my current ploy is to try to write an AppleScript that will take advantage of that; will post here if I figure anything out.

03-16-2005, 21:56
quite fooling around!

upgrade to CS. get the free RAW file download from the website. buy a good book. such as Real World Photoshop RAW. study up. go to FredMiranda and download a few of his plug ins. Study some more. Life will be easy.

this is about a $200 investment. how much is your time worth?



03-16-2005, 22:12
quite fooling around!

upgrade to CS. get the free RAW file download from the website. buy a good book. such as Real World Photoshop RAW. study up. go to FredMiranda and download a few of his plug ins. Study some more. Life will be easy.

this is about a $200 investment. how much is your time worth?



Thanks, but...

-- I know a lot about Photoshop. I'm a professional graphic designer, I've been using it since version 2.0, and I use CS every day at work. But its resource requirements are too heavy for decent performance on the laptop I lug to studio shoots. When I can afford to upgrade that, I'll upgrade to CS too.

-- The Photoshop raw plug-in doesn't do as good a job on Epson ERF files as the Epson plug-in, so I want to keep using that for my final conversions. Switching to CS wouldn't alter this.

Newsflash: I've found (see other thread) a way to handle studio shooting by using Adobe DNG Converter to batch-convert the ERF files into a format I can view in iView, and later convert back to the original ERFs so I can open them into Photoshop using the Epson plug-in.

Life still isn't easy, because photography isn't easy.