View Full Version : to in-camera sharpen or not to sharpen

12-03-2007, 07:20
Is it better to shoot with in-camera sharpening or without? depending on the setting, i usually sharpen from low to standard for my in-camera jpegs.

but if i also usually do alittle sharpening on photoshop during post production, is it better to keep sharpening off in-camera and just use the sharpening tool on Photoshop or do you think it makes no difference?

thanks in advanced.


p.s. when converting RAW, i keep sharpening off during conversion to Jpeg, and only sharpen while post processing the Jpeg on photoshop.

12-03-2007, 07:25
Don't. You want the 'cleanest' file possible in photoshop.

12-03-2007, 07:39
In other words, sharpening off in the camera and do it last of all in PS. You'll have much more control of it this way and less artefacts too.

Ben Z
12-03-2007, 07:55
With my 20D it's a toss-up whether to shoot RAW or large-fine JPEG, but with the M8 I found with some testing very early on that JPEG's leave a lot to be desired compared to DNG. As to sharpening, one of the reasons I do not use C1-LE is because it always leaves a little sharpening on, whereas ACR doesn't. It's the same situation with my Canon 4000 scanner, the Canon Filmget software always has residual sharpening, so I use Vuescan. Sharpening is the very last thing I do. I happen to like Focal Blade, except for the 20D which I use Fred Miranda's plugin.

12-03-2007, 08:16
thanks for the advice guys. will leave sharpening to the end. ;)

12-03-2007, 08:38
commonly held advice from instructors and photographers. Sharpen last.

12-03-2007, 09:19
Sharpening should always be the last step before the final output (screen or print)



Gabriel M.A.
12-03-2007, 10:31
I also like to leave sharpening to a post-processing matter. Some people who don't understand this would say "why not soften the photo later?"

This, too, is a matter of taste, and depends on your shooting/post-processing habits.

12-03-2007, 21:13
I follow these personal groundrules (unless I don't:))

1. I shoot RAW only. All images benefit from at least light sharpening.
2. I sharpen after "image size" in PS. However, IMO anything more than light sharpening here speaks to me, "photo has been sharpened," and I don't like that effect.
3. If more than light sharpening is required, I will try to split the difference in Bridge and sharpen as part of the conversion. Then a tweak more in PS if needed.
4. I'd rather err on the side of soft than over-sharpen.

12-04-2007, 06:58
The M8 can produce a funny kind of jig-saw like moire-type patterns if one does not disable all sharpening both for Jpeg use and for raw conversion.

12-04-2007, 11:25
The M8 can produce a funny kind of jig-saw like moire-type patterns if one does not disable all sharpening both for Jpeg use and for raw conversion.
Yes, this can indicate over-sharpening. I can't comment on the M8's in-camera sharpening because I shoot only RAW. And zero sharpening is my default both in Bridge at pre-conversion and in PS--post-coversion.

However, some files that are perfectly focused and with optimal lens use can benefit from light USM. I should note that these are not recommended protocols, but habit and a personal aesthetic (which I might, one day, call a style). What's not personal, and seems to be common practice, is to sharpen as a last step in one's post processing.

I'm inclined to toggle sharpening because without an A-B comparison, whatever I'm looking at normalizes in my vision and starts to look best. Because I sometimes prefer less color intensity than what the M8 produces, I will tweak down saturation--in which case I might sharpen a file I otherwise wouldn't.