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Raw versus JPG

Published August 16th, 2011

We take a lot of photographs for work. It is the single largest digital resource that consumes the most space on our servers. Years ago when we made the transition to digital photography, we made a conscious decision to not shoot in raw. Most of our photographs are intended to record condition, with little or no aesthetic value associated with the image. All that matters is that the image recorded what was seen. This minimized our need for server space but also limited the ability to improve marginal photographs.

As a consequence, I was slow to take to RAW imagery and many of my older photographs were taken solely in JPG format (for smaller disc space). Taking photographs for aesthetic purposes now requires taking photographs in RAW which slowly but surely is consuming much of my hard disc space (thank god for external hard drives).

The photograph below shows an example of some older images that were taken with film and scanned. They have had a little post processing after scanning

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Night time visibility shot. This image was taken as part of a series of images that used to show what was visible from headlights from an ATV. Not visible was the 20 ft drop after the first hill but before the second

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A section of fused wiring that formed part of a parallel heat trace wire. This caused a fire as it lacked proper ground fault circuitry

  • Canon EOS 40D
  • 85mm / f/5.6 / 1/60 sec
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Incidental damage to some electrical panels as part of a large fire

  • Canon EOS 40D
  • 17mm / f/4 / 1/60 sec
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Close up of the oxidation of stranded wiring that is used to connect to a starter (from a battery) in a vehicle. The chunk missing arced against the frame and caused a fire.

  • Canon EOS 40D
  • 85mm / f/5.6 / 1/160 sec

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