More Nikon and Sony Raw Tone Curve templates

I've added Raw Tone Curve templates for the following cameras: Nikon D3100, Nikon D5100, Nikon D7000, Sony SLT-A35, Sony SLT-A55, and Sony NEX-5N. It turns out that the last five all use the same sensor, so the Raw tone curve is the same for all of them.

Instruction pages added

A number of people have been having trouble figuring out just what to do with the files from LightZombie (or even how to get them), so I've put together some nearly-step-by-step instructions for each of the three environments. You'll find them linked at the top of the column on the left.

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Fuji EXR sensors, the X10, and dcraw

As I expected, dcraw 9.12 is out. It was released on Wednesday. As I expected, it contains support for the Fuji X10.

What I didn't expect was that LightZone didn't like it. The X10 raw conversions in LightZone were Teh Suck!!1! They were unacceptably noisy, even at minimum ISO. Furthermore, the DR200 and DR400 files were dark. I've spent three days learning a lot about EXR Raw files in general, X10 Raw files, and the older Fuji SuperCCD Raw files.

Tex Andrews' guaranteed method to make your Photos look Phantastic!

My Yule present to all of you, and totally guaranteed, unless you have non-photographic related problems, in which case all bets are off. Enough with all this technical mumbo-jumbo, no offense to you Doug, and all your hard work....First, open up your photo(s) in the browse program of your choice---this method works with all software programs, including LZ of course. Set this up first for reasons that will become apparent later. Maybe also make sure your photos are properly backed up.

Corrected Contrast Mask classic tool

I don't know where I got the Contrast Mask classic tool template from, but it wasn't right. It was simply a Tone Mapper classic tool with the default title changed. This isn't a major problem because Tone Mapper is pretty much a Contrast Mask tool with an added slider for Detail. The main advantage of the genuine Contrast Mask tool is that in the Tone Mapper tool, the Radius slider has a minimum value of 100. If you want the "flat lighting" effect that a smaller radius can give, you'll need the genuine Contrast Mask.

The state of the community — personal observations

The Past

Two months ago, we didn't know for sure that Light Crafts had shut down. One month ago, Tex and I were starting to plan the lightzombie.org web site. Today, the LightZombie Project has somewhere around a hundred community members who have checked in, and likely another hundred or two who didn't see a need to check in and are just lurking.

Hi Pass Filter and classic Color Balance tools resurrected

Two existing but apparently long-lost LightZone tools have been resurrected as Style templates.

One Mac XML problem fixed - we hope

The problem some Mac users were having with saving the LZN-JPEG files appears to have been solved. It seems to be related to non-ASCII characters being present in the file path, folder, file name, or metadata. The easiest way to fix this is to download an updated Info.plist file into the LightZone.app/Contents/ folder. You probably want to rename the current Info.plist file to save it "just in case."

Mac help needed

We're still looking for people who can help our Mac users out. We've got a number of Mac users who are having difficulty.

I might have missed a few problem reports for this list, in which case please feel free to add a comment.

More Raw support - a look ahead

LightZone's Raw-file conversion facilities are heavily dependent upon the open-source dcraw program. In turn, dcraw is fairly dependent on Adobe's DNG converter, because by default the camera color profiles in dcraw are those provided by the DCP files in the DNG converter (although some dcraw profiles are custom).

Adobe's next DNG converter version will be 6.6. According to Adobe, this will add camera support for:

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