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Canon 5D Mark III
Canon 5D Mark III

Sharpness: RAW vs JPEG

How much image sharpness is thrown away by JPEG vs a properly converted RAW file?

You can learn a lot just by looking.


The Canon 5D Mark III was set for JPEG best Quality at standard settings but with maximum sharpening (in the hopes of increasing detail). The RAW Canon CR2 files were converted to 16-bit TIF ProPhotoRGB using Adobe Camera RAW 7.2.

The camera was set for Daylight white balance, actual gray-click white balance in ACR was within 100°K of that, impressively close.

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Since 2006, Diglloyd Advanced Photography is the authoritative review and reference for DSLRs and their lenses: Canon and Nikon primarily, but also Pentax and some medium format. Reviews of key DSLRs are included, but the primary focus is on lens performance. Also included is a wealth of technique and workflow approaches.

DAP includes thousands of pages of exclusive coverage and high resolution Retina-grade examples detailing Canon and Nikon DSLR bodies and their lenses, with in-depth analysis of sharpness and contrast, color, bokeh, vignetting, distortion, MTF, and flare, behavioral and practical usage.

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Variants RAW, JPEG, RAW Sharp available in full article

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