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Now that we know a little bit about the DNG file format, in this movie we are going to take a look at how we can convert our files to this format whether by using the Adobe DNG Converter or Adobe Camera Raw. Well one of the things that you might want to do is you might want to navigate to Adobe's site, you can go to adobe.com/ products/dng, it will then redirect you to this page where you can get some more information about this file format. Then if you scroll down about three quarters of the way down on this page you will find an area where you can download the Adobe DNG Converter for your operating system.
Now this converter is free, it's a free little utility which allows you to convert your file to this format. Well now that we've seen that, let's say that we have decided to download this product, what we can do next is go back to Adobe Bridge. In Bridge you can go ahead and click- and-drag on your image and then drop it onto this icon in the dock if you're on a Mac, or if you are on Windows you could obviously just click on the icon and then you can select the files that you want to work on here. Next we can choose where we want to save the file and also how we prefer to name the file and whether or not we want a uppercase or lowercase extension there.
And then we have a few preferences which we can dial-in in regards to this conversion. Now once you're ready to convert the file all that you need to do is to simply click Convert. Well rather than doing that here I am going to click Quit because I want to show you also another way that you can do this and that is with Adobe Camera Raw. So if you prefer not to use the DNG Converter, what you can do is select one or more images and then go to the File pull-down menu and choose Open in Camera Raw.
Once we have our files open in Camera Raw we can then save them out. To do so you can click on the icon in the bottom left-hand corner over there it says Save Image. And here once again we can choose where we want to save the file, how we want to name it, the format, in this case we are interested in choosing Digital Negative. and then when it comes to compatibility regardless of the technique that you use whether it's a Converter or Adobe Camera Raw, you want to choose the latest and greatest version of Camera Raw so that you can take advantage of the best type of the processing version.
Next, we have JPEG Preview. Typically Medium works best. And then here we have some pretty interesting options, I want to talk about these. The first one is Embed Fast Load Data. You definitely want to have that turned on, because what this does is it creates a DNG file that you can read and work with more quickly when it comes to making adjustments on the file. This only increases your file size in a way that's really insignificant. So you get more speed out of the file without much increase in file size, definitely turn that option on.
Next we have an option which is called Lossy Compression. Well why would we want to do that? Well by default the DNG format is lossless, that means that we have a smaller file size without loss of data. Typically that's what you'd want to do. Well you may want to use Lossy, if you're interested in converting this file to a smaller file, but you still want to take advantage of all that DNG has to offer. In other words you could click this option on and then go over here to this pull-down menu, here you can see I can limit my pixel count or also the size by choosing one of these options.
What this will then do is it will resize this file, save it out as this DNG file format and it will do so in a way that the file is much smaller. You might want to do this with those outtakes that you have from that one photo shoot that aren't that important, it's not worth it to keep the entire file, you just want to keep a smaller version of all of those files. Well in those cases you might want to use Lossy Compression. Well in my case I want everything here, so I'm going to turn this off.
Next we have an option which is to Embed the Original Raw File. There are some people who are concerned that if I convert my file to DNG, I am going to lose the original raw file. Well you can include that in this format by clicking on this option, although this will increase your file size dramatically. So in my own workflow I've found that it's just not worth it. Well after having dialed in these different options here we will go ahead and click Save, in doing that we can see the little Save Preview here, showing us the progress of that saving of that DNG file.
Then we can click Cancel or Done in order to exit out of Camera Raw. Now back in Adobe Bridge you can see we have this DNG file. And whether or not we use the DNG Converter or Camera Raw we can choose to save these files in the same location or in a different location. Well why use a Converter versus Adobe Camera Raw? Well the Converter is great if you're going to use or convert a batch of images, Adobe Camera Raw typically works better when you have a smaller amount of photographs.
Well now that we've seen how we can do this and we see these two files, the last thing I want to do here is take a look at these files in our Finder or Explorer windows. To do that you can right-click or Ctrl+ Click on the image, then you can select Reveal in Finder or Reveal in Explorer, depending on your operating system. This will then show us these files, the first thing I want to highlight is that the native RAW file is 25 megs, the DNG file it's a mere 22.
So here's where it shaved off some file size without sacrificing any quality or data. The next thing I want to highlight is that we have this XMP file here. This belongs to the native RAW file, the DNG file it doesn't have a sidecar XMP file. So it's just helpful to kind of see, that to start to realize that the DNG stands on its own. Well after having gone through all of these issues and this overall process, my hope is that this gives you some valuable information so that you can make the decision of whether or not you want to integrate converting your files to this DNG format into your overall workflow.
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