Descubra tudo sobre arquivo RAW

Find out all about RAW files

Everything you need to know about Raw files. Good with this post we will start to give tips on Photoshop, Lightroom and other tools of revelation, production of why not creation and finalization of digital images, and nothing better than talking about the best format to use in digital photography, the standard of Raw file.

For those who are starting out in the world of digital photography and only know the much loved and used file. Jpeg or Jpg is already the tip configure your machine, whatever it is, to shoot in Raw files, as long as your machine allows.

First thing to know is that a Raw file is not an extension of digital files but rather a format, a convention between brands, for digital negatives. And then you wonder.

Everything you need to know about Raw files

What do you mean negative ?

Yes, digital negatives, almost always when shooting with a DSLR machine you need to reveal your photos, so that all that emotion you felt when taking them is passed on to those who will appreciate them.

A lot of people must be wondering.

develop is equal to print ?

No, developing digital photos is not the same as printing them. Revealing digital photos is using tools to change important aspects that you want to be seen.

It’s not just pushing the machine button and then putting your photos online, using the right processes of revealing your work will impress you many more than you think, especially if you are new to digital photography.

Before we talk about advantage and disadvantages of this pattern of files let the extensions that it are usually shown.

You will see these file extensions depending on the brand of your machine.

In addition to these extensions we also have of course the two major brands of the current market to Canon with their formats .crw and .cr2 and also Nikon with their extensions .nef and .nrw.

Because its name suggests a raw file, raw in English, are files that are not yet ready to be printed or edited in paint family image editors for example, they lack a little more affection.

It is itself a digital negative because the camera sensor stores only the light information it receives, without processing such information.

And right after processing, which can be done directly on camera, or in a developing program, such as Adobe’s Lightroom, we have the positive file, this yes is usually the .jpeg or .tiff file.

This bid not to process the file during its capture is one of the biggest advantages of shooting in Raw, because in the process of developing you will have full control over important aspects of your photo, such as the example of exposure, besides the fact that you do not have a photo coming straight out of your camera, you can change the light, contrast, white and black levels in a much more controlled way.

When compared to jpeg files the Raw file has huge advantage as the image quality and is worth every megabyte the most spent to shoot in Raw.

Its dynamic colors and contrast and significantly superior, even when compared to jpeg files without loss of quality.

Raw file vs Jpeg - 2

In the photo above we can see that the definition of the version in jpeg is much less than the definition of the raw file.

Raw file vs Jpeg - 2

Already in this other photo the dynamics of the fine contrast more apparent. We can notice that the Raw file version has much smoother colors and with a better transition between them.

But the biggest advantage in shooting raw is the nondestructive processing of the image, because all the data referring to that image is stored and intact along with the original files, the image, .

This way you can create as many summers as you want from your image by finishing it in .jpeg, for example, without destroying any information contained within your Raw file.

Well as not everything is blue in life the Raw standard for digital images has rather its disadvantages, which for some cases can make all the difference.

The first and almost without the one that is most complained about there is the fact that the Raw file is much larger in size than a .jpeg, this size difference can rotate between 2 to 6 times, that is, you will take up much more disk space shooting in raw.

For those who photograph sporadically this may not be so big problems, after all just format the card before leaving home, but it is for the photographer who will do an event or, and have to take thousands of photos to then decide which one got better? In this case I always say, there is memory card huh!

Another interesting fact about the Raw file is that they are not widely accepted in the market, as is the case of .jpeg that runs in everything that is place nowadays, to run a Raw file your computer needs to know what it is.

And since many manufacturers use what we call proprietary extensions, meaning each has its own extension, you can certainly go crazy if you have cameras from different manufacturers to work every day.

Adobe took a very nice initiative in the direction of facilitating this process and created the extension . DNG that also respects the RAW standard. Some companies are adopting the . DNG as standard on your cameras, which makes life much easier.

One of the steps that can be called disadvantage is the need to use software to finish or develop this Raw file.

For many this additional process of having to transfer the images to the computer to ai yes see if they were really good, and then hit everything that needs to be done in the photo, can be become very massive.

On the other hand think that throughout this process you are in control, and this is one of the great advantage of the Raw file, you can take the photo wherever you want.

And not just leaving it up to the machine to choose what’s best or worst for that photo or that moment.


Today there are numerous programs to process Raw files, some with greater image processing power, others work only with simple viewers of these images.

The most famous and used today is Adobe’s Lightroom, which is an amazing tool for developing your digital negatives. In this program it is possible to do virtually everything with your raw file, resize, rotate, change contrast, change white balance and more. Particularly this is my preferred tool for developing Raw files.

Apple recently put on the market a very cool tool for handling Raw files that is Iphoto 5 a very cool application, but if you want professional features Aperture also distributed by the brand.

For Windows we have a collection of codecs that allow viewing of the Raw file directly in the viewed images.

There are also proprietary programs, distributed by machine manufacturers, many of them provided with all the necessary resources for developing digital negatives.

Nikon has on its website a complete suite of programs for viewing and finalizing Raw files, such as the viewnx 2 example.

Just like Canon that maintains a complete list of options for professional editing of your Raw files on your website, just put the model of your camera and low drivers and programs needed.

And for those who do not want to spend money on a program like Lightroom we also have a very cool list of programs with open source, or free applications.

Darktable for Linux is one of the most complete options on the market for those who use the Linus system!

LightZone is a complete option and available for the 3 largest operating systems.

There are many other programs either can be used with the example of Camera Raw, which is an addon for Photoshop, which has great power to process Raw files.

Well I believe that everything written here already covers what a normal human should be worrying about in relation to a Raw file!

Next time I’ll give a brief introduction about Lightroom so that we can in addition to photographing reveal our photos in the same way that professionals do.

And do you shoot raw or jpeg? Leave your comment!

Written by Rix Mascarenhas

Rix Mascarenhas is a photographer, videographer, and drone pilot at

Art lover, always involved with crafts, design, painting etc... As a photographer, I enjoy taking pictures and creating stories that have meaning and help people to thrive. My work is guided by the stories behind each scene that really represent the moment.


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