Choosing image quality, Raw vs JPG and post processing photos on Adobe Lightroom

Which of the two is better? Am I gonna use the RAW? How about the JPG type? What if I use both just to be sure… These are the questions that pop to my head when I first lay my hand on my Canon 1000D camera. But before we proceed to actual illustrations, let’s do a little recap on how to switch image qualities on your cam.

Press Menu button, go to the first tab/selection, then go to Quality. You’ll notice there’s a lot of qualities to choose from like S, M, L, RAW and RAW+L.

At first, I’m using RAW+L to see the difference between them. But then later, I’m switching from one quality to another since using RAW+L quality will eat a lot of space on your memory card. Just do remember that using RAW type consumes approximately from 8-10mb max on your memory card per shot, while L (jpg) consumes from 2-4mb max.

Many photographers prefer using RAW because of its clarity, image quality and post processing capabilities, compare to JPG types. Below are the illustrations and actual shots when I’m still using RAW+L quality, so be the judge ladies and gents, compare and conclude! To start of the judgement, I bring you my first shot, taken at the grounds of The Fort.

1st Shot: Skater Boy

Picture Style
User Defined 1: Monochrome
Filter effect: Green

L (jpg) image quality from Canon 1000D
L (jpg) image quality from Canon 1000D

Here are two images generated on a single shot. The above image is L, while the image below is RAW. Here’s what happens when you open the RAW file on Adobe Lightroom. The Picture Style is discarded and retains its original format and colors. So if you’re going to use the Mono Style on your cam, you should use the L(jpg) format.

RAW quality image when opened on Adobe Lightroom
RAW quality image when opened on Adobe Lightroom

Doing a little post-processing on this one, like increasing exposure, brightness and contrast, here’s the output:

Post-processed Raw quality image on Adobe Lightroom
Post-processed Raw quality image on Adobe Lightroom

Applying the same adjustments here on L (jpg) quality, here’s the output:

Post-processed L (jpg) quality image on Adobe Lightroom
Post-processed L (jpg) quality image on Adobe Lightroom

Setting the Saturation on both RAW and JPG types to -100, here’s the output:

Applying Black and White colors on both Raw and JPG quality
Applying Black and White colors on both Raw and JPG quality

Applying saved preset on both RAW and JPG image quality using Adobe Lightroom, here it is…
Preset used: Creative – Antique Light

Creative - Antique Light applied on Raw image quality
Creative - Antique Light applied on Raw image quality
Creative - Antique Light applied on L (jpg) image quality
Creative - Antique Light applied on L (jpg) image quality

2nd Shot: Lonely Coffee just for One

Here are the two coffees generated on one shot.

Coffee on RAW quality image
Coffee on RAW quality image

Above image: Coffee on RAW quality.
Below image: Coffee on JPG quality image
Spot the differences?

Coffee on L (jpg) quality image
Coffee on L (jpg) quality image

Doing a little post-processing on this one, like the ones we did before on the Skater Boy, here’s the output:

Post-processed Raw quality image on Adobe Lightroom
Post-processed Raw quality image on Adobe Lightroom

Adobe Lightroom has this cool tool in which you can rotate and crop the image. It’s like rotating the image but the position remains. Check out the image below.

Rotating (Crop Overlay)

Crop Overlay Tool on Adobe Lightroom
Crop Overlay Tool on Adobe Lightroom

And for the final touch, the Watermarks. This will serve as your identifier, signature and the owner of the product or media. Watermarking can also be used for a wide range of applications such as Copyright protection, etc, etc…

Coffee on its finish product
Coffee on its finished product
Skater Boy on its finish product
Skater Boy on its finished product

Already made your conclusion? Either of the two image qualities that you may use is fine. It will only depend on your shots and how will you use it. If you lack in memory space, you can use the L (jpg) and other image quality except for RAW. My suggestion? Buy a higher memory for you to store more shots, and it’s not that expensive by the way.

Thanks for dropping by to my Raw vs. JPG Gallery! By the way, if you like this post, you can drop some comments and rate it. Just click those stars and gimme a hell yeah! \m/
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Gears Used:
Canon EOS 1000D
Canon EF-S 18-55mm kit lens

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