Shooting RAW vs JPEG

Raw and JPEG are two common image file formats used in digital photography.


  • Raw images are unprocessed data directly from the camera's image sensor.
  • They contain more information and provide more flexibility for post-processing.
  • Raw files have larger file sizes and require specialized software for viewing and editing.


  • JPEG images are processed and compressed images.
  • They have smaller file sizes and are more widely compatible with image editing software and web browsers.
  • JPEG images have limited editing capability as some of the original data is lost during compression.

Ultimately, the choice between raw and JPEG depends on the user's personal preference and their workflow. Raw files are better suited for professional photographers and image editors who need the highest image quality, while JPEG is more convenient for everyday photography.

Advantages for shooting in RAW:

  1. More Dynamic Range: Raw images have a wider dynamic range, meaning more detail can be captured in bright and dark areas of the image.
  2. Non-Destructive Editing: Raw images can be edited without permanently altering the original data, allowing for more flexible post-processing.
  3. Greater Colour Control: Raw images contain more colour information, which allows for greater control over colour correction and white balance during post-processing.
  4. Larger Bit Depth: Raw images typically have a larger bit depth, resulting in more colour and tonal information compared to JPEGs.
  5. Better Image Quality: Raw images retain more detail and sharpness than JPEGs, especially in high contrast and low light conditions.
  6. More Flexibility: Raw images can be processed using different software and editing techniques, allowing for more creative control.

Overall, shooting in raw format provides more control over the final image and results in higher quality images, especially for professional photographers and serious hobbyists.

Advantages to shooting in JPEG:

  1. Smaller File Size: JPEG images are compressed, resulting in smaller file sizes compared to raw images. This makes it easier to store and transfer more photos on a memory card, hard drive, or other storage media.
  2. Wide Compatibility: JPEG is a widely used image format that is compatible with many image editing software programs and web browsers, making it easier to share photos with others.
  3. Faster Camera Performance: Shooting in JPEG format requires less processing power from the camera, resulting in faster image capture and less battery drain.
  4. Convenient Post-Processing: Most cameras apply basic post-processing to JPEG images, such as colour correction and sharpening, making it easier to achieve a good-looking image without the need for extensive editing.
  5. Real-Time Image Review: JPEG images can be viewed and edited immediately on the camera's screen or a computer without the need for specialized software, allowing for quick and easy image review.

Overall, shooting in JPEG format provides a convenient and practical solution for everyday photography, especially for those who prioritize ease of use and file management over image quality and editing control.

Why would you shoot in both RAW and JPEG?

Shooting in both raw and JPEG format provides a balance between image quality and convenience. Here are several reasons why you may want to shoot in both formats:

  1. Best of Both Worlds: By shooting in both raw and JPEG, you get the benefits of raw images, such as maximum editing control and high image quality, as well as the convenience of JPEGs, such as smaller file size and real-time image review.
  2. Quick Sharing: JPEG images can be easily shared and viewed on a wide range of devices, making it ideal for quick sharing on social media or with friends and family.
  3. Backup: Having both raw and JPEG versions of an image provides a backup in case one file becomes corrupted or lost.
  4. Immediate Feedback: Shooting in JPEG format allows for real-time image review and the ability to see how the final image will look, while raw images can be edited and adjusted later for a more polished final product.
  5. Workflow Efficiency: Shooting in both raw and JPEG can streamline your workflow by providing immediate results for quick review and editing, while also allowing for more extensive editing on raw images as needed.

Ultimately, shooting in both raw and JPEG format provides a flexible solution that allows photographers to take advantage of the best of both formats and achieve their desired results in a more efficient and effective manner.

In conclusion, shooting in raw format provides several advantages for photographers looking to capture the highest quality images and retain maximum control over their work. Raw images offer greater dynamic range, non-destructive editing, greater colour control, larger bit depth, and better image quality compared to JPEGs. With raw format, photographers have more creative control over the final image and can produce stunning results with the right post-processing techniques. While shooting in JPEG can be convenient, raw format is the preferred choice for professional photographers and serious hobbyists who prioritize image quality and versatility in their photography. Ultimately, shooting in raw format provides a wider range of opportunities for capturing and creating the best images possible.

I personally shoot with two memory cards in the camera and this allows me to always shoot in RAW, yes they are larger files, but at the end of the day it gives me a lot more flexibility when it comes to the post processing images and having high quality images.

I hope that you found this useful, if you have any further questions, let me know in the comments section.

Until next time,


The importance of post processing in Digital photography

Post-processing is the process of editing and enhancing digital images after they have been captured in camera.  This can include adjusting the exposure, color, sharpness, and other aspects of the image to create the desired final result.  This does not mean manipulating the image and replacing skies, trees with rainbows etc.  That is a whole different discussion.  Think of the images on the memory card in your camera as the film we had in the past, and the post processing as you handing in your film to be developed.

Challenges New Photographers Face

There are many challenges new photographers will face along their journey. This too will be the case for your more seasoned photographers as facing challenges is simply just a part of life.

Where is the fun with no challenges right? Challenges are opportunities for growth and development. This too can help build resilience, increase self-awareness and create a sense of purpose and accomplishment.

Photography is both a challenging and rewarding pursuit that requires creativity, technical skill; which can be learnt, a lot of practice and most importantly, patience. In saying this, even the most experienced photographers can struggle with certain aspects of the craft.

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