What Does a DNG Converter Do?
The DNG Converter is an Adobe product that helps you store the raw files created by your digital camera. DNG stands for Digital Negative, which is a type of public archival format for these images. This product helps you access your raw image even if it is not supported by a particular software program, and it basically creates an industry standard for all types of raw files.
Problems with Raw Formats
The raw format is basically a type of proprietary technology, which is exclusive to the type of camera that you use. For example, if you have a Nikon camera, then you take pictures in the NEF raw format. But, if you have a Canon camera, then you create either CRW or CR2 raw images. There is no one standard for raw images.
The DNG format creates an archive that reads any type of raw image no matter which type of camera that you have. In fact, certain camera and software manufacturers are now developing supports for this archive. These brands include Apple, Casio, Samsung, Canto, Leica, Extensis, Hasselblad and Ricoh.
Benefits for the Photographer
The DNG Converter offers a variety of different benefits to consumers and professionals. For one, you’ll be able to open your raw file with nearly any type of software program. This eliminates the hunt for programs that support your camera’s raw format.
Further, you’ll only need one program for all different type of camera models. For example, if you take personal photographs with your Canon and your professional photos with your Nikon, then you only need a single solution to read both of these formats.
Benefits for the Manufacturers
Software and hardware manufacturers also get something out of this standard as well. It allows you to easily create new camera models with different raw formats since programs like Photoshop can support any type of raw format. It also creates a single, common format, which means that consumers can use a variety of different third-party software programs. They won’t be constrained to just proprietary products.
The DNG format also makes it easier to test cameras, reducing the cost of research and development. If a variety of programs can support a variety of raw formats, quality assurance professionals only need to use one program for multiple cameras.
Plus, photographers are more likely to try new cameras if they know that they don’t have to change all of their programs with a new camera. This will lead to more experimentation and more opportunities for photographers to adopt new camera types and models.
Available Support Programs
The DNG Profile Editor is a free program from Adobe Photoshop that allows you to make and/or change your camera’s profile. Input your camera’s base profile, and then change the Color Table, Tone Curve and Color Matrices. You can currently download this program from the Adobe Labs website.
The DNG SDK interprets and writes your DNG files, and it converts your data into formats that is supported by other photography software programs. You can download this program for free from the Microsoft website.