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Seeing all the way to the edge of the frame of the Lumix LX10 camera using RawTherapee

Posted in Personal by Will on Thursday, September 20th, 2018 ~ 9am

You’re not meant to see the edges of the frame, because lenses have difficulty providing the same kind of quality at the edges that they provide at the center.

So, cameras such as the Panasonic LUMIX DMC-LX10 automatically cut off the edges. (The sensor records the whole image but lops off the sides when it presents the image to you). The Panasonic LUMIX DMC-LX10 is an excellent camera by the way, and you cannot fault Panasonic for their decision.

But sometimes, you really want to see as much as possible of what you photographed.

So, how to stop the edges from being automatically cut off?

You’d expect that the answer would be to use Lightroom to develop your pictures. Lightroom is one of the best applications to develop pictures, but Lightroom honors the Panasonic LUMIX DMC-LX10’s built-in lens profile – meaning, it cuts the edges off just like Panasonic wanted. And at least on the final desktop version of Lightroom, which is the version I use, you can’t tell it to stop doing that.

So, you have to turn to a lesser-known application, RawTherapee, an independent effort originally written by Gábor Horváth of Budapest, now developed “by a team of people from around the world”.

On a Mac (I can’t speak to the Windows version) RawTherapee is clunky – it barely notices when you move your pointer, it doesn’t even instantly display the photo you want to work on when you click on your selection, and it has very limited color correction compared to Lightroom. Its annoyances are many.

But it has the advantage of not respecting the built-in lens profile!

Meaning, you can get the full picture, like so:

(Comparison of the same photo as presented by the camera versus the wider version you were never meant to see)

You have to be shooting RAW, not JPGs, in order to do this. (The Panasonic LUMIX DMC-LX10’s version of RAW is called “RW2″ but it is the same for all intents and purposes).

You end up with an even wider angle of view than what the camera is advertised as having.

Here’s how another photographer put it. He refers to Micro Four Thirds cameras. The Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX10 actually uses a 1” sensor, smaller than a Micro Four Thirds sensor, but that’s not relevant. He says, “Micro Four Thirds cameras have a lens correction profile (lcp) saved with the raw file, but not applied to the raw file. Many software, including some third party software like Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom, apply this lcp automatically when processing the raw file. These images look like the JPEG … Other raw software ignores the embedded lcp, like DxO and RawTherapee and RPP64.”

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