For many years, my format of choice to write photographs has been RAW. Exclusively RAW. And then development on the PC. Partly due to the desire to write picture with most complete data to be able in the future to get maximum quality final pictures. Even if this “getting maximum quality” stays in the category of good wishes. Partly due to the fact, that my cameras so far didn’t process shots the way I would be satisfied. So there is nothing strange in fact that just after I started shooting with X-Pro2, my search for best RAW (or RAF) developer for files written by this camera has also started. Everybody rate Iridient as the top developer. But for me it has one, but huge disadvantage: I would have to buy Mac just to be able to run Iridient Developer! Just because Iridient works exclusively on Mac. So for me – Iridient has been disqualified at the very beginning. The more that Iridient is a great product (if you believe the admiration of users), but the product of one man. And what if this man get bored? Another option is Adobe Lightroom. But Lightroom is not the best, or even a very good developer. It is a great program for cataloging photos, but processing pictures leaves a lot for improvement. That’s why for Nikon RAWs I bought a really great developing software, which is the DxO Optics Pro 10. This is indeed the highest class of developing RAW files of any kind, and certainly NEFs. But … well … DxO Optics Pro at all, in any way, does not support the Fujifilm X-Trans RAF files. Introduction of support for this format would cause serious “protocol disorder”, as can be read in the explanation by DxO. Anyway, DxO Optics Pro 10 has been disqualified too, because it does not support RAFs. So what remains? Among the best developers probably only the PhaseOne Capture One Pro 9 has left. And this is actually the developer, which works really well with RAFs. The program itself is a powerful tool for development and even fairly easy to learn. It has only one disadvantage: you can not just open the RAW file and develop it. Unnecessarily authors have made use of the program quite hard, requiring the user to use either the catalog, or the session. If you use the catalog, it works like Lightroom catalog: you have to import files to be able to process them. But I already have a catalog – the Lightroom catalog. I do not want to create another catalog just so I could develop one or two photos. So session. The session is intended as a way of working with images obtained together in a short period of time, during one… well… session 🙂 It would seem to be the perfect solution. But! To start working with images, first I must import them to the… session. And in this case there is no option other than to copy or move images physically to the session folder on the hard drive. But I already have photos on disc – imported, copied to disc and cataloged by Lightroom! I do not want to copy them again, this time to a different place! And here it turns out that it is not possible to work with pictures without copying them to the session directory 🙁
With enough problems before I even started developing RAW files, I started to test the X-Pro2 abilities to develop files in-camera. And as it turns out: so you can even drop RAW files at all. Yes, each camera can write jpgs. But not all cameras can save up to three (3) versions, developed in three different ways! I immediately set my X-Pro2 to write versions for Velvia, Provia and Acros. The older ones know what’s going on! And the younger ones, I will let you check in Goole 😛
Below are examples of such development, straight from the camera, without any additional corrections (except rescaling for website).