I’m thinking about getting a new digital camera, and one of the modes many of the better cameras have is RAW mode. The camera records data in 12-bit-per-channel or even greater color space, and also saves data like white-balance adjustment.
When brought into a photo editor, there’s much more room in the color space to adjust levels and color, reducing the grain and corruption that stems from pushing the curves too much.
I was worried that linux wouldn’t have up-to-date support for RAW mode files, but I was wrong! A little googling, and I found the RawPhoto GIMP-2.0 plug-in which puts a nice face on David Craw’s raw photo decoder. All I had to do was compile David’s program (he provides the gcc line on his site) and run gimptool-2.1 –install on the rawphoto program.
Now I can open up raw photos and play with the brightness and contrast in 48-bit colorspace before I bring it into the 24-bit land of the gimp.