View Full Version : Silkypix

3rd September 2008, 11:15 AM
Although I have CS3 and the latest raw converter and have tried many other raw converters I have always tended to gravitate back to Silkypix for raw conversion because I just got the (unscientific ) feeling the tones were smoother.

Now I have come across a article from a fine art photogrpaher that might explain my "feeling" :)

Editing of Master files: combining SilkyPix and Photoshop
SilkyPix has a true 16-bit processing engine under the hood. The most popular professional photo editing application, Photoshop, surprisingly handles only up to 15 bits of the image data. Losing that 16th bit means that an entire HALF of the tonal information is ignored by Photoshop when the image file is opened and is subsequently discarded once it is saved. Considering the importance of the tonal information in creation of fine art images, I recommend using the full 16-bit power of the raw conversion process to create a full tonal base for the desired look of the Master image file while keeping an overall contrast of the image low and avoiding clipping by staying away from pure whites and blacks. The tonal and color adjustments in Photoshop should be applied only in adjustment layers.

Dick Bowman
3rd September 2008, 02:56 PM
I feel pretty positive about Silkypix in terms of results, but I'm a bit less enthused of their sales arm (Shortcut) who seem a bit casual about responding to queries (there's a forum, and there seem to be one or two "officialish" support people who are responsive - but Shortcut themselves seem to keep a low profile).

I'd probably splash the cash if I felt that the sales/support people were more responsive. When I first looked - a couple of years ago - Silkypix themselves were quite approachable. I can understand their wanting to have a sales/distribution agent, but I wonder whether they've made a good choice.

3rd September 2008, 06:49 PM
one of the things that has always confused me is that the cameras only have 12-bit or 14-bit RAW capture.
That is then mapped to 15-bit or 16 bit and then we are viewing it in 8-bit
don't ask me to explain...I cant .... but it makes me confused over the difference between Silypix and PS

Jim Ford
3rd September 2008, 07:35 PM
I don't think Photoshop users need exercise themselves too much over 15, rather than 16 bits. Jpeg users seem to do quite well on a meagre 8 bits!

Quoting Bruce Fraser on Photoshops 15 bits:

"One advantage of this approach is that it provides an unambiguous mid point between black and white, which is very useful in imaging operations such as blending modes, that a channel comprising 65,536 levels lacks."

I tried Silkypix once, but IIRC found the interface pretty wierd!