Help me archive my image files!
September 6, 2006 8:59 PM Subscribe
PC-based digital photographer here... Does anyone supplement camera RAW file archives with JPEGs, and/or use any specific browsing/cataloging apps to speed up library searches?
posted by brianvan to computers & internet (9 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I recently transitioned to using RAW capture on my digital SLR, as opposed to writing JPEG format. I've noticed that 6mp source JPEGs are not the fastest-loading file format out there, but the RAW files are egregiously slow to load in all applications on my PC (Photoshop, Picasa, IrfanView, MS Picture Viewer shell extension, etc). Sure, they load fine, but they take so damn long! I can't just flip-through pictures; I have to wait for them to load and sharpen in nearly all my applications. I feel the need to correct this somehow.
I have disk space (much) + plenty of RAM (1GB), and my processor should be plenty fast (1.8ghz P4) to handle the sort of images we're talking about here. So the performance bottleneck, sans upgrades, is the size/complexity of the RAW files. And I do NOT plan to buy more equiment to fix this.
Anyway, the bigger problem is that I'm at the point where I'd like to take about 70 GB of source images offline, but I'm undecided about the storage media (do I really buy an offline hard disk for this? DVD-RAM is too small and perishable) and the cataloging (if I don't make small local copies of the image files, how will I know what is what exactly?). I'd enjoy best a solution that provides automated offline backups, but that also keeps sufficient local copies so that I can browse through and pull larger files from archives. I'm not sure if Picasa or Adobe Bridge fit these needs on my platform. (FYI, Bridge is dog-slow on my computer)
A potential solution: go through a tedious process of generating 600x400 samples of each RAW image in a replica directory tree. These I can browse through efficiently and store locally. It doesn't link to originals through any one-click solution, but with my existing storage tree, I'm sure I can match the preview/small images to their offline parents pretty easily (as long as I have online access to them... in which case I have an external-chassis 300GB hard drive to store copy #1). And while I have local archive access figured out (USB2.0 300GB HD), having an extra offline HD copy of the originals would be my catastropic recovery solution.