FAQ FAQ  Forum Search   Events   Register Register  Login Login

Darktable as a replacement for Lightroom

Page  12>
Author
Mark Twain View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: 05 May 2013
Country: Austria
Status: Offline
Posts: 378
Post Options Post Options   Quote Mark Twain Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Darktable as a replacement for Lightroom
    Posted: 10 January 2018 at 12:46
Hi,

I just wanted to ask if anybody uses Darktable for post-processing and managing pictures?

I use Kubuntu as my daily driver and the sole purpose of Windows 7 on my hard drive is Lightroom (and sometimes a few games). Therefore I tried Darktable several times in the past, but two things kept me from using it:

1. I have a lot of collections in Lightroom (each collection represents a topic, like "Portrait", "Landscape" etc. with sub-collections) where I have put my pictures in. That is really handy!
2. I was never able to replicate my editing process in Darktable that I was used to in Lightroom, so the results were disappointing.

Recently, I stumbled upon the following video on youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aU8z81INOBU I think it is an awesome demonstration of how the editing process in Darktable works. It is so different to Lightroom! I tried much of the described steps during the last days, and though I need ten to fifteen times longer for a picture in Darktable than in Lightroom the results look fine to me this time.

The workflow in Darktable needs much more time (at least for me) but I think there are much more possibilities than in Lightroom! Once you have internalised the editing method, which is basically a stacking of multiple layers of the picture where the edits are saved, editing gets much easier.

Unfortunately I have not yet found a decent solution to imitate the collections in Lightroom (Tags are inferior in my opinion as they do not have a hierarchy) and performance in Darktable is also worse (though I don't use the NVIDIA graphics card on my laptop and instead rely on the onboard graphics card because then the laptop is not so noisy). Hardware upgrade could help

Is anybody else here using Darktable?

Regards

PS: Will upload a picture today or tomorrow

https://www.darktable.org/

Edited by stiuskr - 10 January 2018 at 23:00
 



Back to Top
wetapunga View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: 02 September 2007
Country: New Zealand
Location: New Zealand
Status: Offline
Posts: 5061
Post Options Post Options   Quote wetapunga Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 January 2018 at 22:41
I'm interested that you've started using it, as it's something I've become aware of recently. I haven't tried it, but I can add I'm interested in your experiences with it. Looking forward to the pics.

a7R, a77ii | Minolta 17-35mm G, 20mm f2.8, 35-105mm f3.5-4.5 O, 50mm f2.8 M, 70-210 f4, 85mm f1.4 G, 100mm f2.8 M, 300mm f4 G | Sony 16-50mm f2.8,CZ16-80mm f3.5-4.5, 70-200mm f2.8, 135mm f2.8 STF
Back to Top
minolta_mutley View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: 01 August 2010
Country: Belgium
Location: Belgium
Status: Online
Posts: 410
Post Options Post Options   Quote minolta_mutley Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 January 2018 at 23:01
Maybe RawTherapee is a better option, one never knows.
Maybe you can try to split the functions among programs - use digiKam for the catalog and link that to your preferred raw-editor. I cannot comment on how good Lightroom is for the catalog-function - i never used it as such - and if i'm using something on windows it's C1.
My color calibration is done with a colorhug (you can get it from the UK) under linux (debian testing with KDE).
Back to Top
stiuskr View Drop Down
Moderator Group
Moderator Group

Joined: 01 September 2006
Country: United States
Location: West Virginia
Status: Offline
Posts: 10930
Post Options Post Options   Quote stiuskr Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 January 2018 at 23:03
First I've heard of Darktable myself, and you left out one important bit. OPEN SOURCE FREEWARE!
Rob Suits Jr.
a99M2 a99 a77 a700 KM7D|Min24/2.8 Min35/2 So50/1.4 So50/2.8 Min85/1.4G Tam90/2.8 Tam180/3.5|Tam17-50 CZ24-70G2 KM28-75D So70-200G1 So70-300G So70-400G1| SonyF60 AD200R2
Back to Top
Tue Romanow View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: 12 September 2006
Country: Denmark
Location: Middelfart, Fyn
Status: Offline
Posts: 903
Post Options Post Options   Quote Tue Romanow Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 January 2018 at 09:01
I've been using Darktable for a while. I think it's quite capable and has a lot of great options. What I don't like is exactly what you mention: Collections or some other sort of organizing images. Also, it's not the fastest application....but it's free!

Another free option could be RawTherapee. That's the one I use most of the time. It's packed with features. It still doesn't do collections as such but I still find it a lot easier when handling a lot of shots at a time and it feels slightly faster.
There's no such thing as too many lenses.
Back to Top
Nikleo View Drop Down
Newbie
Newbie

Joined: 28 December 2017
Country: Netherlands
Location: Den Haag
Status: Offline
Posts: 50
Post Options Post Options   Quote Nikleo Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 January 2018 at 12:36
I am also trying Darktable these days, since they recently released a Windows version (finally!).

My current workflow is RAW processing with minimum adjustments (so just fixing the white balance, overall exposure, distortion, horizon, cropping, noise reduction, CA and vignetting if necessary) in DxO Optics Pro 9.5, occasionally making use of its Prime NR engine, converting the result into 16bit TIFF and then doing all retouching, more subtle exposure and colour adjustments and dodging/burning, as well as resizing in GIMP 2.8 since it has layers and masks and all that stuff.

Since stable builds of GIMP do not work with 16bit files yet, I've been meaning to find a way to do more of the editing earlier in the process, in RAW converter. Looks like Darktable might be a solution, ability to use masks and do local adjustments in layer-ish form is very welcome. We'll see!
 



Back to Top
craig66 View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: 03 April 2012
Country: Australia
Status: Offline
Posts: 625
Post Options Post Options   Quote craig66 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 January 2018 at 13:27
You can have a hierarchy of tags in DigiKam. I use Darktable for RAW development/editing and DigiKam for cataloging. The big advantage of Darktable over Rawtherapee is selective editing and masks. I believe Rawtherapee can use Adobe lens profiles for lens corrections. Darktable uses the lensfun library. The list of currently supported lenses in lensfun is   here. If your lens is not supported, shoot some calibration images and upload them as described here
Back to Top
Mark Twain View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: 05 May 2013
Country: Austria
Status: Offline
Posts: 378
Post Options Post Options   Quote Mark Twain Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 January 2018 at 20:04
Hi,

as promised here two pictures I edited with darktable:

The first one is quite difficult. I don't really know what to do with the strong shadows on the right hand side, so I just ignored them. The foreground (grass and rock) needed some serious brightening and more contrast and saturation as a result. Furthermore, the sky on the right side is a bit darker (due to the polariser), so I made that a bit more brighter. Overall I increased the "compression" to increase lows and reduce highs. That was a beautiful day!

#1 original


#1 edited


The second image needs more brightness and more microcontrast due to the distances. As the sun already disappeared the grass needs a bit more saturation and the sky - well, that sky is just boring as it is and needs more pop. So I tried my best with my newly acquired but still limited Darktable skills. Maybe the sky pops a bit too much already in the edited version...

#2 original


#2 edited
Back to Top
Mark Twain View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: 05 May 2013
Country: Austria
Status: Offline
Posts: 378
Post Options Post Options   Quote Mark Twain Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 January 2018 at 15:17
Hmm, #2 is still very dark and furthermore the horizon needs some adjustment
Back to Top
Miranda F View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: 11 January 2014
Country: United Kingdom
Location: Bristol
Status: Offline
Posts: 2889
Post Options Post Options   Quote Miranda F Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 January 2018 at 22:08
In that situation I generally use DR+ on the camera to ensure the blacks aren't crushed, contrast +2 to bring back some contrast in the highlights, and then play with the tone curve to get lighten the darker areas without washing them out. Not always possible, though; A few days ago I took some pics from Dunkery Beacon (the highest point in Southern England) looking toward a well-lit but very hazy S. wales coast. I couldn't find a PP setting which made both the dark moor foreground and the distant bright shore look okay.
Miranda F & Sensorex, Sony A58, 5d, Dynax 4, 5, 60, 500si/600si/700si/800si, various Sony & Minolta lenses, several Tamrons, lots of MF primes and *far* too many old film cameras . . .
Back to Top
Mark Twain View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: 05 May 2013
Country: Austria
Status: Offline
Posts: 378
Post Options Post Options   Quote Mark Twain Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 January 2018 at 11:18
Originally posted by Miranda F Miranda F wrote:

In that situation I generally use DR+ on the camera to ensure the blacks aren't crushed, contrast +2 to bring back some contrast in the highlights, and then play with the tone curve to get lighten the darker areas without washing them out. Not always possible, though; A few days ago I took some pics from Dunkery Beacon (the highest point in Southern England) looking toward a well-lit but very hazy S. wales coast. I couldn't find a PP setting which made both the dark moor foreground and the distant bright shore look okay.


I suppose you are shooting JPEG?
Back to Top
Mark Twain View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: 05 May 2013
Country: Austria
Status: Offline
Posts: 378
Post Options Post Options   Quote Mark Twain Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 January 2018 at 18:42
Another try. This one was done in ~10 minutes.

Original:


There is hardly any (micro-)contrast in this picture, also it is dark. So I brightened the picture and avoided the waterfall by applying a parametric mask. I brightened the right side (where the wood) is with a brush. Then I added lots of contrast and cropped to 16:9. Oh boy, that looks much better (though I am not sure about whitebalance and maybe there is too much microcontrast now):


Edited version:


Back to Top
carusoswi View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: 04 August 2007
Country: United States
Location: Philadelphia
Status: Offline
Posts: 456
Post Options Post Options   Quote carusoswi Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 January 2018 at 21:54
I have been using DT quite a bit lately. I've been aware of it for years, but never really tried to get into it until now. In fact, I never used LR until late last year, but, out of curiosity, tried it and like it very much.

I do not use the database features in either application, just the development modules. Obviously, LR integrates very nicely with PS CC. But, if you are using the latest development version of Gimp, you will discover #1 its installation also includes the installation of DT as a RAW converter. You do your "thing" in DT, close the image, and it automatically opens in GIMP for any further adjustments you care to make.

BTW, the development version of GIMP now handles higher bit depths, also.

The DT as GIMP plugin is what really motivated me to dig into DT.

One thing that DT has that almost no other RAW editor (including LR) has is the ability to localize your adjustments. DT allows you to mask areas to which you want to confine your edits. You can also inverse those masks to apply the changes to all but the masked areas.

This allows you to make more adjustments in the RAW file rather than moving to TIFF in your pixel editor to make those same adjustments.

I find DT to be very powerful and feature-packed.

Loving it so far.

Caruso
A100/700/900/Sony1870/Sig50mmf2 .8DGMacro/Tam1118 DII/Tam200500/Tam60mDIIIF2Macro/F56AM/Viv283/Max9000/Minolta4000/Min3570/Max9/Min1002.8 D/Sony50m1.4/Min85 1.4/MinAF35105
Back to Top
Tue Romanow View Drop Down
Senior Member
Senior Member

Joined: 12 September 2006
Country: Denmark
Location: Middelfart, Fyn
Status: Offline
Posts: 903
Post Options Post Options   Quote Tue Romanow Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 January 2018 at 22:27
@carusoswi

That's exactly why I use DT for certain jobs. The parametric masking module is extremely powerful when you get to know it properly. I haven't found anything like it in any other application.
There's no such thing as too many lenses.
Back to Top
Dyxum main page >  Forum Home > Equipment forums > Digital Darkroom Page  12>

Forum Jump Forum Permissions View Drop Down



This page was generated in 0.078 seconds.

Monitor calibration strip

Dyxum.com - Home of the alpha system photographer

In memory of Cameron Hill - brettania

Feel free to contact us if needed.