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Long time archival
#1
Short form of the question: which file format should we use for long-term archival of our photos?

Long form with context.
I've been using Adobe Lightroom since October 2017 and Capture One from that date. I've been able to run Lightroom (the last version which didn't require a subscription) up to the beginning of this year; then I bought a new laptop, upgraded to macOS Big Sur and that old Lightroom can't run any longer. I bought PhotoSupreme that I'm now using for all the DAM operations in place of Lightroom. In case of need I still can run Lightroom in a virtualised Mojave, but I want to get rid of this as soon as possible.

Up to now I've always kept and archived the original RAW files for my photos (NEF for Nikon and ARW for Sony). Now I'm worried about two things:

1. That sometime in future the latest version of the RAW processing software I use won't be able to deal with my older files (e.g. Nikon D100, D70, ...)
2. That when I need to work again on a photo that was processed with an older piece of software I have to do a lot of work. I'm going to explain this with an example: I've started preparing a new photo book to print. Whenever I deal with a photo processed before October 2017 I have to export it with Lightroom - now I can still do that with the Virtual Machine, but as I said above I want to get rid of this approach. Without Lightroom I can post-process the photo from scratch with Capture One trying to visually match the look that I got with Lightroom (I exported low-res JPEGs for all the photos). Very doable,  but time consuming. If I had a non RAW file copy (e.g. TIFF) with all the post-processing applied I could just open it and convert to the desired format for printing.

Add to this the point that I'm fine with Capture One but I can't bet that, say, in ten years I'll be still running it (I can't even be sure Capture One will still exist).

I've been thinking of this kind of issue since a lot of years ago (2005, at the times of the OpenRaw initiative), but I never really worked on it. At the time I thought DNG could be an option, but now I'm not sure about it. I rather think a non-RAW format (JPEG, TIFF, ...) would be better.

So... which format? Capture One offers me: JPEG, JPEG XR, JPEG 2000, TIFF, PNG, PSD. I think that JPEG2000 would be ok, but CaptureOne doesn't support lossless compression (such as TIFF).
And what color profile to embed? sRGB of course is too narrow, but Capture One offers only AdobeRGB as alternative; unless I go with the native camera profile.
stoppingdown.net

 

Sony a6300, Sony a6000, Sony NEX-6, Sony E 10-18mm F4 OSS, Sony Zeiss Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm F4 ZA OSS, Sony FE 70-200mm F4 G OSS, Sigma 150-600mm Æ’/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Contemporary, Samyang 12mm Æ’/2, Sigma 30mm F2.8 DN | A, Meyer Gorlitz Trioplan 100mm Æ’/2.8, Samyang 8mm Æ’/3.5 fish-eye II | Zenit Helios 44-2 58mm Æ’/2 
Plus some legacy Nikkor lenses.
#2
If size is a concern then HEIFF is the obvious choice, but RAW converters I know don't offer conversion tp HEIC
#3
Interesting suggestion about HEIFF, thanks. Well, indeed I thought that I can pick *any* format that is reasonable and if Capture One doesn't export it I can go through exporting a TIFF and then converting with an external tool (Capture One allows to specify a post-processor after each export, and in any case I can easily implement a batch on my own).
stoppingdown.net

 

Sony a6300, Sony a6000, Sony NEX-6, Sony E 10-18mm F4 OSS, Sony Zeiss Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm F4 ZA OSS, Sony FE 70-200mm F4 G OSS, Sigma 150-600mm Æ’/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Contemporary, Samyang 12mm Æ’/2, Sigma 30mm F2.8 DN | A, Meyer Gorlitz Trioplan 100mm Æ’/2.8, Samyang 8mm Æ’/3.5 fish-eye II | Zenit Helios 44-2 58mm Æ’/2 
Plus some legacy Nikkor lenses.
#4
Short answer would be nobody knows. ;-) But that doens’t help.

I can share my approach at least. I do store photos I do care about in 3 different formats: raw, jpg and dng. Not any additional work needed, though, but for some longer time needed to move/ import files.

I shoot as raw&jpg. Jpg from camera is pure archive, while I do convert raws to dng while importing to Lightroom. In the end, I do export selected photos in jpg again. This last part will probably soon become something like HEIF, if it will indeed become mainstream. Which it didn’t so far.
#5
Yes, nobody knows :-) So it's useful to hear what others are doing.
stoppingdown.net

 

Sony a6300, Sony a6000, Sony NEX-6, Sony E 10-18mm F4 OSS, Sony Zeiss Vario-Tessar T* E 16-70mm F4 ZA OSS, Sony FE 70-200mm F4 G OSS, Sigma 150-600mm Æ’/5-6.3 DG OS HSM Contemporary, Samyang 12mm Æ’/2, Sigma 30mm F2.8 DN | A, Meyer Gorlitz Trioplan 100mm Æ’/2.8, Samyang 8mm Æ’/3.5 fish-eye II | Zenit Helios 44-2 58mm Æ’/2 
Plus some legacy Nikkor lenses.
  


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