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Converting Motion Snapshots for Viewing on a Computer

Simple how-to guide to converting Motion Snapshot files on a Mac or…

Beginner

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4.3 Rating
Understanding ISO Sensitivity

Photography is built on the three pillars of exposure: shutter speed, aperture and…

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What is XQD and Why Should I Use it?

Benefits of the XQD media card format explained

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Dedicated Time Release Movie Mode and Time Lapse Using the Built-in Interval Timer

Deciding which technique to use with…

Advanced

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Shooting with Remote Cameras

Andrew Hancock discusses the art of shooting sports with remote cameras

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Chromatic Aberration

Chromatic aberration is a phenomenon in which light rays passing through a lens focus at different…

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New Directions: The D750 Inspires Creating, and Sharing, New Images

Lindsay Silverman shoots with the D750 DSLR

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KeyMission 360 Workflow Options

Best workflow options for KeyMission 360

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Preserve and Protect: Got a Backup Plan for Your Photos?

Don't lose those precious photos. Make sure you've got a backup…

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Shooting Spectacular Sunrises and Sunsets

Jim Harmer’s tips for photographing at dawn and dusk

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Video Tutorial Series: Getting Started with your Nikon D3300 DSLR

Series of six videos to help you set-up and shoot and…

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Photographing the Night Sky: Star Trails

Astrophotography: tips for making great star trail images

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Nikon Electronic Format (NEF)

Exclusive to Nikon cameras, the NEF is Nikon's RAW file format. RAW image files, sometimes referred to as digital negatives, contain all the image information captured by the camera's sensor, along with the image's metadata (the camera's identification and its settings, the lens used and other information). The NEF file is written to the memory card in either an uncompressed or "lossless" compressed form. 

The primary benefit of writing images to the memory card in NEF format rather than TIFF or JPEG is that no in-camera processing for white balance, hue, tone and sharpening are applied to the NEF file; rather, those values are retained as instruction sets included in the file. You can change the instruction set as many times as you like without ever disturbing the original image's RAW data. Another benefit of the NEF file is that depending on the camera, it retains 12-bit or 14-bit data, resulting in an image with a far greater tonal range than an eight-bit JPEG or TIFF file.

After-capture processing of the NEF file by Nikon's Capture NX2 software, or other imaging programs, offers greater control over the final image than the processing of a JPEG or a TIFF. After processing, the NEF file can be saved as a TIFF, JPEG or again as a NEF with the addition of any applied Capture NX2 processing saved inside the file as a second or alternate instruction set. As long as the original NEF file is preserved, the "digital negative" remains untouched; processing a NEF file does not alter the original instruction set.

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Enter the Nikon Photo Contest 2016-2017

Nikon is once again announcing the dates of its global photo contest. The entry period is now open, and will run from October 17, 2016 through January 27, 2017. Visit the website to learn about the categories, find out how to enter and more.