Processing Sony A6000 Raw files in Lightroom: Workflow and Settings Guide
The A6000 is one of Sony’s best selling mirrorless cameras, even with its successor the A6300 now in the market. While working with Sony RAW files in Lightroom may seem like a fairly straightforward process, there are lots of things that you can do to optimise your workflow. This guide will look at all these things, and give you the knowledge you need to get the best from your Sony RAW files, no matter what the situation.
The Sony A6000 is one of the company’s best selling mirrorless cameras, even with its successor the A6300 now in the market. The compact E-mount camera is a diminutive powerhouse, with its 24mp sensor and wide range of features. Shooting in Sony’s RAW format and working with Lightroom gives you a great degree of flexibility to work with your images. While working with Sony RAW files in Lightroom may seem like a fairly straightforward process, there are lots of things that you can do to optimise your workflow.
There are some aspects to the way Lightroom handles Sony RAW files by default that can benefit from tweaking, such as the default colour calibration. With a few simple techniques you can get the best out of the camera and the images that you have taken with it. This guide will look at all these things, and give you the knowledge you need to get the best from your Sony RAW files, no matter what the situation.
This guide is designed for Sony A6000 users who have a basic working knowledge of Adobe Photoshop Lightroom. It will not cover every use of the software, and it assumes you know the basics, such as how to import images, work with the Develop module and so on. It doesn’t assume that you are an expert however, and where possible, I’ve tried to write it to appeal to as wide a skill set as possible. This guide also assumes that you are shooting RAW. It will discuss some aspects of working with JPEG files briefly, but the bulk of this guide deals with working with photos shot using Sony’s ARW RAW format.
This book was written for Lightroom CC and Lightroom 6.1 but most of the topics should be relevant for Lightroom 5 as well. Some panels in the develop module as mentioned in the book may be in a slightly different place in previous versions of Lightroom
What’s Covered in this Guide
Here’s a breakdown of what topics are covered in the guide:
CHAPTER 1: RAW VS JPEG VS RAW + JPEG
The A6000 will let you shoot in three different formats. You can choose to shoot just JPEGs, just RAW files, or RAW and JPEG. In this chapter I discuss the merits of shooting RAW + JPEG and I discuss workflows for managing both in Lightroom. I also briefly discuss Sony’s compressed raw format and some of the controversy surrounding it
CHAPTER 2: SETTING BASIC SETTINGS AND CREATING AN IMPORT PRESET
If you’re shooting RAW files with the A6000, you may be disappointed when you first import them into Lightroom, especially if you’ve been looking at the JPEG output on your camera. The reason for this is that JPEG files have the contrast, colour settings and so on baked into the file.
There are ways to minimise this discrepancy, and that’s what this chapter is about. By creating a basic setup that sets a “base level” for your RAW files, it will save you a lot of work in the future and it will also mean that your images look better out of the camera when you first import them into Lightroom. With a few tweaks, you should see a big difference.
In this section I’m going to show you what to change to create a default setup, and how to save those changes as a preset to apply to imports in the future. I’m also going to show you the settings I use and recommend, which are included with this guide as a preset that you can try for yourself.
CHAPTER 3: FIXING COMMON PROBLEMS
In this chapter I look at how to address a number of issues that commonly crop up when processing RAW files from the Sony A6000. While many of these topics are common to all cameras, this chapter will approach the subject with a focus on how they affect images taken with the A6000 specifically.
Chapter 3 looks at the following issues that can occur with your images and ways to approach dealing with those problems:
• Correcting white balance and how white balance affects images.
• Tinting shadows and highlights.
• Fixing colour fringing.
• Manually setting distortion options.
• Fixing banding.
• Fixing shadow noise with photoshop.
CHAPTER 4: CREATIVE ADJUSTMENTS
In this chapter we look at some of the ways that you can creatively adjust your images in Lightroom. While this could be a book all of its own, we focus on some of the adjustments that you can make to match the in-camera options. In particular we look at creating black and white images, matching the adjustments available for the picture controls, and expanding the dynamic range, similar to the camera’s DRO settings. We also discuss shooting and processing HDR Images.
This guide also includes a set of develop module presets for Lightroom. These cover some of the subjects and settings that are covered in the guide. they are also included as pre-made presets for you to use.
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