Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 27

Thread: TIFF when to use ?

  1. #1
    wmoore's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Gloucester, UK
    Posts
    327
    Real Name
    Warrick

    TIFF when to use ?

    Hi

    I don't really understand TIFF files and when to use them. I do know they are used when printing an image, and I find that external PP programs that run from lightroom convert the file to TIFF. But what else are TIFF used for ?

    Thanks
    Warrick

  2. #2

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    Not sure if this is what your looking for. Hope it helps.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tagged_Image_File_Format

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    New Zealand
    Posts
    17,662
    Real Name
    Have a guess :)

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    Once a RAW file has been passed through from the RAW converter it needs to be saved in some format if the image is a "keeper". If one is an Adobe user then using TIFF files don't make a lot of sense since Adobe have their own PSD format which offers smaller file sizes and more compatibility with other Adobe products, but if one ISN'T using Adobe products then using TIFF is appropriate if one wishes to retain as much information in the file (to assist with future editing) as possible (including layers).

    JPEGs are optimised for size - and they're just fine for printing from. The thing folks need to understand though is that there is often a "size control" when a JPEG is created; in Photoshop it ranges from 1 through to 12 ... at a setting of 1 the file will be very small -- but the quality will be awful - whereas at 12, the quality will be visually indistinguishable from a TIFF (both on screen and in print), but the file size will be relatively big (although still much smaller than a TIFF file of the same image).

    So basically ... if you want to print files from JPEGs, just make sure that they're saved at a high-quality setting first. If you want to edit the files some more - and for some reason you can't use a PSD file type - then you should be using TIFF.

  4. #4
    John Morton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    New York NY USA
    Posts
    459

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    I like TIFFs. I use them all the time. When I do my initial processing of NEF image files in Nikon Capture NX2, I save them as TIFFs and then I process those files in Photoshop.

    I'll also convert my NEF files into TIFFs before I run them through an HDR program like FDR Tools. Then I can save the HDR version as a TIFF and open it in Photoshop, where I can blend it with a single exposure from the HDR sequence to 'subdue' the HDR effect.

    TIFFs support layers, so I can save my images at various stages in my editing process and, should I decide to take a few steps back and go in a different direction, I can do so with an earlier edit that still has the layers available for adjustment.

    TIFFs are a form of bitmapped file; this means the pixels are defined on a standard Cartesian X/Y axis. Each pixel has a unique place; each pixel location can have a unique color signature. This is why TIFFs are lossless: the information for each pixel is always retained along with the exact location of the pixel in the image. Each pixel can be saved at varying bit depths: 8 bit, 16 bit, even 32 bit.

    TIFFs are widely supported in 8 bit format. Most image editors can handle an 8 bit TIFF image, so it makes a good format to use for archiving images. I'll throw in a folder of 8 bit TIFFs when I give someone a selection of their photos in JPEG format, just so that they'll have versions they can work with without the image suffering degradation from compression. Of course, I archive all my own edited TIFFs as 16 bit files.

    Most programs can't open 16 bit TIFFs, though (or at least they couldn't the last time I looked at other common programs, which was admittedly quite a few years ago).

    I use JPEGs when I am finished editing an image and know I will be using it 'as is' from that point on; usually, to some specific end (such as uploading onto a web site). I use TIFFs for all my image editing, and for saving a final image that I know I will probably be using for a number of different purposes: that way, I have a edited, lossless file that I can adapt further for use on the Internet or for printing.

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Provence, France
    Posts
    910
    Real Name
    Remco

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    I prefer 16-bit PNG for intermediate results, as I've had problems with TIFFs from one program not being read by some others...
    Also, PNG tend to be half the size, and I don't need the layer capacity usually (and when I do, I use the native GIMP format).

  6. #6
    John Morton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    New York NY USA
    Posts
    459

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    Quote Originally Posted by revi View Post
    I prefer 16-bit PNG for intermediate results, as I've had problems with TIFFs from one program not being read by some others...
    Also, PNG tend to be half the size, and I don't need the layer capacity usually (and when I do, I use the native GIMP format).
    TIFFs should be generic; at least, that is what they were initially designed to be (but the format has also been modified in numerous ways since its inception). A lot of programs just won't handle 16 bit files although that might not be the case with PNGs (I don't know I've only used them for avatars, really).

    I can't think of a single image file of mine that I have edited without using layers so, that is pretty much a necessity for my work flow. The first thing I do upon opening a TIFF in Photoshop is duplicate the image so that I can work on a layer non-destructively, rather than editing the base image background layer.

    Layers let one do that, as well as use blending modes and "Bend If" protocols; one can fade the effects of edits upon the top layer, bringing back more of the original; hide the original briefly to see how far an edit has taken one from the original version;
    add a layer mask to partially block edits; place additional layers between the edited version and the original... I use layers so much, I even use a plug-in that will load an image into secondary memory so that it can be used to alter subsequent edits of the image - kind of a 'shadow layer' that is really handy for adjusting HDR images using a single image from an HDR sequence.

    I guess I would have to wonder a little bit how all of that would always work with JPEGs, for instance... in truth, I have no idea but I do know that the bit mapped format of a TIFF will always uncropped versions of a file that haven't been resized (or rotated, or undergone other such transformations that affect the physical dimensions of an image) to align with each other exactly; which is of course the underlying 'given' that makes using layers work.

  7. #7
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Glenfarg, Scotland
    Posts
    19,982
    Real Name
    Just add 'MacKenzie'

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    If you are a GIMP user, then you will think in terms of .xcfs (GIMP's native file type) as well as TIFFs.

    As Colin writes, once you process your RAW file you have to save it as soemthing. Because my RAW processor (DxO Optics) doesn't offer the opportunity to save as a .xcf, I save from there as .tiff.

    Given that I then take 99% of my work into Silver Efex Pro2, that is done with file still as a .tiff. (I have to use SEP2 as a stand-alone rather than a plug-in because I don't use Adobe products). Once I've made the B & W conversion that is saved still in .tiff. Once I get to the GIMP for finishing, I immediatelty save as a .xcf. I can then discard the .tiff.

    What gets printed and/or posted up here is one of the JPEGs (different sizes and quality grades made depending on output) made from the final .xcf.

  8. #8

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    Or if you are a Lightroom user, you may need only the original raw file. Lightroom is a non-destructive editor where the original file is not altered nor (in many cases) is a second copy needed for the edited version, as Lightroom keeps a list of all the edits you've done separate from the original file. Whenever you need to see or print the edited version, Lightroom recreates it from the original plus the list of edits. I use TIF when I need editing beyond Lightroom's capabilities, and use Photoshop.

  9. #9
    drjuice's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    310
    Real Name
    Virginia

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    I'm with the folks. I used to use the .tiffs as the uncompressed image format where all my RAW files lived after I converted them from RAW. The app (free) that I use to do the conversion creates either TIFF or PSD files. Since I don't do PhotoShop, I convert to .tiffs. I prefer working with .png files once I have the images converted. The issue is that often, I have to move my images to a memory stick for printing, especially when I'm on the road and use places like Kinko's for the printing. They often have software that can handle .tiff files on what they call their "design workstations". But, I can open .png files in any browser (that's why .png files were originally invented), even on their "basic workstations", and get a satisfactory print with excellent color representation unless their printer is messed up, in which case they've always refunded the charge to my Kinko's card.

    I also have given full .TIFF files to print shops when I've wanted very large format pictures for display.

    virginia

  10. #10

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    TIFF, originally standing for Tagged Image File Format, is a popular format for high color-depth images, along with JPEG and PNG. It is great tag-based file format for file format for storing and interchanging raster images (bit-mapped images) on personal computers (both PCs and Macintosh computers). That is a brief info of tiff, you can get enough tiff converion component info.

  11. #11
    xpatUSA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    3,137
    Real Name
    Ted

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    Quote Originally Posted by wmoore View Post
    Hi

    But what else are TIFF used for ?

    Thanks
    Warrick
    One use is for those unfortunate owners of late-model Sigma DSLRs ("Merrills") which have little support for the latest incarnation of their raw (X3F) files. Since the editor part of Sigma's supplied Photo Pro converter/editor software (SPP) is not well-respected among serious post-processing folks, the tendency is to convert to 16-bit TIFF, probably in the ProPhoto [big] color space, open the resulting huge file in their favorite Editor and get to to work. Of course TIFF's can be 8-bit sRGB too and compressed, but I digress.

    With TIFF, you can never revert to the captured image data, unlike RAW or DNG as has already been said. TIFF is useful as a transition format, a lingua franca, so to speak, like Esperanto.

  12. #12
    Cantab's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Canada (west coast)
    Posts
    1,249
    Real Name
    Bruce

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Garrett View Post
    ... I use TIF when I need editing beyond Lightroom's capabilities, and use Photoshop.
    I've started using LR4 in conjunction with Photoshop. My initial inclination was to export files from LR to Photoshop as psd's. But I now see some folk transfer the files as TIF's. What are the pros and cons for each option?

  13. #13

    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    New Zealand
    Posts
    17,662
    Real Name
    Have a guess :)

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cantab View Post
    I've started using LR4 in conjunction with Photoshop. My initial inclination was to export files from LR to Photoshop as psd's. But I now see some folk transfer the files as TIF's. What are the pros and cons for each option?
    TIFFs are bigger, but they offer compatibility to programs that don't understand PSDs. Image-wise the differences are purely academic.

  14. #14
    rpcrowe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Southern California, USA
    Posts
    13,186
    Real Name
    Richard

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    John Watt of Watt Digital Imaging in San Diego, CA uses a workflow that incorporates a Master File. This is the RAW image opened, with some input sharpening, adjustment of contrast, brightness, hue and saturation, and enhancements in layers. He then saves that file as an unflattened TIFF. Then when he desires a product, he will flatten, resize, crop and apply output sharpening depending on the final product. The format in which he saves the ultimate product depends on the product and the use for that product. He doesn't save it as a TIFF; since TIFF images are specifically for master files in his workflow.

    TIFF when to use ?

    He states that he could as easily use PSD for saving the Master File but, that since he began saving those files as TIFF; it is easier for him to continue saving as TIFF since then he automatically recognizes his TIFF images as one of his master files.

    I have not incorporated the master file concept into my workflow but, I can see how it might have some merit since, I often need my images in various formats and various sizes for both hard copy and Internet use.

  15. #15
    Cantab's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Canada (west coast)
    Posts
    1,249
    Real Name
    Bruce

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    Colin and Richard, thank you both for your helpful comments. Since there seem to be no big arguments for me to switch to TIFF's from psd's, I think I'll stick with psd. The only place my photos go after I've edited them is occasionally to a website or person who needs jpeg's.

  16. #16

    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    New Zealand
    Posts
    17,662
    Real Name
    Have a guess :)

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cantab View Post
    Colin and Richard, thank you both for your helpful comments. Since there seem to be no big arguments for me to switch to TIFF's from psd's, I think I'll stick with psd. The only place my photos go after I've edited them is occasionally to a website or person who needs jpeg's.
    No worries,

    Both PSD and TIFF are both heavy-duty industry stalwarts. PSD isn't as compatible with all other editors, but the files are slightly smaller and off memory I think they supported something like history, which TIFF didn't (something like that anyway) - either way, it wasn't a biggie.

  17. #17

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    TIFF, originally standing for Tagged Image File Format, is a popular format for high color-depth images, along with JPEG and PNG. It is great tag-based file format for file format for storing and interchanging raster images (bit-mapped images) on personal computers (both PCs and Macintosh computers), popular among graphic artists, the publishing industry, and both amateur and professional photographers in general.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tiff

  18. #18

    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Dunedin New Zealand
    Posts
    2,697
    Real Name
    J stands for John

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    Just to mention pspimage which is an alternative system to psd ... though if I thought my images deserved saving after I or my computer passed on for good I would use TIFF as an archive system for posterity.

    Mentioned as relevant in these days of antipathy to cloud systems being forced upon some wedded to a particular system

  19. #19

    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    4

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    TIFF (originally standing for Tagged Image File Format) is a file format for storing images, popular among graphic artists, the publishing industry, and both amateur and professional photographers in general. As of 2009, it is under the control of Adobe Systems. Originally created by the company Aldus for use with "desktop publishing", the TIFF format is widely supported by image-manipulation applications, by publishing and page layout applications, by scanning, faxing, word processing, optical character recognition and other applications.

  20. #20
    GrahamS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Hertfordshire, United Kingdom
    Posts
    432
    Real Name
    Graham Serretta

    Re: TIFF when to use ?

    Warrick, you may want to read this to get a bit more insight about file types.

    Workflow - how to save, backup and archive files?

    http://www.cambridgeincolour.com/tut...imagetypes.htm

    As has been pointed out before, it is worth noting that PSD files can only be opened by Adobe photo editing, imaging software, while Tiff and Jpg files can be opened by most industry standard software. I don't think it is a good idea to archive files in PSD format as it is not a "universal" file format.
    Last edited by GrahamS; 22nd August 2013 at 10:07 AM.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •