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Old 07 June 2021, 17:08   #21
Daedalus
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thorham View Post
You use gamma correction for that, not jpeg.
There's typically more to it than gamma correction, but anyway, I wasn't saying JPEG fixes that at all. I was just trying to point out that raw images aren't what Foebane thinks they are, and that he would prefer a properly processed JPEG version of an image to the raw image used to generate it.
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Old 07 June 2021, 20:51   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daedalus View Post
There's typically more to it than gamma correction, but anyway, I wasn't saying JPEG fixes that at all. I was just trying to point out that raw images aren't what Foebane thinks they are, and that he would prefer a properly processed JPEG version of an image to the raw image used to generate it.
Nnnnnoooooo, I wasn't saying that at all.

How about a PNG? Or a TIFF?
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Old 07 June 2021, 21:11   #23
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Originally Posted by Foebane View Post
Nnnnnoooooo, I wasn't saying that at all.
Hmmm, fair enough. From your post it sounded like you were saying a raw image was better than JPEG because of compression:
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Originally Posted by Foebane View Post
Are you kidding me? RAW would be pure, uncompressed data, before JPG introduces all those nasty artefacts into the image.
Whereas they're two very different things with different purposes, with the raw image not normally suited to or intended for consumption, and the JPEG representing the artist's intention. That's the point of dreadnought's analogy, which you seem to have missed, but apologies if I misunderstood. Of course a badly compressed JPEG has nasty artefacts, but it doesn't have to be badly compressed. Photographers use it all the time. So long as you work from a lossless master, there's nothing wrong with JPEG.

Quote:
How about a PNG? Or a TIFF?
Fine as well, and both will typically be very different from the raw image too, having been processed and ultimately having lost some detail from the original raw image.
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Old 08 June 2021, 04:13   #24
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Raw is king for postprocessing then pick your poison when printing and jpeg is at the bottom of the pile for quality.
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Old 08 June 2021, 04:39   #25
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Send a private message to Stuart Campbell. He used to be the editor at Amiga Power.
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Old 08 June 2021, 08:28   #26
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I remember reading on the letters page of Your Sinclair (I think, or maybe it was an Amiga mag) the question was asked about how screenshots were taken for the reviews. The answer was 'a very expensive camera', no other details.
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Old 11 June 2021, 01:17   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foebane View Post
I noticed that all the magazines by Future Publishing used a new method of reproducing images.

With this new method, the pictures looked cleaner, better (for the most part) and were free of phosphor dots and scanlines and tube bulges. The clarity of the pictures (for the most part) were so good, that you could achieve the same results by using WinUAE today and then printing them out on your inkjet.
I noticed the transition too, but was less impressed. The captures were often too 'perfect', missing nice effects of a CRT such as higher contrast and rounding of the pixels. On the Amiga it wasn't so bad, but some other platforms such as the ZX Spectrum suffered horribly. Compared to a composite display the images were dull and lifeless, and the graphical limitations of the machine were exposed.

But the worst thing was that since nobody had LCD displays in those days the magazine images never reflected what it would look like on your own monitor or TV.
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Old 14 June 2021, 09:11   #28
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I imagine a lot of them used video capture devices made for generic NTSC/PAL video. i.e. the exact same stuff they used to capture screenshots in the console magazines. They were expensive but had come down in price by the time the 90's had rolled around. Remember that affordable slow-scan capture devices like the Digiview were available in 1986 -- and this got you great screenshots as long as nothing was moving.

You could get a video framegrabber like the Data Translation DT2861 for a rather exhorbitant price around 1989, but it would let you get very nice screenshots. By 1990 you could get a greyscale capture device for $500 and 24-bit framegrabbers for a few thousand dollars, and the prices just kept getting cheaper until they were basically commodity products in 1995.
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Old 15 June 2021, 21:43   #29
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A sufficiently big publishing house could afford a professional frame grabber, possibly even with RGB capacity (it wouldn’t be very crisp if grabbed from a composite signal).

Such screen grabs would also be sufficiently small to use in 90s desktop publishing programs. Though DTP was established by 1990-ish, it wasn’t until a decade later that you could incorporate high resolution photos in layouts on a normal desktop Mac. Instead, you used low resolution scans for the layout, then sent the films or prints to a bureau that would scan them on a very expensive drum scanner, do touch up and colour correction and incorporate those high resolution scans in the layouts, from which films or plates ready for printing were made.

It wasn’t until you had hundreds of megabytes of RAM and hundreds of megahertz CPUs that it was realistic to produce a document incorporating both text and photos suitable for direct transfer to a printing plate.
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Old 15 June 2021, 21:54   #30
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It wasn’t until you had hundreds of megabytes of RAM and hundreds of megahertz CPUs that it was realistic to produce a document incorporating both text and photos suitable for direct transfer to a printing plate.
Such stuff was available in the 1980s... if you had the money. The big newspapers had this and the software could do airbrushing etc.

Some youtube channels have obtained and reviewed this kinda thing, sure it was millions of pounds back then, but it's fascinating what the select few had access to.

I remember reading that Trevor Horn (ZTT) had a custom computer with 32MB of RAM in 1982(!) on which he was doing his sample based music (Frankie etc).

I remember wondering if he could have built a sample super computer by combining 32 Amigas and going with 14bit audio, perhaps cheaper than paying millions for a custom setup, but who knows how it worked.

Last edited by rothers; 17 June 2021 at 14:14.
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Old 17 June 2021, 09:55   #31
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It wasn’t until you had hundreds of megabytes of RAM and hundreds of megahertz CPUs that it was realistic to produce a document incorporating both text and photos suitable for direct transfer to a printing plate.
Sorry but that just isn't true. The files sent to the printer may have been hundreds of Megabytes, but the computer that produced them didn't have to keep everything in memory at once in full resolution.

We used Professional Page on an A2000 to produce the box art, CD inserts and manuals for the programs we published. It created CMYK postscript separation files, which we sent to a local printing firm who had a Linotronic imagesetter. IIRC we set the pixel resolution to 150 dpi because going any higher was pointless due to the screen ruling of their offset printing press.

I don't remember how much RAM that A2000 had, but it certainly wasn't 'hundreds of Megabytes', and this was in 1992 so it couldn't have had more than a 50MHz 030.
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Old 17 June 2021, 14:20   #32
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The Today newspaper was using full DTP in 1986.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Today_(UK_newspaper)

I can't find what the software was though or what their machines were. They may well have been custom machines with 64MB of RAM & full colour graphics cards.

You could get a consumer 16bit graphics card in 1988 (ATI VGA Wonder) so I expect 16bit colour was available to business from 1980ish (plenty of arcade games were using 16bit colour in the mid 80s for example).
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Old 19 June 2021, 18:46   #33
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Sorry but that just isn't true. The files sent to the printer may have been hundreds of Megabytes, but the computer that produced them didn't have to keep everything in memory at once in full resolution.
I think you’re underestimating how heavy the pages in a professionally printed magazine with 300 dpi pictures are. I’m not talking about screenshots, but photos and textures. In the age of Quark Xpress 3 and the 68030, this was not workable. Just try to load up some multi-megabyte TIFF pictures in PageStream and work with that.
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Old 19 June 2021, 18:50   #34
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Originally Posted by rothers View Post
The Today newspaper was using full DTP in 1986.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Today_(UK_newspaper)

I can't find what the software was though or what their machines were. They may well have been custom machines with 64MB of RAM & full colour graphics cards.

You could get a consumer 16bit graphics card in 1988 (ATI VGA Wonder) so I expect 16bit colour was available to business from 1980ish (plenty of arcade games were using 16bit colour in the mid 80s for example).
I never wrote that DTP was not a thing in the 80s, though often on a black and white Macintosh rather than in full colour, and newspapers were amongst the last to leave the traditional processes (1986 is extremely early).

What I did write was that DTP in the 80s/90s wasn’t like DTP in the 21st century, where you can just export PDFs from InDesign and upload them to the printing press. Most publishers couldn’t afford that kind of equipment and used service bureaus to create the final printable films from their DTP originals, combined with illustrations on paper or film.
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Old 19 June 2021, 23:38   #35
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Kudos for still coming up with such an interesting and unique question in 2021 by the way. I never realized that I wanted to know more about this, but I do.
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Old 20 June 2021, 09:51   #36
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This bit about DTP colour printing in 1986 was interesting:

'The colour was initially crude, produced on equipment which had no facility for colour proofing, so the first view of the colour was on the finished product. However, it forced the conversion of all UK national newspapers to electronic production and colour printing'

What was the first computer magazine to have colour screen shots?
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Old 20 June 2021, 13:53   #37
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Technically, you could print colour photographs from the 19th century, but it was probably still rather expensive for a long time, even in the 1970-ties. I think Byte started using colour screenshots somewhere around 1977-78.
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Old 27 June 2021, 09:10   #38
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Technically, you could print colour photographs from the 19th century, but it was probably still rather expensive for a long time, even in the 1970-ties. I think Byte started using colour screenshots somewhere around 1977-78.

As I understand it, color prints in the 19th century were incredibly hard to make as they worked by taking three shots via RGB filters and then carefully depositing dye for each color in the printing process and it could take days to get it right, and even then it basically needed manual touchups while you made it making it partly a painting. What they could do easily is print three positive slides which could then be projected on top of each other using colored lights.

Of course now you can composite the original negatives easily which is why we now have incredible color photographs of 1900-1910s Tsarist Russia that put to shame ones made with actual color stock 40 years later.
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Old 08 September 2021, 07:11   #39
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This article in usgamer.net might be of interest to you.
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Old 26 September 2021, 16:28   #40
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My first full time job in 1989 was working at the local newspaper creating advertisements on their new Apple Macs.

Our inhouse photographers did any game screenshots (for 90's consoles games) that were requested - very few if I remember correctly.

I think the company Xbox 360 proved too much of a distraction and I don't remember it lasting long on site...
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