Problems with RAWs (RW2) from Panasonic LX100II

I imported RW2-Files from my Panasonic RX100II in Darktable 4.6.1 for Windows (same problem in DT 3.8.1 for Linux) and the picture are pale, wrong colours, strange look. I always thought I’m pretty good in colourgrading, but with the RX100II files I’m not able to get the look of the jpg’s. Not even close. To create a style is also hopeless, even with extremely similar pictures the copy, paste of history-steps brings up different results. Is it possible to check to “presets” of those RW2 Files?

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Hi and welcome to pixls. :slight_smile:

The as-imported initial darkroom view of files in darktable is always different to the jpeg, as dt doesn’t apply much processing for you. Having said that, have you tried using the sigmoid workflow? (or just switching off filmic and switching sigmoid on).
That often gives a more familiar starting point.

Would you like to share and licence an example RAW+jpeg pair, one that you’re happy to make public? For licence you just need to specify a CC0 licence, we usually use this one…

Creative Commons, By-Attribution, Share-Alike

I would be fairly confident of being able to give a reasonable consistent match, assuming no unusual issues crop up.

Sorry, I’m not quite sure of the question?

If you use one of the predefined workflows, you should get an image where you can get an idea of what needs to be done. But darktable doesn’t even aim at providing a jpg look-alike with any of the default settings.

One argument is that if you want the camera jpeg, you’re better off using the camera jpeg.
A (better) reason is that it’s virtually impossible to mimic the in-camera processing for all the different makes and models out there (every brand has its own internal algorithms to convert sensor readings in a jpeg image).

If with “presets” you mean camera styles and such, no, darktable cannot use those (again, the processing for such camera styles is unknown). Even though the styles and parameters are stored in the raw metadata, they cannot be used.

For the copy and paste of the history stack, you may want to read the relevant section of the manual as there are a few sublties involved.

@123sg : Just a nit, but the licence you linked to is not CC0. That would be equivalent to public domain. The link refers to cc-by-sa, but the others should be fine as well (for here, you’ll want to avoid the “nd” clause for e.g. play-raws)

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Thanks for the correction, and apologies!:face_with_spiral_eyes:

I somehow tacked the 0 on in my head… Not sure why tbh.

For users that are more familiar with other software you will see that in comparison DT doesn’t add a punchy colorful profile, preset or look. Its rather likely in many cases more like what you would see if you loaded it using a “neutral” profile or style in some other software… As noted above you can take a path that is more like other software by using a base curve in DT, however this is not the default as DT has modules designed and organized to do a scene referred approach to editing… In that workflow if you are not using sigmoid you might be more happy with that as it might seem more colorful and its easy to add contrast… You can set that in preferences.

From that point you need to get a feel for your images and then start to use the modules to add color and contrast as you see fit… In short order you will arrive at presets of your own or find favourites in the included ones that you can autoapply

Hi Steven, rvietor and Todd
thank you for your answers!
I would like to get an neutral look from the start. I worked the last years with pictures taken by the Sony RX-100I and raws and jpgs have been not so different.
But now I see: some of my pictures are taken with an auto-mode. So this is obviously a special look.
Nevertheless even the manual-mode-pictures are difficult to develop. But perhaps I need more practice…

After import I find in the history:

  • color calibration
  • exposure and
  • filmic RGB
    are set to “scene-referred preset”

How creates Darktable those adjustments? Is there an .dcp-file like in Lightroom or an ICC-profile?
In lens correction my camera name LX-100 appears.

I loaded up a picture sunset.

Thanks again.

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and this is the link:

Thanks for the samples and further info!
It’s a surprisingly complex subject.

Those the basic modules that dt applies to get your image to a workable state.

  • color calibration - this is for white balancing (plus more, but this is the base purpose)
  • exposure - this is basically brightness adjustment
  • filmic rgb - this is a sophisticated version of a tone curve

These defaults are set in the preferences, like so:

I prefer the sigmoid option instead of filmic, as I find it gives a more familiar starting point. Note if you change this, it will only affect images you haven not edited before, unless you discard the history for that image.

I’ve had a try at your image,this is what I was able to get after a little fiddling (ok, 15 min…)

20240223_0001.RW2.xmp (8.5 KB)

You can load my .xmp sidecar file via this button in lighttable, to see all my settings:

I’ve also created a style, that can be applied easily to any photo. I don’t know how close it will be on other shots - a sample of one isn’t that reliable :wink:
Attempt to match jpeg LX100ii.dtstyle (4.8 KB)
Import it here:

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Probably the key points of my edit are:

  • filmic rgb disabled
  • sigmoid for contrast adjustments with preserve hue dropped to zero
  • I left the white balance settings in color calibration as default, (as out of camera) for consistency with other photos, but introduced a small equivalent shift in rgb primaries to better match the jpeg.
  • saturation adjustments in color balance rgb
    a little tweak to highlight hues using color zones

That covered the main points!

Note that exposure will probably need adjusting depending on the shot… I didn’t set up the auto-exposure or anything in the style.

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The jpg is a nice dark silhouette but with the raw I thought bringing it up enough to highlight the car driving down the road and cast a bit of light on the vehicles over to the right is also a nice option…

20240223_0001.RW2.xmp (11.2 KB)

Personally I find trying to match a cameras JPG a fruitless exercise as I can nearly always produce a superior result to the camera. I get much more detail from my raw files. However, you like the look of the cameras sunset and therefore use the cameras JPG is my advice. However, here is my attempt to get close to the cameras JPG very quickly. I had to add a lot vibrance to the image to get the strong saturation given by the camera. I also use sigmoid and not filmic. Moving the preserve hue slider in sigmoid allowed me to get a close color match to the cameras interpretation of the sunset.

If you look at mine it doesn’t have that strange halo artefact around the sun that the camera has given, therefore I feel I have beaten the camera for detail. Color is personal taste.


20240223_0001.RW2.xmp (10.0 KB)

Love the helpful dedication in this forum :yellow_heart:

I think @123sg is right on track. I tried for myself and found about 3 ingredients to get the look:

  • sigmoid in per channel mode with low hue preservation for the yellowish look of the sun (if you like that)
  • color balance rgb with preset ‘basic colorfulness: add vibrant colors’ a tiny bit pumped up
  • rgb primaries to shift the blues more into magenta (wouldn’t do that, but thats what is in the jpg)
  • might pull down the shadows with tone eq to get the sillhoutte look)

the rest is minor: bit of local contrast, sharpening, lens correction, …

Have fun

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Hi Steven, Todd, Terry, qmpel,
thank you for your overwhelming support! :slight_smile:
The most essential point is the preference setting “auto apply pixel workflow default” After changing this to “Sigmoid” or even “display-referred workflow” (and reset the history), I had very good starting situations for all pictures. → so you solved my problem. Thanks!!!
Also interesting that sometimes it could be reasonable to start with the .jpg, when the picture has been taken in automatic mode. (which should be rare… :-))
Thank you for your xmp’s and dtstyle’s. I will check them out and learn…
Have a nice day!!!


You’re welcome! Glad we could help.

Sigmoid is excellent in that regard. The older display referred workflow can work well too, but it’s not as flexible as the scene-referred options once you get into more complex edits.