October 21, 2006
D70 under Linux
This page lists Linux specific information, links and tools
Nikon D70 digital SLR owners.
While focusing on the D70, some of the information might be
useful for Linux based digital SLR owners, especially for RAW
Please join in the
effort to get Nikon and other camera makers either open up their RAW
adopt a standard. You may start by reading raw-flaw
and sending the petition email to Nikon. This is doubly important since
Nikon made a wrong turn and started
encrypting the WB of the D2X and the new "entry level" D50.
Mass storage mode:
breezy onwards The d70 is automatically recognized and mounted. KDE 3.5
automatically adds a desktop icon which should make
windows users happy.
breezy pops a "Camera"
desktop icon upon connection.
2.1.5 will download all photos to the current directory with 'gphoto2
Acquiring photos and camera control:
support for the D70,
Nikon DSC D70 (PTP
Nikon DSC D70 (PTP
You can capture an image with,
New file is in location / on the camera
provides camera status, with a few known fields and
unknowns. I wish
(readwrite) would mean can be set
by gphoto2, but
will probably never happen.
device version: V1.01
serial number: (null)
Vendor extension ID: 0x0000000a
Vendor extension description: Nikon PTP Extensions
Battery Level(0x5001):(read only) (type=0x2) Range [0 -
100, step 1] value: 100
Image Size(0x5003):(readwrite) (type=0xffff) Enumeration [
Compression Setting(0x5004):(readwrite) (type=0x2)
Enumeration [0,1,2,4,5] value: 2
Property 0xd017:(readwrite) (type=0x1) Range [-3 - 3, step 1] value: 0
sent me this
for libgphoto 2.1.5 (cd
libgphoto2-2.1.5/camlibs/ptp2; patch < libgphoto-2.1.5-nikon.patch
which "adds name support for most of the D70 extension
parameters, and renders some of them in a human readable way
He also led me to ptpcam
which in fact can change camera settings. However it is a command
line only affair, and not a particularly nice one to be honest. It
seems like all the pieces are in place, but I fail to see
how it is usable without a good GUI. Is there such a beast? Can you
gtkam version 0.1.12 compiled and produced an executable
and a gimp plug-in. The plug-in adds "Capture from camera" and
"Download from camera" entries to the gimp
submenu. Both are
useless. Download presenting a garbled 120x160 image. Capture activates
the camera and exists with an obscure error message. Manually detecting
camera each activation is no fun either.
The best program to read D70 NEF
JPG metadata is Phil Harvey's ExifTool
All the data discussed in the D70 manual (and then some) is
recognized (I know that for a fact because I sent the initial data to
The full set is quite large so it is useful to create a .ExifTool_config
to view just a subset (Look for "
in Phil's page). The latest version can write and transfer tags as
- it is
written in Perl.
Raw conversion via dcraw discards
EXIF tags. neftags2jpg
transfers them back to the jpg. neftags2jpg
0.7 or newer).
After compiling and installing,
- exifdate is
a small shell script which
sets the file date to the time a photo was taken. Requires a working ExifTool.
KDE Konqueror shows
automatically, since they are in fact TIFF files, declaring the small
120x160 thumbnail as the "main image". Remember to increase
file size in the "Previews and Meta data" Konqueror configuration to at
is a capable and
viewer. To view NEF thumbnails, click Edit/Options.../Filtering, double
click on the tiff entry and add
to the list.
gqview, which uses the GTK library to load images, finds
the first (smaller 120x160) thumbnail but knows nothing of the second,
larger one. Here is an appalling patch
version 1.5.X to remedy the
situation, which requires a working nefextract
you path first. You want jpegtran in your path as well to enable
rotation (there is a good chance it is already installed for your
system). Right click and choose (Edit -> In the Gimp...)
to complete a reasonable single photo workflow.
has a working Linux
version which (slowly) handles raw images, but may be better than
other free solutions at this point.
If you are interested in
improving your photographic skills (and in some cases the images), it
shoot in RAW mode
However this shifts more of the responsibility in developing prints
hands, a decision not be taken lightly.
For some time Dave Coffin's
been the only option.
has made an amazing job reverse engineering every major (and some non
major) raw formats on the planet.
In addition to adding new cameras at a phenomenal rate, Dave is
improving the usability of dcraw by adding automatic rotation, color
management, more advanced interpolation methods and so on. Here
modified V8.40 (October 21 2006)
which contains some minor changes used by the gimp plugin (see below)
which add reading tone curves and thumbnails.
standalone, 16 bit version for batch processing.
Has a Linux version
with D70 support. You can download a time limited trial version and
check it out.
I bought Bibble Pro in April 2006 and has been using it since. I have
mixed feelings about Bibble. The workflow is well thought of and it is
full featured while keeping reasonably fast. However, the main reason I
got bibble was to be able to print but this is broken in several ways
and even though it is a professional, paid for software in Linux space
no one will hear your screams. I am not always happy with the resulting
image but I may be expecting too much or fretting about non issues. The
Linux version is also prone to crashes, hangs, and getting stuck while
happily using 100% of the CPU.
- Free for non-commercial use
Mark from dpreview
gave the link
to through-the-lens RawViewer
Java/dcraw based viewer and conversion tool.
don't really care for Java. In a true java spirit the user interface
has some oddities - The directories are sorted in a semi random order,
hidden directories are shown by default, "camera curve" has to be
selected for any new file even though it appears as the default menu
choice, the jpeg in portrait orientation came out as landscape,
if you don't select an output directory the program goes through the
motions, prints a large friendly DONE at the end, but does nothing.
I did not find any "Auto exposure" button, but I might have missed it.
has sent me a
link to the download
page of LightZone, a java based commercial browser and editor which is
Linux users. LightZone approach is original and based on two key ideas
- manipulating the tonal zones visually and applying changes using a
stack model. LightZone is
using the dcraw conversion matrices and which
leads to "washed out" D70 images.
At the start of 2004 there were
practically no good options for RAW processing on Linux, free or not.
The situation has improved to a point where you can choose between one
commercial product and several free options, three of them related gimp
plugins. The first is the
original PTJ's RawPhoto
. The second
is my fork (RougePhoto 1.39e,
October 21 2006)
substantially different by now. The
third is Udi Fuchs UFRaw
another fork by
a D70 enthusiastic. I guess D70 attracts more geeks than other models
... UFRaw, now in version 0.9.1, is undoubtedly the leader in open
Please use Rouge
with at least gimp 2.2 and gcc 3.3. Don't send me
emails about problems with earlier versions.
Note: You must use my
dcraw (above) with RougePhoto. In the future I
might integrate it in, but preliminary tests show no speed
improvement, so it is very low on my priority list.
Note: If you are
getting images with strange colors, try running
env LANG=en_US gimp' (Assuming
you run under a different setting).
I hope to eliminate
this workaround when I figure out what is going on.
The locale problem is hopefully fixed in the latest
version. Please report if it persists for you.
Note: The plugin will
any file supported by dcraw, which are many. However,
note that for your colors to be closer to reality you need to find the
input ICC profile for your camera. See below.
I tested RougePhoto
with the following formats
appreciate example files from other formats if you have them.
- CRW (Canon
300D and 10D)
- MRW (Minolta)
- NEF (D100 and D70)
- ORF (Olympus E-300)
Note: EXIF tags support
is available for D70
when neftags2jpg is installed. However, gimp uses libexif,
and version 0.6.9
(the latest available) handling of NEF makernote is broken. For now I
advice removing the
test for Nikon in libexif/exif-data.c. It is far from obvious how to do
this in Debian - see here for
RougePhoto now contains some color management capability
via Little CMS
. Read Udi's
page. To setup RougePhoto, download Nkx_D70_4_0739_02_308.icm
from Udi's site and place it in ~/.gimp-2.2/profiles/input
Copy (Or soft link) any output profiles to ~/.gimp-2.2/profiles.
See the README file for the gimprc entry needed to
complete the setup. I have made only very limited testing using images
other cameras, but duplicating
the above with the appropriate files should work. Some 10D owners
reported they had no success with the 10D profile in Udi's site. I
suggest using either Fred Miranda's or Bibble profiles for the 10D (Can
someone find out if there is an official Canon profile?).
The recent version of dcraw (7.30 and up) contains "conversion
matrices" from camera RGB to sRGB prepared by Thomas Knoll. If you can't set an input profile, those
provide much better output. Great addition, Dave!
version 1.36e, RougePhoto will use those automatically if it can't find
input profile. An override toggle is provided in the Setup
Below is a comparison for a Canon 10D image.
No Color Management
Bibble 10d profile
Unfortunately the D70 conversion is not as good results in a
"washed out" image. Using the Nikon profile is the best bet
at this stage for D70 nef's.
- Spot WB, White and Black Point.
- Gamma, Exposure and Black level.
- Auto Exposure/Black point (with separate exposure and Color
- Color Auto Level.
- Saturation & Shadows adjustments
- B&W mode.
- Visual display of overexposure,underexposure, and color
- Zooming, Panning and Resizing of preview (thanks to Dov Grobgeld GtkImageViewer)
- Intensity and Color channel histograms.
- Manual & Automatic orientation (when supported by
- Plugin title shows image name and camera make/model.
- User control of White/Black/Color Clip cutoff%.
- Choice of saturation method. Either linear or the one from
Fuchs UFRaw. I
don't use saturation in raw conversion, but Udi says it is an
- Gamma and Log tone curves
- Camera Tone Curve. dcraw loading code taken from Udi
(Again only for D70. I will add
more if anyone sends me a dcraw patch to read tone curves from other
- Load-able Tone Curves. Unpack curves (Dec 07) into your gimp
curves directory (typically ~/.gimp-2.2/curves) and they
should appear in the tone curve selection menu.
- Automatic selection of input color profile. Menu of
Destination color profiles. Download Nkx_D70_4_0739_02_308.icm
from Udi's site and place it in ~/.gimp-2.2/profiles/input.
Place (Or soft link) any output profiles to ~/.gimp-2.2/profiles.
See the README file for the gimprc entry needed to
complete the setup.
- Image comment contains RougePhoto conversion parameters for
- Fast startup. (2-3 seconds on my 1800XP Athlon using
the default setup).
- Conversion takes approximately 12-13 seconds on same
- EXIF support for D70 via neftags2jpg.
- Some customization options via gimprc.
- Gimp 2.2 ready.
- Support for Gimp 2.2 thumbnail API. D70 now uses small
120x160 thumbnails for speed.
Raw Plugin Screen Shot
(KDE 3.3.1 - Keramik, GTK 2.4.4 - Aquativo-1.5)
Most of the
controls and numbers are hopefully self explanatory. A little
experimentation should do the trick for others. Here are some
explanations and comments on less than obvious features.
- Left click on
the image performs spot white
balance, which is based on colors around the spot. It is
possible to spot a white/black
brightest/darkest) as well by changing
Neutral Point to
- The preview
will re-size when the size of main window changes. The
mouse button zooms in, Ctrl-Right zooms out, and Middle button
moves around. Alternatively you can use the '=' and '-' keys for
to fit the image back (Similar to gimp Ctrl-E and Ctrl-Shift-E).
Press '9' (As in 9 O'clock) for
orientation, '3' for CW orientation,
and '0' for the default.
- Note that a spot white
balance changes both temperature and green tint
(available only under the WB tab). Temperature
determines the ratio between red and blue, while green tint determines
the ratio between green and red/blue. So, if you are unhappy with a
spot WB press "Camera WB" to return to camera supplied values, since
just resetting the temperature will generally give a different
result. You can change the red/blue/green ratios directly in the WB
tab, but in my opinion this is hardly an effective way to get the
- Note the various options under the SETUP tab. You should
determine what works best for you, then please
let me know. Hopefully we can reach an agreement on
best setup, and can either reduce the number of options or at least
have a better default setup.
- For the curves I introduced my own file format. I am not
very happy about this, but unaware of any standard format.
I went for text format and utmost
simplicity. There are no load/save buttons - all curves in the
gimp curves directory are automatically loaded on startup.
Note that there is no automatic
Auto Bright/Black after switching to a new curve.
I re-created Fotogenic
and others from the points in D70
, but am not sure if I did this correctly or not.
Conversion used a gamma value of 0.45 (1/2.2), but you
can make a Gamma adjustment for the loaded curve if you wish. I would
appreciate some feedback about this if possible.
- Nikon .ntc files have been cracked by Xyrus. See his C++ program for the details.
- I made a first effort to improve the Histogram. While more
cluttered, I think it is more informative to see all colors + intensity
together. It helps if you have a large screen and willing to give it
more screen real estate by selecting a larger height (via the gimprc
Compared to ...:
What can you expect from
1.3Xe)? Some (photographically boring) examples
am totally unqualified to make such a comparison. The number of factors
is great. The choice of Color Profiles can make a huge difference in
how the end
result looks. I have very little experience using Nikon Capture, Bibble
ignore important issues such as user interface, workflow features,
platform availability and more trivial stuff such as price and speed
(but yes, NC is soooo sloooow). The number of examples is too
small. Everything below is biased
personal opinion. You certainly want to conduct your tests rather than
assuming I did the right thing.
The mediocre results I get
makes me wonder if I have some setting problem. Perhaps some kind soul
can suggest a possible source of the problem?
compares dcraw and Bibble here
Currently I have,
C1PRO sharpening is set to
"soft look", and "Convert to Web
Destination". NC sharpening is set to default, whatever that is.
- 30 days
trial version of C1PRO version 22.214.171.124 (Expired)
- A trial version of
Capture 4.1 (Expired)
- Bibble 4.1 Windows
- RawViewer 1.5.3
- RawShooter essentials
- Light Zone for Linux
RougePhoto output is "as-is" from the plugin (i.e. no sharpening)
any gimp adjustments. RawViewer has no "Auto EV".
Here are the highlights
The first image is a setup
taken indoor in natural light.
- After taking into account exposure & black point
issues, RougePhoto colors
are very similar to NC colors.
- The grass is
always greener at Bibble, but look to me a trifle too much. I assume
this is an effect of a different destination
- C1PRO default auto
exposure seem to be set too high. same with NC.
C1 Auto Exposure was surprisingly aggressive. NC
default is underexposed. I
am still looking for an "Auto Exposure"
button in NC,
some people pointed me
to NC "Auto Contrast" button in the LCH tab.
It seems like the right button, however it is too aggressive as
well, so I will not bother showing the result. I entered a value of +0.33EV
The next is outdoor on a New Zealand cloudy day.
Again C1 auto EC is overboard, and default is under.
C1PRO, Auto EC
Bibble 4.1, AutoLevel
Nikon Capture, Default
RougePhoto, Auto EV (gamma curve)
RawShooter essentials 1.1.3
400% crops comparing the difference in handling of the dreaded moire.
Nikon Capture 4.2
High ISO noise:
At higher ISO's, CCD noise is quite visible. It seems Nikon Capture
(and other RAW converters)
automatically apply noise reduction in higher ISO's, but at the moment
Linux only users have to apply noise reduction using Gimp.
Below is a 100% crop from a photo shot at ISO 800. Below are the
results from the professional Noise Ninja (Bill's Box Only), Gimp
Despeckle plugin, Dcam
, Noise Remover
plugin, and the slightly improved noise
remover described later.
One problem in evaluation is that it is easy to spot artifacts, but
hard to measure the amount of noise reduction. It is impossible to
figure out how to apply the "same amount" of reduction when each method
offers totally different, and typically cryptic controls.
For the moment I will
ignore this issue, unless it is obvious (see Grain remover below).
Below are the difference images (via Grain Extract layer mode) to the
original and a closer crop for
Despeckle, beside being horrendously slow, exhibits strong
color dependent patterns. Noise-remover shows smearing, halos and large
color loss, especially in the blue channel. Grain remover looks great,
unfortunately this is because in it's default setting it removes little
noise. In higher settings it exhibits considerable smearing and lose of
I recently got an email from Peter Chiocchetti pointing me to Dcam Noise 2
seem to be an impressive plugin with many (perhaps too many?) controls.
However by using the defaults and just adjusting "Filter Threshold"
I got a very good result which seem to have less artifacts
than Noise Ninja and still reducing the noise nicely.
Niels Kristian Bech Jensen sent me the link to
, another heavy duty plugin. Just like Dcam Noise 2,
it has various cryptic controls and no advice on how to use them, so
chance of doing justice to both
are low. GREYC does a nice job of removing noise while preserving
color and detail. However it is much slower, turning even exploration
via the preview quite painful.
The small, non scientific change I made to noise-remover is to simply
disallow pixel changes greater than TH (say 20). The result is
obviously more noisy, but does not exhibits strong color patterns. The
price is high on another front - I was reluctant to write a plugin for
what seems a simple task, however iterating over an image is way over
script-fu ability, and even python-fu, which I used, needs to be
augmented with heavy machinery in the form of numarray
You can get my python-fu script here
With the Dcam and GREYC in my Gimp menu I am happy to say Linux users
are not at a disadvantage anymore - and as usual - the price is just
While browsing yesterday I saw
that the Vosonic
X's Super drive 6230
supports D70 RAW files, and after a brief
googling session bought one on impulse over the internet. The unit has
a built in CF card reader and a 2.5" screen for viewing (+ zooming),
can play audio and video and has an upgradeable hard drive (I got the
Unfortunately all the online complaints turn out to be true. The unit
is an unattractive silver plastic brick, the buttons feel as if they
would last only a short time, the sound quality is marginal and the
limited video codec support mean I will have to convert any video I
wish to view them on the tiny screen. The user interface is clunky,
manual outdated and useless, and the list goes on.
While you can indeed view NEF files, EXIF info is not available. It is
there for JPG's but thanks (again) to Nikon failing to fix this bug
even in Firmware 2.0, ISO is displayed as 0 .
On the other hand the unit has an upgradeable drive and batteries, USB
2.0 is fast (backward compatible with 1.1 as well), is Linux compatible
by choice and not by hacking, and may improve with upcoming firmware
updates. I hope I will have some good things to say after using the
unit in the field.
(Oct 2006) The 80 gig on the X drive has filled up nicely.
On the whole it was a good buy, as the unit travels well and still
fully functional. Vosonic keeps supporting the model by releasing
firmware updates and fixing small issues on the way. My music now
resides on an ipod video, so the marginal audio quality is not an
As you can see, my English
language & graphic design skills leave a lot to be desired. If you
are experienced in either and would like to help, I will appreciate it
- Added File Grain Remover to Noise reduction methods.
- Small fix: ignore request for camera curve when no curve in
file. (Dec 06)
- Bug fix: Incorrect auto Adjust with user curve. (Dec 07)
- Added Provia 4.0, P&S 4.0 and EV3 4.0 curves. (dpreview
- Added "Compared to" section (Dec 7).
- Added a section on RawViewer.
- Allow value of 0 for "auto level" level.
- gphoto 2.1.5
- small bug with tone curve selection.
- Another try at fixing locale problem.
- Added .ntc crack program.
- Initial support for color profiles.
- Fixed color profile for non D70.
- upgrade neftags2jpg to exiv-0.6.1
- added contrast and shadows controls.
- Added Dcam Noise 2 plugin.
- Added RawShooter example.
- Added example for dcraw conversion matrices.
- Added GREYCstoration.
- Choice between better&slower AHD interpolation and
- Updated neftags2jpg for exiv2 0.7.
- Added a section about VP 6230.
- Added LightZone.
Please send comments,
and feedback to jheled@