Bryan -

Wiser heads will probably correct or refine this, but ...

The 'raw' file is supposed to represent data very close to what is 
provided by the camera's sensor array.

Before saving images in non-raw formats (JPEG, etc.) the camera performs 
some conversions of the image field as well as - usually - applying some 
compression. These conversions are irreversible and represent a compromise 
intended to give pleasing images of common subjects.

This is crudely analogous to the processing applied to color negatives by 
most photo processors as they are printed - you have probably seen the 
quite surprising results this sometimes gives: colors gone crazy!

UFRaw gives you the chance to make different assumptions and adjustments, 
and keeps the original image file untouched in case you want another 
chance. It also provides as default a compensation similar to what the 
camera would have done if left to its own algorithms. That's what you get 
if you don't intervene.

If you aren't making any adjustments in UFRaw you may be just as well-off 
to work with [say] JPEG images out of your camera. The intermediate stage 
of adjusting your image in UFRaw is one of the main reasons for using RAW 
format in the first place.

At least that's my [mis?]understanding.

  - Mills

On Wed, 30 Sep 2009, Bryan wrote:

> For starters, is there any good reason why UFRaw should be used for 
> anything other than opening a RAW file before transporting it to Gimp?

> What I really wanted to ask was, Why, when open up an image in UFRaw and 
> it looks great, even when zoomed in as much as allowed. However, when 
> you sent it to Gimp via UFRaw, when you zoom into even a small amount 
> the image is very pixelated. When or how did it become downsized or some 
> sort of processing that might cause this to happen? Is it possible to 
> bring in a RAW file and retain it's sharpness?

> Thanks for anyone's help in regards to this.
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