Andrew please educate me if possible. I have read the link four or five times and I don't see a reference to zeroing sliders and importing directly to Photoshop.
Just check the Color Theory archives, the only place you’ll find actual text by Dan, a often difficult cookie trail by design. Note “this new workflow” is some “fix the turd in Photoshop” that you broke by zeroing out all the sliders.
Here’s one such post by Dan:
On Apr 18, 2008, at 2:32 PM, Dan Margulis wrote:
With respect to doing things that might make the picture temporarily look
better, ACR should be avoided in this workflow because of its master-curve
approach to setting range. Instead, accept the camera's white balance and
zero everything else out
. I recommend this approach even in traditional
workflows, but in this new workflow it's particularly necessary.
In a reply post to Jerry asking about this strange idea the same day:
> Second, what is the meaning of zeroing everything out in ACR? My
> hypothesis is this:
> Start by setting the default ACR settings (below the white-balance
> settings), which includes these zeros: Exposure, Recovery, Fill
> Light, Clarity, Vibrance, and Saturation. Then, change the setting
> for Blacks from 5 to 0 (to leave the shadow point lighter). I think
> Brightness should probably be left at its default of +50.
It should not. this is an example of the sort of setting referred to earlier, one
that makes the image look better temporarily but in the long run is damaging.
The inadequacies of ACR's implementation of this command have been
discussed at some length in the thread and are also mentioned in Stephen
Marsh's post that hit the list at approximately the same time as yours.
> For me the main quandary is what to do with Contrast. Leave it at the
> default of +25?
No. Also, the curve setting should be set to Linear. Each of these defaults
suppress shadow and highlight detail in the interest of enhancing the
midrange of each channel. While that sacrifice may well be what we want to
do at some later time, in the context of this workflow it's premature to make the
decision in the raw module
. We have plenty of time to do it later on, if that's
what we want.
And Dan’s take on ACR and perhaps raw rendering in general (hard to know if he’s ever use any other raw converter):
On Apr 28, 2008, at 10:27 PM, Dan Margulis wrote:
Additionally, some of the bells and whistles found in raw modules emulate
expert-only tools in Photoshop. Not as flexible, but still opening the door to the
I tested ACR carefully in Photoshop CS2, not from the point of view of the
beginner but the skilled user. I was not really concerned with how much time
was involved. I can see white balance as a useful, possibly time-saving
alternative to correcting certain casts in Photoshop, but it does not offer
superiority. The remainder of ACR/CS2 is seriously impacted by the
inadequate range-setting routines*. Consequently, I wrote that I was unable to
find any images where a better final result could be obtained by any
combination of ACR/CS2 commands than by opening with everything zeroed
So the silly idea is two fold. One, there’s something wrong with ACR of which Mark addressed in his piece on curves referenced already. A peer review again ignored by Dan. 2nd, the idea you should build a turd in ACR because of this silly idea and then fix it in Photoshop. Note he’s referring to ACR in Photoshop CS2, I have seen nothing from Dan since then that states otherwise begging the question if Dan has looked at updates to the ACR engine since then. I suspect not.
*Another made up Dan term that needed clarification on the list (people asking, WTF are you referring to). But that’s a different story.