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Raw camera and general image processor
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Raw camera and general image processor, my way...

I wanted a simple raw processor. Here it is. It's primarily a desktop GUI application, but one day I'll make it tablet- friendly. It doesn't do image management. With the exception of saturation, denoise, and sharpen tools, it only does tone manipulation. It saves the processing applied in the EXIF of the saved image because I do not like the sidecar concept. It works internally with floating point pixel values. Here's a list of the implemented manipulations:

  • Black/White Point
  • Bright
  • Colorspace
  • Contrast
  • Crop
  • Curve
  • Demosaic
  • Denoise
  • Exposure
  • Gamma
  • Grayscale Conversion
  • Highlight
  • Lens Correction
  • Redeye Correction
  • Resize
  • Rotate
  • Saturation
  • Shadow
  • Sharpen
  • White Balance

You open an image, add whatever manipulations you want to apply to the list, then save the result. You determine the order of the manipulations. Also, you have to deal with the raw image, in that the choices regarding white balance, demosaic, colorspace conversion, and gamma are for you to make. The input image is dark, so learn to deal with it.
And, in doing so, you'll learn valuable things about digital images.

In the display, you can use the 't' key or double-click the upper-left thumbnail to toggle between a small repeat image for panning, a 255-value histogram, and no thumbnail.

So, you can open a RAW file, apply a list of manipulations, and save it as, say, a TIFF. Then, using the "Open Source..." menu item, you can select the saved TIFF, and rawproc will open the original RAW file and automatically apply the manipulation list saved in the TIFF. The manipulations used to produce the TIFF are stored in its EXIF metadata. This is my take on 'non-destructive' editing.

rawproc also implements what I call 'incremental processing', in that each added manipulation does its thing against the previous one and stores the result; adding a manipulation doesn't restart the whole processing chain, it just pulls the previous processed image and applies its manipulation. If you go back and change one, it only has to process from that point forward. This approach uses more memory, but at the benefit of less time to see the results of single manipulations.

The check box by each manipulation sets the display to that manipulation's result. So, you can set the display and go to any previous (or subsequent) manipulation and play with it, seeing the result at the checked manipulation. A kinda goofy way to display, but I'm warming to it... :) Crop is the exception to this behavior; if you want to see the actual cropped image, you have to check a subsequent manipulation.

This code is licensed for widespread use under the terms of the GPL.

Contributed code and algorithmns:

I started rawproc development with FreeImage, It served well to flesh out the initial look and behavior of rawproc, but I encounterd significant hurdles with it and color management. So, I ended up writing my own image library, gimage, That was a significant learning endeavor, but well worth the effort, as I now have high-quality image algorithms with OpenMP threading throughout, with color management tools to boot. Also, gimage has only one internal tone representation, floating point. Image manipulations are a little slower as a result, but I've done some pixel-peep comparisons and the tone gradations do look better. double, float, or half floating point representations are selectable at compile-time; the 32-bit Windows installer version uses half because I ran into heap limits with a 32-bit executable. I compile my Linux version with float; I can't see that using double provides any advantage worth the memory use for the tone ranges we work with in general purpose photography.

I offer no promise of support or enhancement, past offering the code on Github for you to fork. It is organized to compile with the GNU g++ compiler, either native on Linux OSs or Mingw32 on Windows platforms. I've compiled and run executables on Ubuntu x86_64 and Windows 7, 8, and 10.

'img' is a command line program that uses the same image processing routines as rawproc. The only comprehensive documentation is the img.cpp source file. You use it like this:

img input.jpg resize:640,0 sharpen:1 output.jpg

img will allow wildcards in the input and output filespecifications, so you can use it to apply processing to all images in a directory. It will also read rawproc configuration files, so a workflow that starts with batch-produced JPEGs and continues with re-editing selected images in rawproc is seamless.

This code is essentially a hack; I started it with a wxDevC++ project, but abandoned that IDE some time ago. I wrote code for things I could understand; and shamelessly copied code (e.g., spline.h) for things I didn't want to spend the time learning. My C++ skills are spotty, and look a lot more like C in some places. But I learned a ton about digital imaging doing this, and I now have a tool I can use in the field to do what I'll call 'contact sheet' processing; at a later time I can go back to the JPEG I produced and extract the manipulation list, use it as the start for more 'quality' processing in Raw Therapee and GIMP.

If you want to gripe or comment about rawproc, I'll be occasionally monitoring the forums. If I subsequently commit anything interesting to the respository, I'll shout it out there.

Building a github Checkout

If you clone the github repository, do these things first:

automake --add-missing

Now, you have the files to proceed with ./configure... make... etc.


If you're on a Debian/Ubuntu or derivatives, install these packages:

sudo apt-get install libjpeg-dev libtiff-dev libpng-dev liblcms2-dev liblensfun-dev libraw-dev

If you want to enjoy the fruits of librtprocess, the nascent effort to package the Raw Therapee demosaic routines, you'll at present need to compile and install librtprocess from a github clone:

Instructions to do so are in the librtprocess README. Once you've done that, you'll be able to use --enable-librtprocess in rawproc's ./configure. Otherwise, the demosaic tool will only allow the internal algorithms half, half_resize, and color.

Next, if you want to compile rawproc, get the wxWidgets sources and do a static compile:

tar -xjvf wxWidgets-3.1.2.tar.bz2
cd wxWidgets-3.1.2/
mkdir build-linux
cd build-linux
../configure --disable-shared --enable-unicode
make doc

You can make install wxWidgets, I find it just as convenient to use their wx-config script to link in-place.

Building rawproc

cd over to the rawproc directory and do the following:

mkdir build-linux
cd build-linux
../configure --enable-lensfun --enable-librtprocess --with-wx-config=/path/to/wxWidgets-3.1.2/build-linux/wx-config CXXFLAGS=-O3
sudo make install

...and there you go, rawproc, img, and exif binaries will be installed in /usr/local/bin.

Other Tasks

If you're building from source in either Linux or MSYS2, you'll also need to build and manually install your configuration and help files. In the build directory:

make doc
make conf
sudo cp src/ /usr/local/bin/.
mkdir ~/.rawproc
cp src/rawproc.conf ~/.rawproc/.

Right now, rawproc will only look for its help file in the directory containing the executable. rawproc will look for a rawproc.conf in a few places, but the best place to put it is in a ~/.rawproc directory. Future versions will use that directory as a default for other stuff, like cms.profilepath and the lensfun database.

Building img without rawproc

If you just want to build the img command line program, without the wxWidgets library, then do this:

mkdir build-linux
cd build-linux
../configure --enable-lensfun --enable-librtprocess --disable-wxwidgets CXXFLAGS=-O3
cd src
make img


  1. Lens correction using the lensfun library requires particular attention to where the lens correction database is stored. Even then, I don't guarantee it'll work correctly at this point.

  2. Color management requires the user to specify a profile directory, and in that directory shall go all profiles used, camera, working, and display/output. rawproc doesn't use the operating system color management facilities.

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