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Restoring a Digital Image Share This on LinkedIn   Tweet This   Forward This

17 February 2022

Every now and then we get the bright idea of taking out the old Sony F707 and giving it a workout. The big zoom is one attraction and Nightshot mode another. But this bright idea has usually just ended up being a passing thought. Until this morning.

The zoom is around 200mm and, with 2x digital zoom (ugh!), reaches to 400mm. We tried a few shots out our picture window after charging the 21 year old battery (man, can it drink).

Terrible stuff, really.

One reason is the 2560x1920-pixel images were compressed to 1.8-MB JPEGs. Another was the white balance, which behaved as if sunlight had not been invented in 2001.

But it gave us another bright idea. Or challenge, if you will.

Can images from this old camera be restored with modern software? Like, say, Adobe Camera Raw?

In 2001, there was no such thing as a Clarity slider. Or Dehaze either. And you couldn't easily edit color ranges for saturation and luminance.

We used all those tools (and a white balance adjustment) to get from what the camera captured (this time as a TIFF, which was Sony's idea of a Raw capture) to a presentable image.

As a quick experiment it was promising.

It wouldn't be worth buying a new battery for the F707 but if you have 20 year old JPEGs lying around, you might refresh them with a modern digital restoration.

Now and then we do that for our Friday Slide Show and, apart from the resolution (which isn't a big deal for the 800-pixel images we display), we're happy with the results.

New and improved, as they say.

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