Lack of DNG support needs to be adressed

Chris – where did you read this?

→ The screenshot shows some of VueScan’s options to save a scanned file.

Read what?
You said give it a try and save as TIFF. I don’t want Tiffs I want DNG.

A serious question in the context of this discussion… why do you want DNG?

Archives and Museums use DNG as their standard. Input is in a wide range of RAWs from many camera’s and Scanners. DNG was decided upon as the standard to use.

The thing is a LOT of images on glass plates, roll film of all sorts is being digitised in to DNG. VueScan works with most scanners including dedecated slide and fim scanners.

I bleleve that apart from all the UK Museums and Archives using DNG other countries do as well for the same reasons.

Would I be right in thinking the original DNG would be treated as the archival material and PhotoLab is being used (or would be) to process it for general consumption (e.g. on web sites)? Because if the archival file is the output of PhotoLab then you have a working solution now… scan to TIFF, process in PhotoLab, and export as Linear DNG.

I had another read of the Wikipedia page on DNG and while it does “self describe” the data, it would still require PhotoLab to be able to treat specific data layouts it comes across. As such, I still think it’s a case of “support VueScan DNGs” rather than “support generic DNGs”. It is possible that many non-camera DNG files follow one or a few basic layouts, but that becomes a pain for DxO to quantify what will and won’t work.

I am coming around to the idea that maybe it’s worth DxO’s time to look at supporting common cases, but it does go outside their core competency which is in treating Bayer (and now Foveon) sensor data with clever algorithms, with a very strong focus on cameras.


I’m also an old museum worker and I also have used DNG privately during some years but I don’t anymore.

Adobe created DNG and Lightroom is the RAW- converter that by far has the best DNG-support.

The problem with DNG and Photolab is not the DNG-file format in itself at all. Instead the problem is that Photolab has a file read control that always checks if the camera models files you are using are supported. Even if you have converted a file to DNG Photolab will only open the ones that have profile support in Photolab.

Last year I bought a new Sony A7IV and got problems right away and I continued to have problems for six month. Capture One and Lightroom fixed support in a couple of month but not DXO. I also have the older A7 III.

I also know from experience way back around 2006 or 2007 with the same problem in other converters that had the same issues. So I tried to fool that control in Photolab using a HEX-editor. So I took an A7IV file and just gave it the same code as the A7 III files use to have and sim-sala-bim I got in. So it’s not about the RAW-format itself at all necessarily but about the version codes written in four places in the files. In the meantime when I was waiting for DXO to fix the problem I batch converted my new files with a macro tool that I used to call the HEX-editors search and replace function.

I’t gets even more weird. When I had fooled the file control so I got in and could edit the files, I was able to select ANY of all the camera profiles in Photolab. I could for example select the Canon 5D MK IV profile (that gave me a starting point with slightly more unsatured colors) and use that instead. THAT was possible to do but I was refused to open an ARW A7IV file and change the profile later. What is the logic in that?

I can also tell you that this A7 III profile hat is there to give me a better starting point when starting my work with A7III files, worked so good even with the new unsupported files that I couldn’t see any differences later when DXO gave us profiles even for the A7IV files some months later.

We are several people with new Sony, Nikon and Canon bodies that have asked DXO to get rid of the file control during 2022 or at least to give us a chance to override it and open our files without having any explicit support for these files.

Read this message if you are intrested in by passing the file read control with files from new cameras


I can see some logic in it. If you state explicitly what you support with the high tech features and only allow those to be opened, you (theoretically) reduce your support burden.

But… the same could be achieved by putting a warning message right on the image thumbnail. It’s true no matter what you write, some people will simply not read it, but a warning right in the software would solve that.

If they think it’s so important not to edit without a matching profile that they stop us from opening an unsupported file there is a strange lack of logics that they allow us to select profiles created even for completely different vendors cameras.

It doesn’t matter which profile I select to get access to for example the new sharpening in “Lens Correction”, as long it IS ANY-one of the supported profiles.

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All the Archives including the scaned material are in DNG format. Photolab would be used for repair and adjustment for the archive in DNG. Nothing to do with websites. For web sites etc you would generate a JPG or laterly a PNG
Basically PhotoLab needs to be able to hande DNG properly from Lightroom and Scanners. I not that Lightroom can handel DNG from VueScan but PhotoLab can’t handle these images. Neother can it handle Tiffs from VueScan that Lightroom converts to DNG.

As Stenis said “Even if you have converted a file to DNG Photolab will only open the ones that have profile support in Photolab.” Which seems to be the crux of the problem.
DxO needs to sort this out.


I did not remember exactly when I wrote about DNG support, but it is still a problem if we can read here.
Dng is supported by so many applications…not by Dxo
We don’t want full workflow like with raw, only basic settings like the other competitors have
We would be happy if opening a dng will also pop up a warning message or only show the basic tools and palettes
We would like to got a statement of dxo about the why and why not

Ignoring the crowd we can also close the forum, because why spending time by being ignored as forum member


The point I was manking is not only are many other programs supporting DNG (more fully thant DxO) but that DNG is THE main Archive format for many/most/all the worlds major archives and museums.
The problem with the Archives and Museums is they are converting old images to digital using scanners not cameras.
This is on top of photgraphing artifacts using a wide range of cameras.

So if DxO does not support the scanners and Lighroom etc then DxO will have no place in the workflow for all the worlds museums when there are other programs that dosupport DNG more compleltey…
A no brainer for DxO would have thought.


Constantly asking for or demanding a statement about a business strategy might not be the proper way to approach DxO.

I’m quite convinced that they processed this option as well as they have done with several others I’ve been in personal contact with them about.

If DxO choose to invest in the work needed for this I’m sure will will find out sooner or later.

“Do it all - for everyone and everything” is not really in DxO business strategy.
I’m happy with that.

If DNG is a Life or death choice, PhotoLab might not be the right tool at the moment.
Perhaps it will be. Perhaps it will never be.

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Dxo has their own opinion of what is worth their effort, how they want to present themselves, what the features are current customers would want, and which features they might need to get more customers.

In your ‘bubble’ it might seem a no brainer. It probably isn’t when you see all the numbers they have.

Now, completely separate from that… If a scanner produces a dng, it’s a linear dng. That means the strong points like lens correction, noise reduction and sharpening isn’t going to be available. So dxo photolab loses a lot of the unique selling points.

Any regular r,g,b tool might be more suited , such as photoshop, affinity photo, gimp, etc…

If you really want to use dxo, you could always extract the rgb data inside as a tiff file, since that is what a linear dng really is. Maybe just renaming might be all it takes.

Side note: Archiving to dng seems like a very bad idea in my mind. It’s one of the most confusing formats out there , not open at all and regulated by a single commercial company. Most archival standards telt on proven code with public domain implementations , so that not only the files can be archived , but also the code needed to do something with them .


You might well be right but that is what a lot of the world is doing… I argued against it a decade ago but no one seem to have a better solution.

Edit. The “bubble” AFAICS is most/All museums, collections and archives around the world. The problem is whey they scan and digitise collections of non-digitial images. There is no camera profile however VueScan seems to berecommended by most scanner manufacturers Certainly Nikon for their film/slide scanners…

When I need to scan my 5" x 4" film transparencies, I have created an ICC profile for each film base and use that with my Epson V700 scanner.

I always scan at 2400ppi to 16-bit TIFF files, using Epson’s own software, and then convert to the ProPhotoRGB profile for editing - works fine for over 15 years.

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I missed the bit where you end up with a DNG file which is the standard required. Then how you read in DxO the DNG’s that have been scannd and convered by something other than a camera

Assuming you are replying to me, I never use DNG because all the scanning software that I have used is capable of generating TIFF files. I regard DNG files as unnecessary wrappers that contain a TIFF anyway.

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Good for you.
Howver as stated for over a decade the worlds museums, archives and collections appear to have standardised on DNG. Everyone is happy with that except that DxO doesn’t work well with DNG. That you as a single individual are happy not using DNG is good for you but irrelevant.

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Decisions taken by organisations a decade ago can not be DxOs responsibility today and something that “needs to be adressed”.

It’s better to post a wish or feature request, get the votes and hope that DxOs return on investment is a positive one.

On a personal reflection - I see more and more of threads where demands are made, where lack of knowledge or misunderstandings are loudly voiced as DxOs responsibility to solve. I feel a sad when reading them as they have a haughty wording. :confused:


Well, the Adobe applications are the industry standard since long. DXO has done a lot to be compatible with especially Adobe Lightroom (read “synchronisation”) and the irony is that it happens to be DNG that is used since quite a few years. Also, when making a “black box” plug-in of Photolab (PureRaw) that plug-in is relying on DNG as an intermediate format (besides TIFF). So Photolab is of some reason compatible mainly with the DNG created by Photolab. That is a pretty strange way of handling a file format that once was created to be an open standardized RAW alternative.

I also have to write that not just Photolab have used a file control that has stopped users from editing “non supported file types”. The first time I came across it was in RawShooter, which Adobe killed in a hostile take over around 2006 or so.

Today I and all Sony-users have alternatives to Photolab when we buy a new camera and DXO in practice refuses us from using Photolab until DXO might prioritize to make a profile for our files in half a year or so. Nowadays Sonys totally free Imaging Edge is so good that it will be all they need. It supports even wireless tethering and support our files from day one the new files start pouring out of our cameras.

If you think a bit about the last paragraph here you realize that DXO will lose access to any of the worlds cultural heritage institutions just because DXO won´t be able to guarantee that they will be able to open any of their files from their new cameras in months or even half a year. That´s really an unacceptable “show stopper” for them, believe me!

I´m pretty convinced that most companies in the world would respond quickly if they found out that a pretty unnecessary file control in their software deprived them of a pretty large market share. Maybe this knowledge hasn´t manage to pass the techies to DXO´s market people but once it does I´m pretty sure there will be a reaction and a proper action. There seems to be some of the DXO techies that have fallen in love with their own control code and that will cost DXO a lot.