Lightroom 4.2 cannot "uncrop" Canon 5D Mark III images taken with in-camera cropping turned on

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  • Updated 6 years ago
I recently shot some images on my Canon 5D Mark III that I knew were destined for 4:5 (or 8:10) crop. I turned on the "Add cropping information: Aspect ratio 4:5" option in the camera.

This allowed me to review the images on the back of the camera with a line on both sides that represented what would initially need to be cropped away to change aspect ratios. I figured I would need to slide the crop box to one side or the other in post to get the desired framing, so I was really just using it as a reference.

When I brought the RAW images into Lightroom 4.2, to my great dismay , I could not see the pixels outside of the 4:5 bars. It was as if they were never there, and the image was 4:5 right out of the camera instead of the usual native 2:3. Look on the camera, and they're there. Lightroom, gone. This left me with numerous images with the edge of the subject cut off just a bit, ruining them. I was shooting from an awkward position, so framing was a challenge, and I intended to easily fix that by cropping in post along with cropping to the intended 4:5 ratio.

Fortunately, I was able to edit them in Canon's Digital Photo Professional software and get what I wanted, but it was a hassle because I haven't used that program in a few years. At least it let me "uncrop" to the camera's full image, and then I could place the actual 4:5 crop where I wanted it without anything being thrown overboard beforehand.

Lightroom briefly displayed them with black bars, like a letterboxed movie, before cropping them to the in-camera option.

Entering the Crop tool on any of these images brings up the (what I know to be cropped) image with the drag frame/bounding bars matching the dimensions of the whole image. If I hit reset, nothing happens. "As Shot," "Original," or "4x5/8x10" still stays at the full dimensions. Normally, if you pulled up a regular image that didn't have this in-camera crop information in it, and chose, say, 4x5, the bars would immediately reflect those new, proposed proportions in a centered fashion, and one could drag and/or resize as desired.
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Todd Rullestad

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Posted 6 years ago

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Steve Sprengel, Champion

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You can use the DNG Edge Recover plug-in to get those pixels back, but you have to convert the CR2s to DNGs, first:
http://labs.adobe.com/technologies/li...

Hopefully a future version of ACR and LR will provide a better option.
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Todd Rullestad

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A plug-in and a different file format just to get back to what should be easily ignored or turned off (the in-camera crop) in Lightroom? That's a bit too clunky for me, so I guess I'll refrain from using that camera option until I hear it is properly supported.

I don't understand why Lightroom is going so far out of its way to strictly obey the in-camera crop settings and prevent access to what is really there. It knows it's there and zooms slightly to present the revised aspect ratio.

Just imagine if you couldn't adjust in Lightroom from the original in-camera white balance setting because you had the camera's white balance set to something other than auto.

The in-camera crop, if present, should simply be the starting point in Lightroom crop tool, not the already-cropped hard limit of the image's aspect ratio.
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Steve Sprengel, Champion

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I and probably most people agree that the Adobe raw engine should do what the plug-in allows to happen, without needing a plug-in or DNG format, so no further elaboration or convincing needs to be given, I don't think.

In an attempt to explain some months ago, before they released the plug-in, Eric did say that years ago when they were first designing the camera-raw engine, they had to decide to either respect the crop or ignore the crop (I don't know why this was the choice, but that is what he said), and they decided to respect the crop. Nikons and Panasonics always crop the pixels anyway, and you might guess that some of the deciders shoot Nikon so wouldn't have benefitted, anyway. I think they just decided to do the easiest thing which is make the processing the same for all cameras, instead of doing extra work for cameras that do capture all pixels.

I also think a reason why things aren't easily remedied, is that the raw engine has been configured with the parameter to look at for each camera model and changing things to a more relaxed-cropping behavior would require redoing something for each camera model. This standardization of parameters is taken care of by the DNG Converter, already, so it is an easier fix to require DNG and a plug-in, which I believe is a temporary workaround.

The fact Adobe has released a plug-in means they understand there is a problem and have thought somewhat about the solution, but I wouldn't expect Adobe to redo the cropping behavior until LR5, since a major release is usually when the database structure changes to allow for new data to be stored. It might even need to be a different process version, if it's not easy to convert old images to the new behavior.
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Todd Rullestad

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Thanks, I appreciate the background information.

Glad I wasn't using the in-camera crop on a Nikon. That data is gone! ;-)
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Jim Wilde, Champion

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Personally I think this is at best an inconsistent implementation, and at worst a flawed implementation. Reading the 5DIII documentation about the "Add Cropping Information" function, it seems to me the intention was simply to add cropping information which could be used in post to apply the crop (or not)....and that's exactly what happens when using DPP as the OP noted. However, Adobe have gone a stage further and actually apply the crop during import, but inconsistently they don't do that if shooting Jpeg, only if the file is Raw. This leads to the bizarre situation when shooting Raw + Jpeg of having the Raw cropped and the Jpeg not.

This was raised near the end of this thread:

http://feedback.photoshop.com/photosh...

You will see that Eric Chan had a different result from his testing that I did from mine. Although I sent him some samples a few weeks back for him to check, I've not yet heard any more.

I too have "Add Cropping Information" disabled....
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Eric Chan, Camera Raw Engineer

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For nearly all cameras that offer the in-camera crop / aspect ratio feature (e.g., current models from Canon, Fuji, Olympus, Pentax, Samsung, and Sony) the JPEG is always cropped to the in-camera setting. Similarly, the live preview shown on the back of the LCD only shows the cropped portion. This has been my experience as well with the 5D III, though Jim has found otherwise.

Starting with all models newly supported in ACR 7.2 / Lightroom 4.2, there is now the built-in ability in ACR / Lr (without the use of an external plug-in) to use the full raw image data.
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Jim Wilde, Champion

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Well, I'm a bit puzzled then. I've checked again with those samples I sent you (plus others) and the cropping information is definitely there on the associated jpegs (both the raw and the jpeg show the exact same "crop line" information when viewed in DPP). So I have no idea what's going on.

Personally, it's not a problem as I don't usually shoot Jpeg anyway, and I doubt I'd ever want/need to use that custom function (I only came across the "anomaly" when doing some testing for another user).....but if others get the same result as me they may also be somewhat perplexed.

But thanks for the response.
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Rikk Flohr, Champion

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Eric, what happens on mRaw or sRaw files?
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Allan Olesen

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There is a plugin which works for some camera models without requiring DNG as the official Adobe plugin does:
http://tim.jagenberg.info/projects/de...

It creates a copy of the original image file with crop information removed using exiftool, imports the copy and stacks it with the original.

I have not tried it myself. I don't think it works with all camera models, since the metadata for in-camera crop seems to be proprietary and require different exiftool commands. (Example: On my Sony a77, "Sony" is actually part of the name for the relevant fields...)
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Lee Grider

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Could someone please just email me the actual DNGEdgeRecover plugin file.
The one that has a .plugin extension

When I download from the Adobe labs, all it has is an executable file that never executes.

I am literally screwed until I can get this resolved....
Any help appreciated!
Mail to f.64@comcast.net
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Steve Sprengel, Champion

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Look at the installation instructions at the bottom of the download page: You should not be running the EXE, you should be unzipping the files somewhere and going into LR and doing an Add Plug-in when pointing to that folder:
http://labs.adobe.com/downloads/light...
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Heather Shuker

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this plus in does not work!! my files are ok in DPP, ok in RAW and lightroom just screws them up ..and crops them - tried recover edges..nothing