After searching the net to find out what the differences between standard RAW and sRAW – I thought I would post it here incase other people end up searching for it too.
sRaw is quite simply is a small version of a standard RAW file, roughly 1/4 the size. This sRaw file format is ideal for when you know you won’t need to print any thing bigger than approx 6″x4″.
RAW vs JPG – A brief guide & 101 – RAW vs JPG, the constant debate! Which is best for what you need?
SRAW could be a great file format for some – if space is at a premium or if you definately know you won’t be needing to print a bigger size in the future. The smaller sRAW file should write quicker to your card as well, so this is a big advantage. This could be quite a useful format to be honest, as there is a number of times when I’ve wanted to shoot in RAW, but just taking small snapshots – that definately don’t need to be bigger – IE for quick web shots, where I still want to be able to edit the white balance and the exposure if needed. sRaw is available on the higher canon range, it is definately on my Canon 40D!
Edit:Sept ’08 – Found a little more info from ‘starchild’ on the ‘soocool.com’ forums.. so added it here too
“ It needs to be added that 1/4 size sRAW does pixel binning of 4 neighboring pixels in Bayern pattern:
G B, R G, into a single pixel with (R, G, B) values. The effect is pretty similar to what Foveon or film-capture does; since the need for demosaicing disappears (i.e. you don’t need to interpolate for the missing color values), the resultant image becomes quite sharp. I’ve been finding the 2.5mp sRaw option on 10mp 40D to be extremely sharp and noise-free.“
Thanks for that extra bit. (Although there is another thought on this down in the comments – so not 100% on the reliability of the quoted text above)
These great books I have found have way more about the Raw format and worth looking into:
Real World Camera Raw with Adobe Photoshop CS3 (Real World)
Adobe Camera Raw for Digital Photographers Only (For Only)
Understanding RAW Photography