Originally Posted by Chiaroscuro
What? RAW captures more data. More data is what you want in a digital photo, b/c more data allows you more freedom to manipulate the image in post processing. It also means the image will be of higher quality at least data wise, b/c theres more info in the image.
that's a generalization that must be assessed on an individual basis. raw has to be converted into another format before you can print or display it, such as a tiff or a jpeg, and some raw converters will do a better job with a particular camera than others. jpeg engines are just built-in raw converters, and sometimes their output is sharper than what current versions of raw converters can produce. generally speaking, most cameras have very good jpeg engines, and only a few are not as good. it's a messy issue, and there are no simple, one-size-fits-all answers. the main difference that always applies is that shooting jpeg only throws out the original raw file. there are reasons to do this throughout the spectrum of photographers. if you're a photojournalist, sports photographer, or wedding photographer, there are practical reasons to shoot jpeg only (smaller file sizes and faster write times), and with good shooting practice there's little to no disadvantage. if you're just sharing photos with family and friends on the internet, or making small album sized prints, there is very little reason to shoot raw. there are no resolution or file manipulation issues at these sizes. on the other hand, if you're making large fine prints, you'll probably want to shoot raw. i doubt that is the case here. but if you're worried about missing out on raw, there's little penalty for the casual photographer to shoot in raw+jpeg mode. you'll probably use up much more hard disk space than you actually need to, but memory is cheap.