HEIF/HEIC

Discussion in 'Sit and Chat' started by AlanLichty, Nov 28, 2019.

  1. AlanLichty

    AlanLichty Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2017
    Messages:
    11,290
    Likes Received:
    9,271
    Location:
    Vancouver, Washington
    Home Page:
    I have been using Adobe Lightroom to archive my iPhone images for quite a few years now since it lets me keep them organized by date along with the images I take with my DSLRs. I can also process them in Lightroom on my computer which gives me more latitude for image editing than I would get from phone apps as well as the advantage of the larger screen.

    Just before heading down to the southern Oregon coast last week I upgraded my laptop to the newest version of both Photoshop as well as Lightroom. While I was on the road last week I downloaded some images from my iPhone along with dumping in the SD card from my DSLR after a hike as usual. While looking at what I had harvested for the day I was surprised to note that all of the imported iPhone images had a file type of .HEIC.

    I decided to do some quick searches to figure out what had just happened. HEIC is a container file format that Apple started using internal to the iPhone as of iOS 11 in 2017. This is based on the HEIF (High Efficiency Image Format - AKA H.265) standard that comes from the MPEG standards folks. Microsoft also adopted this standard for storing images in Windows 10. In iOS Apple has been converting this file format into jpegs before exporting them for applications that do not request the new format.

    Adobe apparently did adopt support for this standard a couple of years ago but as of this most recent set of updates to PS/LR/ACR it is now the default for files imported from iPhones. This may also apply to images imported from Android phones although I do not have an Android phone to test this on.

    From my brief time playing around with the .HEIC images it looks like these are closer to our DSLR RAW files than to the jpegs when it comes to manipulating the images in either LR or ACR. The jpegs are seriously lacking when it comes to even marginally challenging dynamic range conditions.

    Here is the shot that made me look twice to make sure it had really come out of my iPhone 7. I was checking to see the .jpg file name instead of .CR2 when I first noted the .HEIC file extension. The location is Secret Beach and I was just taking a set of quick snapshots to record the overall scene:

    SecretBeachHEIC.jpg

    This is what inspired me to try pointing my DSLR right into bright sunlight last week - I decided if an older iPhone can shoot with this kind of light my DSLR must be able to do it as well.

    Is anyone else playing around with this file format from their phones? It seems like a pretty significant upgrade from the jpeg files I have been playing with through the years.
     
  2. Ben Egbert

    Ben Egbert Forum Helper
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2017
    Messages:
    10,887
    Likes Received:
    7,257
    Location:
    American Fork Utah
    Home Page:
    Thanks Alan, great info. I have been taking Iphone pictures, but have not figured out how to transfer them to my computer.
     
  3. AlanLichty

    AlanLichty Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2017
    Messages:
    11,290
    Likes Received:
    9,271
    Location:
    Vancouver, Washington
    Home Page:
    Connect your phone to the computer using a USB cable. Then use the import menu in Lightroom and then select your phone from the source list on the left. You should get a display of all the images on the phone and the default in Lightroom is to import all new images. You can be selective as well and you can also customize where the images will be copied to on your computer.
     
  4. Jameel Hyder

    Jameel Hyder Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2017
    Messages:
    1,795
    Likes Received:
    2,270
    Location:
    Sammamish WA
    Home Page:
    I upload all my images to my OneDrive using the OneDrive app on the iPhone.
     
  5. AlanLichty

    AlanLichty Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2017
    Messages:
    11,290
    Likes Received:
    9,271
    Location:
    Vancouver, Washington
    Home Page:
    What file format is it importing? JPEG or HEIC?

    Next question - what application(s) are you using on your computer to process the images?
     
  6. Jameel Hyder

    Jameel Hyder Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2017
    Messages:
    1,795
    Likes Received:
    2,270
    Location:
    Sammamish WA
    Home Page:
    It imports jpg. I use ps to process - although I don’t process phone pictures much anyways. Simple cropping etc I do on the phone.
     
  7. JimFox

    JimFox Moderator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2017
    Messages:
    15,472
    Likes Received:
    10,919
    Location:
    SoCal
    Home Page:
    Interesting, I remember seeing that file format a time or two, but mine always import as jpg. But then I usually just use the File Explorer since I don't use Lightroom.

    I will edit my iPhone photos from time to time, but almost always I do it just on the iPhone using the Photoshop Express App.

    So is the .HEIC format 16 bit? If it's not 16 bit, you wouldn't think it would be much difference from a jpg as far as detail goes. Are you then able to use ACR on this .HEIC format and get a range of adjustment similar to Raw?
     
  8. AlanLichty

    AlanLichty Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2017
    Messages:
    11,290
    Likes Received:
    9,271
    Location:
    Vancouver, Washington
    Home Page:
    .HEIC does support 16 bit color and actually creates smaller files than jpg. ACR does support this as does Lightroom (same underlying ACR software). Much greater degree of control over being able to edit the light with the .HEIC files over .jpg.
     
  9. Kyle Jones

    Kyle Jones Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2017
    Messages:
    3,103
    Likes Received:
    4,773
    Location:
    Pleasanton, California
    Home Page:
    For what it's worth, the Google pixel saves raw files in DNG format. I'll have to play with some and see how much latitude they provide.
     
  10. Sunny Sra

    Sunny Sra Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2017
    Messages:
    387
    Likes Received:
    465
    Home Page:
    Ben,
    Get a dropbox account. Here's my phone process:
    1. install the dropbox app on the phone
    2. Install the dropbox app on your computer
    3. Open the dropbox app on your iphone
    4. Select Account
    5. Select "Camera upload" and use the slider to turn on the option
    6. upload_2019-11-29_8-23-34.png
    7. On the next screen, select the options:
    8. Vidoes, when to upload etc
    9. I have it set to not upload when using cellular data only
    10. Whenever the phone connects to wifi (starbucks, mcdonalds, spectrum etc), it starts the upload process
    11. When i get home, the file is already on the computer in the dropbox folder
    12. upload_2019-11-29_8-25-52.png
     
  11. Sunny Sra

    Sunny Sra Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2017
    Messages:
    387
    Likes Received:
    465
    Home Page:
    Additionally, on the iphone you need to change 1 setting:

    Use iPhone or iPad settings to upload HEVC as a different file type
    You can upload HEIF and HEVC files as JPG and non-HEVC MOV by changing the settings on your iOS device and then manually connecting the device to a computer to upload. To do so:

    1. Open the Settings app on your iOS device.
    2. Tap Photos.
    3. Scroll to the Transfer to Mac or PC section and choose:
    • Automatic: iOS will automatically import the JPG or non-HEVC MOV version of the file
    • Keep Originals: iOS will automatically import the HEIF or HEVC-encoded MOV version of the file
     
  12. Ben Egbert

    Ben Egbert Forum Helper
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2017
    Messages:
    10,887
    Likes Received:
    7,257
    Location:
    American Fork Utah
    Home Page:
    Thanks Sunny, I have used dropbox in the past, I did not know I could use it on an Iphone. I will work on this
     
  13. AlanLichty

    AlanLichty Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2017
    Messages:
    11,290
    Likes Received:
    9,271
    Location:
    Vancouver, Washington
    Home Page:
    Nice info Sunny but my goal is to NOT convert these into jpg files in the phone when I can edit with 16 bit color space with the HEIC format files on my computer and convert to jpg when I am done with edits.
     
  14. Sunny Sra

    Sunny Sra Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2017
    Messages:
    387
    Likes Received:
    465
    Home Page:
    upload_2019-11-29_10-37-26.png
    Alan,
    neither is mine. There are certain things you need to do on the phone to be able to transfer HEIC. One also has to setup the iphone camera to save files in HEIC instead of "most compatible"
    Then make changes in Dropbox to save transfer HEIC ..not jpeg

    upload_2019-11-29_10-37-7.png upload_2019-11-29_10-37-7.png



    After I changed the Iphone to use HEIC instead of most compatible, and changing Dropbox setting, my phone autosynced to my PC transferring HEIC photos

    upload_2019-11-29_10-37-26.png
     
    AlanLichty likes this.
  15. AlanLichty

    AlanLichty Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2017
    Messages:
    11,290
    Likes Received:
    9,271
    Location:
    Vancouver, Washington
    Home Page:
    Interesting Sunny - the phone actually stores the images automatically in HEIC format but I can see where getting the device to transfer the file without turning it into a jpg is necessary to copy them this way. I just checked the contents of my phone using the Lightroom import dialogues and it turns out that all images on the phone taken since the iOS 11 release in early 2017 all have the .HEIC extension so I can reimport them and replace the jpg versions with the HEIC format.

    Had I been aware of the HEIC file formats earlier than the most recent Adobe updates I would have needed to do something like what you just described.
     
  16. Sunny Sra

    Sunny Sra Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2017
    Messages:
    387
    Likes Received:
    465
    Home Page:
    Alan,
    My camera mode was set to "Most compatible" and not HEIC. The steps and process I outline, are for people like me who don't connect the phone to computers...and I don't have to wait till I get home to sync photos...they are already there (provided I have wifi)
     
  17. AlanLichty

    AlanLichty Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2017
    Messages:
    11,290
    Likes Received:
    9,271
    Location:
    Vancouver, Washington
    Home Page:
    Slight difference in our M.O.'s here since most of my photography on the road is based out of my RV as a mobile photo lab. I am dumping my SD card into my computer as soon as I get back from my photo session and often dump my phone images at the same time if I took any. Quite rare for me to be hanging out where there is wifi in the first place when I am out shooting.
     
  18. Ben Egbert

    Ben Egbert Forum Helper
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2017
    Messages:
    10,887
    Likes Received:
    7,257
    Location:
    American Fork Utah
    Home Page:
    I downloaded Drop Box and ended up with Google Photos
     
  19. Ben Egbert

    Ben Egbert Forum Helper
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2017
    Messages:
    10,887
    Likes Received:
    7,257
    Location:
    American Fork Utah
    Home Page:
    Ok, I got the right Dropbox installed on my phone. But part of the install says point the phone at my computer and wait. Nothing happens, plus I worry this might be downloading something it should not be. It also costs $9.99 p[er month. I dont need it that bad.
     
    Jameel Hyder likes this.
  20. AlanLichty

    AlanLichty Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2017
    Messages:
    11,290
    Likes Received:
    9,271
    Location:
    Vancouver, Washington
    Home Page:
    You already own Lightroom Ben - why not try bringing them directly to your computer from the phone?
     

Share This Page

  • About Us

    Welcome to Focal World. As a Guest you have access to view the resources here. But it is totally FREE to Register and participate in the forums. If you find FocalWorld useful, please support it by Upgrading your Account to a Premium Account located in your Profile page. It is only $15 a year and will give you added ability of uploading photos directly from your computer and also the allows you to create your own Gallery's. We will be sharing the Daily Featured Photos on FaceBook, Instagram and in a Pbase Gallery to help share FocalWorld with others and to draw in new users as they view the incredible photos shared here. All photos share will include the name of the photographer who took them. If you do not want your photo to be shared in this method please let me know. But hopefully everyone will participate in helping to spread the word of FocalWorld in this manner. Thanks, Jim Fox