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What is RAW Format?

by GoPro ‎09-30-2019 07:33 PM - edited ‎04-16-2021 05:42 PM
What is RAW format? When should I utilize the feature?

Where does it apply?
  • HERO9 Black
  • GoPro MAX
  • HERO8 Black
  • HERO7 Black
  • Fusion
  • HERO6 Black
  • HERO5 Black

We recommend the use of RAW photo for those that intend to apply their own color correction and other image editing techniques. Similarly, RAW audio should be used when you aim to customize audio in an editing program. These features are primarily intended for professional workflows, when more flexibility in the editing process is desired. 

NOTE: To utilize your RAW photos and audio files, insert your microSD card into a card reader and locate the files with your computer’s file explorer.

RAW Photo
Capturing RAW photo allows for less compression than the standard .JPGs, yielding higher quality photos, and more flexibility while editing. When this setting is turned on, the photos will be saved as a .GPR file with an accompanying .JPG image (for immediate viewing on your camera or sharing with GoPro Quik). The .GPR format is an extension of Adobe’s .DNG format, adding enhanced compression (VC5 Standard) for faster storage and smaller files without impacting quality. VC5 compression takes what would have been a roughly 20MB file and reduces it to between 3-7MB. 

These files can be used in Adobe Camera Raw (ACR), version 9.7 or later, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom CC (2015.7 release or later) and Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 6 (version 6.7 or later).

RAW Format is available only for the Photo capture mode and only when Wide Dynamic Range is turned off. RAW Format is not available when using Continuous photo mode (i.e., holding down the Shutter button to capture multiple photos until released) or when in Linear field of view.


RAW Audio
This setting creates a separate .wav file for your video, in addition to the standard .mp4 audio track. This setting is useful if you want a separate .wav file to share or use in an advanced editing program. You can select the level of processing to apply to the RAW audio track: 
  • Low: Applies minimal processing; ideal if you apply audio processing in post-production.
  • Medium: Applies processing based on your Manual Audio Control setting (wind and/or stereo). If you have Manual Audio Control turned off, the camera automatically switches between wind filtering and stereo audio.
  • High: Applies full audio processing (automatic gain and AAC encoding).