I have been using Lightroom 6 with an Olympus em1 mk II for a few years now. I will soon be getting a new OM Digital Systems OM 1 as an additional camera. As this camera has just been released, there will be no raw support for it in my version of Lightroom. I will need a new raw editor that is compatible with Windows 10. I'm intrigued by Darktable and would like to give it a try provided I can convince myself that it isn't going to be a frustrating, bottomless time suck.
The first issue with Darktable is just a timing issue. Darktable does not recognize OM 1 raw files yet. I wouldn't expect it to because it is a new camera. However, if raw file support tends to lag significantly behind new camera introduction, then I have problem. Does anyone have a sense for how quickly the Darkroom developers introduce support for new cameras?
In the meantime, I've started looking at the user manual and some how-to videos. Unfortunately, I've barely gotten started with importing images and already have significant issues. No surprise I suppose, but the nature of the problems is concerning.
First off, the manual is threadbare. It is not adequate to even get started with the editor nor does it accurately reflect the Windows version of Darktable. In addition, none of the the videos I have found so far describing image importation show a user interface that looks much like the Windows interface nor does the functionality seem to be the same. The Windows version seems to be missing some options and looks far more primitive (even though the version of Darktable in the videos is actually older). This begs the question: Are the different flavors of Darktable (Linux, Mac, and Windows) functionally equivalent? If not, it appears the windows version may be behind in development. Is this correct? If so, does anyone know if there are any instructional videos that pertain to the Windows version of Darktable?
Now to may specific problems with importing. When I select the import tab in the upper left of the lightable screen. I see only two buttons: "add to library..." and "copy & import...". There is no "scan for devices" button as mentioned in the user manual. As threadbare as the manual is, it doesn't seem to be accurate either.
If I connect my em1, I only get errors when I try to "mount camera". I've tried to connect the camera on every possible USB connection option the camera offers. Sometimes Darktable correctly identifies the camera as an Olympus EM1 mk II and sometimes incorrectly as an EM5. However, it always fails to make a connection. I only get the message:
"Failed to initialize 'Olympus EM*' on port 'usb **, likely causes are: locked by another application, no access to devices etc"
Hmmm, not good. The camera is not connected to another application yet Darktable is not able to connect to the camera. I'm not sure how to "unmount" the camera (or mount it for that matter as I don't have a camera saddle). I just connect it so it is visible on the computer. When I try the same connection with another editor, I have no trouble connecting to the camera and seeing the images on the card.
If I instead I select "copy and import...", then point to the correct folder on the camera's card (that I I am able to do this demonstrates that access to the camera card is not blocked from Darktable), I see a list of filenames rather than a standard thumbnail grid. The Darktable instructional vids show a thumbnail grid. If I select the eyeball option to see thumbnails, I get a LIST of thumbnails. There are only 4 of them at a time on my 27" screen . In this case, there are 900 images on the card! I'm supposed to scroll through and select from among 900 images when I can only see 4 of them on the screen at once.!?!?!? Is this a joke? Have I missed a setting? I sure hope so. Please help. (Obviously, I could just import them all and then sort and discard afterwards, but this is just stupid. Surely this is not what the developers intended.)
More generally, please tell my if 1) I have just been unlucky and picked the one incredibly crude, buggy, and unusable module of Darktable or 2) that this is in fact a fairly accurate impression of the Windows version.