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Opinions Wanted

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by greyflash, Dec 30, 2005.

  1. I am considering the purchase of a Gretag Macbeth color chart but at $67.00 I want to be sure it will be worth it to me. I would like opinions pro and con as to its usefulness and value plus how you use yours in everyday shooting. Thanks in advance.
  2. i do not know from nothing on this, i have the eye1 for calibrating tho and it is good. please tell me I do not need this thing.............
  3. Dave,

    I wasn't considering this for calibration of my monitor as I already have an expensive device for this purpose. I will use this for achieving a perfect WB while taking and processing images (I think). That is the purpose of my question at least.
  4. general


    Apr 30, 2005
    I own one

    I own one but I have rarely used it. I find the Auto WB on the D2X is so good that unless you are in a difficult mixed light environment it will do just fine. Just my take.
  5. i knew that, just hoping I did not need something like this for everyday shooting. but your question is the one on the table so I will wait and see the responses as you do. from looking at your portraits, I can not see the need for such a device for what that is worth.

  6. Hi Gordon:

    I have used the Macbeth card and there is not question they work well. The problem I have found is they might not be all that convenient when using....

    As a result I'm thinking you might be better off with a little unit...
    If you are in no hurry.... I have this in-bound to me but it's coming via Gaye when she heads up my way in Feb. so I cannot report back till then.

    My thinking is this system http://www.whibal.com/ is much smaller and you can just stick it in front of the camera with your spare hand... Take a sample shot and then carry on shooting. Get home and use the sample to process all the others.

    Hope this helps

  7. Hi Don and thanks for responding. The reason I am considering the Gretag Macbeth is for those difficult lighting situations you speak of. I find myself in those situations more than I would like and many times I am faced with eyeballing the WB in NC.
  8. Ken-L

    Ken-L Guest

    Have you considered, or tried, the Expodisc? They work well....
  9. Commodorefirst

    Commodorefirst Admin/Moderator Administrator

    May 1, 2005
    another vote for the Whibal


  10. I have an Expodisc Ken and use it often; however in very difficult lighting situations, especially with flash it isn't as good as it could be. It is for these situations that I was looking for something a little more foolproof. I do a lot of outdoor and indoor portraits and this is where I thought the Gretag Macbeth or WhiBal would be most useful.
  11. Thanks Don, Dave, Wade and Roman;

    I may be leaning towards the WhiBal but will wait until my friend Doug Barber has a chance to evaluate it.
  12. general


    Apr 30, 2005
    Me too

    I forgot to add that I always have at least one WhiBal in my bag - very convenient. I don't use it a lot either but it is definitely worthwhile.
  13. Commodorefirst

    Commodorefirst Admin/Moderator Administrator

    May 1, 2005

    I respectfully disagree about "useless" I use the large one about 6-10Ft in front of my camera, just lay it on the ground, or set the camera on timer or remote, and walk out there holding it, click, I am done and I at least have a closer setting for the lab work. If I am on an edge of a cliff or area where I can't get in front, I just don't bother, and select somewhere on the image that is neutral as a starting point.

    Proper term in my opinion is perhaps less useful. Lighting does change so quickly outside it is hard to use it every few minutes.


  14. Chris101


    Feb 2, 2005
    Hi Gordon,

    The good thing about the GM chart is that you will get a good sampling of many colors, in the same position as your subject (assuming that you are shooting under conditions where you can place the chart in the position of your subject.) This will give you the best way to adjust your color for maximum fidelity to the scene. It's uses go way beyond white balance though.

    You will be able to calibrate your entire color workflow to corespond to the shot of the card. For 'simple' white balance adjustment however, something less complex may easier to use.
  15. For $15 the Kodak gray cards are economical and work.

    With that said, this thread is motivating me to get a Whibal. Looks more functional and handier which translates to more-likely-used.....
  16. Thanks everyone, I am leaning towards the WhiBal cards as I think they will give me what I need.
  17. twig


    May 23, 2005
    Macbeth makes a mini color checkers which is smaller than an index card. It costs as much as the big one ! but is very convenient to carry places.

    As opposed to the expodisc (which you want to point at a light source), sometimes having the card is better, for example it catches the reflective color cast of indoor gymnasiums better (sometimes iwth an expodisc you point at the lights but images still have a yellow cast because of all the light bouncing off yellow floors).

    Anyway, I have the macbeth chart, an expodisc and a d2hs. The auto WB in mixedl ighting is so good on the Hs model that I am dumping the expodisc. I also like the Auto WB correction in Raw Shooter Pro.

    What I like about the macbeth chart (though I have never used it this way) is that it provides sample patches for different skin colors- so you can adjust your WB, then look at the results to see if the skin tones are reproducing properly in the chart.

    I you use AC R, you can photo the card and use it to customize your ACR settings for your particular camera, which is nice, there is a good script for that. That alone may be worth the price of admission if you use ACR.
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