White Balance Camera to NX related question....Hope this is the right place to ask

Apr 21, 2007
Los Angles, CA.
OK, I'll start by saying that I hope this is the right place to ask this - if not, please let me know where to go to.
Anyhow, I have my D200 set on AUTO in White Balance all the time so far & I've found that to work well for me most of the time. Well, actually just about all of the time. The problem arises when I go into NX to start working my photos. I shoot aRGB RAW always so I go into NX & do my sharpening etc.

But that's when I go in & change settings & start manipulating things. However, I've been a bit "unhappy" I guess I could call it with the result at times. Let me give you an example....

I often shoot my local "family" of squirrels in the backyard. Problem is, how to deal with White Balance in PP. So again, camera is set on AUTO in White Balance. Then I go in to adjust the White Balance in NX. The squirrel is most of the time in the shade in the tree or on the fence or on the ground. But he's in the shade. If I go in to NX & change my setting to shade the whole picture turns way too brownish red. Direct sunlight is closer, but there is a noticeable color change again. Cloudy is no better as it's not cloudy either. Reality is, that if I leave NX's setting at AUTO I retain be closest colors.

Am I the only one with this experience? I've debated getting a color meter or one of the ExpoDiscs. But I'm happy with the colors I get out of the camera 99% of the time. . . .

What am I doing wrong? Should I just leave NX in AUTO in these situations & leave it be or.......

Recommendations please & thanks for reading my long post.

Jun 9, 2006
Rural Virginia
Sounds like you have a mixed lighting situation. Even though sunlight is the only light source you have direct sun and shade elements in the shot. This means you have at least two different light temperatures, so most likely no one white balance setting will give accurate colors over the entire image. Auto white balance may well produce a better white balance compromise than any of the preset white balance settings.

Another option is to use a white balance setting that produces the best color for majority of the image and them do selective color correction in the remaining area of the image. Not an NX user, but I believe the Targeted Adjustment Tools in NX will allow you to do this.
Feb 7, 2005
Annandale, VA
Birger is spot on. D-lighting will bring out the shadows. It shifts the bulk of the histogram to the right without moving the right (lighter) end. You also might consider bringing along a whibal card. You can get them in a business card size with a retracting clip. You shoot it first and when you get into NX select "set gray point" to correct the white balance. I also use auto white balance but out of habit usually pop the card in the immediate vicinity of the focus spot (if I can) but in any case I get it to match the light conditions of the inended scene. This will be used for every image under similar lighting conditions.

For example, here's a jpg of the whibal card on my carrying case. In NX I set the grey point by marking a marquee (rectangle) on the light grey area. I save the settings (including sharpness) as 2007-05-20-(0001wb).set (for example). Then when I bring up my subsequent images for processing I "load settings" from that white balance settings file and badabing! white balance is spot on.

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)



May 1, 2005

I would echo Rich and use a whibal or other card and shoot Auto Wb for most situations. Then correct in Raw. If I am indoors with fluorescent lights I may use the flor preset or if I am in a theatre I would preset with incandescent, I do this to get close for the drastically different types of settings like this, but find Auto Wb works pretty good for most casual type of situations if shooting raw.

I tend to correct Wb by clicking on caclulate automatically and moving the adjustment up or down a little to fine tune the setting as shot in auto mode, or if i shot with the grey or whibal card, clicking set grey point.

cheers, and any other questions please holler,


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