White Balance

Discussion in 'General Technical Discussion' started by gbenic, Jul 4, 2005.

  1. Okay, so I find a Pringles-type lid and use Preset WB on the D70 kit lens. I do some shooting at dusk. What a difference! I am thinking that perhaps now I know how to take pictures! Today I put the 70-300ED lens on and do the same thing. This time I am zoomed out to 300mm. My factory WB settings look closer than the Preset option! The differences were that the subject was in bright sunlight and I was in the shade and the focal length. Is the fact that I was in the shade make this much difference? If so, does the Expodisk work any differently? Does anyone have any suggestions (aside from post processing)?

    Thanks.
     
  2. Gale

    Gale

    978
    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
    Did you use the white pringles :>))

    They are making them clear now..not so good for us....
     
  3. Iliah

    Iliah

    Jan 29, 2005
    nowhere
    Here are 2 images. For the first, colour temperature was set directly as Incandescent + 3, for the second custom white balance was used to neutralize grays. Colours on the second image are: 1. - inaccurate colorimetrically, 2. - not true to what I see at all. While first image is very correct in terms of what I see with the doll lit by a single 50W lamp in straw lightshade.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  4. I noticed that. I bought a Wal-Mart mixed nuts can with the correct WB lid on it!
     
  5. So if I understand what you are saying, the Preset doesn't work as well and I should just take care of it after the fact or choose Direct Sunlight, etc? I was hoping to get most of it done in-camera.
     
  6. Iliah

    Iliah

    Jan 29, 2005
    nowhere
    I mostly use Nikon presets (Incandescent, Sunny, Fluorescent, Shade, Cloudy) or direct "K" settings. Click-WB can be done later, or other more advanced methods of colour balancing can be applied. But Nikon presets take care of the things best way for me. Direct "K" - I use it for unusual lighting - early/late light, theaters, etc., and Flash. Nikon Flash preset does not work for me.
     
  7. Chris101

    Chris101

    Feb 2, 2005
    Arizona
    Preset works fine IF you use the correct target. By using either a translucent polypropylene food container lid, or an expodisc, you are averaging the light that is hitting the lens. There is no guarentee that the light hitting the lens is the same color as the light hitting the subject.

    I have found there is not a 'works-every-time' substitute for shooting a gray card to set the proper white balance.

    I have experimented with this and found that setting the whitebalance from a properly illuminated neutral target is the same as setting the white balance in ACR using the eyedropper tool. It takes me less time to do the latter, so unless there is some overriding issue, I rarely use a preset white balance.
     
  8. Iliah

    Iliah

    Jan 29, 2005
    nowhere
    Dear Chris,

    What you say is true for ACR; but not quite the same for NC
     
  9. Chris101

    Chris101

    Feb 2, 2005
    Arizona
    Hello Iliah! (Although I know that you are not American, Happy 4th of July! It is a big picnic and fireworks celebration day here.)

    I do not have enough experience with NC to know what the best methods are with it, and must rely on others such as yourself to guide me. However, I noticed on another thread that Greg is new to ACR and might be using that.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 15, 2017
  10. Iliah

    Iliah

    Jan 29, 2005
    nowhere
    Dear Chris,

    Thank you. Happy Independence day to all of us, whatever that day is :)

    Even in ACR, if you render the same image in different White Balance presets, you will see that the results are different for same colour temperature. That can be mainly attributed to different "tint"; but nevertheless, it is a good indicator that spectral composition of light is taken into account. Based on that, and the current trends in RAW converters and digital cameras development - it seems to me like a good thing to respect those pre-sets. As we discussed earlier, colour temperature alone is not enough.
     
  11. heiko

    heiko

    May 15, 2005
    Israel
    I remember reading somewhere that - when shooting RAW - the WB settings on the camera don't influence the RAW data being recorded, which then can be readjusted in something like NC. Is this correct, or am I completely wrong?

    By the way, I noticed that using the Flash pre-set on the D70 produces a different tint than setting the WB to Flash in NC, even though the image was shot with WB set to Flash (i.e. instead of choosing "recorded value", I changed it to "Flash", which should be the same, or not?).

    I found that nothing compares to using a gray scale for WB setting. Here in Israel at broad daylight, the Nikon Sunny WB is not really hitting it.

    Some people suggest to set WB to Auto and let the camera do the thinking. Others strongly recommend to preselect the proper WB and shoot, while again others recommend to stick with one WB setting and adjust WB in NC or PS. Any recommendations?

    As for indoor shots with mixed flash and fluorescent light - when a grey or white area is in the picture - the Set Graypoint option in NC works best for me (perhaps ACR is similar, but haven't used it).

    Appreciate your input!
     
  12. Iliah

    Iliah

    Jan 29, 2005
    nowhere
    Dear Heiko,

    In all Nikon dSLR cameras, except original D1, WB setting does not influence RAW data. However, in D2X and D2Hs there is a possibility to change RAW data through WB - this possibility seems not to be active, but future firmware releases can activate it.

    There is strong suspicion that WB in some cases may affect exposure - for D2H if WB is not exact at shooting time for low light/high ISO, noise seems to increase.

    Sunny is not universal. An old joke is "what is 5500K? it is sky at noon in Rochester, NY" (Kodak Headquarters, and RIT)

    To simplify the task of shooting in mixed Fluorescent/Flash light, you can mount green gel onto the flash, and watch the exposure to be 1/25, 1/50 or 1/100 exactly. You can also try Fluorescent settings in NC after that.

    Flash WB in camera is indeed different from Flash WB in NC, and camera version seems to me more accurate.

    As far as gray card goes - I use it sometimes, and sometimes I use colormeter. Whatever is more convinient, and works best for the situation.
     
  13. heiko

    heiko

    May 15, 2005
    Israel
    Thanks, Iliah - this has been most helpful!

    I also have had the feeling that WB settings at low light / high ISO may affect exposure.

    Regarding shooting in daylight, I found that using the preset Sunny wouldn't work very well, even if I try to compensate afterwards in NC (by changing the color temperature setting). Using a grey card corrects both red and blue channels versus green, and the WB of images then snaps right in.

    I never really tried Auto-WB on the camera, as sometimes I want to capture the mood of the scene (sunsets, etc.). But perhaps most of the time it might work well. Any suggestions here?
     
  14. Iliah

    Iliah

    Jan 29, 2005
    nowhere
    Dear Heiko,

    I tried Auto WB for a couple of hundreds shots. Conditions varying: light overcast cityscape, late light flowers, sunny riverside, flash indoors (main light source), office fluorescent, heavy overcast marine. I must say I was not pleased. It was much better compared to previous models, but still some shots have such a weired tint that it was not easy to correct them. I do not beleive in click-gray panacea, as IMHO our eyes never see gray as perfect neutral gray.
     
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