Custom White Balance?

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by ckphotography, Mar 4, 2010.

  1. ckphotography

    ckphotography TPF Noob!

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    Hi Everyone,

    Just wondering if there are photographers who shoot weddings and take the time to custom white balance. If so, can you share your thoughts? How much time does it take? Do you use and white balance card? Are you happier with the quality of your photos?

    Thanks in advance for your replies!
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I rarely set a custom WB, I shoot RAW and use AWB. If I need to adjust the WB in post, then I'll do that. Using Lightroom, I can easily set a consistent WB for a group of images with the Sync command.

    For something like a wedding, I'm not going to worry about a technically accurate WB. I'll adjust for what looks good.
     
  3. SpeedTrap

    SpeedTrap TPF Noob!

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    I am the opposite of Big Mike, I always set custom White Balance.
    It takes about 5 seconds to do using a Lastolite Gray Card, it is one less thing to do in post and saves time for me. If I need to tweak a few later I will, but most are fine this way.
     
  4. RONDAL

    RONDAL TPF Noob!

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    if you're shooting in the same conditions (ie lighting and location) and those conditions are constant over the length of your shoot, setting a custom WB makes sense.

    if not, you'll simply set for one condition and then it will be off when you move to the next. So you really have to be careful.

    I'd far rather prefer to just do it all in post, than worry about it in the field but to each his own
     
  5. Jeremy Z

    Jeremy Z No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    With memory being as cheap as it is, your best bet is to shoot RAW and know you can always correct it later. Color correcting jpgs is no biggie either. RAW helps more in other areas, like tonal range, fixing too-dark shadows or too-light highlights.
     
  6. Dominantly

    Dominantly TPF Noob!

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    Custom WB.
     
  7. Josh66

    Josh66 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    WhiBal. Quick, easy, flawless accuracy... Why not?
     
  8. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    That may be true, but those are mainly exposure issues...and exposure is something that should be taken care of when you are shooting. Whether it's setting the exposure settings on camera or adjusting/adding light to the scene. RAW can help you 'fix' things, but it's better not to have anything to 'fix'.
    White Balance, on the other hand, is purely a digital setting. Setting it before or after, makes no difference to the final product. For me it's just a time and 'state of mind' issue. I don't want to take the time, or to even think about WB when I'm shooting a wedding.
    Now if it was a controlled photo shoot, I might be more inclined to set it in-camera. But still, I can set it and sync it in LR in less time that it takes to set a custom WB on the camera.
     
  9. Electricblue73

    Electricblue73 TPF Noob!

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    how do you set a custom WB if you are using an external Bounce flash on your camera? Is this a waste of time because you would be bouncing the flash from various surfaces/ceilings/walls, etc.... which would mean inconsistent size of light source ?

    I just started using an external bounce flash and wondered if setting the WB should be a priority before shooting. I use it mainly for shooting family pics inside the house, for now.
    I bounced the flash off walls and ceilings (side, behind, above,etc..) using a homemade bounce card attached to my flash.
     
  10. ckphotography

    ckphotography TPF Noob!

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    Great replies everyone- Thanks! I'm gathering that it can be a personal preference thing and, having shot quite a few weddings, know that I am apt to forget that I set the custom white balance in one setting, move on to the next and have a very minor melt-down in the next setting when I'm trying to figure out why the photos are looking so awful. Until I remember, that is.....
     
  11. Joves

    Joves No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I set mine as well. You will need to reset or make a second preset for the reception indoors if that is the case.
     
  12. LearnMyShot

    LearnMyShot TPF Noob!

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    I use AWB, but check as I go along....seems to work well for me!
     

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