?Custom White Balance?

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by edouble, Aug 7, 2010.

  1. edouble

    edouble TPF Noob!

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    I was just wondering what everybody prefers to use to set their white balance. ExpoDisk? Warm cards? Grey cards?
     
  2. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I use an Expodisk which I've found to be very accurate and reliable (albeit pricey) EXCEPT in low-light situations. Generally speaking however I prefer to leave my WB in Auto and correct to a known point (ie the white of a wedding dress).
     
  3. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I use a colour checker passport which has a grey card in it when I'm in a real pickle (fluros, bouncing light of yellow roofs etc), but mostly I do it by eye. There's a very good reason photoshop and lightroom have grey backgrounds.

    If I do a continued shoot in a controlled environment, then I'll always pull out the grey card.
     
  4. TobascoJackson

    TobascoJackson TPF Noob!

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    I've found that even when I'm not shooting in RAW (which is almost never anyway) it's pretty easy to adjust it after the fact. When shooting RAW, I leave it in AWB or Daylight, and when shooting JPG, I'll set it to whatever preset I feel is closest. I've only used the manual WB settings on my camera once. Most of my images get white balance tweaks in post, whether to correct for accuracy or to play with it as an artistic tool.
     
  5. Steve01

    Steve01 TPF Noob!

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    I always shoot RAW and always set to Auto White Balance.
    It's been my experience that the camera is very, very good at getting it right.

    Since I shoot raw I can adjust the white balance on the occasional image that I didn't feel came out right.
     
  6. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    Under most sun-lighted or sky-lighted conditions, AUTO WB is normally reliable...within reason...sometimes when the light levels are low, like in open shade or in deep shade late in the day, some cameras can go grossly out of whack on white balance,and produce absolutely garish,horrific,cartoonish-like results....the Fuji S2 Pro was terrible at that late in the day as evening came...AUTO WB would be good,good,good, and then BAMMO!!! Absolutely cartoonish,horrible,GARBAGE color...almost totally unusable. With that camera I learned to take a Custom WB about 2.5 hrs before sunset, using a white-painted chair,and I would store that WB for days and days on end, re-setting it throughout the year,winter,spring,summer,fall.

    I dunno....AUTO is okay most of the time, but you can also shoot to a pre-set, for greater consistency,and less shot-to-shot variation. Depends. I have used white washcloths....easy to transport in the camera bag, light,cheap, no problems with glares or reflection in-studio like there can be with a gray card and a softbox.

    I have also had great success using a telephoto lens, zooming tight, and throwing the image out of focus, and taking a Custom WB off of white or gray clouds in the sky above the scene: this works a LOT like the Expo Disc does,and incorporates a HUGE amount of the incident light that will actually light up your scenes.

    During stormy weather, sunrises,"weird light" conditions" sunsets,fireworks, I try to never,ever use AUTO WB, because it neutralizes the odd,beautiful color of the light--always try and use a pre-set under those situations. As always, YMMV, not all cameras do AUTO WB as well as other cams.
     
  7. DennyCrane

    DennyCrane No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Raw, auto WB. But once in post, I manually tweak the adjustment. I'm embarrassed to admit it, but I eye-ball about everything. It's easy when there's something known to be white in the shot, but generally I adjust until the "haze" in a shot with bad WB goes away.

    Derrel's lil' tip there about the telephoto lens is intriguing. I'll try that.
     
  8. Josh66

    Josh66 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I too always shoot RAW, but - I always leave the WB on Daylight.

    Most of the time, daylight is the right setting. When it's not, changing it is easy.

    If I know it will be wrong, or want to make sure it's perfect, for whatever reason - I'll just shoot a WhiBal.
     
  9. clyde dove

    clyde dove TPF Noob!

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    That information should be in the Owner's Manual. You might find the "Magic Lantern" instructional DVD about your camera helpful.
     
  10. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I'm definitely one for telling someone to read the manual, but I guarantee that the poster's manual will not answer the question of what the general population of the forum prefers to use for whitebalance.
     
  11. edouble

    edouble TPF Noob!

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    I think clyde dove misunderstood the direction of my question. There maybe one specific way to set the white balance in the camera's controls but there are many tools available to read the white balance in a given environment.

    I have to do more research on this.
     
  12. mmartin

    mmartin TPF Noob!

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