Define Tungsten

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by ang, Jul 23, 2004.

  1. ang

    ang TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2004
    Messages:
    58
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    I'm new to photography, I've got a pretty good understanding of outdoor photography, but now I want to explore indoor photography.

    Simple question:
    Is household lighting considered tungsten lighting? I mean are the two interchangeable. Please define Tungsten lighting for me, I'm a little confused on the terminology.

    Should I use tungsten film or a filter with daylight film for portraits? I plan on using general indoor floodlight and household bulb.

    Thanks.
     
  2. Big Mike

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

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2003
    Messages:
    33,822
    Likes Received:
    1,811
    Location:
    Edmonton
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    I'm no expert but yes, household lighting is tungsten. You can use either tungsten balanced film or a filter to get proper color tones. I don't know which would be better for you. Try them out and see which you like better.

    Oh, Welcome to the forum :cool:
     
  3. voodoocat

    voodoocat ))<>(( Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 15, 2003
    Messages:
    5,277
    Likes Received:
    17
    Location:
    Gilbert, AZ
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Tungsten lighting is the same as your household incandescent lighting. The color temp is about 3200k which is much warmer than what daylight film is balanced for. This causes the photos to have a strong yellow color cast. You can either a)buy tungsten film, b)use a color correcting filter or c)use digital and use tungsten whiting balance (or better yet, use a custom white balance)
     
  4. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2003
    Messages:
    7,021
    Likes Received:
    34
    Location:
    Lawrence, KS
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Tungsten films and filters are not balanced for household incandescent bulbs. They are balanced for tungsten photoflood bulbs, which are seriously more powerful than anything that goes into a normal lamp. Photofloods have a color temp of 3200 or 3400, depending on type. Household tungsten bulbs usually have a color temp much lower than 3000 (unless they have a blue coating like some new bulbs). Using tungsten film or filters with household bulbs will eliminate some, but not all of the red/orange cast.
     
  5. ang

    ang TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2004
    Messages:
    58
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Matt,

    what would you use to eliminate the orange/red cast that results in shooting with household lighting?

    do you really have to switch to photoflood lights?

    is a photoflood light the same as an indoor floodlight?

    thanks
     
  6. ksmattfish

    ksmattfish Now 100% DC - not as cool as I once was, but still

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2003
    Messages:
    7,021
    Likes Received:
    34
    Location:
    Lawrence, KS
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    A photoflood is a tungsten lightbulb that is designed to have a specific color temp (3200 or 3400) that is balanced out by the tungsten film or filter. They are most often used in copy stands and for product work. They are usually very powerful (250 or 500 watts), and would probably melt or burn any household lamp. They are so hot that they usually are not good for working with living subjects (it would be like being in a tanning bed or a toaster!). It is not the same as a household or yard flood light.

    The problem that you are going to run into is that household bulbs vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. The solution is to use a blue filter; how much blue is going to vary with the situation. You'll notice that the standard filters for use with the photofloods are already very blue. You will need even more blue for household bulbs.

    You can try the standard filters and see what you get. Maybe it will eliminate enough of the orange cast.

    To totally eliminate the orange cast of household bulbs I either turn them off, or use an electric flash that just overpowers them. Sometimes I combine a slow shutter speed with the flash: this lights my main subject with the white light of the flash (actually a smidge blue, which is why you might use a warming filter with a flash), and allows some of the warm orange in the background.

    Flashes are relatively cheap. I'd concentrate on learning to use them. For portraits I think that your choices are use flashes, or only natural light. Pro strobes and studio setups are just overgrown flashes.
     

Share This Page

Search tags for this page

define tungsten

,
definition of tungsten light in photography
,
tungsten definition
,
tungsten definition photography
,
tungsten light definition
,
tungsten light definition photography
,
tungsten light photography definition
,
tungsten lighting definition
,

tungsten photography definition

,
what is tungsten lighting definition