Suggestions for Canon 350D: change color balance?

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by sothoth, Dec 24, 2006.

  1. sothoth

    sothoth TPF Noob!

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    Never done this with a DSLR, but I would like to now and could use some suggestions.

    I have a Canon Digital Rebel XT, and I'm very pleased with it except I think most of the images are underexposed and have a yellow hue to them. In some cases, a blue sky looks a little magenta.

    Any suggestions on how to correct this? I realize I can do some "fooling around" to get it to produce more natural images but if anyone here has worked thru this issue before and can help with a few suggestions, it's appreciated.

    Thanks!
     
  2. Puscas

    Puscas TPF Noob!

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    Sounds like you need to change the white balance. Press 'menu', go to 'camera-symbol 2' and choose white balance. The following menu allows you to change the white balance according to the light source (indoor, outdoors, cloudy). This only works on manual settings (that's everything above the green square on your dial)




    hope this helps



    pascal
     
  3. sothoth

    sothoth TPF Noob!

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    Ok, no problem there. But I'm not finding a setting that gives good exposure out of the pocket.

    I was hoping for a description of what the WB SHIFT/BKT means, it sounds from the manual like you can set it to a color combo that "corrects" for certain color imbalances but I can't seem to figure out what that means from the manual or from playing around with it. For example, if my blue sky looks a little magenta, do I used the WB shift to bracket out magenta so it cancels magenta? Or something else?

    There is also custom WB which I don't understand...

    And don't get me started on how to increase brightness without just manually overriding the f-stop every time I take a picture. Or is that what I'm stuck with? I guess I can fool the camera by using the flash exp comp setting and tell it to overexpose by 1 stop every time if that's how I like the pics to look... but I think that's only half the issue, there is too much yellow in white and too much magenta in blue.

    Suggestions?
     
  4. Orgnoi1

    Orgnoi1 TPF Noob!

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    Well using the presets will fix 90% of your problems... keeping a generic setting make the color balances decent... custom WB is really the only way to accurately correct your WB though.

    To set the Custom you will need an 18% gray card, and be in the same lighting as the subject you intend to shoot. Put your lens on manual focus and take an unobstructed shot of the gray card fairly close up (you have to fill most of the frame with the card so metering will work), put your lens back into AF (very important)... go into your menu and click on custom WB... it will ask which image you want to use and you click ok since the last image should be your gray card image... then go to your WB settings and set it for the Custom setting (looks like of like gun sights) and you are all set....

    Just remember that lighting can change as quickly as a cloud passing by or shadows moving so you have to be concience of your surroundings...

    You can also change your WB presets and try them out under non-normal conditions (cloudy setting when its sunny out) and see if the result is more pleasureful to yourself....
     
  5. ksmattfish

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

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    Set your white balance to 5000 degrees, and see how that looks. If it's still too yellow and magenta there may be something wrong with your camera. By the way, are you looking at prints from a good lab? If you are looking at the photos on your computer it could be that your monitor isn't calibrated correctly.

    I've found that Canon DSLRs seem to run a bit too yellow, but it's slight, usually only a problem for me if I set the WB to shady or cloudy. I just keep my camera WB set to 5000 degrees. I shoot raw, so it's easy to adjust if I need to. I'm using Adobe Raw from CS2, and I've found that for some reason it was automatically reading the image files as 200 degrees less than what the camera was set to. Now that I have calibrated my monitor and the software I'm getting good color.
     
  6. ftops

    ftops TPF Noob!

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    try changing the custom white balance by taking a shot of a light orange color. when you manually change the white balance, it sets that color basically equal to zero...so if you take a shot of red, everything will appear green...because essentially you are telling the camera that everything that is red is actually white, and without a complementary color to contrast it, the greens in your pictures will be very prevalent.
     
  7. ftops

    ftops TPF Noob!

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    im sorry, make that more of a pale yellow...the easiest thing i find is to change the background on your monitor to a single color, and find whicever one you want. thats how i always change my white balance.
     
  8. Digital Matt

    Digital Matt alter ego: Analog Matt

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    White balance has nothing to do with exposure. The meter in your camera has no idea what you are photographing. It only knows to try and make it 18% gray. For a lot of subjects, that will be underexposed, depending on how you metered.

    As for the white balance, shoot raw, and fine tune it on your computer. Shoot a white card or gray card in the same light you'll be photographing, and calibrate from there.
     
  9. ftops

    ftops TPF Noob!

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    if your images are coming out magenta-ish even after youve metered it with an 18% gray card, then chances are its the lense or the camera.

    if youre still having a problem with the yellow hue and underexposure, try raising the iso speed, and maybe even get a uv or polarizing filter. chances are you can get a decent one for about 25 bucks.
     
  10. sothoth

    sothoth TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for this, it was right on the money. I agree that the Canon DSLRs run slightly yellow and using the adobe RAW format (and subsequent adjustments in PS) did the trick.

    Also, my monitor turns out was the culprit for the magenta, at least I think. I printed a few 8x10s a while back and compared the printed images to my monitor and it seems they're all a little magenta on my monitor but not so on the print.

    It's always more of a PITA when you have two things giving you a headache (monitor giving magenta AND yellowish from the camera) instead of just one, that translates into 10x more work to pin down the problems! I started wondering if I needed to lay off the LSD for a while there when I was looking at my images.

    Of course I'm just kidding about the LSD, I never touch(ed) the stuff... ;)

    Thanks!!
     

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