Flat Colour

AJ Jewell

TPF Noob!
May 30, 2006
Reaction score
Toronto, Ontario
Can others edit my Photos
Photos OK to edit
I have noticed that with my DSLR the colour is very flat compared to my P&S. Is this because the SLR does not colour correct onboard? Or do I not have a setting correct on it? I just see other pictures on this forum, and the colour is astounding. How much of that is post-production in pshop?
Typically, most P&S digital have the saturation, contrast & sharpening turned up. It give the images more 'pop', which is what most consumers want to see...right out of the camera or just on the LCD screen.

Most DSLR users want to have more control over their images...we would rather make those decisions ourselves...rather than let the camera do it.

Read the manual, I'm sure you can (if you want) adjust the parameters so that your images have more 'pop', right out of the camera. That is, if you are shooting JPEG. If you are shooting RAW, those settings do not affect the actual image...which allows you to edit the image, starting with the pure image data.
I can't speak for the D70s, but my 20D gives me control over the final output of the jpg. I can set contrast and saturation at different levels. I think Nikons give you the ability to upload custom curves to the camera. I'm not sure if the lower end models have this or not. As Mike said, you'll probably find that in your manual.
I figured that. Here is what I am talking about. I took this pic under incandescant light. The colour looks flat, and the skintone is gross. Any suggestions on how to colour correct these types of shots? If so, do you always correct images? Or only some.

AJ, that shot is very underexposed. Over a stop, maybe close to 2 I'd say. You need to get a good exposure before you can really get those colors to pop.

Watch the histogram on the back of your camera, to see if you are getting a good exposure. You can't rely on the picture you see, because 99% of LCD screens show the image brighter than it actually is, and it will often give you different brightness, depending on the angle you are viewing it at. Don't rely on that. Have it show you the histogram after each shot.

Just in case you aren't familiar with histograms, here is a good read.


After you finish that, read this one:


Set your saturation and contrast up a bit in camera, or shoot raw. When the shot is cool like that one is, (a bit of a bluish cast), you can warm it up in photoshop by adding some red and yellow, or if you shoot raw, you have complete control over white balance.

Most reactions