White balance

Boz Mon

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Could someone tell me the procedure to white balance a D40? I have been trying to do it according to the manual and it always tells me it cant do it. Whats your method?
 

daluke09

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Do you have the camera in Manual mode, shutter priority, or Apeture priority? I don't think it will let you change white balance unless you are using one of those modes.
 
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Boz Mon

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I use manual. I was trying over winter to do it once using snow as the white and it still wouldnt work for me.
 

rmh159

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I use my 50 and just get as close as possible to what I want to use as reference and take the shot.

I only have enough patience to try for about 2 mins though before I give up and edit the WB in the Raw conversion.
 

dEARlEADER

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I use manual. I was trying over winter to do it once using snow as the white and it still wouldnt work for me.

I'll start off by saying this is approaching my technical limit.

But are you trying to set your white balance and forget it?

If you are, I believe white will appear different depending on the colour temperature of the ambient lighting. Technical pro's calibrate white balance based on the room and lighting they are shooting in. It must be reset if you move to a different room or change your lighting. This is why most people use automatic white balance or choose some of the precalibrated settings like "cloudy" etc... I'm not sure about the D40, but on my D60 i can further tweek a setting like "cloudy" to obtain the desirable result.


Also as someone else has mentioned, WB can be adjusted in PP if you happen to be off. I prefer using the camera's onboard monitor to get it right instead of this method but to each his own.
 

Atreus

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how so?^^^^ i would like to know how to adjust the WB preset, settings as well....
 

dEARlEADER

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how so?^^^^ i would like to know how to adjust the WB preset, settings as well....

Press Menu
Select WB
Select a desired setting "shade"
While shade is highlighted press the middle button

This is brings up a hue adjustment screen... adjust to taste...

I find the auto WB on the D60 to be a little cold(blue) for me... I usually make adjustments starting from the "Cloudy" preset.
 

Sidewinder

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Hm, I actually recommend shooting in RAW and then adjusting your white balance later in the RAW converter - as has already been mentioned above.
 

JerryPH

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I also shoot 95% of the time in RAW and adjust in post process.

Some additional info on WB here.
 

table1349

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Unless Nikon is really different from Canon on this one the procedure should follow something like this:

First you need a white target. Keep in mind that white ain't always white. White paper will often fool the camera sensor. The human brain will compensate for minor color variations of white. The target posted by Jim H looks to be a good one. I personally use this one. 18% gray target on one side, white target on the other.

Place the white target in the light you are going to be shooting in with the target toward the camera. Fill the viewfinder with the target and focus. Take the shot.

Now select custom white balance. The camera should ask you to pick a photo from what is on your card. Pick the white target you just shot. You just set a custom white balance for the light you are in. Light changes, do another custom white balance for the change in light.

I go one step further to make post processing easier. After I shoot a WB and set it I shoot the 18% gray target. That gives me something to work with for touch ups in post processing.

With a little practice you can accomplish both in a couple of minutes. For me it is worth it, even though I shoot raw. I rarely have to adjust my WB in post processing which saves time.
 

Helen B

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White polystyrene foam ("Styrofoam") cups and plates work very well for white balancing. You can either use them like a white card or like an expodisk (but for white balance, not necessarily for exposure).

Polystyrene foam is spectrally neutral by nature - more neutral than many commercial white balance targets. Plain white paper kitchen towels tend to be good targets as well - they usually don't have optical brighteners. As an aside, that makes paper towels useful as neutral diffuse reflectors.

Best,
Helen

PS Here's a link to a little note I wrote about white balance targets.
 

mrodgers

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White polystyrene foam ("Styrofoam") cups and plates work very well for white balancing. You can either use them like a white card or like an expodisk (but for white balance, not necessarily for exposure).

Polystyrene foam is spectrally neutral by nature - more neutral than many commercial white balance targets. Plain white paper kitchen towels tend to be good targets as well - they usually don't have optical brighteners. As an aside, that makes paper towels useful as neutral diffuse reflectors.

Best,
Helen

PS Here's a link to a little note I wrote about white balance targets.
Hmm, never thought of expanded polystyrene (EPS). I extrude, expand, and mold expanded polypropylene (EPP) and polyethylene (EPE) for work, but not polystyrene. I can tell you that the shades of white in EPP and EPE are as variable as the shades of green that you see in different grasses due to the various amounts of additives we put in the plastics. That's a bummer. I see more EPP and EPE in a week than probably everyone here sees EPS combined in their lifetime, LOL.

I'll have to try this using EPS. Though I do think I could probably determine which of our EPP/EPE products are the closest to pure white as I do have many sheets of scrap in my garage, as well as many many sheets of it sitting in my office and in my inventory.

Now I will be checking our inventory for some of the grey that we have to try and compare it to 18% grey as well.

A small square of EPP/EPE sitting in the camera bag would be nearly indestructible compared to trying to carry around a EPS coffee cup or plate.
 

Joves

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With the Nikons it is easy to set WB. Go to White Balance in the menu and then to measure. Fill you viewfinder with the target, then you measure it. Like Helen said the styrofoam plates are great or, you can get targets at B&H or, an Expodisc which is what I use a majority of the time.
 

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