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White Balance

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Cooknn, Nov 22, 2005.

  1. macrumors 68020


    I use a Nikon D70s. Been shooting in M mode with white balance on Automatic. This setting measures color temerature between 3500k and 8000k. I was reading about how this might not be adequate for interior photo's, which tend to fall closer to 3000k. Today I decided to try Nikon's setting for Incandescent white balance for a couple of my real estate photo shoots. All I can say is that I'm glad I shot a second set of images at Auto because Incandescent made everything BLUE :cool: I've noticed from time to time that my images can run a little warm, but I can't see how I would ever want to use that setting again...

    I shoot in Jpeg <ducks for cover>, so optimizing on the Mac isn't a great option. I suppose if I ask what the pro's do, the answer will be to shoot in RAW. Are there any other options for fine tuning on the camera when shooting in Jpeg?
  2. macrumors 6502a


    You might find some additional help here

    I find using the either the "auto" setting or the preset option for using a grey or white object as a referrence for white balance works 99% of the time.
  3. macrumors 68020


    Cool website Sparky. Thanks for the heads up :)
  4. macrumors 603


    Shooting in RAW eliminates all need to use white balance, as you can always come back and fix it in post, since RAW is essentially the data right off the sensor, without the "modification" that is white balancing.

    If you don't want to shoot in RAW (I don't like dealing with the files, however easy they've made it), you can use Custom white balance. If you bring a pure white or gray card whenever you shoot, you can take a picture of it in the general lighting of the room, select it and select Custom White Balance, and the camera will adjust the color temperature to what it calculates the temperature of the light in the room to be. Works wonders when none of the Auto settings are working very well, and you don't want to be bothered playing with color temperature scales. :)
  5. macrumors regular

    Amen! White Balance is in my post-processing workflow, and not even a thought in my mind when shooting. I love RAW! :D
  6. macrumors 68020


    I like the sound of this. I've seen articles on the white/gray cards but never dug in to understand. Thanks for the summary.
  7. macrumors Demi-Goddess

    Clix Pix

    LOL! I shoot with a D70s also and like you, haven't ventured into shooting RAW yet.... Don't know quite why I'm so hesitant about this, as I've certainly seen it demonstrated enough and I know that it can make a huge difference in post-processing some images, but for some reason I tend to stick with the tried-and-true .jpeg. One of my goals for the next few weeks is to take a blind leap of faith into this new arena and just try shooting RAW and seeing what happens....

    Edited to add: just noticed in your sig file that you also have the CP 8800. Same here. Extreme frustration with that camera is what finally drove me into buying the D70 (and later the D70s) after years of not touching an SLR. Once I got back into the swing of using interchangeable lenses (and developing a severe case of Lens Lust) and rediscovering the joys of the flexibility of an SLR as well as appreciating the speedy responsiveness of the D70 that took care of that. The CP 8800 is now stashed away in a cupboard collecting dust....

  8. macrumors G3


    Can i ask why your not using your Coolpix 8800? :eek: :confused:
    BTW do u have the wide angle adaptor... i was thinking of getting it
  9. macrumors Demi-Goddess

    Clix Pix

    Not sure if you're asking me or asking Cooknn.... Since I'm the one who made a snarky comment vis-a-vis that camera model, I'll assume it's me.

    My frustration with the CP 8800 is primarily due to the extreme slowness of that camera when it comes to focusing and when it comes to uploading to the memory card. Can't tell you how many shots I lost due to that. The VR lens on that camera is amazing, though, and it is capable of some really outstanding images. The 8800 is really very good for shooting static subjects in good lighting, for shooting landscapes and so on. It falters badly when there is any sort of action involved or if there is a need for quick focusing and quick reading to the memory card. Many people who are far more patient than I am or who have different interests in photographic subjects have had great success and satisfaction with the CP 8800. I've seen some spectacular flower photos and still-life macros done with that camera, for instance. It just turns out that for me, it was not a tool which met my expectations and it just wasn't right for the way I like to shoot.

    One day last spring I was going out to a party, and instead of choosing the 8800 or the 8400, for some reason decided to take my old 995 instead. Had a fun time shooting away, and when I was at home later downloading/reviewing the images, I noticed the high percentage of "keepers" as opposed to any time I'd shot with the 8800. I also reflected on how much fun I'd had with that old CP 995 and realized that with my 8800 I just was not having fun. Each time i went out with it I would come home angry and frustrated. Right then I stopped to analyze the situation and realized that it was time to move on from the 8800 and that the type of camera that I would need to do the type of shooting I would like, with the responsiveness I require, was going to have to be a DSLR. Went to the local camera shop and handled a D70 and came home with it. The rest is history....

    In answer to your question about the wide-angle lens attachment, no I don't have that. Instead, I have the CP 8400, which is a great little wide-angle camera and super for parties. It is a very good complement to the 8800 and was designed as such. It makes a great little "street" camera, too, as it is unobtrusive and people aren't always aware that someone is using it. I think now prices have come down on them so if you're interested in getting into more wide-angle stuff, you might want to consider picking up an 8400 rather than fiddling with a bulky add-on attachment WA lens for the 8800. I think you would be much more satisfied with the results. Just my opinion, though: as they say, YMMV (your mileage may vary).

    Since I bought the D70 and various lenses I haven't used the 8800 at all but there have been times when I've pulled out the 8400, as I still enjoy using that little guy at parties and such.

    Hope this answers your questions!

  10. macrumors 65816


    It also eliminates all the image processing done right in the camera. Apart from being much faster, these algorithms are also usually much better than any software...
    Also RAW is a non-standard format that varies from manufacturer to manufacturer and perhaps even from camera to camera. If support for RAW files disappears in the future, there go all the high quality RAW photos. :(

    I'm just pointing out some of the cons of shooting in RAW to balance out (pun not intended) the pros. I guess it's a matter of preference what one shoot.

    I personally like to shoot HQ JPEG with my D70 as it gives me all the quality I need, takes up less space on the memory card and speeds up everything else. I can always adjust white balance in Photoshop if needed.

    As for the topic at hand, I usually shoot auto (see above), but will switch to flash when using flash (the auto setting can handle that), fluorenscent/incandescent when I don't wont so warm colours, and sometimes open shade when shooting outside.
    Also don't forget you can compensate white balance just as you can compensate exposure: WB button + front dial (on a D70s). :)
  11. macrumors 68020


    Forgot to update my 'sig :eek: I bought the DSLR so that I could use it with a custom panoramic head (360Precision). I use this with the 10.5mm f/2.8G ED AF DX Fisheye. I works great for pano's. I shoot 6 around and 1 up then stitch them together with a program called PTMac.

    I managed to sell mine + my old panoramic optic for $750 :)
  12. macrumors Demi-Goddess

    Clix Pix

    That sounds really cool, using the pano head and fisheye lens together to produce panos! I'd love to see one of your images! Fisheye lenses are fun and fascinating, aren't they? I have a fisheye attachment which I can still use with my CP 995 but haven't worked with it in a long time. A fisheye is on my ever-growing list of lenses I'd like, but it's not a priority item at this point -- got a few others I want first.

    Yeah, I should do that, try and sell my 8800 since I know I'm not going to use it any more. I have this bad habit of keeping my older cameras instead of selling them when I get a new one. I know that's really foolish, as it causes clutter in the camera closet and sheer waste of tools someone else could be using and enjoying. Not to mention, of course, that it wouldn't hurt for me to recoup some of the money I've spent.

    Maybe I'll see if I can unload it and the 8700 on eBay....

  13. macrumors Demi-Goddess

    Clix Pix

    Very good points, Whocares! That is one hesitation that I've had about shooting/working in RAW: the extra time required in post-processing, especially if one has shot a lot of images. Sometimes I just don't have the time to put into it. On the other hand, I suspect I'd learn a lot from at least trying this out once or twice to see if I'm happy with the results.
    I don't think that support for RAW files will disappear in the future, but certainly any major changes could have a serious impact on already-processed images.

    Sometimes there are situations where speed is of the essence and you really do need to shoot in jpeg (I, too, use HQ JPEG) rather than taking the extra time to use RAW, either in order to capture images quickly or to later on down the road not have to spend a lot of time in post-processing.

    Glad that there are at least a couple others here who prefer jpeg! :)

  14. macrumors 68020


    Here's one that I shot this week (click the red spinning house). The place was really dark. Getting exposure right is an ongoing challenge. I'm reading a book right now called Understanding Exposure which will hopefully shed some light on the subject for me :p
  15. macrumors 65816


    Of course, if the D70 supported TIFF, I'd probably shoot that. :rolleyes: ;)

    Sorry to hijack thread:

    What tool(s) do you use to create your QTVRs?
  16. macrumors 68020


    So would I. Doesn't the Coolpix 8800 have a TIFF option?

    The primary application I use is PTMac.
  17. macrumors Demi-Goddess

    Clix Pix

    Hey, that was really nice! I liked the house, too -- LOL! No, really, the photography was great and showed the house and its features off to good advantage. So that's how you do a QVT, you use special pano software and a super-wide lens..... Very slick!

    So you're in Fort Myers, eh? Many years ago my parents had a condo at Seven Lakes. I used to enjoy visiting them and going out to Sanibel Island. Beautiful area!


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