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Old Jun 2, 2005, 11:18 PM   #1
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I decided to really take this challenge to heart. The first thing I had to do was to learn how to use the manual WB setting on my D100. It is somewhat complex until you get the hang of it.

This is the first of two series of test photos, one indoors, and one outdoors. This series is indoors. The setting is my kitchen counter. 99% of the light is from compact fluorescent bulbs, the spiral type you screw into a regular socket. The drapes were pulled and no other light was used. The only editing done to the photos was a contrast adjustment to lighten them a bit and resize. The camera is a Nikon D100, Sigma 28-70mm f2.8 lens, ISO 800, hand-held. The first five shots show each of the WB presets, fluorescent, Incandescent, Sunny, Cloudy, Shade. The next five shots are done with manual WB set from different colors of paper. The last shot uses auto WB.

None of the shots captured the correct colors of the scene. I don't know the color temperature of the fluorescent lights but it is obviously not the same as the straight tubes used in offices. These lights seem to be closer to incandescent in color. Consequently, the color balance is not correct in any of these shots. The counter is white. The little lion cub is baby blue and pink. The goat is gold colored.

Here are the pictures.
#1 Fluorescent Preset


#2 Incandescent Preset


#3 Sunny Preset


#4 Cloudy Preset


#5 Shade Preset


#6 Manual WB set from Green paper


#7 Manual WB set from Red paper


#8 Manual WB set from Purple paper


#9 Manual WB set from Teal colored paper


#10 Manual WB set from Hot Pink paper


#11 Automatic White Balance


I have observed a pattern in the manual settings. In all cases, the color of the photo is the color on the opposite side of the color wheel from the color of paper used to set the WB.

I know this is long but I thought it would be education for many. I will do an outdoor series over the weekend and post it next week

Cal Rasmussen
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Old Jun 2, 2005, 11:40 PM   #2
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Very interesting Cal, the only one I can think of that you missed is a manual WB using a white sheet of paper giving you the correct colors. Good job, forcing us to learn all the buttons on the camera.
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Old Jun 3, 2005, 7:40 AM   #3
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Here is the missing shot--manual WB set using white paper. The colors are accurate in this shot.



I should mention that I could not get the camera to set manual WB using yellow or gold colored paper. I am not sure why unless it is pushing the computer beyond its programmed limits.

Cal
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Old Jun 3, 2005, 10:26 AM   #4
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Very nice, Carl. It really shows the different setting's capabilities.
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Old Jun 3, 2005, 12:27 PM   #5
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Yes! This was very helpful to me. Thanks so much. I have been reading the different articles that was put there for us to read. My Canon EOS camera book is a tough read but I'll keep trying. Great pictures!

Cute little test subjects!
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Old Jun 3, 2005, 2:06 PM   #6
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well done cal!
fascinating stuff, and good discovery..

your idea that the camera adds the opposite color is EXACTLY correct.
it reads the temperatures of the colors, and adds the opposite color (with paint it would make 'black' and with light it makes 'white') to show the proper colors.

your camera reacted to the different color papers like i wanted mine to!

may i ask..
how does your d100 set manual wb?
do you take a picture, and then go into the menus and have it figure out through that? or is it a button you press while in 'shooting mode'?

awesome series!
Vito
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Old Jun 3, 2005, 3:15 PM   #7
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Vito, it's a two (and a half) step process. First, you have to go into the setup menu and select "preset" and the type of exposure control you will use. (e.g. Program, Aperture, Shutter). Then you exit the menu and rotate the mode selector to "WB". You rotate the main command dial to set "PRE". You then rotate the sub-command dial one notch either direction and "PRE" flashes in the display window. Now you "take a picture" of your reference paper or object that you want to appear white. It doesn't actual record a picture but in sets the WB according to what it "saw". If it was successful, it flashes "GOOD" in the display. If not, it flashes "NO GD". Once you get a good result, you rotate the mode dial to whatever exposure mode you used to setup. I used P. The manual or preset setting will remain in effect until you change it.

You don't have to repeat the menu steps each time if you are using the same exposure mode.

I had to read the manual about four times to understand what it was telling me but once I figured it out, it's pretty easy.

Cal
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Old Jun 3, 2005, 4:16 PM   #8
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hmm...it seems to be a mix of my G2's and my rebels...

for my 300D (rebel ) you have to take a picture of the white(or colored in this case) card, and then go into the menu in 'replay' mode to set it as the custom WB...

then you set it as the white balance choice when you go to take the picture..

i believe you can have multiple 'customs',i could be wrong though

Vito
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