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Old Jan 30, 2009, 10:34 AM   #1
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This is something that I think should be brought up since it appears a hot topic.

For setting a custom WB which is better (or preferred) a white card or a gray card?


I use a gray card to set custom WB in the gyms that I shoot basketball and the colors look fairly good although we all know of a gym where no matter what you do the colors are horrible.

Let's here what you have to say!
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Old Jan 30, 2009, 11:38 AM   #2
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Technically speaking - a white card. A grey card's purpose is to set proper exposure not white balance. That said I used a grey card for years. I switched to an actual white card a year and a half ago and I believe it did make a difference. What put me off on white cards was they were so expensive and I had no idea why.

But B&H sells one for $8 so expense was no longer an issue.

Now, I will also say it was that same season I was tipped off to the notion of using a slower shutter speed (1/60) when taking the WB shot so I would get an average temperature for the lights and not have the color temperature skewed toward a 1/400-1/500 second portion of the light cycle. So I can't honestly say how much of the improvement was due to using a white card and how much was due to the average temperature trick. But I do know my WB are better now that I do those two things verses grey card and fast shutter speeds.
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Old Jan 30, 2009, 2:19 PM   #3
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I shoot with a card or anything that's white and will get great colors. I had once thought that the "White Card" had to be "factory specific" used to get WB correction but that is simply not the case and to add to that JUST PLAIN FALSE.

Case in point, for me, when shooting swim meets the officials doing the timing all wear white T-shirts. I just have one of them turn their back toward me, pull down on the bottom of the shirt to remove the wrinkles and I photograph it. Choose that shot for my custom WB and the colors are perfect!

I did at first buy a grey card but have since taped a white sheet of paper over it which works just as well. So keep the $8 dollars in your pocket and just shoot something white, you'll be surprised!!
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Old Jan 30, 2009, 3:23 PM   #4
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here's my take on white balance, i was shooting a wedding and i took my time and shot a target on the alter and midway in the church, so i could use them as references later on. well in lightroom you can actually adjust your wite balance by using a white area on the photo it works great!! so thats how i have been adjusting it and its fast and works well!!
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Old Jan 30, 2009, 3:47 PM   #5
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I used a white piece of paper the other day to set my WB and my pictures did turn out better than using the presets.

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Old Jan 30, 2009, 4:23 PM   #6
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airbrushjohn wrote:
Quote:
here's my take on white balance, i was shooting a wedding and i took my time and shot a target on the alter and midway in the church, so i could use them as references later on. well in lightroom you can actually adjust your wite balance by using a white area on the photo it works great!! so thats how i have been adjusting it and its fast and works well!!
John - is that just for RAW conversions? Or working with JPEG too?
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Old Jan 30, 2009, 6:17 PM   #7
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Neatrual Grey card (18% grey) for me when I use one, my understanding from what I have readis the reflectance across the spectrum is ideally the same with a grey card compared to white and it does not add any of its own color to the reflected light.
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Old Mar 3, 2010, 8:06 PM   #8
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What is the RGB set of a standart 18% grey card? I think i can print a grey card because there is not a place over here to buy it.
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Old Mar 3, 2010, 8:15 PM   #9
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White card for WB, gray card for exposure lock. Get a card that has white on one and gray on the back to cover both wb and for locking exposure.
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Old Mar 3, 2010, 8:17 PM   #10
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Some will say use a wbd
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