Custon White Balance: Subject Photo?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Steve Cutchen, Feb 17, 2005.

  1. I'm looking for a target for making the photo needed to do custom white
    balancing on my 300D. Something I could have confidence in and take
    with me from gym to gym (I shoot a lot of volleyball...) Any ideas?
    Is there a commercial target card or something like that?
     
    Steve Cutchen, Feb 17, 2005
    #1
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  2. Steve Cutchen

    secheese Guest

    On Thu, 17 Feb 2005 12:59:08 GMT, Steve Cutchen <>
    wrote:

    >I'm looking for a target for making the photo needed to do custom white
    >balancing on my 300D. Something I could have confidence in and take
    >with me from gym to gym (I shoot a lot of volleyball...) Any ideas?
    >Is there a commercial target card or something like that?


    If I understand you correctly, what you're looking for is called a
    gray card; actually white on one side and gray on the opposite.
    Yes... you can buy them at any decent camera store. However, a white
    sheet of paper works as well.
     
    secheese, Feb 17, 2005
    #2
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  3. Steve Cutchen wrote:
    > I'm looking for a target for making the photo needed to do custom
    > white balancing on my 300D. Something I could have confidence in and
    > take with me from gym to gym (I shoot a lot of volleyball...) Any
    > ideas? Is there a commercial target card or something like that?


    The ideal item is a photographic gray card.

    A white piece of laser paper will work as well. I remember being at a
    national dance competition once and the TV camera guy kept turning around
    and photographing me. I would have not thought anything of it if he was
    photographing my partner, the fact that it was clear I was the target made
    me wonder about him, until if figured it out. I was wearing a white Tux.
    :)

    --
    Joseph Meehan

    26 + 6 = 1 It's Irish Math
     
    Joseph Meehan, Feb 17, 2005
    #3
  4. On Thu, 17 Feb 2005 12:59:08 GMT, Steve Cutchen <> wrote:
    >I'm looking for a target for making the photo needed to do custom white
    >balancing on my 300D. Something I could have confidence in and take
    >with me from gym to gym (I shoot a lot of volleyball...) Any ideas?
    >Is there a commercial target card or something like that?


    Yeah, but for setting white balance I find a piece of white paper or
    card does the trick. When out I'm usually carrying field guides so I use
    a piece of white card (actually a blank postcard) as a bookmark, and
    that does the job just nicely.

    And if if gets lost or damaged it's quick and cheap to replace.

    Frink

    --
    Doctor J. Frink : 'Rampant Ribald Ringtail'
    See his mind here : http://www.cmp.liv.ac.uk/frink/
    Annoy his mind here : pjf at cmp dot liv dot ack dot ook
    "No sir, I didn't like it!" - Mr Horse
     
    Doctor J. Frink, Feb 17, 2005
    #4
  5. Steve Cutchen

    redbelly Guest

    Doctor J. Frink wrote:
    > I use a piece of white card (actually a blank postcard)


    Or a blank 3" x 5" index card.

    Mark
     
    redbelly, Feb 17, 2005
    #5
  6. Steve Cutchen

    Bill Hilton Guest

    >I'm looking for a target for making the photo needed to do custom
    white
    >balancing on my 300D.


    Most people use a Kodak grey card or even a white piece of paper.

    > Is there a commercial target card or something like that?


    Yes, especially for digital cameras ...
    http://www.pictureflow.com/products/whibal/index.html Make sure you
    shoot in RAW mode since you can adjust the WB during the RAW conversion
    without penalty.

    Bill
     
    Bill Hilton, Feb 17, 2005
    #6
  7. Steve Cutchen

    DHB Guest

    On Thu, 17 Feb 2005 12:59:08 GMT, Steve Cutchen <>
    wrote:

    >I'm looking for a target for making the photo needed to do custom white
    >balancing on my 300D. Something I could have confidence in and take
    >with me from gym to gym (I shoot a lot of volleyball...) Any ideas?
    >Is there a commercial target card or something like that?


    Steve Cutchen,
    on page 96 in the March 2005 issue of "Popular
    Photography & Imaging" magazine they published a suggestion from an
    individual who uses a white coffee filter to cover the lens, held in
    place with a rubber band. Them aims at the light source & uses that
    to set the custom white balance.

    This is something I intend to try because it's extremely
    inexpensive, foldable (thus small), I should be able to carry a few in
    a zip-lock sandwich bag in my camera case or pocket & it would take-up
    almost no room.

    Now to try it & find out how well it works compared to my
    Kodak gray/white card. If it works as well, then great, if it's
    almost as good than, I can always carry some as a backup to my Kodak
    gray/white card & for use with Point-n-Shoot cameras that also have a
    custom white balance setting.

    Hope this idea proves to be of value to you & or others, the
    investment is minimal & you may already have several in your house, so
    I think it's well worth a try. My only concern if it works well would
    be to keep several from that batch aside for future use. There is the
    possibility that the purity of "white" may vary from batch to batch or
    brand to brand, after all, they are coffee filters so I don't think
    consistency of a neutral "white" is a concern to the manufacturers.

    Good luck,

    Respectfully, DHB

    "To announce that there must be no criticism of the President,
    or that we are to stand by the President, right or wrong,
    is not only unpatriotic and servile, but is morally treasonable
    to the American public."--Theodore Roosevelt, May 7, 1918
     
    DHB, Feb 17, 2005
    #7
  8. Steve Cutchen

    Paul Mitchum Guest

    DHB <> wrote:

    > On Thu, 17 Feb 2005 12:59:08 GMT, Steve Cutchen <>
    > wrote:
    >
    > >I'm looking for a target for making the photo needed to do custom white
    > >balancing on my 300D. Something I could have confidence in and take
    > >with me from gym to gym (I shoot a lot of volleyball...) Any ideas?
    > >Is there a commercial target card or something like that?

    >
    > Steve Cutchen,
    > on page 96 in the March 2005 issue of "Popular Photography &
    > Imaging" magazine they published a suggestion from an individual who uses
    > a white coffee filter to cover the lens, held in place with a rubber band.
    > Them aims at the light source & uses that to set the custom white balance.
    >
    > This is something I intend to try because it's extremely
    > inexpensive, foldable (thus small), I should be able to carry a few in a
    > zip-lock sandwich bag in my camera case or pocket & it would take-up
    > almost no room.


    And you can make coffee... :)

    I found this on the web a while back: <http://www.expodisc.com/> Same
    idea. It snaps on the lens filter threads and guarantees you 18% grey,
    so you can get the white balance and maybe get a handle on exposure, as
    well, if that's what you're after.

    I haven't used it, but I plan on giving it a whirl at the next
    opportunity.
     
    Paul Mitchum, Feb 17, 2005
    #8
  9. In article <170220050659085672%>, Steve Cutchen
    <> wrote:

    > I'm looking for a target for making the photo needed to do custom white
    > balancing on my 300D. Something I could have confidence in and take
    > with me from gym to gym (I shoot a lot of volleyball...) Any ideas?
    > Is there a commercial target card or something like that?


    Some very good suggestions, thanks all.

    My 300D manual says to shoot a white item that fills the *center* of
    the screen... (the drawing shows the white target inside the first
    four AF focus points)

    So it does not matter that the rest of the frame might be some odd
    color?

    Also, is the camera just looking for a neutral target (i.e. RGB values
    equal, like the traditional 18% gray) or does it need to be WHITE?
     
    Steve Cutchen, Feb 17, 2005
    #9
  10. Steve Cutchen

    Stacey Guest

    Steve Cutchen wrote:


    >
    > So it does not matter that the rest of the frame might be some odd
    > color?
    >


    It doesn't matter if the white fills the whole screen.

    --

    Stacey
     
    Stacey, Feb 18, 2005
    #10
  11. Steve Cutchen

    DM Guest

    Steve,

    What you are after is a 17% grey card (actually is better for white balance
    than a white target).
    Most specialist camera stores (rather than discount chains) should be able
    to provide you with one.

    Regards

    DM


    "Steve Cutchen" <> wrote in message
    news:170220050659085672%...
    > I'm looking for a target for making the photo needed to do custom white
    > balancing on my 300D. Something I could have confidence in and take
    > with me from gym to gym (I shoot a lot of volleyball...) Any ideas?
    > Is there a commercial target card or something like that?
     
    DM, Feb 18, 2005
    #11
  12. Steve Cutchen

    DM Guest

    Sorry secheese, but whilst a white card is better than not balancing at all,
    this is straight from Canon's 20D manual...

    "Instead of a white object, an 18% grey card (commercially available) can
    produce a more accurate white balance." (p52)

    Regards

    DM

    "secheese" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > On Thu, 17 Feb 2005 12:59:08 GMT, Steve Cutchen <>
    > wrote:
    >
    >>I'm looking for a target for making the photo needed to do custom white
    >>balancing on my 300D. Something I could have confidence in and take
    >>with me from gym to gym (I shoot a lot of volleyball...) Any ideas?
    >>Is there a commercial target card or something like that?

    >
    > If I understand you correctly, what you're looking for is called a
    > gray card; actually white on one side and gray on the opposite.
    > Yes... you can buy them at any decent camera store. However, a white
    > sheet of paper works as well.
    >
    >
     
    DM, Feb 18, 2005
    #12
  13. Steve Cutchen

    DM Guest

    Steve,

    First you are better off using an 18% grey card not white (the neutral
    target will actually help the camera work out a better balance than white -
    despite it being called white balance).

    Secondly, the grey card should be both out of focus & exceed the diameter of
    the 'partial metering circle' (where the white balance is evaluated). The
    crux is that the 'exposure must be correct' therefore one would be also best
    advised to switch to 'partial metering' when doing the white balance so that
    the exposure is being read off the card itself.

    Regards

    DM

    "Steve Cutchen" <> wrote in message
    news:170220051730124723%...
    > In article <170220050659085672%>, Steve Cutchen
    > <> wrote:
    >
    >> I'm looking for a target for making the photo needed to do custom white
    >> balancing on my 300D. Something I could have confidence in and take
    >> with me from gym to gym (I shoot a lot of volleyball...) Any ideas?
    >> Is there a commercial target card or something like that?

    >
    > Some very good suggestions, thanks all.
    >
    > My 300D manual says to shoot a white item that fills the *center* of
    > the screen... (the drawing shows the white target inside the first
    > four AF focus points)
    >
    > So it does not matter that the rest of the frame might be some odd
    > color?
    >
    > Also, is the camera just looking for a neutral target (i.e. RGB values
    > equal, like the traditional 18% gray) or does it need to be WHITE?
     
    DM, Feb 18, 2005
    #13
  14. Steve Cutchen

    John Francis Guest

    And do you know why that is?
    It's because a random "white" object may not be accurately white,
    and you don't want to white-balance to a shade of off-white.

    A calibrated "white card" is just as hue-neutral as a grey card,
    and works just as well.

    So, basically, secheese is quite correct, and your "correction"
    just shows you don't understand what is going on. Sorry, DM.



    In article <08bRd.129963$>,
    DM <> wrote:
    >Sorry secheese, but whilst a white card is better than not balancing at all,
    >this is straight from Canon's 20D manual...
    >
    >"Instead of a white object, an 18% grey card (commercially available) can
    >produce a more accurate white balance." (p52)
    >
    >Regards
    >
    >DM
    >
    >"secheese" <> wrote in message
    >news:...
    >> On Thu, 17 Feb 2005 12:59:08 GMT, Steve Cutchen <>
    >> wrote:
    >>
    >>>I'm looking for a target for making the photo needed to do custom white
    >>>balancing on my 300D. Something I could have confidence in and take
    >>>with me from gym to gym (I shoot a lot of volleyball...) Any ideas?
    >>>Is there a commercial target card or something like that?

    >>
    >> If I understand you correctly, what you're looking for is called a
    >> gray card; actually white on one side and gray on the opposite.
    >> Yes... you can buy them at any decent camera store. However, a white
    >> sheet of paper works as well.
    >>
    >>

    >
    >
     
    John Francis, Feb 18, 2005
    #14
  15. Steve Cutchen

    Guest

    In rec.photo.digital DM <> wrote:
    > Sorry secheese, but whilst a white card is better than not balancing at all,
    > this is straight from Canon's 20D manual...


    > "Instead of a white object, an 18% grey card (commercially
    > available) can produce a more accurate white balance."


    This is true, but the difference is quite small. I just measured both
    sides of an old Kodak grey card, and they were:

    white L* 96.5 a* 0.8 b* -2.2
    grey L* 49.5 a* -0.5 b* 0.1

    Ignoring the L* (luminance), it's quite clear that the white side has
    more shift away from neutral (the a* and b* values). However, the
    difference is so small that it's probably not worth worrying about
    when taking photographs.

    I also tried a random piece of copier paper, and it was 93.9, 2,4, 10.1
    This isn't so hot! Still, it's always possible to correct later.

    One other thing: beware of fluorescent whites.

    Andrew.
     
    , Feb 18, 2005
    #15
  16. Steve Cutchen

    DM Guest

    Actually John (before you chip in so 'helpfully'),

    If you read secheese's original comment completely (as I did) you would have
    noticed he finished off his comment about the commercially available cards
    by saying: "However, a white sheet of paper works as well."

    So before you start saying who does not understand what's 'going on' here
    maybe you'd like to read a little more carefully and be a little less quick
    with the derogatory remarks.

    Regards

    DM

    "John Francis" <> wrote in message
    news:cv3ls0$apk$...
    > And do you know why that is?
    > It's because a random "white" object may not be accurately white,
    > and you don't want to white-balance to a shade of off-white.
    >
    > A calibrated "white card" is just as hue-neutral as a grey card,
    > and works just as well.
    >
    > So, basically, secheese is quite correct, and your "correction"
    > just shows you don't understand what is going on. Sorry, DM.
    >
    >
    >
    > In article <08bRd.129963$>,
    > DM <> wrote:
    >>Sorry secheese, but whilst a white card is better than not balancing at
    >>all,
    >>this is straight from Canon's 20D manual...
    >>
    >>"Instead of a white object, an 18% grey card (commercially available) can
    >>produce a more accurate white balance." (p52)
    >>
    >>Regards
    >>
    >>DM
    >>
    >>"secheese" <> wrote in message
    >>news:...
    >>> On Thu, 17 Feb 2005 12:59:08 GMT, Steve Cutchen <>
    >>> wrote:
    >>>
    >>>>I'm looking for a target for making the photo needed to do custom white
    >>>>balancing on my 300D. Something I could have confidence in and take
    >>>>with me from gym to gym (I shoot a lot of volleyball...) Any ideas?
    >>>>Is there a commercial target card or something like that?
    >>>
    >>> If I understand you correctly, what you're looking for is called a
    >>> gray card; actually white on one side and gray on the opposite.
    >>> Yes... you can buy them at any decent camera store. However, a white
    >>> sheet of paper works as well.
    >>>
    >>>

    >>
    >>

    >
    >
     
    DM, Feb 18, 2005
    #16
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