White balance versus actual daylight color?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by dperez, Sep 27, 2003.

  1. dperez

    dperez Guest

    OK, I'm asking 'cause I've been too lazy to actually get up at dawn and test

    Film camera shooting daylight film. Out pre-dawn to get some shots during the
    golden hour. Which I THINK is called that partially because the actual color of
    the light is warmer than during the mid point of the day... I know when I shoot
    sunrises and landscapes at this time I get a golden/reddish warmth on the
    daylight film.

    BUT, with a digital camera, in my case a Fuji S2, my understanding is I SHOULD
    BE setting a custom white balance for different conditions. IF I do this during
    the early morning will I correct the warm light right out of the images? Do I
    just NOT do a custom white balance and set the camera for daylight? What would
    the AUTO white balance do in this case?

    BTW: This, setting of white balance, seems to be the one thing I haven't gotten
    used to yet. I've been shooting film for somewhere around 35 years and I keep
    forgetting to do a white balance when lighting conditions change... I had/have
    the same problem when shooting video. On the Fuji the auto white balance seems
    pretty good so I haven't gotten into any BIG trouble YET, but I'm always wishing
    to do better. I'm going to be carrying a white card with a 92 brightness this
    weekend to see what effect using it to set white balance has, but I'm interested
    in thoughts from some of you experienced folks...
    dperez, Sep 27, 2003
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  2. Well because there are differences between cameras and photographers the
    only way to really know is to try it a few hundred times.

    Seriously with digital the cost of trying something like this is really
    small and by doing so you make an investment in your most important piece of
    equipment, your skill and knowledge in a way not possible by asking someone

    In general you have the right idea. Auto keeps you out of trouble, but
    it also can take the edge off some photos.
    Joseph Meehan, Sep 27, 2003
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  3. dperez

    Buster Guest

    If you traditionally shot daylight balanced slide film and want to
    recreate that effect, set your white balance to daylight. However, you
    will have all the problems of film (cool colors in the shade,
    reflections from buildings, etc.) If you have been shooting negative
    film, though, leave your white balance on auto, because whoever does
    your printing is probably adjusting your color automatically, too!
    Better yet, get out of bed and take some pictures at the different
    settings and see which you like better. Or shoot in RAW and try all
    the different setting during post-processing.
    Have fun,
    Buster, Sep 27, 2003
  4. dperez

    dperez Guest

    Well, I"ll be spending quite a bit of time out shooting early morning in a
    couple weeks, but I figured if there was info available it'd improve my chances
    of getting color balance right WITHOUT having to shoot a few hundred error

    BTW: Your statement about shooting RAW confused me... Does RAW NOT use
    whatever the white balance I set for the camera? I was under the impression
    that white balance, saturation, and sharpening parameters in the camera all
    still got used even when shooting RAW. Is my understanding incorrect?
    dperez, Sep 29, 2003
  5. dperez

    JPS Guest

    In message <>,
    No. The white balance info is stored in the RAW file, for default
    conversion, but does not affect the data at all, until conversion, at
    which point you can override the white balance. It's more or less a
    recipe, included in the RAW file, for converting it.
    JPS, Sep 30, 2003
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