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Reasonably priced white balance card

Discussion in 'Studio Lighting Forum' started by Shaunmbs, Jan 19, 2018.

  1. Shaunmbs

    Shaunmbs Here a lot

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    I’m looking for a reasonably priced pref 3 section white balance/grey card. Any recommendations?
     
  2. Dean M

    Dean M Always on

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  3. GJ Vernon

    GJ Vernon Account Closed

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    We used to use the Lastolite Ezybalance for years which was thrown in with the Hi-lite we bought, but moved on to the Xrite color passport checker which
    sets its own software profile in Lightroom hence not only whites, blacks and greys are spot on, but every other colour in the scene..
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2018
  4. Shaunmbs

    Shaunmbs Here a lot

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    Do you have a link to something similar to what you mean? Does that involve using the colour to set the white balance just as you would with a grey?
     
  5. oldgeezer

    oldgeezer Always on Premium Member

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  6. GJ Vernon

    GJ Vernon Account Closed

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    I think Oldgeezer has linked to the Datacolor Spyder checkr which only gives you a preset rather than a true and accurate DNG camera profile such as the Xrite product does hence
    the difference in price. The Datacolor product uses the HSL sliders to create a preset which must initially have an accurate Camera profile to be effective which it cant produce.
    The Xrite product is here: http://xritephoto.com/colorchecker-passport-photo
     
  7. MikeB

    MikeB Always on Premium Member

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    Well, you asked about a simple gray card and we've taken you all the way to profiling the camera.

    If all you are doing is assuring white balance any grey card, from white to black, will help you avoid a color cast. Middle grey (18% grey) helps with exposure. A set of 3 from Adorama that includes white, gray and black is USD $2.99. I'm sure you can find something locally

    https://www.adorama.com/dkgcp.html?...ixaypfUFBCoevWA-6ruiB7zm5ID6PMIRoCbGsQAvD_BwE

    In the field, I use this - £18.99.

    https://www.wexphotovideo.com/colour-confidence-total-balance-collapsible-af-grey-card-1531568/
     
  8. oldgeezer

    oldgeezer Always on Premium Member

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    This is how's to use it. You don't need to spend ridiculous money for this sort of thing unless shooting catalogue product shots.

     
  9. GJ Vernon

    GJ Vernon Account Closed

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    ......................................................................

    It´s not ridiculous money? The Xrite colorchecker product i recommended is $30 cheaper than the product he is using in your video?

    Spyder: https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/prod...K100_SpyderCheckr_Color_Calibration_Tool.html

    Xrite: https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/651253-REG/X_Rite_MSCCPP_ColorChecker_Passport.html

    The cut down version of the product you linked to higher above at Amazon is very limited being that it only displays saturated colours and only two skin tones
    as opposed to the normal 8 skin tones and various unsaturated pastels, more greys and more near black tones.

    Both the Xrite and the Spyder are absolutely not just for catalogue product shots, they are used for both landscapes and especially for portraits to achieve an accurate skin tone which of course we all want.

    In Lightroom bottom right in the develop module, you´ll see the default camera calibration profiles, what the Xrite does is
    create a new true DNG custom profile which displays the colours in your scene perfectly. What the Spydercheckr does is create a preset by moving the HSL sliders (a layer on top of the camera calibration)
    - which calibration you are supposed to use from the beginning in Lightroom is unclear. You can´t use the HSL Preset Calibration at will. It has to have the proper DNG profile in place in order for the HSL "profile" to be meaningful or: DNG profiles are absolute while HSL presets are relative.

    There are many more complex tutorials on how the Xrite color checker works, but this is the simplest by far..

    or this one:
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2018
  10. oldgeezer

    oldgeezer Always on Premium Member

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    The one I linked to is 1/3 of the price of the xrite and the reason that the one in the video has a case makes it that price.
    It depends on what one needs to achieve and the budget that is available but that is up to the individual so a wider choice is better than no advice at all. I can only base my advise on personal experience. What people do with it is up to them.
     
    gaelldew likes this.
  11. GJ Vernon

    GJ Vernon Account Closed

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    I´d say that´s a factor along with many more colour targets, it´s great to give people a choice at the end of the day - i´ve often been fixed on one product for ages, saved up for it then changed my mind on the day and bought something completely different.
    On the subject of just white balance i also have both of these:



    and:



    The Expodisc for me is way more consistent in most situations, but get a branded one and not the cheap Chinese rip off´s from Ebay.

    My girlfriend always carry a bog standard white balance card which works for her :)
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2018
  12. MikeB

    MikeB Always on Premium Member

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    It should be noted that eliminating color cast is usually a good thing but not always. There are times that the lighting conditions produce a natural ambiance (color cast) across the scene that can make the image stand out. Use of grey cards, color checkers, or diffusion filters (e.g. ExpoDisk) to set the camera's white balance will eliminate the natural ambiance of the scene and change the tonal relationships in the histogram. What you capture will no longer be an accurate representation of what you saw and recreating the tonal relationships will be difficult. In these situations, such as early morning or late evening, it is often better to use Live View and set the white balance temperature (Kelvin) for the camera to match the scene. Of course the problem doing that is the color temperature may be constantly changing. Another option is to take a photo of the scene with the grey card/color checker in the scene for later reference in post.
     
  13. GJ Vernon

    GJ Vernon Account Closed

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    Absolutely agree, setting the white balance from a card or other method can often kill the general atmosphere of a scene, the hard truth versus the contextual..
    We use both methods, setting custom and also using the colour picker in Lightroom (Xrite) to sync the balance of a series of images taken around the same time. The beauty of raw of course is you can pick and choose from all the recorded data either selectively or globally to create the image you want..
     

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