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Author Topic: Expo Disc vs x-rite color checker  (Read 4443 times)
Steven261
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« on: September 28, 2010, 01:53:27 PM »
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Which is going to be the better choice when using raw capture?

Setting a custom white balance using an expo disc prior to creating an image or series of images in the same lighting.

Or using the x-rite color checker in my first image and then making the corrections in lightroom?

Would it be redundant to use both?

Any help would be greatly appreciated!
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #1 on: September 28, 2010, 02:08:02 PM »
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Hi,

In my view the simplest solution is to use a gray card illuminated with the same light that illuminates the target. You can of course use a color checker as an expensive substitute for a grey card.

I have never understood the idea with the expo disc. What does it see, is it the light incident on the lens or an average  of the scene? Neither one is a good choice!


Best regards
Erik


Which is going to be the better choice when using raw capture?

Setting a custom white balance using an expo disc prior to creating an image or series of images in the same lighting.

Or using the x-rite color checker in my first image and then making the corrections in lightroom?

Would it be redundant to use both?

Any help would be greatly appreciated!
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digitaldog
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« Reply #2 on: September 28, 2010, 02:24:43 PM »
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I don’t see how the Expo disk would be useful for raw workflows. You want a spectrally neutral white object in the shot to click on with the white balance tool in the raw converter. Building some kind of custom WB data in the camera isn’t going to be used for raw data.
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Andrew Rodney
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Wayne Fox
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« Reply #3 on: September 28, 2010, 04:16:51 PM »
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Which is going to be the better choice when using raw capture?

Setting a custom white balance using an expo disc prior to creating an image or series of images in the same lighting.

Or using the x-rite color checker in my first image and then making the corrections in lightroom?

Would it be redundant to use both?

Any help would be greatly appreciated!
Personally I think many (I've watched them) people use the expo disc incorrectly and while it still works, to use it correctly is more challenging that shooting something like the color checker (or a whi-bal card or even a simple grey card).

To use the expo disk correctly, you have to aim the camera at the light source of the scene, often requiring you to physically move the camera to the subject. This way the light hitting the expo disc is the same light hitting the subject.  For some things it doesn't matter much, but it seems much easier to just hold something in front of the camera so the light reflecting off it it is the same as the light hitting the scene.

I suppose the only advantage I can think of in setting the white balance in camera if shooting raw is it might make the previews look a little better?  To me it's faster to shoot a whi bal card, then set the white balance and sync that to the images in Lightroom than it is to set up a custom white balance in the camera.
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JeanMichel
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« Reply #4 on: September 28, 2010, 05:01:02 PM »
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Hi,

I recently purchased the Color Checker. It works like a charm.
I work exclusively in RAW. For my work in documenting exhibitions I used to photograph a testing board that included a full size Kodak Gray card; a black card, a white card, the Kodak Grayscale and the Kodak Colour patches -- not a bad set-up. After getting the Color Checker I added it to the board and that woks fine. For the last job I used the Color Checker only and that worked well too. You are supposed to be able to shoot the Color Checker once under the particular illumination but in many cases the gallery lights vary in colour temperature, and I may or may not supplement that with my own tungsten lights so i find it useful to include the board or Color Checker for each setup.

Jean-Michel
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #5 on: September 28, 2010, 10:50:14 PM »
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Hi,

In my view the Color Checker is nice for having a visual reference. It's also possible to build a "camera profile" for a scene in a given illumination, using Color Checker Passport software or Adobe DNG Profile Editor. This would be a good idea for studio lighting, especially if the light source has non continuous spectral characteristics. I think it is overkill for white balance. The lightest gray square, the one right off the white one is recommended for WB, anyway.

Best regards
Erik


Hi,

I recently purchased the Color Checker. It works like a charm.
I work exclusively in RAW. For my work in documenting exhibitions I used to photograph a testing board that included a full size Kodak Gray card; a black card, a white card, the Kodak Grayscale and the Kodak Colour patches -- not a bad set-up. After getting the Color Checker I added it to the board and that woks fine. For the last job I used the Color Checker only and that worked well too. You are supposed to be able to shoot the Color Checker once under the particular illumination but in many cases the gallery lights vary in colour temperature, and I may or may not supplement that with my own tungsten lights so i find it useful to include the board or Color Checker for each setup.

Jean-Michel
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