BetterPhoto Q&A
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Photography Question 
Robyn Gwilt
BetterPhoto Member Since: 7/15/2005

Manual White Balance

Can someone please give me some basics on manually white balancing my camera (30D) I usually use AWB or one of the other pre-sets if I have to warm up or cool down a scene, but when shooting in a studio situation, I would like to have more control, as my backgrounds sometimes come out quite grey. I'd like to cut down on the amount of PS I have to do. The skin-tones and clothing colours seems to be fine. Sometimes I use a mix of studio lights and constant spots on the background and then get either a yellowish, or pinkish or greyish hue. Please can someone (Will/Alan??) give me some really simple steps.

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1/23/2008 12:42:36 AM

Gregory LaGrange
BetterPhoto Member Since: 11/11/2003
  You want uniform color, don't mix lights.
A gray background that is not gray color is a light quantity problem. Not temperature.
The basics of changing white balance yourself are you match the color temperature number on the camera with what the color temperature of the light is.
5600 for sunlight. Tungsten is 3400 neighborhood. Flouro is 4500 neighborhood. Blue overcast is 5900 neighborhood.
Low numbers are red end of the rainbow. High are purple end.

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1/23/2008 1:40:09 AM

You "would like to have more control", Robyn?

Shoot RAW, so you can adjust WB in PP.

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1/23/2008 3:00:45 AM

Robyn Gwilt
BetterPhoto Member Since: 7/15/2005
  Thanks Greg and WS - what I also want to know is how to actually adjust it on the camera. There is something in the Custom Functions(i think), where you move the little button around in a square with colours (obviously warmer and colder) but am not sure how to go about it properly. Sorry to be vague, I don't have the camera in front of me.
Maybe I'm going to have to give in and shoot RAW one of these days :)

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1/23/2008 3:10:15 AM

I use the presets and RAW, and reset WB in PP if neccessary.

If I want the image 'warmer' or 'colder' I apply PS filters in PP, since I can only judge it properly on a big screen. Not on that puny uncalibrated LCD on the back of the camera.

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1/23/2008 7:32:29 AM

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