Saturday, April 13, 2013

HF50EXR – Review Part 17 – White balance Matrix on Cloudy Day

It is a cloudy day today, but it is the light I have. I will perform the same test later on various bulbs (or at least one :-) and if I have time I will shoot a matrix on a sunny day too. I have to give the cameras back in a week, so time is getting short.

I shot this using the usual DR400 M size settings that work so well with these cameras. I shot JPEG only and you are seeing the output resized only … I.e. this is what images you shoot should look like. Of course, I have the camera on a tripod and set to manual exposure to remove all exposure variables. I use multi focus and that seems rock steady in this mode. So all that is left is to vary the WB and trigger on timer with IS disabled.

The matrix looks like …

My Observations
  • Auto WB (AWB) is too cool for my taste. I always end up tweaking it in Lightroom and you can see why.
  • Custom WB is right on. Duh. I set it on the snow in the neighbour’s back yard.
  • Daylight WB seems even cooler than AWB, indicating that AWB at least moves part way towards accuracy.
  • Cloudy WB is very warm. I don’t mind that at all. But some might prefer to tune the WB towards blue.
  • FL1 WB is pretty good, actually. Obviously set for daylight FL bulbs.
  • FL2, FL3 and Incandescent bulbs are out to lunch with wicked magenta or blue casts. As expected.
  • AWB with maxed out tuning for yellow and red actually comes out quite well. The extra intensity in only those colors seems to open shadows slightly.

So there you have it. If you dislike AWB’s obvious cool (i.e. blue) cast, then consider shooting cloudy WB as a matter of course, or tuning your HS50 with extra warmth by increasing red and yellow. Either works, but the latter lets you diminish the effect if it is too strong for your tastes.

Remember that there is no right or wrong, although my images are by definition right Smile