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  1. #1
    AlQ
    AlQ is offline dPS Forum Member
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    Default Grey card: maybe a stupid question but...

    I always use AWB but am going to try to shoot more in RAW, so it's been suggested to set a custom WB off of a grey card.

    1. Does it have to be in focus when I shoot the grey card?....i.e. with my 70-200 lens, it will not focus when I hand-hold the card in front of the lens (too close).

    2. I need to reset it every time my lighting changes...i.e. moving from a room with flourescent lighting to one with halide lighting, correct?

    thanks!
    -Al-
    Canon 7D, Canon XSi, 70-200mm f/2.8L IS, 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS, EF-S 50-250mm f/4-5.6 IS, EF 17-55mm f/2.8, EF 50mm f/1.8, 24-70mm f/2.8, Vello battery grip.

  2. #2
    Tito87's Avatar
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    1.- No.
    2.- Yes

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  3. #3
    AlQ
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    Thank you!
    -Al-
    Canon 7D, Canon XSi, 70-200mm f/2.8L IS, 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS, EF-S 50-250mm f/4-5.6 IS, EF 17-55mm f/2.8, EF 50mm f/1.8, 24-70mm f/2.8, Vello battery grip.

  4. #4
    AHutch is offline Get moving!
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    It doesn't have to be in foocus but your shutter may not release if you are in autofocus mode. If that is a problem just switch to manual focus. Also, just make sure that the grey card is always placed in the same location (under the same light) as your subject.

    And also note that you can use a plain white sheet of paper if you don't have a grey card handy.
    Anthony H.
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  5. #5
    kirbinster's Avatar
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    Actually I have heard it is better if it is not in focus as you get a better blend and don't have to worry about slight imperfections in the card.
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  6. #6
    AHutch is offline Get moving!
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    One other point - if you are shooting RAW you really have no need to worry about WB since that is fully adjustable when you process the RAW image on the PC. And to a certain extent so is exposure. The camera's meter should give you a decent exposure (in most cases but not all) to work with in RAW, but WB is fully "adjustable" after the fact.
    Anthony H.
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  7. #7
    Gulf Coast Girl's Avatar
    Gulf Coast Girl is offline Quit honking Im reloading
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    Hopefully you won't mind me tacking on a question I have about WB cards.....

    I have this EzyBalance Grey/White Card 12'' - Grey/White Card | Lastolite card.

    It says to set the camera white balance with it, it should be placed in front of the camera to fill the frame. OK, no problem if I'm photographing something close, however, what about when I'm shooting something 15 (or more) feet away without a zoom lens? If I hold the card in front of the subject, it isn't filling the frame and if I pull it back towards the camera until it fills the frame, then the lighting is not the same as directly on my subject.

    So which is better..... directly in front of subject, but not filling frame.... or filling frame, but lighting may not be exactly the same?
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  8. #8
    AHutch is offline Get moving!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gulf Coast Girl View Post
    Hopefully you won't mind me tacking on a question I have about WB cards.....

    I have this EzyBalance Grey/White Card 12'' - Grey/White Card | Lastolite card.

    It says to set the camera white balance with it, it should be placed in front of the camera to fill the frame. OK, no problem if I'm photographing something close, however, what about when I'm shooting something 15 (or more) feet away without a zoom lens? If I hold the card in front of the subject, it isn't filling the frame and if I pull it back towards the camera until it fills the frame, then the lighting is not the same as directly on my subject.

    So which is better..... directly in front of subject, but not filling frame.... or filling frame, but lighting may not be exactly the same?
    If your are going to use custom white balance in this type of situation and assuming you are NOT shooting RAW, if possible, walk over to the subject with camera in hand, place the grey card OR white sheet of paper in the same light as the subject, fill the frame and shoot the card/paper. Then obviously walk back to you shooting spot. IF you cannot walk over to your subject then I would suggest not to go the custom WB route (unless you are confident that the light is the same where you are shooing from). If you are unsure of what you should set WB at try one of the following instead:

    1. Go with auto WB and RAW - then you can play with WB in post processing. OR
    2. Try using Auto WB bracketing if your camera has that feature OR
    3. Take multiple shots, setting a different WB each time.

    But overall, if you are going to use custom WB, yes, the card/paper has to fill the frame AND be in the same light as the subject.
    Anthony H.
    Don't just sit there, get moving!
    My Website - GoDigitalSLR.com - Dedicated to the DSLR Beginner

  9. #9
    Gulf Coast Girl's Avatar
    Gulf Coast Girl is offline Quit honking Im reloading
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    Quote Originally Posted by AHutch View Post
    If your are going to use custom white balance in this type of situation and assuming you are NOT shooting RAW, if possible, walk over to the subject with camera in hand, place the grey card OR white sheet of paper in the same light as the subject, fill the frame and shoot the card/paper. Then obviously walk back to you shooting spot. IF you cannot walk over to your subject then I would suggest not to go the custom WB route (unless you are confident that the light is the same where you are shooing from). If you are unsure of what you should set WB at try one of the following instead:

    1. Go with auto WB and RAW - then you can play with WB in post processing. OR
    2. Try using Auto WB bracketing if your camera has that feature OR
    3. Take multiple shots, setting a different WB each time.

    But overall, if you are going to use custom WB, yes, the card/paper has to fill the frame AND be in the same light as the subject.

    Thank you! That helps a lot. I was taking the other approach and bringing the card to my camera... DOH!! Once I thought about it.... it did seem wrong, so I'm glad I asked.

    I do shoot in RAW, but I'm not the best with the software yet so I like to do as much right in camera as possible. All part of the learning process, thanks again
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  10. #10
    AHutch is offline Get moving!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gulf Coast Girl View Post
    ... I like to do as much right in camera as possible. All part of the learning process, thanks again
    The best way to learn in my opinion!
    Anthony H.
    Don't just sit there, get moving!
    My Website - GoDigitalSLR.com - Dedicated to the DSLR Beginner

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