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12-30-2011, 06:22 AM   #1
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Purple Birds?


I bought a K5 with the 18-135 WR lens a week ago. This is my first DSLR so I used the "Green Mode" for the beginning. After a few hundred shots I noticed that the camera often pruduces purple instead of grey.
Yesterday I shot two pictures indoors (synthetic lighting). The K5 produced the following two shots:

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I shoot in RAW mode (sRGB). I used Lightroom to convert it to jpg.
No, I didn't paint that sparrow purple.
My question is: Where does the purple come from? Do I have to send the camera in, or is this chromatic aberation?

Thank you very much for your help


Fleischmann from Germany

12-30-2011, 06:46 AM   #2
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Make sure that the camera's white balance is either set to Auto or to match the light of the scene.

Next make sure that you don't accidently change white balance when you import the images into light room.
12-30-2011, 07:35 AM   #3
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WB is on Auto in "Green Mode". I checked the photos using the camera screen with the same result.
12-30-2011, 08:00 AM   #4
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Under the conditions you are shooting the camera's auto white balance can be inaccurate (because you have nothing white and very few colors in the scene).

Under those conditions try adjusting the white balance manually until you get what you want. It's not hard to do.

12-30-2011, 08:13 AM   #5
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I wouldn't be nervious about the camera just yet. You have several possibilities for shifting the colour cast, namely: artificial light with a color cast, reflection of light off a colored surface, or failure of the WB to recognise the light and/or correct the color cast. First test if all is normal under controlled light conditions. If this works ok, then the camera is most likely fine

What is the light source: CFL; LED; FL...? You could also try setting your own specific WB for the lighting in the room, and then test it using that WB setting rather than allowing the camera or program to guess the correcting WB settings.

EDIT: Another idea is to use the pop-up flash. This will give a specific light color and also direct the WB to flash setting.
12-30-2011, 09:29 AM   #6
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looks like WB is critically fooled here.
i also notice some purple subject on the bottom of the first photo (the floor?)

my recommendation is to turn the camera to P mode, manually set the WB to daylight setting, and see if you can get a more accurate color render of the real scene.
also make sure there is no shift in hue (the "right arrow" of the circle wheel, choose "natural" setting and make sure the "hue" is at 0)

setting the camera at "P" mode is always better than green mode for beginner.
you can at least set the WB, color render(saturation, sharpness, etc), exposure level yourself, instead of letting the camera do all the thing.
12-30-2011, 09:40 AM   #7
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It was the White balance. I set it to "synthetic lighting" in P Mode and reproduced the shot - no purple at all!
Thank you all for your advice

12-30-2011, 02:32 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Fleischmann Quote
It was the White balance.
Shooting small theatricals can be a big problem with WB, as the images can have strong colour casts. But, with raw, the embedded WB parameters are the camera's "suggestion". You can easily change this in your raw converter, so it's not hard to fix a strange WB. Once you fix one image, you can apply it to all the others. You can also save a WB preset in your raw converter like "Theatre Light #1" (which is what I did in SilkyPix Pro 4).

With JPEG, WB fixups it can be a lot more difficult. Some programs like SP & LR can convert a JPEG/TIFF into a virtual-raw format so you alter the WB as if it was a raw file, but the displayed colour temp is not longer valid - the original WB data info was lost in the conversion to JPEG or TIFF, so any colour temp adjustment you make is now relative, not absolute.

So greater WB flexibilty is one of the reasons I shoot in raw. I just leave the camera in Auto WB - a wrong choice by the camera is only going to affect the review image, unless you shoot raw+.


Last edited by dosdan; 12-30-2011 at 02:47 PM.
12-30-2011, 03:16 PM   #9

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QuoteOriginally posted by Fleischmann Quote
It was the White balance. I set it to "synthetic lighting" in P Mode and reproduced the shot - no purple at all!
Your earlier RAW files with the wrong colors can be salvaged, too. Just about any software capable of post-processing a RAW file will let you adjust white balance after the fact.

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