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09-24-2016, 03:00 PM   #1
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Theatre/Indoor/Bad light

Recently I noticed with my K5 and using the flash light, build in flash and using external flash at my K5 my photo's are overexposed. Not using it they are underexposed. Using the P, SV, (T)AV all the same problem. Using bulb or manual lighting it's even worse. Manual the photo's become very dark or even completely black. Especially during theatre, red carpets, indoor or when there is bad light those things happen. Not using flash, my photo's(indoor) get a strange yellowish colour. Whatever I try to do nothing seem to work. Due to the fact I'm often working on location and with people using Canon or Nikon, no-one seem to be able to help me out there. Am using the standard 15-55mm lens but also a sigma 70-300 lens most.

The camera is up-to-date to the latest version. Also, putting the factory adjustments back doesn't seem to help the problem.

09-24-2016, 04:10 PM   #2
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Are you using manual or pttl external flashes? If they're manual but the on-camera flash is pttl, then you need to take that into account yourself (exposure compensation or manual settings). Otherwise the camera will try to expose using only the on-camera flash and the external ones will overexpose.

About using manual settings: aperture and flash settings both control the flash exposure. A shutter speed lower than the max sync only lets more ambient light in, that's because the flash duration is extremely brief. So if your photos look too dark, then either increase aperture or flash power.

I don't use flash during shows, but even then I mostly do manual settings to avoid changing lights causing problems.

About the yellow cast: it's best to shoot raw in low light, this way you can adjust and experiment with both noise reduction and white balance. But if jpeg is a must, just use manual wb: when you get there, set wb to some k value that looks good and leave at that. edit: but manual wb will backfire if you forget about it and the light changes significantly; my camera has something in custom settings that says "tungsten color correction," with one of the settings trying to correct more and the other producing warmer colors.

Last edited by aaacb; 09-24-2016 at 04:23 PM.
09-25-2016, 04:05 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Khashoggi Quote
Not using flash, my photo's(indoor) get a strange yellowish colour.
Shoot in raw. Many years ago I got caught out setting the WB in a church, only to realize later that the lighting took a long time to 'heat up'. A lot of the energy efficient lights in use have this characteristic.
09-25-2016, 04:41 AM   #4
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The yellow cast is normal for indoor tungsten lighting. Shoot RAW and it's easily corrected.

If flash is allowed, I tend to use M on the camera, and either P-TTL or Auto on the hot shoe flash, always bounced or diffused. I never use the on board flash as the light source is too small and direct.

Better/faster lenses might help, as would the improved low-light AF of the K-5II and K-3, but that will cost money

09-25-2016, 07:54 AM   #5
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The big problem is, I can't shoot RAW. As I often need to send the photo's immediatly to buyers from location, can't go home first. Unless it's a small show I can do. Then there's a way to use raw and edit them at home. They refuse to use RAW.

Thanks for all the advice! Really appreciated.
09-25-2016, 11:03 AM   #6
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Regarding the white balance problem, I assume you're using AWB? If so, I'd recommend you carry an 18% grey card, and in the environment you'll be shooting in, set a custom white balance off that instead before you start. If there are lots of different lighting sources and types within that environment, or if you drastically change the mix between ambient and flash lighting, you're going to have a tough time setting just one white balance that will work, but if the lighting sources are mostly of the same type, you should be OK.

As for the over/under-exposure issues... was everything working ok previously? Have you used your particular flash camera, lens and flash setup successfully in the past? Has anything changed at all?

Last edited by BigMackCam; 09-25-2016 at 11:48 AM.
09-25-2016, 11:47 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Khashoggi Quote
The big problem is, I can't shoot RAW. As I often need to send the photo's immediatly
Another thing you could try for wb is to develop in-camera all raw photos at once: find a wb setting that works and then apply it to all photos. At least the k3ii does that, not sure about your camera, but it's actually really fast to apply some jpeg settings to a batch.
10-02-2016, 11:33 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by BigMackCam Quote
Regarding the white balance problem, I assume you're using AWB? If so, I'd recommend you carry an 18% grey card, and in the environment you'll be shooting in, set a custom white balance off that instead before you start. If there are lots of different lighting sources and types within that environment, or if you drastically change the mix between ambient and flash lighting, you're going to have a tough time setting just one white balance that will work, but if the lighting sources are mostly of the same type, you should be OK.

As for the over/under-exposure issues... was everything working ok previously? Have you used your particular flash camera, lens and flash setup successfully in the past? Has anything changed at all?
In years before everything was working fine. Even with in-build and external flash. Never changed a thing.

QuoteOriginally posted by aaacb Quote
Another thing you could try for wb is to develop in-camera all raw photos at once: find a wb setting that works and then apply it to all photos. At least the k3ii does that, not sure about your camera, but it's actually really fast to apply some jpeg settings to a batch.
Sadly it doesn't. Only possibility is using JPEG on location. But thanks for the advice.

But anyway, tried some things out the past week with some advice from here. Thankfully I'd removed away from some standard settings&changed them with the white balance using the color patch you see on the screen. Still using P, those give the best results. Normally those would've given previous named problems.

Three photo's added here, normally those photo's would've been yelowish/over/under exposed. Especially with Neon light some small changes made.





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