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10-31-2012, 09:22 AM   #1
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why my night shoot is so warm colored?

hi, all:

several nights ago, i attended a party with my new k-5 and DA 18-135 lenses. After taking some photoes, I found my picture wasn't clear or too dark. If i put higher iso like 6400 or higher, my picture would have many dots. if lower, my photo is too dark. I don't want to use built-in flash since the result wasn't that good. i think i put white balance on AWB. how can i do in such not well lit home enviornment? did i do something wrong?

BTW, I use P mode.

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10-31-2012, 10:03 AM   #2
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Auto WB doesn't really do a good job with the color temperature of all light sources. You can do a couple of things. Color balance it better in an image editor after the fact, set the camera to one of the many light source choices or perform a manual color balance (look it up in your camera manual). Manual color balance usually involves taking a shot of a white surface under the light (or mixed light) in the room.
10-31-2012, 10:05 AM   #3
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The rule of thumb I use with regard to white balance, if I'm indoors I use a hotshoe or off camera flash or I use manual white balance dialed in as needed. AWB only seems to work well with natural light. It is very inconsistent with artificial light. The dots in this image are sensor noise. As the sensitivity (iso) of the sensor it increased, it also becomes more sensitive to electo-magnetic noise in the sensor itself, showing up as random dots. Goose software can make this look more pleasing (noise ninja, topaz denoise, etc). However, high ISO settings will also reduce image detail as well. If you want to take pictures in dimly lit areas, I highly suggest a powerful hotshoe flash bounced off the ceiling. That will yield the best IQ I believe. A faster lens would help a bit. Better sofware for denoise. Shoot in RAW and post process. Learn about ETTR (expose to the right). Given how high your iso is, you really need more light. All of this I'm saying is assuming your shutter speed was already as slow as it reasonably could be.
10-31-2012, 10:46 AM   #4
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Like L33tGreg said,

Shoot in raw and then the while balance setting wouldnt matter. Everything will be easily correctable later in post processing. I find this a better alternative than having to manually figure out how to adjust it in the moment I am shooting.

As suggested one option is using a flash. The problem with that is that it is different kind of light. The light in the background of the shot i assume was tungsten (yellow) while the light from the flash will be a different color (white). This may complicate the white balance adjustment later, though some people dont mind that look.

Another option is using a faster lens (than the 18-135) which is very limiting when it comes to your F stops. Something like 50-135 would be much better as it has F2.8 on both ends or using a prime (such as a fast 50mm F1.4). THis would also allow you to shoot handheld in dark with low iso

10-31-2012, 12:51 PM   #5
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Flash. (aah!)
10-31-2012, 02:27 PM   #6
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AWB has a range of 4000-8000K. Tungsten light has a color temperature of around 2800-3200K. AWB works fine when the color temperature is within its range, but you cannot expect AWB to work when the color temperature is outside its range. Instead, set your white balance to tungsten when shooting under incandescent light.
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