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03-05-2007, 07:14 PM   #1
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blown out reds...is my camera defective?

Hi guys,

Not sure if I'm completely allowed to do this...but I was hoping you guys could help me out. The pentax board at DPreview is trying to answer this as well, but I figured I'd cast a wider net...hopefully one of you may be able to help.

Here's the direct link to the topic I started on dpreview:

blown our reds - is my camera defective?: Pentax SLR Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review

Any help is greatly appreciated...thanks!

Cheers,
David

03-05-2007, 07:39 PM   #2
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What was your shutter speed? I have done some stage work; the lighting is very tricky, especially color work. My 2 cents is that you might be experiencing a combination of slow shutter and super saturated light. If the fan is red, and moving, the lighting will work with the sgutter speed to fill-in the color. Of course, this is one man's opinion.
03-05-2007, 07:39 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by nicekato42 Quote
Hi guys,

Not sure if I'm completely allowed to do this...but I was hoping you guys could help me out. The pentax board at DPreview is trying to answer this as well, but I figured I'd cast a wider net...hopefully one of you may be able to help.

Here's the direct link to the topic I started on dpreview:

blown our reds - is my camera defective?: Pentax SLR Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review

Any help is greatly appreciated...thanks!

Cheers,
David
Have you tried developing this using Pentax Photolab? RAW converters from other places do not necessarily use the RAW data faithfully, although they do look overexposed as well.
I think you will need to upload a RAW file for someone to experiment with.
03-05-2007, 08:03 PM   #4
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didnt look like blown out reds, more like just bad exposure...i thought it would be bleeding all over. even the outdoor shots you had, it wasnt that bad. could be just your monitor..

03-05-2007, 10:28 PM   #5
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I suspect there may be a white balance issue as well. Digital sensors are very sensitive to different colored light, which is why stage lighting can be difficult. If these were shot in raw there may be a way to recover some of this over exposed red by pulling some reds out of it. Some new raw converters even have highlight recovery capabilities.
03-06-2007, 08:48 AM   #6
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i think the red lighting has hit a digital weakspot.. hard to say if its just a generic weakspot of there is something wrong with your camera..

turning saturation type settings down will help.. i would shoot some jpegs with red in them.. this removes the raw conversion factor..

my k100 will blow reds.. throwing some red lighting at it as well would totally fool the poor thing and send it into a spasm i recon.. he he he

not exactly a normal situation is it..

trog
03-06-2007, 09:54 AM   #7
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Your photos have caused me to go back and look at about 1500 images of my daughter's last 4 school productions, all shot with my *istD at ISO settings from 800-3200. Some with manual daylight or incandesent WB some with auto.

What I can tell is that under full red stage lighting, things tend to be all red, but under more neutral lighting, although reds are very bright, I never get any wash out of the reds and loss of detail. I can see all sorts of shades for folds in clothing etc in the reds, but they are bright. Actually, I like it, but the hard part, without being prepared to think about it in acvance is what the scenes actually looked like to my eye. The eye is not that good with colors under low light either, but I think red and especially yellows. also appears brighter than things on the other end of the spectrum, which tend to shades of grey.

I did not use my K10D this year as much was shot in the past at 3200 ISO and the K10D does not have this capability no matter how much I complain to pentax. Too bad I guess because I could have given some better comments to the K10D performance, but I went with what I knew would work on the lighting.

Overall, my images were much sharper and clearer than what you have posted. I did have a very fast F2.8 70-200 lens, which gave good shutter speeds even with stage lighting.
03-06-2007, 11:00 AM   #8
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First off, welcome to the forums!

You had a very tricky lighting situation. IMHO you shot very well.

With the majority of your subject being lit in red, or being clothed in red and lit in yellow light, you will notice the details wash out a little bit. It's a weakness with a lot of digital cameras. This is because there is very little or no blue or green channel to balance out the signal from the ccd to give "texture" or detail to the subject during demosaic procedure.

Color Filter Array: Camera System: Glossary: Learn: Digital Photography Review

You will also notice the same thing when the majority of the subject is blue or green.

If you look at your histogram in Picasa, you will see that the red channel is very high, with very little, if any, blue and green.

Here's an example from my Fuji 2800Z (An older 2 MP point and shoot). Poor indoor lighting, yellow light coming from an incandescent light in the hall and my camcorder light, giving a yellow cast. If you look at the petals of the roses, they appear to lose quite a bit of detail, but had it not been for the green leaves and the white from the boubonier, I would have had the same situation as you or an unusable shot.

Bridesmaid Bouquet

Shooting in Vivid mode will boost the reds and make the picture more warm, so to counter this, shoot in natural mode (shoots cooler shots). Custom WB or Incandescent will also help somewhat in offsetting the problem.

Since you already shot these pics, try turning down the colour temperature a touch then boost the shadows a little in Picasa to recover a little more detail and to see if you can get results more pleasing to you.

Hope this helps.

03-06-2007, 12:10 PM   #9
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Thanks everyone for your input!

Thanks all for your kind replies.

It sounds like what I did wrong was the following:

1. Need to underexpose more. things did get better at -2.5...so perhaps I should try 3 next time

2. Auto WB was probably a big no-no. The only problem is that the lighting didn't stay red for more than 1 minute...so changing back and forth would have resulted in more missed shot opportunities.

3. I should probably try a filter to counter out some of the red next time. Again though, the lighting didn't stay that red most of the time

4. Turn DOWN the saturation and use "natural" tone instead of "vivid".

also, regarding the comment about the 70-200/2.8 lens...I actually have the same thing. Shutter speeds were still not fast enough...unfortunately the girls were moving very fast in most of these pictures, only staying still for brief moments.

When I used my friend's canon 20d, I didn't compensate for exposure or WB...the shots just came out fine. I wonder what canon does differently that made it work so well? Of course, the lighting of the previous performances was not as challenging as this one. I think the lighting guys got lazy. They stuck with basically 2 lighting settings (1. ALL red, 2. single spot in middle of stage that wasn't even the correct size, with bluish lighting the rest of the stage). Previously, they had tried to even the lighting out a bit, and included backdrop lighting as well. Oh well..

I will try the outdoor pictures of the berries one more time. That is definitely something I can recreate. This time, I will try it with "natural" tone and possible turn down the saturation.

Cheers,
David
03-06-2007, 12:40 PM   #10
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cc40m

A few comments:
A cc40m filter (flash and daylight conditions) and custom WB would probably help. Problem is the sensors sensitivity (or lack of) to red. If you look at the multiplication co-efficents for daylight and flash WB, they are about 1.5ish. If the red is bright and you are working in 8bit mode (or converting your files to a 8 bit in sRGB color space, it doesn't take much to push you outsid 256,0,0, so to speak.
A custom WB w/ the cc40m filter brings these coefficients to 1:1:1. You can now more accurately use the histogram to judge exposure and will be able to increase your exp compensation without pushing the reds into no man's land.
Do a search under dpreview in the Nikon200 and do a search for cc40m.
dpreview is down for me at this time so I can't post a link. Sorry.
Now I didn't see your photos so I have no idea (dpreview out?) if this helps.
Under tungsten light the recommendation would be a cc40c filter (like the old days). Once the WB is set you just take all the photos though the filter. Only catch is 1 filter per lens. A Cokin gel holder w/ various ring works fine
Anyways the key is to trick the camera into setting the 1:1:1 multipliers based on the filtered light............ After that the rest is easy
03-06-2007, 12:43 PM   #11
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No Not at All

QuoteOriginally posted by nicekato42 Quote
Hi guys,

Not sure if I'm completely allowed to do this...but I was hoping you guys could help me out. The pentax board at DPreview is trying to answer this as well, but I figured I'd cast a wider net...hopefully one of you may be able to help.

Here's the direct link to the topic I started on dpreview:

blown our reds - is my camera defective?: Pentax SLR Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review

Any help is greatly appreciated...thanks!

Cheers,
David
Hello David;

It is totally normal that your red's are excessive. You are shooting theatre spots that are natively very warm around 3600K and they have added red gelatines to the light. I often shoot with non-colour corrected spots to get exactly the effect your are complaining about. How can one balance what the lighting technicians are trying to accomplish. That is, to put on a highly saturated colour light show. If you wish to capture the show as it is, set your WB to 5000K and just let it happen. That is the way it was intended to be.

For your info, when I do want to compensate for tungsten light, I use a half to full blue filter.

Ben

Last edited by benjikan; 03-06-2007 at 12:51 PM.
03-06-2007, 01:11 PM   #12
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Ben, which blue filters do you like to use. I am thinking of getting some for my Cokin holder and can't decide which. Would you go with the Cokin or one that goes on the front of the lens?
03-06-2007, 01:19 PM   #13
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Cokin

QuoteOriginally posted by arbutusq Quote
Ben, which blue filters do you like to use. I am thinking of getting some for my Cokin holder and can't decide which. Would you go with the Cokin or one that goes on the front of the lens?
I used Cokin for quite a while. My only concern is the fact that their filters are plastic. I know how expensive it is to buy dedicated screw in filters though. In studio I don't put the filter on my lens, but on the actual lights. However, before buying expensive filters, see if you can get some samples of gelatine in blue and experiment a bit. Colour correction Gels in "blue" come in 1/4, 1/2 and Full. That is what I use and have been quite satisfied with the results. However, as I mix flash and tungsten that is a different horse of a different colour all together. Won't go there now!

Anyhow, if Cokin fits your budget get a 1/2 and Full Blue correction filter and see how you like them. I often use these filters to make the skin look very "Cold"...To kill the reds in the skin.

Ben
03-06-2007, 02:13 PM   #14
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now for my question.. which board provided the best most usefull answers .. ????

trog
03-06-2007, 02:18 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by trog100 Quote
now for my question.. which board provided the best most usefull answers .. ????

trog
Nice timing! To add, which board was the most responsive too?
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