Forums > Photography Talk > Xrite or Nikon camera profiles? Advice please.

Photographer

Bershatsky

Posts: 142

Seattle, Washington, US

I haven't been shooting any models in a while, but I find this forum full of very talented and knowledgeable photographers.  I am having some issues determining the best workflow in Lightroom.

I posted it here on my blog with links to the raw files so you can post process and try it for yourself. 

http://www.bershatsky.net/2013/01/d800- … e.html?m=0

Bottom line is, when I use Nikon Standard everything seems fine items of highlights, but when I use adobe standard or the Xrite profile, it seems a little too bright in the highlights.  Not just for this shot, but always.  It seems like the Xrite might be more trouble than its worth.

Opinions, suggestions, advice?

Jan 11 13 07:52 am Link

Photographer

730372

Posts: 1952

Abbeville, Alabama, US

Even on my crappy work monitor I would say that the Xrite profile (on the left) is significantly better tonally.

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-UEmSDoXdPo4/UPAxUrsrasI/AAAAAAAAPsk/VlKruIbvCmU/s640/Xrite+Left+and+Camera+Standard+Right.jpg

Jan 11 13 08:03 am Link

Photographer

WMcK

Posts: 5286

Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom

The X Rite one looks better to me. The one on the right looks too flattened in the highlights. But it's all a matter of personal choice, some will prefer one, some the other.

Jan 11 13 11:53 am Link

Photographer

Aperture_Photo

Posts: 478

Chicago, Illinois, US

I just downloaded your file and created a profile maker 5 profile for you.

PM your email and I'll send it to you to try

Jan 11 13 01:23 pm Link

Photographer

tonygale

Posts: 88

New York, New York, US

I much prefer the one on the left, and in general I find the Xrite Color Checker profiles to be fantastic. It is al ot more then just contrast/exposure it is much more about accurate color

Jan 11 13 02:50 pm Link

Photographer

ACPhotography

Posts: 8622

Plainview, New York, US

I wasn't having any luck with the Xrite and the D800 when LR4 and the D800 first came out, I need to revisit making my own profiles for the camera since the updates...

But I agree, the one on the left looks nicer, more contrast... You can always make a preset to drop the exposure slightly if it bothers you that much.

Jan 11 13 03:04 pm Link

Photographer

sidney_k

Posts: 874

Paris, Île-de-France, France

Bershatsky wrote:
I haven't been shooting any models in a while, but I find this forum full of very talented and knowledgeable photographers.  I am having some issues determining the best workflow in Lightroom.

I posted it here on my blog with links to the raw files so you can post process and try it for yourself. 

http://www.bershatsky.net/2013/01/d800- … e.html?m=0

Bottom line is, when I use Nikon Standard everything seems fine items of highlights, but when I use adobe standard or the Xrite profile, it seems a little too bright in the highlights.  Not just for this shot, but always.  It seems like the Xrite might be more trouble than its worth.

Opinions, suggestions, advice?

Do you have a color calibrated graphic monitor?
I know Xrite, I have their spectrophotometer, but what do you mean by 'Xrite profile'? Monitor profile, camera profile, printer profile?
When you print out your images with your calibrated printer, do you see a big difference between print and screen?
Most problems arise from badly calibrated monitor screens and wrongly profiled printers.

Jan 11 13 03:13 pm Link

Photographer

ACPhotography

Posts: 8622

Plainview, New York, US

Carioca wrote:

Do you have a color calibrated graphic monitor?
I know Xrite, I have their spectrophotometer, but what do you mean by 'Xrite profile'? Monitor profile, camera profile, printer profile?
When you print out your images with your calibrated printer, do you see a big difference between print and screen?
Most problems arise from badly calibrated monitor screens and wrongly profiled printers.

Adobe Camera Profiles, you use the Xrite passport and supplied software to make custom profiles for your cameras under different lighting conditions.

Jan 11 13 03:16 pm Link

Photographer

sidney_k

Posts: 874

Paris, Île-de-France, France

ACPhotography wrote:

Adobe Camera Profiles, you use the Xrite passport and supplied software to make custom profiles for your cameras under different lighting conditions.

Got that...
But it only makes sense if your monitor and printer is calibrated.

Jan 11 13 03:18 pm Link

Photographer

ACPhotography

Posts: 8622

Plainview, New York, US

Carioca wrote:

Got that...
But it only makes sense if your monitor and printer is calibrated.

You know those little profiles in the drop down box under camera calibration in Lightroom or ACR?

Yea, it makes those...

Nothing to do with your monitor or printer...

Jan 11 13 03:35 pm Link

Photographer

730372

Posts: 1952

Abbeville, Alabama, US

Carioca wrote:
Got that...
But it only makes sense if your monitor and printer is calibrated.

Your statement makes no sense to me - can you explain your reasoning behind it please?

Jan 11 13 03:35 pm Link

Photographer

sidney_k

Posts: 874

Paris, Île-de-France, France

T B O L wrote:

Your statement makes no sense to me - can you explain your reasoning behind it please?

My question was, do you have a profiled monitor to start with?

The only way to judge if your camera profile is accurate, is to know, first off, if your monitor is representing colors in an industry standard way, not subjectively.
Profiling a monitor is the primary element in  the color management workflow.

Jan 11 13 03:47 pm Link

Photographer

sidney_k

Posts: 874

Paris, Île-de-France, France

ACPhotography wrote:
You know those little profiles in the drop down box under camera calibration in Lightroom or ACR?

Yea, it makes those...

Nothing to do with your monitor or printer...

Camera profiles are useful if you have absolutely the light conditions they were taylored for.
There can't be a profile for 'party light' or 'wedding light' snaps.
A profile for 5600 degree Kelvin (light temperature) won't work right at 5000 nor at 6500.

So in the end, it has to do with your calibrated monitor.

Jan 11 13 04:00 pm Link

Photographer

ACPhotography

Posts: 8622

Plainview, New York, US

Carioca wrote:

Camera profiles are useful if you have absolutely the light conditions they were taylored for.
There can't be a profile for 'party light' or 'wedding light' snaps.
A profile for 5600 degree Kelvin (light temperature) won't work right at 5000 nor at 6500.

So in the end, it has to do with your calibrated monitor.

No, it has to do with the light you SHOT the photo under! I make profiles that I shoot under various different lights... I have Daylight profiles, Tungsten, Various Strobes, Sunset, Sunrise, Overcast, Shade... All tailored to the camera you shot the color target with... I make profiles for Ice Hockey rinks because their lights are usually all over the place...

I could also choose Adobe Standard and then the somewhat in the ballpark Adobe Nikon (or Canon) profiles for my cameras like Camera Standard, Vivid, Portrait, etc... etc... etc....

Still has absolutely NOTHING to do with your monitor...

Jan 11 13 04:21 pm Link

Photographer

sidney_k

Posts: 874

Paris, Île-de-France, France

ACPhotography wrote:
Still has absolutely NOTHING to do with your monitor...

You are right, it has nothing to do with MY monitor...

I don't use camera profiles, every lighting situation is different, I take a shot of a grey card prior to my session, that gives me enough white balance to start with.

My calibrated monitor tells my uncalibrated eyes, what to do next.

Jan 11 13 04:39 pm Link

Photographer

ACPhotography

Posts: 8622

Plainview, New York, US

Carioca wrote:

You are right, it has nothing to do with MY monitor...

I don't use camera profiles, every lighting situation is different, I take a shot of a grey card prior to my session, that gives me enough white balance to start with.

My calibrated monitor tells my uncalibrated eyes, what to do next.

Actually, you do... Your camera has a profile in it that you can change in camera if you shoot jpg or if you shoot raw you can change it after... It will affect color and contrast before you even start with anything else...

Jan 11 13 04:45 pm Link

Photographer

sidney_k

Posts: 874

Paris, Île-de-France, France

ACPhotography wrote:
Actually, you do... Your camera has a profile in it that you can change in camera if you shoot jpg or if you shoot raw you can change it after... It will affect color and contrast before you even start with anything else...

Let us suppose, by accident, you chose the wrong camera profile.
Who or what, in the end, will reveal your mistake?

That is what I have been trying to come down to, since the beginning.

Jan 11 13 04:51 pm Link

Photographer

ACPhotography

Posts: 8622

Plainview, New York, US

Carioca wrote:
Let us suppose, by accident, you chose the wrong camera profile.
Who or what, in the end, will reveal your mistake?

That is what I have been trying to come down to, since the beginning.

There is no such thing as the "wrong" profile, there are profiles that display colors differently...

On Nikon I can choose Vivid, Portrait, Landscape, among many others... Or I can use Adobe standard and the bunch of others that have been developed by the likes of Adobe (or other raw converters.) I could also use the Xrite and shoot the color target and have the Xrite software make me one under the lighting conditions I was shooting under... Or I could make one myself using just my eyes...

Oh, I've even used my "daylight" profile for photos I used strobes on, I know I was completely wrong doing it but I didn't care I liked the way it looked!

http://x-equals.com/blog/playing-with-c … -profiles/

Jan 11 13 04:58 pm Link

Photographer

sidney_k

Posts: 874

Paris, Île-de-France, France

ACPhotography wrote:
There is no such thing as the "wrong" profile, there are profiles that display colors differently...

On Nikon I can choose Vivid, Portrait, Landscape, among many others... Or I can use Adobe standard and the bunch of others that have been developed by the likes of Adobe (or other raw converters.) I could also use the Xrite and shoot the color target and have the Xrite software make me one under the lighting conditions I was shooting under... Or I could make one myself using just my eyes...

Oh, I've even used my "daylight" profile for photos I used strobes on, I know I was completely wrong doing it but I didn't care I liked the way it looked!

http://x-equals.com/blog/playing-with-c … -profiles/

My first question to the OP (who has never responded so far) was, if he had a calibrated monitor.

And, thanks for editing your last post, makes it much more friendly.

Good night.

Jan 11 13 05:05 pm Link

Photographer

Jean-Claude Photo

Posts: 634

Los Angeles, California, US

I use a Color Checker Passport, but personally I always hated the profiles the X rite software generated for my Nikons (D3,D700). Everything seemed to have a greenish hue to it.

A clerk at Samy's Camera here in LA told me about this little gem:

http://www.adobe.com/support/downloads/ … ftpID=5493

Works the same way, you shoot the Passport, convert to DNG, but then you use this instead of the X rite software. I've been very happy with these.

Jan 11 13 05:45 pm Link

Photographer

WMcK

Posts: 5286

Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom

Jean-Claude Photo wrote:
I use a Color Checker Passport, but personally I always hated the profiles the X rite software generated for my Nikons (D3,D700). Everything seemed to have a greenish hue to it.

A clerk at Samy's Camera here in LA told me about this little gem:

http://www.adobe.com/support/downloads/ … ftpID=5493

Works the same way, you shoot the Passport, convert to DNG, but then you use this instead of the X rite software. I've been very happy with these.

That's what I use. I have a profile for every kind of lighting I use (tungsten, flash, sunlight, cloudy, shade etc) and apply the appropriate one when processing Raw in ACR.

Jan 12 13 02:25 am Link

Photographer

Bershatsky

Posts: 142

Seattle, Washington, US

After reading this, I think I'll give up on the xrite:

http://www.digitalcamerainfo.com/conten … /Color.htm

Jan 13 13 07:31 am Link

Photographer

Neil Snape

Posts: 9473

Paris, Île-de-France, France

The chart itself is very good and reliable. X-Rite as any other apps to build a profile are always targeting pleasing color not accurate color.

You can compare analytics on shooting a raw chart until you go blue in the face.

Cameras are not at all destined to reproduce scene color, but an impression of what you think you saw.

Some of the colours on a chart shot and using a calibration target will fetch some colours quite close to a spectrophotmeter reading off a flat sample.

That is where applications are all to be tested to see if they meet the users expectations or not, yet cannot be faulted for not accurately portraying something they cannot do.

Cooking your own sauce directly with a DNG profile is a very good way to get exactly what you want, but a bit more complicated. The Passport and app is so easy, almost fun.

For me personally I hack my images so much that I don't need a profile to create colour that I will destroy.

Jan 13 13 07:57 am Link

Photographer

Bershatsky

Posts: 142

Seattle, Washington, US

Well, I've been monkeying around with it today, and I was initially wrong.  Since this morning, I have thrown out the Xrite software and I am using the DNG Profile Editor. I believe that gives me much better results than before.

Jan 13 13 09:36 am Link