How do you set the white balance for the 5DmkII ?? at DVinfo.net

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Old May 30th, 2009, 10:51 PM   #1
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How do you set the white balance for the 5DmkII ??

I just got my new 5D MkII !!! I am so thrilled to shoot stills with this bad boy!

Now I am going to shoot video with this awesome beast!

My question is ..... How do you set the custom white balance for shooting video with the 5DmkII ??
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Old May 30th, 2009, 11:09 PM   #2
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I had the same exact question. The manual describes shooting a still of the scene and referencing the still? It apparently doesn't white balance in the same way that a professional video camera does, point it at a white object and press a button.

I have been using the presets and have used the manual balance where I dial in a specific Kelvin value and it is working well. I typically don't have time to shoot a still and reference WB off of that still. To any other 5D MKII more experienced users, is there a quicker video-mode way to manually WB than what the manual describes?

Dan
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Old May 31st, 2009, 12:34 AM   #3
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...is there a quicker video-mode way to manually WB than what the manual describes?
No; that's it.
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Old May 31st, 2009, 08:34 AM   #4
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One way is to shoot a white card at the start of filming... you could have the subject
hold the card for a few seconds or just lay it down and take a shot...

then in post you white balance the footage as the white card is the reference....
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Old May 31st, 2009, 09:41 AM   #5
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Shoot a white card in still mode.

Make sure it's not overexposed.

Use the procedure in the manual to set custom white balance using the still as reference.

Make sure to set the white balance to the custom setting.

Dave Smith
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Old May 31st, 2009, 10:33 AM   #6
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You can also use a diffuser, like the ExpoDisc. ExpoImaging - ExpoDisc

Shoot through the diffuser at the location of the subject, if practical. Use that as your WB reference. From tests I've seen on the Internet, you can also use the Melita brand diffuser - a white coffee filter! The results of the coffee filter tests were as good as most of the imaging products!
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Old May 31st, 2009, 11:19 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Dan Brockett View Post
The manual describes shooting a still of the scene and referencing the still? It apparently doesn't white balance in the same way that a professional video camera does, point it at a white object and press a button.
While it isn't quite as simple as the video camera technique, it has the advantage that you can save the images for effectively unlimited white balance presets. This gives you repeatability between shots on the same location if you have to re-white balance between them. Some video cameras, like the XL series, can store a number of calibrations, but not all cheaper ones have the ability to do that.
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Old May 31st, 2009, 02:00 PM   #8
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You can also use a diffuser, like the ExpoDisc. ExpoImaging - ExpoDisc

Shoot through the diffuser at the location of the subject, if practical. Use that as your WB reference. From tests I've seen on the Internet, you can also use the Melita brand diffuser - a white coffee filter! The results of the coffee filter tests were as good as most of the imaging products!
Actually that's not the ideal way to use an ExpoDisc.

What you want to do is stand where the subject is and point the lens at the main source of light.

Pointing the lens at the scene will give you different results depending on the color in the scene.

You would get a different white balance from a shot of someone in front of a red wall than the same person in front of a green wall.

Dave Smith
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Old May 31st, 2009, 07:44 PM   #9
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What you want to do is stand where the subject is and point the lens at the main source of light.
Yes, this is the correct way.

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Old May 31st, 2009, 08:03 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Ray Bell View Post
One way is to shoot a white card at the start of filming... you could have the subject hold the card for a few seconds or just lay it down and take a shot...

Then in post you white balance the footage as the white card is the reference....
That's my prefered method Ray... as I colour correct everything anyway and software like Magic Bullet Colorista makes it so easy to do a white balance in post.
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Old June 1st, 2009, 01:42 AM   #11
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What you want to do is stand where the subject is and point the lens at the main source of light.
Exactly right. When I wrote "at the location of the subject", I meant "standing at" rather than "pointing at". I should have written "from the location of the subject."
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Old June 2nd, 2009, 01:47 PM   #12
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Actually that's not the ideal way to use an ExpoDisc.

What you want to do is stand where the subject is and point the lens at the main source of light.
I'm curious about this ExpoDisc. Checked out their web site.

When you say 'point the lens at the main source of light' ... if you're outdoors you wouldn't point it at the sun, would you?!?!?
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Old June 2nd, 2009, 02:10 PM   #13
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I'm curious about this ExpoDisc. Checked out their web site.

When you say 'point the lens at the main source of light' ... if you're outdoors you wouldn't point it at the sun, would you?!?!?
In general, you point from the subject to the point where the camera will film from. Of course, you can adjust where you point it to offset the balance this way or that.

For instance, if your actor is standing next to a big red wall, you could point it more toward the wall, if you don't want that side of the face to be red. Point it away from the wall to accentuate the red reflection.

When I've used the ExpoDisc, we shot the reference, balanced, and then shot a still of the scene to see the result, and to check the RGB histogram. It's a nice way to double check things before "rolling".
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Old June 2nd, 2009, 03:42 PM   #14
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You can get the same results by taking the reading through one of those thin paper
coffee filters.... cheap and easy to carry....
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Old June 2nd, 2009, 04:02 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Spiro Hernandez View Post
I'm curious about this ExpoDisc. Checked out their web site.

When you say 'point the lens at the main source of light' ... if you're outdoors you wouldn't point it at the sun, would you?!?!?
Hi Spiro

It's like using an incident light meter.

You want the front of the disc to be illuminated by the same light that is hitting the subject.

Dave Smith
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