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Old March 3rd, 2017, 06:58 AM   #1
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Calibration Cards

Is there a lower cost solution to the professional calibration cards commercially available for hundreds of dollars?
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Old March 3rd, 2017, 07:30 AM   #2
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Re: Calibration Cards

Perhaps we could print our own on good quality card.
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Old March 3rd, 2017, 10:36 AM   #3
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Re: Calibration Cards

Check out "DGK color tools" on Amazon.
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Old March 3rd, 2017, 03:15 PM   #4
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Re: Calibration Cards

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed Roo View Post
Is there a lower cost solution to the professional calibration cards commercially available for hundreds of dollars?
There are cheaper ways to go, certainly. But the problem here is the word "calibration". If you want the card to be traceable to a known calibration standard, then you have to pay the price. Because the equipment to print cards with acceptable precision is expensive, the equipment to test the card isn't free, and neither is the expertise to run calibrations.

OTOH, if you aren't trying to match cameras within a broadcast standard, typically an 18% gray card and a manual white balance are the poor man's answer to bringing skin tones (and by implication, most everything else) within a reasonable range of "correct". For example, I've got a couple of old cameras that I often use together (one for a wide lock down, the other for mids and closeups) for clients with smaller budgets. When I start a session I typically get the talent to hold the gray card in front of their face (that is, under the actual lighting conditions) and do a manual white balance on each camera. I seldom need to do any color correction in post and both cameras match sufficiently for my purposes. That is, they cut together quite well.

But I don't kid myself. This wouldn't cut it for broadcast. But some clients won't pay for any more than this, so you do the best you can given the constraints of the client.
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Old March 6th, 2017, 07:49 AM   #5
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Re: Calibration Cards

Bruce,

Your post baffles me a little bit. Are you saying you own two sets of cameras and leave a more modern set alone for low paying jobs? Or I suspect you may be saying if the client has the budget for it you rent higher quality cameras? The only reason I ask is I do know guys that try to charge for almost every piece of gear on set. They WILL leave important quality options (gear & cameras) at the office if not specifically paid for. I have always found the subject interesting. It gets addressed so many different ways.

Regardless of the age or style of camera, white balancing to an 18% grey card instead of a white card will always be a big shift from normal white balance. It is a matter of preference not accuracy. I take it you prefer your skin tones warmed up in camera.

Kind Regards,

Steve
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