White balance for Newbo at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > Panasonic P2HD / AVCCAM / AVCHD / DV Camera Systems > Panasonic DVX / DVC Assistant > Panasonic DV / MX / GS series Assistant

Panasonic DV / MX / GS series Assistant
...and other Panasonic DV camcorders.


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old March 3rd, 2003, 12:37 PM   #1
Major Player
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 436
White balance for Newbo

Hey, I have been shooting some shorts and I finally ran into some white balance issues with the last one when shooting a piece that went from inside an apt. to outside in heavy overhead sunlight. I have a dv852. What's a quick and easy way to WB? Should I turn on Auto WB, let it self calibrate on a surface of pure white and then turn it to manual to "lock" that WB setting? I tried last time to set the WB manually just by looking at my lcd but it ended up looking bad and you can't tell how the image looks in terms of darkness and color on the lcd that well. Thanks to all!
Bryan Roberts is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 3rd, 2003, 07:35 PM   #2
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Singapore, Passport: Malaysia
Posts: 407
You can only set WB on the MX8 (I believe DV852 would be similar) in Manual mode.

Press the dial to activate the WB icon on screen, either the sun, the light, Auto or the 2-triangles. Roll the dial until you get the 2-triangles. Zoom in to a white object (only optical zoom, not possible on digital zoom) until it fills at least 90% of the screen. Hold the dial down until the 2-triangles stop blinking. That's the manual setting of WB on MX8. Press the dial once more to get out of WB and into shutter control.

Being a consumer cam, although hi-end, the WB button is not available, but this is still better than the menu access in Sony's consumer cams. The auto WB is normally slow to react, and that is intentional, so that you do not have sudden changes in colour when you are shooting.

Another note: if you press the dial again, you'll fix the aperture/gain before going back to WB. That means that you should have zoomed into your WB location, and exposed the scene correctly before fixing the aperture/gain, before you do your WB.

Lastly, you should perform white balance near your subject, as the lighting where you are standing may be very different from where your subject is, eg. you are in the shade and your dog is running on the sunlit beach.

I hope that this is not too confusing.
__________________
Cam: Panasonic MX350EN, SOLD my MX8EN
Mac: G3 400MHz PowerBook, 256 MB, OS 9
PC: Pentium 4 2800MHz, 512 MB, WindowsXP
SW: iMovie, Final Cut Pro, Adobe Premiere, Ulead Video Studio, various little utilities
Yow Cheong Hoe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 3rd, 2003, 07:37 PM   #3
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Singapore, Passport: Malaysia
Posts: 407
OH, for some fun, you can try WB on other colours like blue, green red, yellow, whatever. The MX8 (DV852) has a VERY wide tolerance to WB, which is one of the reasons why I like Panasonic cams. The results would be intentional colour shifts.
__________________
Cam: Panasonic MX350EN, SOLD my MX8EN
Mac: G3 400MHz PowerBook, 256 MB, OS 9
PC: Pentium 4 2800MHz, 512 MB, WindowsXP
SW: iMovie, Final Cut Pro, Adobe Premiere, Ulead Video Studio, various little utilities
Yow Cheong Hoe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 4th, 2003, 10:05 AM   #4
Major Player
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 436
Thanks alot Yow Cheong. I understood all of it except when you were talking about the aperature / gain setting. I have dabbled a little bit with this setting when I was trying to set my WB before but I didn't understand what the hell I should set it to and had a difficult time judging from my LCD what level I should set it at. So after I WB and then press the dial to get to the aperature / gain setting, what is a good way to balance that? Do I also set that with my white surface? Thanks so much!
Bryan Roberts is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 4th, 2003, 10:24 AM   #5
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Singapore, Passport: Malaysia
Posts: 407
One of the reasons for me to change from my MX8 to my 3CCD MX350 was the dedicated WB button, which I use VERY often.

Back on the MX8, you first zoom into the target white, then press the dial to fix the shutter and then press the dial again to fix the aperture/gain. By now, you'll have something like

*
1/50
f2.8

This is the auto exposure set by the camera on the frame that you are pointing at. It is assumed to expose the scene to 18% grey equivalent.

Now, when you press the dial again, you will be at WB. Turn dial until the 2 triangles appear and press the dial, hold until the trinangles stop blinking and that's the WB set to the proper aperture/gain for your shutter speed.

The procedure is: point and zoom into white area, set shutter, allow the scene to brighten/dim, fix the aperture/gain, do the WB.

BTW, I'm Cheong Hoe, Yow is the surname, but better to call me YowCH for convenience. It is a little sad that handles are not allowed here, Chinese names are often very confusing to Westerners.
__________________
Cam: Panasonic MX350EN, SOLD my MX8EN
Mac: G3 400MHz PowerBook, 256 MB, OS 9
PC: Pentium 4 2800MHz, 512 MB, WindowsXP
SW: iMovie, Final Cut Pro, Adobe Premiere, Ulead Video Studio, various little utilities
Yow Cheong Hoe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 4th, 2003, 10:33 AM   #6
Major Player
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 436
Excellent! I'm going to try and mess with those settings today if I can get a free sec. Sorry about the name, I as a westerner assumed that your name went first name, middle, then last name. I obviously am very cultured :D ! Thanks again Cheong Hoe.
Bryan Roberts is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 4th, 2003, 10:58 AM   #7
Major Player
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 436
Bah! It all makes sense now. You frame up where you'll be shooting and then press the jog dial in for the two settings under WB and then you frame up a white surface and press the jog dial in when the icon is the two triangles! Very nice indeed...... Thanks YowCH!
Bryan Roberts is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 5th, 2003, 04:19 AM   #8
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Singapore, Passport: Malaysia
Posts: 407
You are welcome, I used the MX8 for 10 months, glad that my experience on it is helping someone else too!
Yow Cheong Hoe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 6th, 2003, 02:17 AM   #9
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia
Posts: 112
Just want to say something about the MX300's white balance. Probably works on the MX8, I'm not sure, haven't tried it.

Terrence gave me a tip a long time ago (Terrence, we miss you!, hint, hint!): In *most* situations, you can be in Manual Mode & just do a

White Balance on- the- fly.

Just like that. Just press the WB button while pointing in the general area of the scene you want to vidcam. Without the need for zooming in to a white object or zooming in to your lens cap etc.

Shocking, eh? Bet your filmschool teacher would have FITS if they hear this... ;) ;) ;)

I think it works best when you're at wideangle & not too zoomed in.

Try it! You'll like it! It sure saves a lot of time!

If it doesn't work - you can check it via the viewfinder or LCD (assuming you've tuned it's colors to be as close to life as possible) - then & only then you can WB on a white object.

Like YowCH says, Panasonic's White Balance is *very* flexible.

=====
One other way to reset the whitebalance if you're on Auto mode: just turn off the cam, turn it on again while making sure you're pointing in the general direction of the scene you want to vidcam.

If you do this on a MX300, you "waste" 3.5 seconds (the startup cycle).

This also works well with Sony's consumer cams especially when they REFUSE to change white balance when they should...
=====

For those of you who like Auto White Balance, be reminded that if the light is very low i.e. candlelight, evenings, single light bulb etc. then your white balance won't be as accurate as Manual White Balance.

But if the light is *too low*, then even Manual White Balance doesn't work properly, and refuses to "lock on" i.e. the double triangles keep flashing & never becomes steady. Oh well.
Steven Khong is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 6th, 2003, 08:12 AM   #10
Major Player
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 436
Thanks Steven! - So then I have a qustion about WB in a candlelight scene. Say I have that scene in some sort of short. It's a pitch black room with just a candle at a table and someone sitting around it. Can I pick this up with my mx8 or is this situation really too low of light and I'll need to throw in some subtle back lights to make things work? Thanks!
Bryan Roberts is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 6th, 2003, 03:14 PM   #11
New Boot
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: Dromahaire, Leitrim, Ireland
Posts: 15
Steven
Thanks for that tip. Very useful and quick. In the evening indoors my whites were too warm. Much better in Manual with the tip you gave.
Tom Weir is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 6th, 2003, 09:21 PM   #12
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia
Posts: 112
Hi, Tom.
You're welcome. That's precisely why you need to do Manual white balance in low light: you get slightly better color accuracy.

Hi, Bryan.
In that case, FIRSTLY I would do as I've advised - just WB on the fly. THEN I try as Yow Cheong Hoe suggests - Manual White Balance on a white object. Then I would either go for INDOOR (light bulb icon) or OUTDOOR (sun icon) White Balance.

Then I compare the 4 pictures & choose which method gives the better picture. Outdoor WB will USUALLY give a reddish yellowish / warmer look, Indoor WB will USUALLY give a yellowish blueish / cooler look.

Though if the light is too low, like in your case, the 2 triangles will not ever stop blinking. I just let it blink for a while (a few seconds), until the picture obviously isn't going to change any more.

I believe that with either methods, the single candlelight scene will still be a little reddish yellowish. You've reached the limits of the Manual White Balance.

My preference in a single candlelight scene is to use OUTDOOR (sun icon) WB. The warmer look fits the candlelight scene best, in my opinion.

Anybody can advise what else to try?
Steven Khong is offline   Reply With Quote
Old March 7th, 2003, 03:01 AM   #13
Major Player
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Singapore, Passport: Malaysia
Posts: 407
I have tried the MX8 on 1 lux, that is the light 1 meter away from one standard candle (about 1 inch diameter) burning. You can still see some very blur words on a magazine (can't read, though), but you'll know that it is a magazine! That's how good the MX8 is in low lights.

About WB, whether manual or auto. If the scene has many colours (like a wide zoom on a general direction) the manual WB will do what the Auto WB does: Look for the brightest point and assume that it is white. Under most daylight shooting or even flourescent (shopping centre), this wouldn't be too wrong!

If there scene is predominantly one colour, even the auto may fail, because the cam will be fooled into thinking that the brightest, say, blue is white hence compensate for the blue!

Under very low light, WB cannot work very well, because the grainines is so great that it confuses the cam, hence it doesn't balance (the blinking never stops). If you do some frame captures of the grainy low light scens, you'll find that the grains are actually multi colour, as the cam and CCD cannot decide what colour is hitting the CCD! This is true on 1CCD or 3CCD cams.
Yow Cheong Hoe is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Panasonic P2HD / AVCCAM / AVCHD / DV Camera Systems > Panasonic DVX / DVC Assistant > Panasonic DV / MX / GS series Assistant

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:23 PM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network