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Old July 26th, 2007, 11:43 AM   #1
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Evening out color temperatures of tungsten and CFL?

I've been reading about the color temperature differences between tungsten and CFL lighting, since I'm new to the whole thing some of it is over my head, but I think I've understood some of it, so here is my question based on that:

If you had a mixed kit of lights, both tungsten and CFL, could you put CTO's on the CFLs (acronym overload) to even the color temperature with the tungsten lights, and then white balance the camera on the light that the tungsten and CFLs were hitting?

Thanks, any explanation would be great.
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Old July 26th, 2007, 02:23 PM   #2
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you would want to gel flourescents with a minus green (magenta) filter to remove the green spike inherent in flourescent lighting...then, depending on the lights you have, you can add CTO to the flourescents if they're too blue, or Blue if they're too orange...More than likely, you'll add a full minus green and 1/2 to full CTO to the flourescent in a mixed lighting setup...bring plenty of 1/2 CTO, CTB and minus greens cause you can stack them to adjust the color intensities as you go...much easier than trying to calculate based on graphs and numbers. White balance to the incandescents...then add filters to the CFL's til they match in the view finder.
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Old July 26th, 2007, 02:57 PM   #3
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A 1/4 CTB or 1/2 CTB on your halogen lights can do the trick for a very quick adjustment in most cases, but don't expect the colors to match exactly. There are so many types of fluorescents out there from 3000K to 5500K, with different levels of green. To match the colors exactly you either need color balanced fluorescents (made for video/film) or experiment a lot with gels.

But, as I said before, when I have to run and gun on location and I see a room full of fluorescents that are not the tungsten 3000K type, I just slap a 1/4 CTB on my camera light. So far it never looked wrong.

*edit* I just saw you said you had CFL lights in your kit. If these are professional CFL lights with tungsten balanced tubes, you don't have to worry about gels, they will match your other tungsten lighting. If you have daylight tubes in there then get a set of tungsten balanced tubes as well and you won't need gels (which also cut a lot of light)
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Old July 31st, 2007, 04:10 AM   #4
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That's right. Tungsten balanced tubes like our Cool Lights ones don't need anything else to blend with tungsten lighting. People do it everyday with nothing extra. Daylight balanced tubes don't need anything extra to mix with daylight and other daylight colored fixtures of the same color temperature.
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Old July 31st, 2007, 11:53 AM   #5
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And, of course, not all daylight is created equal, so, even though you are using daylight flos, you may need to add a little color correction to them to get a color temperature that you like. It usually doesn't take much (just a quarter or half) and you're still much better off in terms of light loss than you would be with a corrected tungsten source.
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