F350 white balance settings at DVinfo.net

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Old January 3rd, 2008, 01:36 PM   #1
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F350 white balance settings

I've been working with my F350 for nearly a year, and one thing perplexes me.
I have been using the camera's ability to adjust white balance in the menu, but it has come to my attention(the hard way) that you cannot simply dial in the color temperature and treat it as a preset. I'll give you an example.

I was shooting news in a hockey arena, and went outdoors to get a scenic of the building. I did a white-balance, and got the shot. I had to get post-game clips(indoors) so I just used the menu to dial the WB back to 3300 degrees, assuming that all would be well. Big mistake, everything came out with a very sickly greenish tinge. I won't tell you how I felt when I popped up the thumbnails to do the feed a little while later. Fortunately, the station was cool, and they were able to salvage things a bit on their end, but it was a horrible moment.

As near as I can figure after some testing, is that when the camera gives a value after performing a white balance, say 5800 degrees, it is not necessarily a pure 5800 deg. It is just an approximation, and that any variations are carried over linearily when dialing in a change using the menu.

Does anybody have any insight into this? I sure wish you could simply dial in say 4300 deg. and have it be just like the 4300 deg filter on a BVP camera.

Sorry if this seems convoluted.

Peter
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Old May 29th, 2008, 04:48 PM   #2
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Hi there.
I had exactly the same problem, trying to dial in my own colour temp to warm up a shot etc, but when I brought the footage to edit, there was a strange 'greenish' tint to it. Was not happy.

Now I always manually white balance off a card and never try to dial it in myself. If I need to change it, I do it in edit.

Good luck,
Sparky
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Old May 29th, 2008, 06:07 PM   #3
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Have you guys upgraded your cameras to the latest firmware (v1.93) yet? I found the white balance and colorimetry to be much improved with the new firmware. There is still an issue however when a 5600K white preset will look different than a dialed in or white balanced 5600K.

Thierry.
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Old May 30th, 2008, 06:31 AM   #4
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Yes, I noticed quite a change in the colour with that firmware upgrade. The 3200k preset seems to have more of that "orangey" look to flesh tones. On the other hand, the actual white balance under the same light registers around 2900k and is much cooler looking. Both are fine, and I use the preset 3200k a lot in scrums under mixed light good results.
The best thing was that the 3200K present now looks very good under the lights at Scotiabank Place(arena) in Ottawa. I don't need to wb when shooting in the bowl.

The menu adjustable WB feature seems a little suspect at anything more than a few hundres degrees above or below the current WB value.

Peter

Last edited by Peter Newsom; May 30th, 2008 at 11:02 AM.
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Old May 30th, 2008, 06:58 AM   #5
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Hi Peter
Just out of interest, are you using an LCD field monitor with your F350? If so, which one and how are you getting on with it?
Need to get one, but unsure as to which model..

Thanks, Sparky
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Old May 30th, 2008, 10:54 AM   #6
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I seldom work with one, as my main gig is news, with few sit-downs.

However, I have worked with the 8inch Sony LCD monitor(can't think of the model), and it seemed pretty nice.

I check footage at home on my old PVM 8020, which looks quite good, despite the aspect ratio.

I would like to get something too, but at around $5k it's not a must have at the moment.
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Old May 30th, 2008, 07:15 PM   #7
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Yes, sometimes odd effects can occur. When you dial in the temp you can see the R and G channels changing, sometimes with some settings that should set some alarm bells going. I avoid manually setting this after making a young lady look rather pink once!

Better to use the preset, or WB offset, and leave the A and B settings to actual set white balances from a card etc.

If there is one thing I have learnt with video over the years, that I *really* should keep repeating in my head, it is KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid!)

Unless you have a damn good calibrated, and trustworthy (as in you'd want it to rescue you from a fire if necessary) monitor with you. ;-)
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Old June 3rd, 2008, 05:49 AM   #8
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Thanks Simon

How are you getting on with the PDW-700? It looks like the ultmiate camera.I'd like to upgrade to this next year if possible. I shoot with a F350 and love the camera and results.
Just out of interest, do you use a LCD field monitor with yours, and if so what model. I need to get one, but haven't found the solution yet. I had an IKAN V8000HD screen, great picture but very unreliable unit so had to send it back.
Cheers
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Old June 4th, 2008, 07:14 PM   #9
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Sounds like the architecture for the camera settings are using the same registers for Preset and Auto white so there is some interaction between the two things. This is also the case with my Panasonic SDX-900 which wipes out preset settings when using Auto White or adds to them (depending on the menu setting) meaning you actually can change the way your preset looks by auto whiting and then going back to preset. This presents itself if you set the preset to look good on your charts and saved the setting to a file. The auto white uses the same register to adjust and this changes your preset. This applies to looks saved to files as well.
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Old June 4th, 2008, 07:23 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daniel Epstein View Post
Sounds like the architecture for the camera settings are using the same registers for Preset and Auto white so there is some interaction between the two things. This is also the case with my Panasonic SDX-900 which wipes out preset settings when using Auto White or adds to them (depending on the menu setting) meaning you actually can change the way your preset looks by auto whiting and then going back to preset. This presents itself if you set the preset to look good on your charts and saved the setting to a file. The auto white uses the same register to adjust and this changes your preset. This applies to looks saved to files as well.
The F350 has preset and memory A & B. You can't even attempt an auto white balance if you're not on one of the A or B settings. I don't believe that altering one of the memories affects the preset 3200/5600k. However, you can go into the advanced menus and apply a constant 'bias' to your 3200 and 5600 K preset if you want a warmer or cooler look all the time. Being an all electronic white balance camera, it has some very flexible features, but you have to have some vigilance and double check if you're handed the camera that someone hasn't radically altered those preset values.

-gb-
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Old June 4th, 2008, 11:07 PM   #11
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Another gotcha to be aware of is that if you change your tungsten preset from 3200K, you are also going to be shifting the 5600K preset in the same direction.

This can be annoying. I run my tungsten preset at 3000K for theatrical lighting, but I prefer my daylight preset to be a true 5600K.

I'm not clear why they need to be linked like that, unless they are sharing a register memory, which I figure they must be.
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Old June 5th, 2008, 04:37 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Eugene Kosarovich View Post
Another gotcha to be aware of is that if you change your tungsten preset from 3200K, you are also going to be shifting the 5600K preset in the same direction.

This can be annoying. I run my tungsten preset at 3000K for theatrical lighting, but I prefer my daylight preset to be a true 5600K.
Eugene makes a good point here. I think the intention by the camera designers was to have a method of slightly warming or cooling the camera's overall look in preset WB to help compensate between individual cameras in a fleet, as well as suit the artistic tastes of an individual owner.

JMHO,

-gb-
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Old June 6th, 2008, 06:45 PM   #13
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How are you getting on with the PDW-700? It looks like the ultmiate camera.
I don't know. Some bloke called Phil keeps using it ;)

I'm still not sold yet. I thought I was, but I keep pulling back. The 700 is a nice camera, but not the ultimate. I don't care what Sony say. I'm standing by my assertion that a sister model will be announced.

If I'm wrong I'll have lost nothing. If I am right, then, well, it'll be much better. :)

I'm not in a hurry for high def. I'll get the right high def camera when the right high def camera arrives. Won't be long now. :) Until then my 510 is dan fine for SD, which is what clients are asking for bread and butter wise. All other stuff I'll hire.
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