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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EOS Digital Cameras 
Thread started 16 Mar 2013 (Saturday) 01:39
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POLL: "When do you set white balance."
I shoot RAW and worry about it in P.P.
I shoot RAW but try to get it right in camera at the shoot.
I shoot JPEG and try to get it right in camera
I just leave it on Auto and take what the camera gives me.

124 voters, 124 votes given (1 choice only choices can be voted per member)). VOTING IS FOR MEMBERS ONLY.
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White Balance - and when to worry about it?

Senior Member
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Joined Apr 2010
Mar 16, 2013 01:39 |  #1


I've noticed that the 6D is lacking one button that my 550D has, and that is the white balance button.

Now this has never worried me before, because I don't think I've worried about white balance much during the shoots. I tend to shoot RAW, leave it on Auto and worry about the shot itself, getting the main aspects right as though I'm shooting film, and then worry about adjusting WB later in PP.

I was just wondering - is this the norm, or do most people work the white balance in camera. Obviously this is a must for JPEG shots - so I was wondering how most people shoot?

(Just for clarification, by "shooting RAW and worrying about it in PP" I'm talking about not worrying about setting the camera WB at the scene. Doesn't mean you don't shoot a WB card - just not worrying about the WB setting until later)

Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power. - Abraham Lincoln

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Liquid Nitrogen
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Mar 16, 2013 01:44 |  #2

Pretty much do what you do; leave in auto or guestimate the Kelvin temperature. As long as it's close, I don't pull out the WhiBal card. (external link) Miss Julia Grey - please refer to me as she/her/Miss
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Mar 16, 2013 03:05 as a reply to  @ twoshadows's post |  #3

Yeah, i (almost exclusively) use AWB, shoot Raw+jpeg, and adjust in post. Even after processing, i don't think i always get it right.. need to start working on WB.


Cream of the Crop
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Mar 16, 2013 07:02 |  #4

I never bother with a WB card. All that will give you is the accurate WB, which is rarely the correct WB.

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grabbing their Johnson
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Mar 16, 2013 07:18 as a reply to  @ hollis_f's post |  #5

Here is my WB process

1. Shoot Raw
2.Get a photovision calibration target
3.shoot 5500K when outside
4.shoot 3800 K inside- Flash is gelled for inside use
5.Final adjustments in post....problem solved.

The trick to accurate colors is a consistent workflow and capture method. By setting the camera WB to one setting, using the photovision calibration target each time you change locations you have effectively controlled 2/3 of your WB capture process. By clicking on the White or grey area of the calibration targets puts the WB where it needs to be with very little tweaking needed after.

Ive been using photovision calibration targets for a couple of years now....Bulletproof.

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"I'm the original idiot"
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Mar 16, 2013 07:24 |  #6

The option in the vote I went for was "shoot Raw and worry about it in P.P." The only trouble with that is I tend not to give it too much attention even then. I'm much more concerned with a result that looks right than a legally binding accurate WB.

I've never understood why people fret about WB so much.


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Cream of the Crop
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Mar 16, 2013 07:33 |  #7

I never use AWB. My 20D could never get that right except on an "average" sunny day outdoors. Now that I use a 7D, I still couldn't care less about AWB.

I always shoot RAW plus Large JPG (because I can often use the .JPG file without any editing). I usually set the white balance selector to match the type of light illuminating the scene. Most of the time this provides fully acceptable colors in the .JPG images.

If replicating the color of a scene is particularly critical, I will typically make a test image with a neutral gray card and possibly a color checker card held in the scene (and with the same lighting as the series of images that I will be making). Then, during the RAW conversion process I can use the test shot and the "eyedropper" tool to sample the color of the card. In my opinion, this process is faster, easier to use, and more accurate than doing a "custom white balance" setup.

Skip Douglas
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Mar 16, 2013 07:38 |  #8

I answered "I shoot raw and worry later" but then I do also keep it on auto and take what the camera gives me.

Not sure why, but call me JJ.
I used to hate math but then I realised decimals have a point.
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According to the lazy TF, My flatulence rates
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Mar 16, 2013 07:39 |  #9

Lowner wrote in post #15720816 (external link)
I've never understood why people fret about WB so much.

Correcting white balance in a jpeg is not so easy. Also, if your monitor is not calibrated, correcting white balance can actually make an image worse.

Not sure why, but call me JJ.
I used to hate math but then I realised decimals have a point.
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Mar 16, 2013 08:30 as a reply to  @ gjl711's post |  #10

Raw and jpeg = auto.

Just jpeg = auto white balance outdoors and adjusted in the camera indoors.

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Mar 16, 2013 08:46 |  #11

I Shoot RAW
I Shoot a XRite target
I try to ball park WB in camera if I'm pushing DR limits and want to use highlight alert and histogram in camera. I also shoot a neutral camera style.

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Mar 16, 2013 10:59 |  #12

I shoot RAW, AWB and faithful camera style which doesn't matter except in DPP for most PP processing. I fix if I feel it is necessary in PP.

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my very own Lightrules moment
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Mar 16, 2013 11:09 |  #13

RAW, set WB to closest preset for current light; correct in post if it's too far off. It's one of the least concerning parts about taking the photo, for me.

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Mar 16, 2013 11:16 as a reply to  @ Snydremark's post |  #14

Shoot Raw, Take at least 1 grey card frame, work it out in post for accuracy..

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Mar 16, 2013 11:44 |  #15

I voted "shoot RAW but try to get it right in the camera" but most of the time outdoors and in daylight that simply means using AWB. In unusual, or mixed, and sometimes shady lighting I'll use Custom WB, set using Lastolite EZBal target or Warmcards (the latter if I want to tweak the settings away from a neutral Custom WB). I also always post-process and frequently do a bit more tweaking... using a calibrated, graphics quality monitor.

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White Balance - and when to worry about it?
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