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P: White balance to much adapted to white world?

Contributor ,
Nov 25, 2021 Nov 25, 2021

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The white balance tool in Adobe LR and PS is working well when applied on the roads paved with asphalt or concrete. A nice reference in gray works well to correct colors, bleaching in slides and negatives. However, in e.g. Africa, the gray areas are often missing. Roads are redish, or sandy, without gray scales. Scanning slides goes best using Braun multimag machines, but the silverfast software that is perfect to correct for bleaching of slides and negatives does not work any more after the scan has been stored in Adobe software like LR. Adobe might learn from this by not using white balance correction or in PS white, black and mid correction. Both the roads in less developed countries, and the people in those areas are not gray and white respectively. Meaning that the white balance tool in Adobe makes it difficulult to correct properly, althouh the tool is perfect in western countries. Contacting competition like the Silverfast creators linked to Braun might improve that in Adobe.

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LEGEND ,
Nov 25, 2021 Nov 25, 2021

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White Balance isn't Gray Balance as the name implies. But either way, the idea of the WB is to do so on something white, spectrally neutral that you wish to define as R=G=B. The tool does that. If you WB on something that shouldn't be white and neutral, well the results may not be desirable. Because raw data is linear encoded (half of all the data is found within the very first stop of highlights/whites), it is recommended to WB in a raw converter. Gamma encoded images in Photoshop, different story, gray balance is ideal. You can WB in ACR/LR on something gray or dark but this isn't ideal and you can end up with color casts. So, the recommendation from Adobe is to WB on something white, but not too white (and if so, it should pop an error). The 2nd white patch found on a MacBeth ColorChecker  is ideal. The patches white/gray are spectrally neutral by design. Roads, not so much, certainly not something like this target you can always depend on. 

The way in which you neutralize an image differs in raw than rendered data due to that data encoding. And that is why you see the tools where they are. 

A nice 'reference' gray or white is just that, spectrally neutral and that's an ideal item to pick for WB or GB depennding  the data and where you apply that correction. 

I have no idea how many roads, anywhere in the world are spectrally neutral (but I have the tools to measure that; no need however). 

 

Author “Color Management for Photographers" & "Photoshop CC Color Management/pluralsight"

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LEGEND ,
Nov 25, 2021 Nov 25, 2021

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Use the WB Selector Tool, and use it with Show Loupe on, Look for pixel with R, G, and B as close to 75% as possible.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XarP1RKeeYg

 

Note, you might be able to also accept a pixal with R,G,B matching in %

 

https://www.lightroompresets.com/blogs/pretty-presets-blog/14740581-3-ways-to-correct-white-balance-...

 

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