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Setting WB for RAW photos (GF1)

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by bchaplin, Dec 19, 2010.

  1. bchaplin

    bchaplin Mu-43 Rookie


    I'm excited to have a new GF1! I realize that it's been out for a while, and a lot of the micro four thirds community are now moving on to other cameras, but I just started researching for something to replace my bulky DSLR and decided on this one. I intend to become as familiar with it as I can so that I can use it in a few months for a trip to Hungary.

    So, for those of you enthusiasts who are very familiar with the camera, please answer what may be a very basic question:

    If I take a picture in RAW, (and later develop it in Lightroom), does the setting for white balance get carried over? And if so, what do you recommend using to set WB? A 'grey card'? I'm trying to find something very small that's it's practical to carry everywhere I take the camera.


  2. Grant

    Grant Mu-43 Veteran


    I have a GF1 and I use it every day and shoot exclusively in RAW. I do all my colour balance in Aperture, a very similar program as Lightroom. If I am really critical about colour I use a grey card, or gray card if you are in USA. With my images I am more interested in how they appeal to me and not in now they really are so I tend to balance to my feelings rather than some arbitrary setting, if that makes sense.
  3. bilzmale

    bilzmale Mu-43 All-Pro

    Hello Beth. Congrats on the new toy and welcome to the forum. The good thing about RAW and LR is you have the option to set the WB after the event. I have a grey card and a WhiBal but never use them and adjust WB afterwards. If you were shooting lots of images in similar conditions a custom WB will save post processing time.
  4. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    including a white or grey card in the same lighting as the scene can help you get the white balance right in post for super challenging scenes like mixed indoor lighting, otherwise the auto will get it pretty close.

    Have fun in Hungary, it's very nice in the spring. Budapest is one of my favorite cities anywhere. Tons of pictures at:

  5. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Phila, Pa USA
    I'm the oddball. I set Auto WB on my GF1 or any digital camera.
    Then in LR I do Auto WB and Auto Tone.
    This gives a great starting point for your PP work.
    I haven't used a grey card or grey card in EU since my film daze....
    • Like Like x 1
  6. bchaplin

    bchaplin Mu-43 Rookie

    Thanks for the replies - and tc, for the pictures!
    I am looking forward to the trip a lot. Hungary is beautiful, I'm sure, and it is also where some of my ancestors came from, so I am interested in seeing it.
  7. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    Do you have plans of where to go? Let me know if you're interested in recommendations!
  8. bilzmale

    bilzmale Mu-43 All-Pro

    No oddball - I think we all agreed we work this way except for exceptions.
  9. Michael

    Michael Mu-43 Regular

    For me it all depends on what you are shooting. Where colour is important there is no substitute of a custom white balance as the starting point I use an Expodisk. Auto is often all that is required. Some camera manufacturers in-camera presets can often be a long way from reality.... I never shoot anything but RAW, jpegs are subject to many unknowns.
  10. Bill

    Bill Mu-43 Regular

    Apr 15, 2009
    Brisbane, Australia
    Bill (really)
    Because there is no white balance setting carried over into raw, I just seek out a neutral tone with the eyedropper that's next to the white balance slider in the develop mode, and, bang, white balance is set.

    If a particular photo does not have a target for the eyedropper, but another photo in the series does, I just use that temperature setting.

    If there isn't a useful white or neutral tone (or if I'm not happy with reality), I adjust it to my preference.
  11. Boyzo

    Boyzo Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Mar 3, 2010
    +1 on that I like Don's approach it works for me :smile:
  12. Grant

    Grant Mu-43 Veteran

    While I am not a colour scientist I do have a strong belief that we all see colours differently. When I think of photography I think of it as sometimes art, sometimes science, and sometimes something else. When I do photography as an art form the colour balance is how I feel it should be, no more no less. When I do it as a science then I shoot for absolute colour balance with a grey card.

    A case in point is once I was involved with an art gallery, helping to create a catalogue of pottery. In three days we shot 2800 pieces. We worked in a studio and took about a day to set up the lights and exposure. The thing was a bl**dy production line with the museum staff setting the crockery and me tripping the shutter. It was before camera tethering so with every memory card we shot a grey card as the fist exposure. The data when straight to the printers, the museum was happy and if I have to shoot another pot as long as I live it will be too soon.
  13. dez.w

    dez.w New to Mu-43

    Dec 10, 2010
    i think everyone should tweak to what looks good to them. you can debate and critique until the cows come home but at the end of the day what appeals to you won't necessarily be the same as everyone else.

    tweak, have fun and enjoy your images! make what you like and let others enjoy it with you. don't make what others like and try to enjoy it with them..


    edit: i got a bit carried away. i say shoot auto wb then adjust to your liking later =)
  14. Boyzo

    Boyzo Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Mar 3, 2010
    I'm with Grant you can get too hung up on WB while shooting
    If you use RAW then Lightroom can correct the WB and don't forget some Pros' adjust WB to suite there taste in PP
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