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    DNG Profile Editor Question??

    Lou Dina Community Member

      I have built custom camera profiles (single purpose and dual illumination) for my Canon digital cameras using DNG Profile Editor. They work well are definitely much better than the canned profiles I was using.Colors snap into place faster and easier, with fewer adjustments. (Nice program!)

       

      I have a question about using these custom profiles in LR and ACR. What in LR or ACR most closely represents an "unmodified" file? I'm talking about the slider positions. DNG PE must assume something when it builds it profiles. I think LR defaults are 0 Exposure/Recovery/Fill, 5 Blacks, 50 Brightness and 25 Contrast (or something fairly close to that). Does DNG Profile Editor build it's profiles so the image looks about right with those settings?

       

      The reason I ask is that those settings seem to "pump up the color, contrast and saturation" and look a bit unnatural to me. Setting all the above slider positions to 0 seems to come closer visually what a Color Checker looks like face to face. Yes, it is a bit flat, but nore natural.

       

      Can anyone shed light on this for me. I'm looking to set my LR and ACR defaults so they match the CC as closely as possible in terms of saturation and contrast.

       

      Thanks,

       

      Lou

        • 1. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
          Lou Dina Community Member

          Hmmmmm....nobody?

           

          Well, after playing with some different settings, I suspect that DNG Profile Editor creates a custom camera profile from the color checker that looks about right when all sliders are set to ZERO and the tone curve is set to Linear. My tests are purely visual, comparing the physical color checker to views on a calibrated monitor in LR. I didn't perform any "scientific" measurements.

           

          Exposure, Recovery, Fill Light & Blacks = 0

          Brightness & Contrast = 0

          Clarity, Vibrance, Saturation = 0

          Tone Curve = Linear

           

          Can anyone confirm this to be the case, or give me the actual settings which correspond to a custom camera profile created by DNG Profile Editor?

           

          Jeff....Eric?

           

          Thanks,

           

          Lou Dina

          • 2. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
            areohbee Community Member

            I think you got it - DPE adjustments are offsets to the base profile settings and have nothing to do with Lightroom/ACR defaults.

            • 3. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
              Lou Dina Community Member

              Thanks, Rob. That jives with what I am seeing and experiencing.

               

              I have set my LR defaults to all zeros on the Basic tab, with tone curve set to linear. That's a good starting point with a custom camera profile. I find it easier to add color and contrast than to remove it, especially when dealing with portraits and skin.

               

              Best, Lou

              • 4. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                Marco N. Community Member

                The base tone curve of the profile is respected when Brightness is 50, Contrast is 25 and Point Curve is set to Medium Contrast.

                 

                Do you mean that the custom profile renders the images over-saturated?

                 

                Marco

                • 5. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                  Lou Dina Community Member

                  Marco,

                   

                  Sorry, I don't understand what you mean by your statement, "The base tone curve of the profile is respected when Brightness is 50, Contrast is 25 and Point Curve is set to Medium Contrast." Perhaps you can express it some other way.

                   

                  What I mean is this....when building a new custom camera profile using DNG PE and a 24 patch color checker target, I'm fairly certain everything is ignored by PE except the raw camera data and the values in the CC target. (If we were modifying an existing profile, then the base profile would establish the baseline, but this is a brand new profile.) When PE saves the new profile, I believe it has to assume something in order to preserve the color and contrast relationships. My tinkering suggests to me (and I may be wrong) that it creates this new profile with the assumption that ALL sliders will be zero and contrast set to linear.

                   

                  If that is the case, and if you have LR defaults set to Brightness 50, Contrast 25, Blacks 5, then, when you apply the new custom profile to an image, your image will be overly contrasty, harsh and saturated. That has been my experience.

                   

                  When I set my Basic Tab sliders to zero, and set the contrast to linear, I find that I get a much better image much faster. Yes, my images generally open looking too dark, mainly because I am used to the above defaults, which pump up brightness, contrast and saturation.If I use my linear settings, I need to expose a bit brighter.

                   

                  I wish somebody from Adobe would chime in. They would KNOW the answer to this question, since they have the algorithm.

                   

                  Even if I am in error, I hope I explained what I mean so it is clear.

                   

                  Thanks,

                   

                  Lou

                  • 6. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                    areohbee Community Member

                    I'm no longer certain I understand what's happening for you.

                     

                    If I use DPE to create a profile Y based on profile X, then if set all the adjustments for Y to zero in DPE, it will look exactly the same as X when applied to a photo in Lightroom/ACR, regardless of settings in Lightroom/ACR.

                     

                    i.e. the idea of DPE is to say:

                     

                    "I want profile Y to be the same as profile X, except with the colors nudged a bit so that they match the 24 color chart but make a smooth transition in between". And, maybe the tone a bit more or less..., and so forth.

                     

                    So, when I use DPE, I'm not thinking about anything except in what ways I want it same as base profile (0'd settings in DPE), and in what ways I want it different than base profile (settings adjusted...).

                     

                    For example, if I base a profile on Adobe Standard, but increase contrast & saturation a smidge in DPE, then when I apply it in Lightroom/ACR, it'll look like Adobe Standard, except with a little more contrast & saturation...

                     

                    Note: This works fine for all Nikon D300 profiles (Adobe's standards + camera emulations). The only Canon G12 profile it works for is 'Adobe Standard' - the rest (all Canon G12 camera emulation profiles) are totally wonky in DPE and unusable as base profiles for some reason. Maybe you are seeing bizarre things because of some funky base profile, or bugs in DPE. More info about that here: http://feedback.photoshop.com/photoshop_family/topics/lightroom_camera_raw_canon_g12_camer a_emulation_profiles_have_problems

                     

                    Rob

                    • 7. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                      Lou Dina Community Member

                      Thanks, Rob.

                       

                      I am wondering if you are Marco are on the same page, and perhaps I am on another. Sounds to me like you are both talking about using dng profile editor to tweak a pre-existing profile. I have not done that and have never even tried it.

                       

                      I'm talking about building a brand new profile from scratch (see tutorial 5 and 6 at the following link).

                      http://labs.adobe.com/wiki/index.php/DNG_Profiles:Editor

                       

                      If I understand tutorial 5 and 6 correctly, (and it is possible I don't), DNG Profile Editor is creating a brand new profile from scratch using a digital exposure (or two if using tutorial 6) of an Xrite 24-patch color checker target. When you use the "Chart tab" in DPE, there is no place to even select a base profile. It is my understanding that this newly created profile is not using Adobe Standard or any profile as a point of departure. It's a brand new creation. After clicking the "Create Color Table" button in the Chart tab of PE, you are taken to Color Table tab of PE, and the base profile is set to "ColorChecker". This leads me to believe we have a brand new profile created from scratch, based on the color checker exposure(s), and not based on a previous profile at all. Am I mistaken?

                       

                      If my understanding is correct, then the software has to assume SOMETHING when it builds the new profile. My current thinking is that its instructions are to create the profile so it preserves color and contrast information with all of LightRoom's or ACR's Basic tab settings at zero, and the tone curve set to linear. It is possible that it assumes LR defaults when building this profile (5 Blacks, 50 Brithness, 25 Contrast), but that doesn't seem to be close to accurate at all. If my understanding is not correct, then I need to dig in more to understand exactly what is happening.

                       

                      Sorry if I am confusing everyone. So, am I confused?

                       

                      Lou

                      • 8. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                        areohbee Community Member

                        I *think* DPE *always* starts with a base profile  - perhaps that's the root of the confusion.

                         

                        If that's not the case, then we're *both* confused and could use some clarification.

                         

                        In any case, check the base profile when you are doing what you are doing, since (unless I'm out to lunch) that may be the key.

                         

                        Rob

                        • 9. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                          Lou Dina Community Member

                          Rob,

                           

                          I think that IS the root of the confusion. But....what profile does it start with? How would we know? Does it also read the slider positions and use them as a starting point? Or does it takes its cue from the LR default slider positions? Etc, etc. Beats me. I'm not sure if you are confused, but I know I am.

                           

                          Seems to me building a new profile from the color checker would start from scratch, but maybe that is not possible. Perhaps it MUST have an existing Adobe profile as a starting point. I'd think it would want to start with a clean slate and just use the color checker to build a new profile without muddying up the water with another profile. I may be way off base.

                           

                          Erin Chan....where are you?

                           

                          And I thought this was a simple question!!

                           

                          Lou

                          • 10. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                            ssprengel MVP

                            Creating a profile from scratch, especially one with hue-twists built in, is much more complicated and has quite a bit of art along with the science of the DNG Profile Editor computations available to the end user, so starting with an existing profile makes sense for simplicity's sake.  I, for one, like to try complicated things, so would like to know what the actual Adobe process is for creating a profile, but I don't work for the RAW Engine group so am unlikely to ever know.

                            • 11. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                              areohbee Community Member

                              To add to what ssprengel was saying: The creation of base profiles is done strictly by Adobe behind closed doors. It takes into consideration individual sensor response characterstics on a camera-model by camera-model basis. So, x-rite doesn't do it, nor do you or I. We simply start with what Adobe has done, then taylor to taste...

                               

                              I *think* that's how it works (I'm admittedly a *little* out on a limb, yet again...)

                               

                              -R

                              • 12. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                Lou Dina Community Member

                                Thanks guys. You may all be absolutely right. Perhaps creating a "new" profile is not a virgin act, but relies on an existing Adobe profile.If so, I'd like to know what settings and profile in LR or ACR can affect profile building using a ColorChecker target.

                                 

                                The slider settings do make quite a difference, especially the Contrast slider. Increasing the Contrast (and/or increasing the contrast in the Tone Curve) steepens the midtones, which not only increases contrast, but pumps up the color and the separation between colors on the tone scale.

                                 

                                Hopefully, Adobe will add some comments to this thread. In the meantime, I will continue setting ALL my sliders to zero and my tone curve to linear. The starting point is flat as a pancake, but I prefer that as a starting point.

                                 

                                Appreciate the comments.

                                 

                                Lou

                                • 13. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                  areohbee Community Member

                                  No settings nor profile selection in Lr/ACR influence profile building - in DPE, you are making a new profile to be accessible in the camera calibration section of Lr/ACR.

                                   

                                  So, a linear tone curve in DPE just means you are not altering the base profile tone curve.

                                   

                                  To see the base profile in DPE, look on the Color Tables tab.

                                  • 14. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                    sandy_mc Community Member

                                    So far as my knowledge of this stretches:

                                     

                                    1. A profile created from a GM24 chart isn't based on any profile - it's entirely from scratch
                                    2. The intended use of that profile is that the starting point will be LR set up to its defaults - brightness 50, etc. This is the same as for Adobe's "canned profiles"
                                    3. However, the thing to be aware of is that LR/ACR (and all raw converters) default setting is to have a slight tone curve. This matches to the peculiatities of human vision. If you remove this curve (set the various sliders to zero), you get a technically accurate rendition, but one that most people would not like.

                                     

                                    If you really want to know more than any sane person would about how LR handles tone curves, etc, I wrote about this back in 2008: http://chromasoft.blogspot.com/2008/01/lightroom-aperture-and-capture-one-mini_24.html

                                     

                                    Sandy

                                    • 15. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                      b2martin_a Community Member

                                      I think the DNG Profile Editor uses the Profile shown in the Color Tables tab as the base profile for profiles generated under the Chart tab.  Run a test - look at what is there and generate a new profile under the Chart tab.   Then go to the Color Tables tab and select a different profile and then generate a new profile under the Chart tab.  Compare the two to see if they are identical or different.  If they are identical then profiles shown in the Color Tables tab don't affect the profile generated in the Chart tab.  Select profiles that have a lot of difference for the test - one low saturation and the other high saturation for example.

                                       

                                      When you convert your RAW file to a DNG file it probably includes a profile.  If you generated the DNG file from Camera RAW or Lightroom, I think it will have the default profile, which is Adobe Standard unless you have changed the default.  I don't know what profile it uses if you generate the DNG file using the DNG converter.

                                      • 16. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                        b2martin_a Community Member

                                        I checked the above out on profiles I generated for my D700 and the DNG Profile Editor uses the profile listed in the Color Tables tab when you open the DNG image as the base profile for the profile you are generating.  If you want to use a different profile for the base profile you can select it here before you use any of the tabs for profile modification.  The base profile determines the tone, saturation, and brightness characteristics of the new profile.

                                         

                                        When you use the Chart tab, it automatically selects each of the colors in the Color Checker chart and determines the correction needed to render the correct color and saturation, but the final profile will have the other charaacteristics of the base profile used, saturation is high in the base profile it will be high in the profile generated.

                                         

                                        You can modify the tone and saturation of the new profile using the Tone and Color Matrices tabs.  The linear curve in the Tone tab means the new profile will have the same tone curve as the base profile, not that it will have a linear tone curve. If you modify the linear tone curve in this tab, it will increase or decrease the tone curve from the base profile that is used in the new profile. If you want to modify saturation you can do this by using the Color Matrices tab and change the Red, Green, and Blue Primary saturations sliders by equal amounts.  This will increase or decrease the saturation from the base profile.

                                        • 17. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                          Lou Dina Community Member

                                          Thanks everyone. Good responses.

                                           

                                          More light is being shed on this mystery, but it still isn't clear entirely. Let me walk through my example to make it very clear what I am doing.

                                           

                                          1. In LR, I selected my daylight ColorChecker DNG image. I set the profile to Camera Neutral, adjusted all sliders to 0, set tone curve to linear, and gray balanced the first light gray patch. I don't think ANY of these LR settings make a difference to DPE, but I am willing to be proved wrong.The reason I say this is that the CC opens bright and normal in DPE, but my settings made the image look flat and dark in LR.

                                           

                                          2. Opened DPE and opened the above CC dng image. This takes me immediately to the Color Table tab in DPE. I selected "Camera Neutral" from the base profile drop down box and left the color table at 6500K.

                                           

                                          3. Went to the Chart tab in DPE, centered the color dots over the four corner squares of my CC image, left the color tables to "Both Color Tables", and clicked the "Create Color Table" button. Yea....Color tables built successfully. That takes me to the Color Tables tab automatically.

                                           

                                          4. In the Base Profile box, the word "ColorChecker" is now displayed. That was NOT one of the available options before I built my color tables. But, after building the color table, that selection was automatically displayed as the "base profile".This is where I get confused.

                                           

                                          If I leave the "base profile" set to ColorChecker, it seems to me that a new profile is being built directly from the CC data. Since that is the base profile shown in the Color Table base profile box, it doesn't seem likely (or at least obvious to me) that it could be using any other profile as a point of departure.If that IS the case, then I guess it is probably using default ACR/LR settings for the various sliders (brightness 50, contrast 25, etc). Yes? No?

                                           

                                          If I manually choose "Camera Neutral" the displayed image of my CC changes pretty dramatically. Same happens if I choose other base profiles. Adobe Standard is more saturated and contrasty than Camera Neutral or ColorChecker. When I do select a different base profile (for example, Camera Neutral), what am I seeing displayed? Is that the original Camera Neutral profile with zero adjustments, or is it the Camera Neutrral profile AFTER adjustments are applied (in other words, is it my final profile after the CC data has been factored in)? I'm guessing it is my NEW profile with CC adjustments using Camera Neutral as a basis, and not the unmodified Camera Neutral profile.

                                           

                                          Sorry this is so difficult. I want to know exactly what I am creating, then I want to know exactly how to use it, and also how to properly expose my images.

                                           

                                          BTW, you CAN select a profile as a basis (Camera Neutral, for example) and then set its Tone Curve to Adobe Standard (aggressive), Base profile (moderate), or Linear if you wish (truly linear and flat as a pancake). Linear, as far as I can tell, does NOT mean it is the same as the base profile. It means linear, as in override the base profile tone curve.

                                           

                                          Thanks again,

                                           

                                          Lou

                                          • 18. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                            areohbee Community Member

                                            Lou,

                                             

                                            What I think I know:

                                             

                                            - A recipe specifies a base profile and a list of adjustments.

                                            - A profile "compiles" the recipe into something usable by Lightroom/ACR.

                                             

                                            What I know I don't know:

                                             

                                            - Where the 'ColorChecker' profile comes from.

                                             

                                            What I speculate:

                                             

                                            - ColorChecker profile is just a trick - its really the ACR 4.X profile created by Adobe.

                                             

                                            In my experience, the results are the same choosing ColorChecker as base profile, and choosing ACR 4.4 as base profile.

                                             

                                            - Lightroom/ACR knows about profiles, but profiles don't know about Lightroom/ACR. Put another way, Lr/ACR settings have nothing to do with what  goes into a profile - what goes into a profile does affect how it will  look when applied in Lightroom/ACR.

                                             

                                            - ACR 4.X profiles are linear profiles that map your unique camera-model/sensor data into a set of colors that have no twists, meaning hue is not dependent upon brightness, which models the real world, and is why its the default when using a ColorChecker - people are generally after accuracy when they are using a color reference. If you apply a chart to a non-linear/twisted profile you will only get accurate color at the luminosities in the chart, the rest are interpolated/extrapolated and twisted...

                                             

                                            What still confuses me:

                                             

                                            - Sandy, who I consider an expert in all this, seems to be suggesting that the profile was being created from scratch when using the ColorChecker... I don't see how, and I don't know how to integrate what she has said into what I think I know/understand. Even like-named profiles which look the same for all cameras (like Adobe Standard and ACR 4.X) require a different file to implement and are kept in separate directories for each camera model, and as I understand, takes some development from Adobe, thus the dot-release required to support new camera models.

                                             

                                            Rob

                                            • 19. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                              Lou Dina Community Member

                                              Thanks again for you help, Rob.

                                               

                                              Everything you say makes sense to me. Perhaps, as you say, ACR 4.4 is the "hidden" base profile beneath the scenes and is being adjusted by my CC image to generate the new profile. (BTW, I don't even have ACR 4.4 as an option in my drop down box, so I can't compare the ColorChecker base profile preview to ACR4.4. I'm on the latest DPE release.)

                                               

                                              I've created profiles numerous ways. I have also tried Xrite ColorChecker Passport software (which says it totally ignores ALL LR settings, including the profile). I get pretty similar results with all of them. So, perhaps it is a moot point. I just like to know what is happening beneath the hood, so I can make better decisions.

                                               

                                              I will probably just use the "ColorChecker" base profile, since DPE automatically defaults to that after building the color tables from the CC target. I presume it must to that for some reason.

                                               

                                              Perhaps I will change what I do if I ever figure out what is really going on.

                                               

                                              Sandy, any ideas?

                                               

                                              Regards, and thanks,

                                               

                                              Lou

                                              • 20. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                areohbee Community Member

                                                I think its as simple as this:

                                                 

                                                A base profile can be thought of thusly:

                                                 

                                                - data which maps sensor readings to colors.

                                                 

                                                And a DPE edited profile is:

                                                 

                                                - a base profile with a set of adjustments incorporated.

                                                 

                                                And what the DPE effectively does when creating a profile is:

                                                 

                                                - re-maps the sensor data to colors making sure to incorporate specified adjustments, and smoothing everything in between.

                                                 

                                                Perhaps I've oversimplified, but certainly everything I've experienced so far can be explained by this simple understanding.

                                                 

                                                And, all the color checker does (via Create Color Table, in DPE) is create a list of anchoring points - i.e. when creating profile, make sure the colors match at the specified points.

                                                 

                                                The dual luminosity business just adds interpolation / extrapolation based on temperature into the mix.

                                                 

                                                PS - You do have some ACR X.X profile on the base profiles list, no?

                                                 

                                                R

                                                • 21. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                  Jeff Schewe Community Member

                                                  areohbee wrote:

                                                   

                                                  What still confuses me:

                                                   

                                                  - Sandy, who I consider an expert in all this, seems to be suggesting that the profile was being created from scratch when using the ColorChecker... I don't see how, and I don't know how to integrate what she has said into what I think I know/understand.

                                                   

                                                   

                                                  Pretty sure Sandy is a guy...

                                                   

                                                  When you create a profile from a ColorChecker DNG, the color profile information is created from scratch based on the actual colors in the CC shot. It does however have a default tone curve–which you can adjust. That tone curve (or whatever curve adjustment you've made) and the color transform is what's saved in the new DNG profile. So, a DNG profile created with a ColorChecker shot is a whole new profile not based on any exsisting profile.

                                                  • 22. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                    Lou Dina Community Member

                                                    Thank you, Jeff. Mystery solved!

                                                     

                                                    I learned a lot in this discussion. Thanks, folks!!!

                                                     

                                                    Lou

                                                    • 23. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                      areohbee Community Member

                                                      Jeff Schewe wrote:

                                                       

                                                      Pretty sure Sandy is a guy...

                                                       

                                                      My apologies to Sandy if I got the gender wrong.

                                                      • 24. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                        b2martin_a Community Member

                                                        I ran a test to see if selecting a base profile affects a profile generated using the Chart tab.

                                                         

                                                        I am using DNG Profile Editor version 1.0.0.45beta on a Windows 7 Professional 64 bit system.

                                                         

                                                        I opened DNG Profile Editor and then opened a DNG image of the X-Rite Passport.  In Color Tables tab the base profile was listed as Camera Standard (this is a Nikon D700 image).  I changed the base profile to Camera Neutral and then selected the Chart tab.  I aligned the four color dots on the Passport chart and clicked create color table and then clicked OK, which then displayed the Color Tables with Color Checker listed as the base profile.  I exported the profile as Neutral Test and then clicked Edit > Clear Color Adjustments and then selected a base profile of Camera Vivid.  I clicked the Chart tab and repeated everything I did when I had Camera Neutral selected as the base profile.  I output a profile with the name of Vivid Test.

                                                         

                                                        I tested these profiles with Photoshop CS5 ACR v6.4.1 and they gave me identical results - both looked like the Neutral profile relative to tone,  saturation ,but different color.

                                                         

                                                        I then opened DNG Profile Editor version 1.0.0.45beta again and opened the same DNG image I used above.  In Color Tables tab the base profile was listed as Camera Standard.  I changed the base profile to Camera Vivid and followed the same steps as above to generate a profile and named it Vivid Test.

                                                         

                                                        I tested these profiles again with Photoshop CS5 ACR v6.4.1 and they give me different results.  Neutral Test has tone and saturation like Camera Neutral and Vivid Test has tone and saturation like Camera Vivid.

                                                         

                                                        This indicates to me that the base profile does determine the characteristics of the profile generated using the Chart tab, but the base profile selected when you first select the Chart tab can't be cleared without closing DNG Profile Editor and openig it again to use a different base profile for the new profile.

                                                         

                                                        Anyone else notice this characteristic?  

                                                        • 25. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                          areohbee Community Member

                                                          b2martin_a wrote:

                                                           

                                                          ...but the base profile selected when you first select the Chart tab can't be cleared without closing DNG Profile Editor and openig it again to use a different base profile for the new profile.

                                                           

                                                          Anyone else notice this characteristic?  

                                                           

                                                          In my experience, all profiles are available straight out of the gate, including 'ColorChecker'. I'm running win7/64 - could be different on Mac.

                                                           

                                                          If I select a different base profile, the derived profile seems to be the same as the base profile, plus any visible adjustments.

                                                           

                                                          In my experience, selecting ColorChecker as base produces the same result (as judged by eye - under limited test conditions) as selecting ACR 4.X as base - dunno what's happening under the hood.

                                                           

                                                          -R

                                                          • 26. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                            Marco N. Community Member

                                                            DNG profiles consists of 2 base matrices which can be associated a correction via LUT or via matrix. In the base profile menu the user chooses the base matrices and then he can append the LUT correction of the tab Color Table and / or the matrix correction of the tab Color Matrices. He can choose the LUT manually or automatically via Chart tab. Resuming the new profile will contain the old matrices plus new corrections. In the case that the base profile don't contain tables at all like ACR 4.4 the LUT will be created from scrath, in the case the profile already contains a LUT like the Adobe Standard profile I think that only Eric Chan knows what happens.

                                                             

                                                            If you want I wrote some thoughts on how to use these corrections in this article: http://www.photoactivity.com/Pagine/Articoli/047CalibDNG/CalibDNG_en.asp

                                                            • 27. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                              sandy_mc Community Member

                                                              - Sandy, who I consider an expert in all this, seems to be suggesting that the profile was being created from scratch when using the ColorChecker...

                                                               

                                                              Rob

                                                               

                                                              My bad, I should have been more precise - color rendition in DNG camera profiles is set basically by two things: (a) the the two color matrixes, and (b) the color lookup tables. There are also a bunch of other things that have some impact, e.g., the tone curve, etc, but (a) and (b) are the main ones.

                                                               

                                                              As far as I know, in Adobe profiles of the same generation, the matrixes are always the same for the same camera model, for all of the Adobe "canned" profiles, and any profiles created by DPE. Which makes sense, as they are largely driven by sensor characteristics - the nature of the dyes used in the Bayer array. What changes are the color tables. For DPE created profiles, those table are built from scratch from the color checker image. So what you have is a profile that consists of the same matrix as in all other Adobe profiles, and a "from scratch" set of tables.

                                                               

                                                              This may not be the case for profiles built by other vendors, e.g., X-Rite.

                                                               

                                                              Sandy

                                                              • 28. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                                Marco N. Community Member

                                                                sandy_mc wrote:

                                                                 

                                                                This may not be the case for profiles built by other vendors, e.g., X-Rite.

                                                                 

                                                                Sandy

                                                                 

                                                                X-Rite has a completely different vision from Adobe in profiles construction: the first focuses on matrices, the second focuses almost exclusively on tables.

                                                                • 29. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                                  Lou Dina Community Member

                                                                  Marco, Sandy, B2martin, Rob and everyone else. Thanks for all the great information. I have also gone to many of the links provided in this thread and looked over your work. Great stuff and very in depth.

                                                                   

                                                                  The explanation of the two matrices and the LUTs makes it clearer to me. Thanks.

                                                                   

                                                                  I have built profiles with both DNG PE and Xrite software. Visually, they are pretty close, but not identical. I didn't do any measurements, but I can see a slight shift between the two when applied to images. They "seem" pretty close, at least to my eye.

                                                                   

                                                                  Thanks again.

                                                                   

                                                                  Lou

                                                                  • 30. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                                    Marco N. Community Member

                                                                    Lou Dina wrote:


                                                                    The reason I ask is that those settings seem to "pump up the color, contrast and saturation" and look a bit unnatural to me. Setting all the above slider positions to 0 seems to come closer visually what a Color Checker looks like face to face. Yes, it is a bit flat, but nore natural.

                                                                     

                                                                     

                                                                    I add only that I agree with you, the custom profiles look too saturated. In this post I have tried to explain why this happens and what are the workarounds.

                                                                     

                                                                    Ciao

                                                                    Marco

                                                                    • 31. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                                      Lou Dina Community Member

                                                                      Thanks, Marco.

                                                                       

                                                                      That mirrors my experinece, though mine is not scientific, purely visual. My main concern is skin tones in portraits, which are very sensitive to excess saturation and contrast. Also, we tend to be very sensitive to incorrect skin tones. Here is my current approach.

                                                                       

                                                                      • Set defaults so ALL sliders on the Basic Tab (LR/ACR) are zero, except for brightness, which I am now setting to 50. (zero brightness resulted in a dark image and will probably need to be adjusted upward anyway).
                                                                      • Set the Tone Curve to Linear.
                                                                      • Set Calibration tab to use my custom profile.
                                                                      • Save as a preset.

                                                                       

                                                                      This gives me a pretty flat initial image preview, but I prefer to start from there, instead of beginning with a contrasty, saturated image.

                                                                       

                                                                      1. Set WB using a light gray neutral patch, and/or manually.

                                                                      2. Adjust basic tab sliders, (mainly Exposure, Fill, Blacks, Brightness, trying to leave Contrast as close to zero as possible).

                                                                      3. Use Contrast sparingly, if needed, watching the effect on skin color and saturation.

                                                                      4. Tweak WB and other settings and done.

                                                                       

                                                                      I find that the Contrast slider and more aggressive Tone Curves, especially if used in combination, often impart too much color, color separation and harshness for many portraits. The "S" curve can hammer the midtone color if you aren't careful and  gentle. I prefer this approach to lowering Vibrance and Saturation, and find it gives me more natural color, but I will sometimes lower Vibrance or Saturation, if necessary.

                                                                       

                                                                      My approach is often more aggressive on non-portrait photos. There, additional contrast is often desireable and helpful, since it does add greater color saturation and separation.

                                                                       

                                                                      My approach may change tomorrow, but that's where it is today.

                                                                       

                                                                      Regards, Lou

                                                                      • 32. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                                        areohbee Community Member

                                                                        Sandy,

                                                                         

                                                                        Thank you for the info.

                                                                         

                                                                        So, if I've got this straight, DPE does use a base profile (with the camera matrices...). Its only when using 3rd party software like X-rite that a base profile may not be used.

                                                                         

                                                                        And, in DPE, since results are so far indistinguishable to me using "Color Checker" as base profile (after clicking 'Create Color Table') and "ACR 4.4" as base profile, that these two are either the same or very similar.

                                                                         

                                                                        Rob

                                                                        • 33. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                                          sandy_mc Community Member

                                                                          Rob,

                                                                           

                                                                          Yes, the matrixes at least would be similar. But if you want, post the two profiles somewhere accessable, and I'll take a look inside them with dcpTool, and tell you exactly what's different.

                                                                           

                                                                          Regards,

                                                                           

                                                                          Sandy

                                                                          • 34. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                                            areohbee Community Member

                                                                            Sandy,

                                                                             

                                                                            It could be that when one clicks 'Create Color Table' in DPE, a new 'ColorChecker' profile was just created (based on the photo of the chart), thus the reason it appears as a new item in the profile dropdown list - this may be what Jeff Schewe was talking about in his previous post. And, it just so happens, that in my case, its about the same as ACR 4.X...

                                                                             

                                                                            I may post the profiles for you to scrutinize in a while - thank you for the offer...

                                                                             

                                                                            Rob

                                                                            • 35. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                                              Marco N. Community Member

                                                                              areohbee wrote:

                                                                               

                                                                              So, if I've got this straight, DPE does use a base profile (with the camera matrices...). Its only when using 3rd party software like X-rite that a base profile may not be used.

                                                                               

                                                                              And, in DPE, since results are so far indistinguishable to me using "Color Checker" as base profile (after clicking 'Create Color Table') and "ACR 4.4" as base profile, that these two are either the same or very similar.

                                                                               

                                                                              Rob

                                                                               

                                                                              As noted, the problem is not the final colorimetrical results, all profile have the same rendition, nor if they start from scratch or not, the problem is the way they come to that result: Adobe doesn't stress the matrices (they are a little far from ideal values) and use the LUT to come to final results, X-Rite stresses the matrices as far as possible and then uses a soft LUT (more work handled by the matrix less work needed by the LUT)

                                                                               

                                                                              The consequesce is that some time with DNG PE profiles are notable phenomenon of posterisation in the images: http://www.gialandra.it/en/archives/372

                                                                               

                                                                              This is the reason because in the my article about the use of DNG PE I use the script (it create a correction matrix) before create the LUT.

                                                                               

                                                                              I think that Eric sooner or later should create a button in the matrices tab to handle matrix correction.

                                                                               

                                                                              Marco

                                                                              • 36. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                                                MadManChan2000 Adobe Employee

                                                                                When using the Chart Wizard feature of DNG PE, the color matrices are taken from the choice of the Base Profile (ColorMatrix* and ForwardMatrix* DNG tags), and the color tables (HueSatMap1 and HueSatMap2 DNG tags) are replaced by the ones calculated by the Chart Wizard.  If the Base Profile has a look table (LookTable DNG tag), it is removed.

                                                                                 

                                                                                Effectively, matrices are used to perform linear color correction, and the color tables are used to perform non-linear (usually targeted) color correction.  Ideally a simple matrix would suffice, but for complex reasons they cannot map all colors perfectly.

                                                                                • 37. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                                                  Lou Dina Community Member

                                                                                  Thanks, Eric....a final question....I think.

                                                                                   

                                                                                  You said, "When using the Chart Wizard feature of DNG PE, the color matrices are taken from the choice of the Base Profile."

                                                                                   

                                                                                  How is that base profile determined when creating a new profile using the Chart Wizard? Does it come over pre-tagged in the DNG file, or do you set it inside DNG PE? Or is the color matrix hard coded and fixed for a given camera model? Your response leads me to believe there are different matrices depending on the "base profile" chosen.

                                                                                   

                                                                                  For example, if I wanted to use the color matrices in the Camera Neutral base profile when creating a custom camera profile for my 5Dmk2, exactly how do I do that?

                                                                                   

                                                                                  Thank you,

                                                                                   

                                                                                  Lou Dina

                                                                                  • 38. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                                                    RASouthworth Community Member

                                                                                    It's the profile showing in the first tab "Color Tables", after loading up the dng target images.

                                                                                     

                                                                                    There is a way to "see" what's inside any of the DNG profile files, using dng_validate.exe out of the Adobe DNG SDK.   It's a command file, have only tried it on a pc, don't know if a similar version exists for the Mac, although they do offer a Mac SDK.

                                                                                     

                                                                                    One can use a command line similar to "dng_validate.exe -d 200 test.dng > test.txt" to dump the contents to a text file.  It pretty much clears up all the mysteries as to which matrices, etc.

                                                                                     

                                                                                    Richard Southworth

                                                                                    • 39. Re: DNG Profile Editor Question??
                                                                                      Lou Dina Community Member

                                                                                      Hi Richard...hope all is well. Thanks for the response.

                                                                                       

                                                                                      I understand. We get to choose the underlying matrices & tone curve, and build our color tables on top of them. I haven't tried downloading the SDK and may give that a shot. Appreciate it.

                                                                                       

                                                                                      Lou

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