9 Replies Latest reply on Jan 12, 2009 9:44 AM by MadManChan2000

    Creating Camera Profiles with Manual Adjustment

    Yammer Level 4
      I've had limited success with sculpting a new custom camera profile with DNG Profile Editor. But one thing still troubles me: saturation (or rather a lack of).

      The way I generate a profile is this:
      Take a photo of my ColorChecker card, low ISO, expose for patch 22.
      Load into ACR, using an Adobe camera profile.
      Remove sharpening, adjust white balance, save as DNG.
      Load into DNGPE, pick the Chart Wizard, place the dots, fire.
      Save the recipe, generate the profile.

      I've done this for both Adobe Standard and Camera Standard profiles. In both cases the resulting profile shows a loss of saturation, as well as the expected shift of several of the patches.

      In my latest attempt, using Adobe Standard, as well as shaving a bit off the top of the tone curve (to improve highlight contrast), I have increased the saturation of each patch by 5, to get the colour back.

      Is this a sensible approach, or am I wrecking my profile?

      Why do I seem to produce de-saturated profiles? What am I doing wrong?
        • 1. Re: Creating Camera Profiles with Manual Adjustment
          MadManChan2000 Adobe Employee
          When you say your profile is "de-saturated" , what are you comparing it to? In other words, what is your reference point of comparison?

          Your last description of what you've done with the profile sounds fine. As long as you're pleased with how the results look, your profile isn't "wrecked" as far as I'm concerned.
          • 2. Re: Creating Camera Profiles with Manual Adjustment
            Yammer Level 4
            I may be misunderstanding the process, so please jump in, if I'm off track...

            I saved ColorChecker photo as a DNG, first with the Adobe Standard profile selected, and later with the Camera Standard profile.

            In both cases, the resulting custom profile (created by the Chart Wizard) produced similar tonal results to the corresponding profile used in the DNG, but with less saturated colours.

            Am I right in thinking that the new profile is based on the one used in the DNG file? i.e. the measurements in the recipe are relative to it? If so, the saturation values were generally negative - thereby producing a less saturated profile - hence my increasing all the values by the same amount.

            Hope that made sense. I nearly confused myself.
            • 3. Re: Creating Camera Profiles with Manual Adjustment
              MadManChan2000 Adobe Employee
              Hi Keith, no, the color profile generated via the Chart Wizard in DNG PE is not based on your base profile (e.g., Adobe Standard, Camera Standard, etc.). That is why, when you go back to the Color Tables pane after running the Chart Wizard, you should see that the base profile has been changed.

              In general the Adobe Standard and Camera Standard profiles have more saturation and "punch" than a strict colorimetric rendering. That's why your Chart Wizard-produced profiles look less punchy by comparison, and less pleasing to your eye.

              Remember, the Chart Wizard has very little to do with making images look pleasing. It was designed with scene colorimetry in mind, not beauty.
              • 4. Re: Creating Camera Profiles with Manual Adjustment
                Yammer Level 4
                That's confused me now.

                The profile I made starting with Adobe Standard was definitely lighter in the highlights than the one I made with Camera Standard, using the same NEF and the Chart Wizard in both cases.

                Or are you talking about something else?
                • 5. Re: Creating Camera Profiles with Manual Adjustment
                  Level 1
                  I would think the "compared to what?" question has an easy answer.

                  To me, calibration should mean the same thing it does for Scanners, Printers and Monitors.

                  If I shoot a photo of a target using certain lighting conditions, and used a RAW conversion profile created with the same lighting conditions, then print the resulting image using a calibrated printer, the result should match the original target within the capability of the printer used.

                  - Stephen
                  • 6. Re: Creating Camera Profiles with Manual Adjustment
                    Yammer Level 4
                    I guess what I'm saying is that the new custom profile seems to inherit the 'base tone curve' of the profile saved in the DNG.
                    • 7. Re: Creating Camera Profiles with Manual Adjustment
                      MadManChan2000 Adobe Employee
                      Yes, your Chart Wizard-produced profile will inherit the tone curve, but not the color adjustments, from the base profile.

                      The Chart Wizard process itself makes no tonal adjustments.
                      • 8. Re: Creating Camera Profiles with Manual Adjustment
                        Yammer Level 4
                        Okay, thanks for bearing with me Eric. I understand now.

                        All the base profile does is influence the preview and provide the base tone curve. The chart wizard creates the colour mapping based on measured values of the chart patches and the DNG file readings.

                        The relative saturation is meaningless, as the Chart Wizard doesn't use the base profile colours at all, only the tone curve. It's up to me to provide any 'aesthetic' adjustments to the profile, once the wizard is complete.
                        • 9. Re: Creating Camera Profiles with Manual Adjustment
                          MadManChan2000 Adobe Employee
                          That's right. For the Chart Wizard, I did not put in any notion of aesthetics. Rather, I intended it to produce a consistent baseline after which you (the photographer, with your own vision) can add or tweak whatever you like.