Camera is underexposing
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03-11-09, 12:25 PM
Join Date: Jul 2009
Originally Posted by
I was shooting in raw on this particular occasion, using digital esp metering
and looking at the histogram on the camera
the main peaks were gathered just slightly left of centre, but in the raw plug-in on my computer they were even further over to the left.
Chris is on the right track here when he states that the histogram on the camera is only a representation. Indeed it is, and, perhaps more importantly, it is a representation of the small embedded jpeg file that all RAW images contain and not of the captured RAW data itself. This viewed jpeg image has also been subjected to any default or personal settings. Not owning your particular camera I have no way of knowing what functions or settings are available so will use Canon by way of example. With these cameras there are various user settings such as Portrait and Landscape etc, and when used the captured jpeg image will be processed in-camera in a way that Canon think a Portrait or Landscape image should look like i.e. Landscapes are usually processed with more saturated greens which are not personally to my taste. The user also has access to each of these 'styles' and can reduce such things as brightness, contrast, saturation and sharpness. So the long and the short of it is, that whilst you may be shooting RAW, the displayed and now processed jpeg image will be in keeping with the style set for jpeg. There are also other settings such as white balance where the user can set for instance 'cloudy' which will also affect the embedded jpeg. For this reason I as a matter of habit always have the style set to 'Faithful' so that the viewed jpeg image is a little more in keeping with the RAW image. Now, the settings probably are different on your particular camera but what's important here is the general principle i.e. that the histogram viewed on the camera is only a representation and more, is a representation of the embedded jpeg image and as such should only be
used for guidance
There are also sound reasons where one should expose a bit more to the right and here's a good link to a short essay explaining the principles and reasoning behind it.
Last edited by Forseti; 03-11-09 at
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