Author Topic: Colour management of D4 NEFs  (Read 13566 times)

Offline Tom Parkes 2

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 31
    • View Profile
Colour management of D4 NEFs
« on: July 13, 2013, 01:58:01 AM »
This has been troubling me for a while but I've never found a solution. I'm shooting NEFs with the D4 with the camera set to Adobe RGB and I've never found the rendering of the colour to be very pleasing in PM's contact sheet or previews, almost as if the profile is not being read even though I have colour management on in PM. I don't recall this being a problem with files from the D3 or earlier cameras. I can't for the life of me see any setting I might have changed though?

Offline Hayo Baan

  • Uber Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 2550
  • Professional Photographer & Software Developer
    • View Profile
    • Hayo Baan - Photography
Re: Colour management of D4 NEFs
« Reply #1 on: July 13, 2013, 02:14:16 AM »
Hmmm, never had this problem with my D4 images. What is your camera's picture control set to?
Hayo Baan - Photography
Web: www.hayobaan.nl

Offline Tom Parkes 2

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 31
    • View Profile
Re: Colour management of D4 NEFs
« Reply #2 on: July 13, 2013, 02:22:13 AM »
It's set to standard. I'm comparing the rendering in PM to the straight out of camera rendering in Nikon Capture NX2 when I open the file. If I have PM set to use the embedded JPG preview it should be a close match, no?

Offline Tom Parkes 2

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 31
    • View Profile
Re: Colour management of D4 NEFs
« Reply #3 on: July 13, 2013, 03:02:52 AM »
Here's a quick example of the difference in rendering I see. Corner of NX2 image to the left of the PM preview. It can be particularly extreme in skin tones.

[attachment deleted by admin]

Offline Kirk Baker

  • Senior Software Engineer
  • Camera Bits Staff
  • Superhero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 24217
    • View Profile
    • Camera Bits, Inc.
Re: Colour management of D4 NEFs
« Reply #4 on: July 13, 2013, 07:10:24 AM »
Here's a quick example of the difference in rendering I see. Corner of NX2 image to the left of the PM preview. It can be particularly extreme in skin tones.

Are you previewing JPEGs in both apps?  If not, then do understand that Capture NX2 is rendering the RAW file data through its own proprietary rendering engine whereas PM is using the NEF's embedded JPEG (or if you're on a Mac and you've told PM to use Apple's ImageIO rendering engine for RAW previews then PM is using Apple's ImageIO RAW rendering engine).

-Kirk

Offline Tom Parkes 2

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 31
    • View Profile
Re: Colour management of D4 NEFs
« Reply #5 on: July 13, 2013, 09:01:04 AM »
Hi Kirk,

Yes, I am on a Mac but I'm not using Apple's IQ rendering in PM.

If I shoot a NEF and JPEG pair in camera then NX2's rendering of the raw file will (visually at least) exactly match the JPEG when it's opened in NX2, suggesting there's no difference between the in camera JPEG rendering and NX2's rendering of the raw file in terms of colour. Additionally, If I took the JPEG and opened it in Photoshop it would look exactly the same as it does in NX2. The odd man out in terms of colour is PM.

Although I initially used the appearance of D4 NEF's in my example as that's 99% of what I shoot, upon investigation now I can say I also notice this difference in rendering of in-camera JPEGs in PM too. Apologies for the incomplete information. To my eye, the D4 files rendered in PM look similar to Adobe RGB files with the profile stripped out and opened in an SRGB workflow, flat and a little desaturated. I haven't noticed this prior to the D4 and my best guess was a setting in PM had become changed inadvertently, but I can't see where that could be.

The preferences I can see which could have a bearing:

Raw > enable raw rendering (using Apple's image IQ) - unchecked

Color management > Default ICC profile if undetermined - set to Nikon Adobe RGB
Color manage thumbs for display - checked
Ditto previews
Embed ICC profile into camera JPEGS - checked

Am I missing anything there perhaps?

Offline Kirk Baker

  • Senior Software Engineer
  • Camera Bits Staff
  • Superhero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 24217
    • View Profile
    • Camera Bits, Inc.
Re: Colour management of D4 NEFs
« Reply #6 on: July 13, 2013, 09:20:53 AM »
Can I see your log file?  Open up PM5, go to the Help menu, choose "Reveal Support Data..." and post the zipped log file here.

Thanks,

-Kirk

Offline Tom Parkes 2

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 31
    • View Profile
Re: Colour management of D4 NEFs
« Reply #7 on: July 13, 2013, 10:18:47 AM »
Sure. Thanks for your attention to this.



[attachment deleted by admin]

Offline Kirk Baker

  • Senior Software Engineer
  • Camera Bits Staff
  • Superhero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 24217
    • View Profile
    • Camera Bits, Inc.
Re: Colour management of D4 NEFs
« Reply #8 on: July 13, 2013, 11:19:05 AM »
Tom,

I don't see any errors in your log so let's turn on COLOR_MANAGEMENT_LOGGING and get a new log going.

Create a text file and name it "PMDebug.txt" and save it at the following location:

<your home folder>/Library/Preferences/com.camerabits.PhotoMechanic/

In the text file put:

COLOR_MANAGEMENT_LOGGING ON

Then restart PM and view some images.  Use the "Reveal Support Data..." command on the Help menu to produce a new zip compressed log file and post it here.

Thanks,

-Kirk

Offline Tom Parkes 2

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 31
    • View Profile
Re: Colour management of D4 NEFs
« Reply #9 on: July 13, 2013, 12:17:52 PM »
Hi Kirk

I'm struggling with that instruction, I'm afraid. The location you mention doesn't seem to exist on my Mac. Anything com. seems to relate to Apple, Google or Abode. A bit more help perhaps?

In the meantime, I restarted PM and frustratingly, colours are now being rendered accurately. Which actually fits the way this has niggled me over the past year, sometimes the problem is noticeable and at others it isn't, which I'd attributed to either the content of the images or my being in too much of a hurry to worry over the rendering of colours in PM. At worst I know have a partial solution of regularly restarting PM. Be nice to get to the bottom of the cause if we can though.

Thanks

Offline Kirk Baker

  • Senior Software Engineer
  • Camera Bits Staff
  • Superhero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 24217
    • View Profile
    • Camera Bits, Inc.
Re: Colour management of D4 NEFs
« Reply #10 on: July 13, 2013, 03:22:41 PM »
Tom,

I'm struggling with that instruction, I'm afraid. The location you mention doesn't seem to exist on my Mac. Anything com. seems to relate to Apple, Google or Abode. A bit more help perhaps?

In the meantime, I restarted PM and frustratingly, colours are now being rendered accurately. Which actually fits the way this has niggled me over the past year, sometimes the problem is noticeable and at others it isn't, which I'd attributed to either the content of the images or my being in too much of a hurry to worry over the rendering of colours in PM. At worst I know have a partial solution of regularly restarting PM. Be nice to get to the bottom of the cause if we can though.

If you're running one of Apple's newer OS X versions (10.7+) then Apple has graciously decided to hide your Library folder from you.  It's still there however.  You can go the the Finder, choose the "Go to Folder..." command on the Go menu, and enter:

~/Library/Preferences

Click on the Go button and the Finder will open the folder.  Inside the folder is a com.camerabits.PhotoMechanic folder.  If you open it up, you'll see all kinds of files and folders that PM uses to keep track of your settings.  Put the PMDebug.txt file in there and then continue on with your test.

-Kirk

Offline Tom Parkes 2

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 31
    • View Profile
Re: Colour management of D4 NEFs
« Reply #11 on: July 14, 2013, 02:10:21 AM »
Thanks Kirk, that's in place now. I'll come back to you as soon as I notice anything amiss.

Offline Tom Parkes 2

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 31
    • View Profile
Re: Colour management of D4 NEFs
« Reply #12 on: August 20, 2013, 03:00:37 AM »
I'm noticing this behaviour again this morning. I've generated another log file before restarting PM and as before, restarting has restored the correct colour but if you can throw any light on the cause I'd be interested to hear.

[attachment deleted by admin]

Offline Kirk Baker

  • Senior Software Engineer
  • Camera Bits Staff
  • Superhero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 24217
    • View Profile
    • Camera Bits, Inc.
Re: Colour management of D4 NEFs
« Reply #13 on: August 20, 2013, 07:38:56 AM »
Tom,

I'm noticing this behaviour again this morning. I've generated another log file before restarting PM and as before, restarting has restored the correct colour but if you can throw any light on the cause I'd be interested to hear.

At what time did you notice the color management becoming off-color?

It looks like you had PM5 open for several days, stopping use on Friday afternoon, and starting use again this morning at 9:02 AM.  At that time I noticed PM creating a new color space for the monitor that was in use.  Is that when you noticed the color problem or was it even later?

-Kirk

Offline Tom Parkes 2

  • Newcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 31
    • View Profile
Re: Colour management of D4 NEFs
« Reply #14 on: August 20, 2013, 09:50:13 AM »
I have PM running on a 17" MacBook Pro. On Friday I would have been working using the built-in display. Because I move around a fair bit I tend to just put the Mac to sleep rather than closing it down. Back at my desk I connect to an Eizo display so at 09.02 today I would have connected the display and woken the Mac. Because of the way I work all of my applications can be running for days before I restart the laptop. The last restart was probably on Thursday of last week when I installed a MBP firmware update.

Thinking back to this morning's session, my perception was that everything was fine in PM until about midway through my edit when I noticed the colour in the contact sheet view seemed to be adrift. To my eye, the previews seemed to be OK at that stage, that's possibly just my perception but I'm reasonably confident of that statement. Eventually I realised the previews were being affected too. That's when I generated the log file and restarted PM, which restored normal colour.

I wouldn't associate the problem just with the external display in itself though, once I notice the colour is adrift it will also be out on the built-in display. If it helps, both displays have been profiled in i1Profiler.

Thanks for your continued attention to this. Much appreciated.