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Getting the colour right on the M11 {split-off thread}


KlausM10

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As I already said, the problem is not permanent, or adding quantity of magenta to frame is not linear, so creating a preset in lightroom does not solve the problem. Batch processing is impossible, each frame has to be corrected manually, and this quickly confuses the brain and requires breaks in work in order to stare at a neutral gray wall for 20-30 seconds.

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1 hour ago, jonoslack said:

 

I don't shoot AWB in daylight, because it's inevitably a crap shoot - there isn't a right answer, just a lot of different Averages - depending on the scene - shooting a fixed white balance means that all your shots in daylight are the same - and you can change them afterwards if you want to. 

 

 

If you don't use AWB when shooting during the day, then it's not surprising that you don't notice any cast. I only mentioned magenta cast when using AWB.

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I do not want to overstretch the issue, therefore just this maybe as a repeat from the above: I belong to the section of users who like the M11 colours as they are. I do a lot of landscape and the skies come with a beautiful blue (not cyan) and the slight magenta cast in many scenes helps the overall impression of an image (landscape). Besides the M11 I have a Q3 which hast no magenta cast and the skies are cyan. I have "big problems" with the rendering of the Q3.

So what do I do with this: In Lightroom Classic in the calibration panel I created a special profile for the Q3 so that the colours look very much like the ones of the M11. This then is the standard profile that LRc takes for the Q3 import (this means that once the profile is done I do not care anymore and Lightroom recognises the Q3 and applies the profile straight away during import). Before I had that profile I suffered a lot with the color rendering of the Q3.

Now I imagine that it's very easy to create a respective profile for the M11 so that the magenta cast is gone and the skies look cyan again. 

I imagine that once this is done then the problem should actually be sorted out.

Another point that was discussed in Beta forums was the option of an additional WB setting as Elmar mentioned above: Here I see what Canon is doing with my R5: There are 2 options for AWB: (1) AWB and (2) AWBwhite. Whether this is the solution for the M11 is another question but Canon is well known for its great skin tones rendering. And it's then up to the user to choose out of several options that the camera offers. There is then (maybe) no need for a special profile in Lightroom Classic. 

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To be honest, the best solution would be to offer different WB bias. For example Nikon and others in their latest cameras offer AWB keep warm, AWB keep scene balance, AWB keep white. No reason Leica couldn't do that. But I agree whole heartedly that changing the AWB mid-stream on a camera without options would be the worst thing Leica could do.

Back to topic, FW 2.1.1 has been fine for me so far, no issues.

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1 hour ago, LeicaR10 said:

I find it quite strange some users have no issues with magenta cast with their firmware and many others do.  My two former M11 variants certainly did have a magenta cast to the DNG files that needed correction.  I never have issues with color casts in the M10, M10-R and certainly has most excellent color for DNGs.  The same with the SL2-S, the color is IMO the best ever followed by the M10-R.  The mystery remains, why do some have color issues and others not?   The color should be consistent if the firmware is all the same.  So this may lead to something with how the M11 sensors were initially calibrated at the factory.  

Last and a second thought not related to the color, is circuit board replacement.  Many board components are made in foreign countries and assembled on one board in a factory.  In the past, I believe Jenoptic makes the circuit boards for Leica albeit that may have changed over the years.  I wonder how many of Leica cameras "might" have counterfeit components that do not meet standards?  This leads to board failures.  This was discovered to be true in a good number of US defense related projects a few years ago and caused the government to change the source of components to be made in the USA.  Just something to ponder along with the color issue.   r/ Mark  

It has changed - Leica make the circuit boards for the M cameras themselves in Portugal these days. . . . 

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11 minutes ago, Smogg said:

As I already said, the problem is not permanent, or adding quantity of magenta to frame is not linear, so creating a preset in lightroom does not solve the problem. Batch processing is impossible, each frame has to be corrected manually, and this quickly confuses the brain and requires breaks in work in order to stare at a neutral gray wall for 20-30 seconds.

I did not see your reply to my post above so i don't know if your particular camera is faulty but as far as my copy is concerned, the M11 does not require any more work than other M cameras in PP. Rather less so comparing to my M8.2 and M240. Not a big deal on either anyway.

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5 hours ago, lct said:

OK so if you see color differences, they should translate in the exif data i guess. You may wish to check the following values on your successive shots. Do you notice different values? Just curious again.
• Correlated Color Temp
• Color Tint
• White Point

Yes, of course, the white balance values in Lightroom are different for these frames

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4 minutes ago, lct said:

I did not see your reply to my post above so i don't know if your particular camera is faulty but as far as my copy is concerned, the M11 does not require any more work than other M cameras in PP. Rather less so comparing to my M8.2 and M240. Not a big deal on either anyway.

I have 2 M11 cameras and they behaved and behave exactly the same. It is extremely unlikely that two cameras purchased within a year of each other will have the same defect. 

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14 minutes ago, Smogg said:

If you don't use AWB when shooting during the day, then it's not surprising that you don't notice any cast. I only mentioned magenta cast when using AWB.

I Really think it's a bad idea to use AWB during daylight shooting - every scene has shadows and lit areas for which the white balance will be different - this can vary wildly across an image, move the camera 5 degrees in mixed daylight lighting and you will get a different AWB. As an event shooter I really want the colour to be consistent between shots - and in daylight the light doesn't change - just the balance between shadows and lit areas. . . . In a group of photos I want the same colour, not some average value which depends on how much of the scene is sunlit and how much in shadow (WTF). 

I shoot sunny in daylight with the M11, and I can't remember when I last felt it was necessary to fiddle with the colour - it's always lovely . . . . . and correct! AWB makes different colour for every shot. . . . . 

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3 minutes ago, Smogg said:

I have 2 M11 cameras and they behaved and behave exactly the same. It is extremely unlikely that two cameras purchased within a year of each other will have the same defect. 

Yep - quite agree , it's not about different cameras.

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4 minutes ago, Smogg said:

Yes, of course, the white balance values in Lightroom are different for these frames

Unsure what is obvious if you shot single shots in fast succession but what values did you read if you kept the files? 

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I do not rule out that I am using the camera in a non-standard way. On M11 I almost always use Auto-ISO (1/250), AWB, highlight priority and -1ev exposure correction. In rare cases when I need to, I set a specific shutter speed value with the wheel

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7 minutes ago, lct said:

Unsure what is obvious if you shot single shots in fast succession but what values did you read if you kept the files? 

Unfortunately, I did not save them, so I cannot give the exact values.

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10 minutes ago, jonoslack said:

I Really think it's a bad idea to use AWB during daylight shooting - every scene has shadows and lit areas for which the white balance will be different - this can vary wildly across an image, move the camera 5 degrees in mixed daylight lighting and you will get a different AWB. As an event shooter I really want the colour to be consistent between shots - and in daylight the light doesn't change - just the balance between shadows and lit areas. . . . In a group of photos I want the same colour, not some average value which depends on how much of the scene is sunlit and how much in shadow (WTF). 

I shoot sunny in daylight with the M11, and I can't remember when I last felt it was necessary to fiddle with the colour - it's always lovely . . . . . and correct! AWB makes different colour for every shot. . . . . 

This makes sense, thank you for the advice

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1 hour ago, don daniel said:

Just so I understand correctly: You like the output of the M11 better than that of all other Leica models (M, Q, and SL)? Right? I also find the image quality of the M11 absolutely top-notch, but I have to work for it. Well, I can live with that.

Hi Don

I absolutely do like it better - however I don't use AWB in daylight, I use sunny and stick to it, and very very very rarely warm things up a little. see my post above about AWB . . . 

I think the M10-R colours are lovely, but the skin tones aren't as good as the m11 - the SL3 isn't as good either (too cool) 

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1 minute ago, Smogg said:

This makes sense, thank you for the advice

It's rather like having a film stock - you get to learn what you are getting in a consistent way AWB is making an arbitrary decision on what film stock you might like for a particular shot . . . . sometimes it's clever and sometimes 🫣

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3 minutes ago, jonoslack said:

It's rather like having a film stock - you get to learn what you are getting in a consistent way AWB is making an arbitrary decision on what film stock you might like for a particular shot . . . . sometimes it's clever and sometimes 🫣

I'm surprised that I've never encountered problems like this on the M10, M10-R, Q2, Q3, X2D and CaNiSony. AWB gave a fairly constant color within one shooting session/walk

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2 minutes ago, Smogg said:

I'm surprised that I've never encountered problems like this on the M10, M10-R, Q2, Q3, X2D and CaNiSony. AWB gave a fairly constant color within one shooting session/walk

Maybe, but I still think it's a crap concept (AWB in daylight) . . . I do use it in mixed artificial lighting (where there really isn't a right answer)

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8 minutes ago, jonoslack said:

Maybe, but I still think it's a crap concept (AWB in daylight) . . . I do use it in mixed artificial lighting (where there really isn't a right answer)

You and Sean Reid are people whose opinions I value very much. So I’ll definitely follow your advice 🙏

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Just now, Smogg said:

You and Sean Reid are people whose opinions I value very much. So I’ll definitely follow your advice 🙏

Sean is a great mate of mine . . . but we're both old men! But I thoroughly recommend using daylight (or sunny) white balance in the daytime - whichever camera you're using - you get to understand it's colour much better and then you can learn to take advantage of it-rather then being worried by the vagaries of its AWB. 

all the best

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