Is Using Digital Grey Card Useful?


I'm not good in photography but I'm learning. I don't have a good sense of coloring and am always struggle in getting the right white balance setup. Sometime its getting too warm and sometime it getting too cold.  I need a tool to help me and I come across a tool call digital grey card.

There were a lot of argument and debate about 18% grey card that it is use for exposure but not for white balance. But its doesn't matter for me since hey both provide similar result ( according to my research) and I'm not enthusiast nor professional that need 100% natural color. I just want it to look nicer.

I decide to get one.

I Just receive a Digital Grey Card which I purchased few days ago and I trying to use it now. I just have time to play around with it after hang out with my lovely colleague and friends.

Anyway, to prove that it is useful and I'm not wasting my money. I decide to test it before I "trust" it.

Here you go, the picture below is taking under fluorescent light using auto white balance:




The picture is a little bit blue  as you can see from the picture above.

Next, I use the preset "fluorescent white light" white balance mode:


The picture shown better result and giving the color close to what my eye is seeing.

Last, I use the custom white balance mode by using grey card as reference:



And below using white card as custom white balance reference:


Both of the Grey and white reference give me difference color tone and base on what I seeing, using white card seems to give me a close to original floor color.

Using grey card as reference give me various results every time I tested it, some better and some making no difference, especially when I modify the exposure . In case above, it gave no difference compare to auto white balance. I might need to do more test or perhaps I'm doing the wrong setup.

Closed one here is definitely the last one, by using the white card as reference.

Worth to mention that, the preset fluorescent light mode did a pretty good job and it give a very close result to the custom mode.

Summary: It is very subjective whether the digital grey card give a big hand here as it give difference result and this is not what I'm expecting, and white card is giving me a good outcome. I might want to test it a little bit more especially outdoor and gather more opinions before I make a judgement.

The bottom line is, the preset mode give us a rather good result while using custom white balance ( with  white card) also give you a good result without having struggle to select the correct presets, especially during outdoor shooting. Avoid using AWB indoor and spend a little more time on finding the right white balance would definitely give us better result.

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