What I learned from Darrell today was all about Color Spaces and Picture Controls. I had no idea what the difference was between Adobe RGB and sRGB. I read somewhere that you only needed to use Adobe if you were shooting for stock footage. It came across to me as a technicality so I just left it in sRGB. Well, come to find out that Adobe RGB covers a larger spectrum of colors esp in the green and blue range and if you are shooting RAW, Adobe will probably give you better color representation.
I also learned about Nikon's Picture Controls. Given the names of them, I had some idea for what they were intended but never really understood exactly what the differences were. Turns out it is a combination of sharpening, contrast, brightness, saturation and hue specifically tuned by Nikon for each application: Standard (SD), Neutral (NL), Vivid (VI), Monochrome (MC), Portrait (PT) and Landscape (LS).
Given printing in the book inherently changes how the picture looks, I decided I needed to investigate these things for myself. This evening I went into the back yard and found some bright red salvia flowers against the deep green leaves. After getting the correct exposure, I shot each picture control setting (except MC) in Adobe RGB, then in sRGB to see what a difference each made. All of these were shot hand held, ISO 800, 300mm, f5.6 and 1/30. Forgive the slight blur please. The AF was struggling so I had to manually focus and my eyes aren't great.
Here are my results. The left column is Adobe, the right is sRGB.
Obviously the Adobe color space appears to make things brighter esp in the green areas. Not sure why. Maybe it has to do with the amount of green colors available in each space. I'll have to do some more reading on that one. The other thing I noticed when I zoomed in on them side by side in LR was a significantly higher CA (chromatic aberration) in the sRGB pics on the SD, NL and VI. That was about the same in PT and reversed in LS.
As far as the picture controls go, I can notice a definite softer focus in PT. LS & VI look too close for me to tell a difference in Adobe although the colors do pop a little more with VI in sRGB. However NL & SD are indistinguishable to me in both color spaces.
Here's my conclusion. I need to shoot this all again with better light, a tripod and a better subject. That will be my project for tomorrow.
BTW, I got confirmation that my lens will be here tomorrow by 10:30. I have to see a patient at 9:30 so if it's not here by the time I have to leave, I have my next door neighbor's son coming over to sign for it. Having good neighbors is a good thing.
I'm a mother of 2 girls living in NC. I've dabbled in photography on and off but really this is just for fun