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Thread: Lightroom preset color not matching Nikon ViewNX2

  1. #1

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    Lightroom preset color not matching Nikon ViewNX2

    I am reviewing Lightroom for purchase and downloaded the beta 5.2 version. I am a Nikon user (D5100) and am familiar with ViewNX2. I would have gone for Capture NX2 but did not see any major upgrades for quite some time. LR appears to be adding functionality quite frequently and would have made my purchase but for the fact that I am having trouble to match the colors between ViewNX2 and LR 5.2 using my custom presets. One caveat here - my monitor is not calibrated with any external product other than what came with the Win7 OS, but I believe I should see the same colors on the same monitor when viewing LR and ViewNX2 side-by-side. I do use ProPhoto RGB as the default RGB space in ViewNX2 but my monitor is not an IP monitor so I believe it will not display colors outside of sRGB - maybe this is an incorrect assumption.

    I find that ViewNX2 shows deeper blues (most obvious color to show a difference, for example ocean view photo in Hawaii with cloudless blue sky and deep blue ocean) when I open the same RAW photo both in LR and ViewNX2 and compare them side by side. I used Nikon Neutral preset (Develop Settings) during import into LR - in any case none of the other LR presets give me a match. I have tried to customize a pre-set to make them match but then it messes up other photos opened with the same preset.

    What are my options? Do I need to purchase a LR preset for my Nikon? I have downloaded Nikon preset for LR4 but although they come close, I cannot get some of those deep blues to match. Does the CT matter at all to the preset - meaning do I need separate presets for different CTs?

    All I am trying to do is not get saddled with a complicated workflow just to stay close to Nikon generated colors - I would rather stick with Capture NX2 and have the correct colors show up and sacrifice some of the workflow advantages of LR.

    Here is the sample - LR is set to Camera Neutral and CT shows 5700 - even clarity/sharpness is off in LR and seems to be underexposed. The Nikon RAW is SOOC:

    Lightroom preset color not matching Nikon ViewNX2

  2. #2

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    Re: Lightroom preset color not matching Nikon ViewNX2

    Being a Nikon product, ViewNX2 is processing the photo with the Picture Controls set in the camera. It's proprietary. LR uses Adobe Standard (or ACR) to construct the photo. You can change the profile in Camera Calibration (LR3) to a quasi-Nikon setting however Adobe does not have access to the Nikon software and can only try to come close. If it's further out than you wish you can always adjust the primary colours in LR.

  3. #3
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    Re: Lightroom preset color not matching Nikon ViewNX2

    You can easily make presets for lightroom or adjust the camera calibration as mentioned above. I have saved several presets in lightroom that relate to either my D200 or to which shooting menu I used on the D800.

    When you have worked out the appropriate preset you can quickly apply it groups or all of your photographs.

    P.S. I see you have used custom presets and I am a bit supprised you have not managed to match them more closely.
    Last edited by pnodrog; 9th September 2013 at 05:43 AM.

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    Re: Lightroom preset color not matching Nikon ViewNX2

    Hi Dennis,

    Same prob as yours. Although I've had LR4 for a year, but I always go back to viewNX2 whenever I want our images to come out with our in-cam picture controls.

    Did some LR4 presets to emulate our pic controls, even then, it's not entirely automatic. We still have to make refinements depending on the ambient light at the scene and/or our cam settings.

    Seems we have to do the same with built-in LR presets. We still need to adjust LR4 to our taste (meaning: perceived viewNX2 picture control effects.). Just needs patience/time. Same with your LR "blue skies" and viewNX2's "blue skies". Needs time/patience to get that viewNX2 "blue skies"..

    When I have to do quick edits, my workflow is viewNX2 - further edits in gimp/helicon filter 5.

    Hope this helps.
    Last edited by nimitzbenedicto; 9th September 2013 at 07:06 AM.

  5. #5

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    Re: Lightroom preset color not matching Nikon ViewNX2

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew1 View Post
    Being a Nikon product, ViewNX2 is processing the photo with the Picture Controls set in the camera.
    I always thought that the Picture Control is only in play when viewing the JPEG and not a RAW file.

    Quote Originally Posted by pnodrog View Post
    I am a bit surprised you have not managed to match them more closely.
    Yep - not sure why but when I use one photo as a sample to create a preset, other photos are impacted. I guess I have to continue to attempt to get a preset that will work for the majority of photos taken in the same location/CT as a start and then continue to make small adjustments to come to a point where I can use the preset for the majority of the photos - I guess I will give that a go until I run out of patience...!!!

  6. #6

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    Re: Lightroom preset color not matching Nikon ViewNX2

    Yes - it appears Picture Control is in effect when view in NX2. My "Recorded Value" Adjustment View displays a Picture Control that I had customized for sharpening using the Standard PC as a start - so that explains the sharpening.

    I guess I will use one of the default Nikon PC settings and use that for comparison when creating a new LR preset. I will attempt to align a Nikon Neutral PC with a Neutral LR preset and go from there - should minimize the complication.

    Thanks for the tip, Andrew.

  7. #7

    Re: Lightroom preset color not matching Nikon ViewNX2

    Quote Originally Posted by DennisS View Post
    ...I have tried to customize a pre-set to make them match but then it messes up other photos opened with the same preset.
    If you simply customize an existing preset that will alter it when used on other images - what you need to do is to apply the preset, then make any adjustments and then go back to the Preset panel on the left and click on the + symbol (create new preset). A dialogue will pop up allowing you to name/save the current settings as a new preset, thus leaving the original preset you started with unchanged.

  8. #8

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    Re: Lightroom preset color not matching Nikon ViewNX2

    That is exactly what I have been doing, Dan - what I was trying to say was that I have made several attempts to get a good match but not had good success.

    The Nikon presets are a good starting point but if I start with one photo and create a new preset after adjustments to get a good match, when I open another photo with this new preset I find that I have to make other changes. So now I have my second preset and so on. After the fourth or fifth iteration, when I go back to the first photo and attempt to use the last preset I created, I see other difference that were not there when I first started.

    It appears that even with photos shot in the same lighting conditions (CT) , I am having difficulty getting photos that have different color tones to match with ONE single preset.

  9. #9

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    Re: Lightroom preset color not matching Nikon ViewNX2

    Quote Originally Posted by DennisS View Post
    That is exactly what I have been doing, Dan - what I was trying to say was that I have made several attempts to get a good match but not had good success.

    The Nikon presets are a good starting point but if I start with one photo and create a new preset after adjustments to get a good match, when I open another photo with this new preset I find that I have to make other changes. So now I have my second preset and so on. After the fourth or fifth iteration, when I go back to the first photo and attempt to use the last preset I created, I see other difference that were not there when I first started.

    It appears that even with photos shot in the same lighting conditions (CT) , I am having difficulty getting photos that have different color tones to match with ONE single preset.
    Maybe you'd like to eliminate the possibility there's something wrong with your LR.
    ( Just a suggestion. )

    Here's a simple test to see if LR is consistent. Open in your LR 2 photos , A & B
    Both with the same scene/ambient light/same cam settings.

    Make many changes ( if possible exaggerated like overexpose, oversat) to photo A. Then open photo B , no edits done on it/no presets made.

    Click on "previous". This should apply the edits you made on Photo A to your currently shown photo B.

    Hope this helps.

  10. #10

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    Re: Lightroom preset color not matching Nikon ViewNX2

    I also just got the Nikon 5100....totallly new to the SLR I have also thought about Lightroom...so far I use PSE Elements 6. I tend to do alot of selections and work in layers...I need to upgrade but haven't for sure decided what I want. Any opinions?? It looks like Lightroom is just a big organizer. I use iPhoto. Also, see Photoshop has gone to a subscription basis. Any thoughts on this??

    Now I'm concerned because of this post about colors. I'm really fussy about that.

  11. #11

    Re: Lightroom preset color not matching Nikon ViewNX2

    The camera applies the Picture Controls only to jpeg, as DennisS says. In raw files, the image data isn't affected by the Picture Controls, but the camera stores the settings of the Picture Controls in the raw file metadata (along with other settings such as exposure, white balance etc). View NX2 (and Capture NX2) know how to read that metadata, and apply the equivalent settings in the software. Other raw convertors can't do that directly, as the metadata that stores the Picture Control settings is in a proprietary Nikon format that they don't publish.

    However, Lightroom (and ACR) have the equivalents of Nikon Picture Controls as Camera Profiles. In Lightroom, Develop Module, Camera Calibration panel (bottom right) there's a "Profile:" drop-down list, and for Nikon cameras the list will include "Camera Standard", "Camera Landscape" etc which correspond very closely to the Picture Controls of the same name. But you have to set them yourself (or create a preset). I have presets for each of the Picture Control equivalents, which I apply when I import into LR.

    The main limitation: in the camera, you can tweak the picture controls (alter sharpness, saturation etc), and ViewNX2 reads the actual tweaks you've done. Lightroom just has one profile for each picture control at default settings.

    This suits me: I can't be bothered with tweaking picture controls in the field. By the time I'd done that the picture would long since have gone. I do the tweaking in PP.

  12. #12

    Re: Lightroom preset color not matching Nikon ViewNX2

    Simon, that's the clearest and most detailed way I've seen anybody explain it. Thank you.

  13. #13

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    Re: Lightroom preset color not matching Nikon ViewNX2

    Quote Originally Posted by DennisS View Post
    I would have gone for Capture NX2 but did not see any major upgrades for quite some time.
    I still use Nikon Capture NX2 for 100% of my images and I use additional software for only 1% of them. (My camera models are old enough that the software will convert their raw files.) Even so, the software was discontinued years ago and is no longer being supported. I realize Nikon's website has their 60-day trial version available for download but I'm not even sure it's available for sale directly from Nikon. I used to know the details about that but it has been so long that I no longer remember them.
    Last edited by Mike Buckley; 4th February 2017 at 10:09 AM.

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