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Thread: Midtones that are off the top of the Histogram

  1. #1

    Midtones that are off the top of the Histogram

    I was reading up on Histograms
    and noticed that in one of the examples, the midtones went over the top of the chart. If this was at either end you would have clipped highlights and shadows.
    What does the over-the-top midtones mean? I do not think it is possible tio have clipped midtones.
    Mt thinking is that the midtones record fine on screen and in print but just does not record in the bounderies of the chart. May also have something to do with the fact that it is a 16-bit image charted on an 8-bit chart.
    Any ideas?

  2. #2
    DanK's Avatar
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    Dec 2011
    New England
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    Re: Midtones that are off the top of the Histogram

    If I understand your question right: clipping refers to a histogram that runs off one or both ends of the histogram, not the top. The vertical dimension is just the count of pixels. The X-axis, the horizontal dimension. is the luminance, ranging from 0 (pure black) to 255 (pure white). If the tonal range of the photo (the distance along the X-axis that has non-zero values) is small enough, and the display does not have enough vertical room, the pixels will be piled up in a narrow range, and the histogram will hit the top. This is not clipping. Clipping refers to having pixels at the ends, either pure black or pure white, which means no detail.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    New Zealand
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    Have a guess :)

    Re: Midtones that are off the top of the Histogram

    Hi "Person who's first name I don't yet know because you haven't filled in the real name filed in your profile",

    Short answer is "don't worry about it" - it's not midtones going over the chart per se (that's impossible) - it's just the way the graphic is cropped for the tutorial.

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