Update for Nikon D3/D700/D300 Shooters Who Use Lightroom or Photoshop
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This is a followup to April's “Important Note for Nikon D3/D700/D300 Shooters Who Use Lightroom or Photoshop” post about camera-calibration profiles for Lightroom (and Adobe Camera Raw).

It seems that the Lr3.6 beta that Adobe recently put out includes a new version (“Camera Standard v4”) for the Nikon D3, D700, and D300 that has been improved yet again. You can't blindly change from v3 to v4 because v3 is intended to be used with -0.5EV of exposure compensation in Lightroom, while v4 somehow gets around that. (I don't recall exactly why v3 required the exposure compensation, but I remember understanding that it was a problem that could not easily be solved in place, but perhaps with a code change in Lightroom 3.6, they can now handle it without requiring the artificial compensation adjustment).

In any case, v4 (and v3) are far superior to v2 and earlier, so if you have images from a D300, D700, or D3, I recommend upgrading when you can. (I don't know what other profiles might have been updated with Lr3.6, but I recall from the v3 post that the change at that time affected only profiles those three specific cameras, and not, for example for the D3s or D300s)

All 3 comments so far, oldest first...

I hadn’t noticed this yet. Thanks for the tip. Been using the v3 profiles for ages as they are indeed much much better than v2. Would be good if we can get around the -0.5 EV thing.

— comment by Jao on December 6th, 2011 at 11:46pm JST (12 years, 7 months ago) comment permalink

Heh, I’ve been using a D300 for three years now, but I’m working full time and in a 3/4 time PhD program, so photography’s taken a back seat. I still take photos of family outings, but have little time to study the little details – I’ve just been taking pictures and uploading them to Lightroom. I use a laptop with an external monitor and just learning how to use a custom printer profile with a calibrated (Spyder) monitor to get decent prints took me months.

I stumbled on your blog a few weeks ago – besides your stunning photos (how lucky you are to live in a place with so many gorgeous locations, and the talent to take such great pictures of them), I’ve been amazed how much I’ve learned that I previously knew nothing about. The last time I read about the camera calibration in Lightroom all they had was the old “standard” “landscape” etc. settings. I used standard, and I guess over time as I upgraded Lightroom the default became “Adobe” because that’s what my NEFs all have for their calibration setting. So, I updgraded to 3.6 today, spent a while figuring out how to set default NEF import settings so Lightroom would use “Camera v4” (which I never knew existed, or v3, or v2…), and now I’m all set! Photos I’ve already processed don’t look good when I switch them to v4, but I understand why, and I assume photos I import from here on should start out looking better when imported via Camera Raw using the v4 calibration profile, and I should have less post-processing to do.

Anyway, thanks for the tip. I’ve spent too much time away from my dissertation today already, but next I want to figure out how to use your adjust/scale for iPad and export to picasa plugins. I’ll be happy to donate so I’m a “registered” user – it just may take me a while to find time to read about them and set them up.

Anyway, thanks for the great blog, photos, and info – I’m really happy I stumbled on your site!

Mark from Fort Leavenworth KS (Retired Army Aviator, History PhD candidate, Assistant Professor)

— comment by Mark on December 14th, 2011 at 12:00pm JST (12 years, 6 months ago) comment permalink

Would be interested in reading more about the V4 version. When I try it, I get a massive reduction in saturation from V3. Photos get very flat and bland (I suppose they would then need to be ramped back up if desired.)

That’s unexpected, and is not consistent with my experiences. Note, though, that if you’re moving from V3 to V4, you have to restore back to no exposure compensation from the -0.5EV compensation that V3 required. (If you’re moving from V1 or V2, no compensation had been required and none is required for V4, so no change needed.). Jon, if that doesn’t explain it, mail an image offline and I’ll see whether something needs to be reported to Adobe (or, of course, you can report directly to Adobe as you like). —Jeffrey

— comment by Jon V on December 30th, 2011 at 2:36pm JST (12 years, 6 months ago) comment permalink
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