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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    2

    New DSLR owner--got a question....

    I saved up and got myself a Nikon D50. I was used to my Canon P&S having black/white mode. Apparently no DSLR will shoot B&W. My camera guy says to get Nik Color Efex Pro 2.0. Damn--I'm poor--I starved myself to get the D50. Now I need to spend another hundred+ for filters to get some pure B&W work in photoshop? As it is I just take the color shots and make 'em grayscale but they're washed out and well, gray. Photoshop brightness/contrast works to some extent but always at the cost of sharpness and detail. Any alternatives? Generic software? Shareware? I could download Nik Color Efex Pro on Limewire but I'd be without a manual and worry about virus' etc. Somebody clear me up--how do I get good tonal range/wide spectrum B&W from my D50 without starving again? Thanks in advance....

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    1,205
    1. Dont download pirated software!

    2. your D50 came with a 30 day trial of Nikon Capture and it has a black and white conversion tool under photo effects- use it!

    3. Congrats on your new D50

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    6,931
    Nikon Editor (free on the CD with your camera) also has a basic black and white (and sepia) conversion ability.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Madrid
    Posts
    79
    Use the free Gimp and read this: http://www.gimpguru.org/Tutorials/Color2BW/
    Nikon D80 - Nikkor 18-70 (kit) - Sigma 70-200 APO Macro Ex and Tele x2 Ex
    Canon S2 IS - LensMate Adapter - Canon Tele
    http://jmgaguilera.blogspot.com

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Maryland's Eastern Shore
    Posts
    2,143
    Google's Picasa 2 has some nice features for those of us on a budget.
    It is free.
    - Rich

    Nikon: D50, 18-70mm, 50mm, 70-200vr
    Kenko: 12mm, 20mm, 36mm Ext Tubes
    Manfrotto: 486RC2
    Benro: A-327 tripod


    My Flickr Photos Here

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    6,931
    Quote Originally Posted by rawpaw18
    Google's Picasa 2 has some nice features for those of us on a budget.
    It is free.
    And it's free and it has a basic black and white conversion tool as well.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    6,590
    Hmmm you have photoshop on your computer, you say. So why do you need any other software?

    Image/Adjustment/Channel mixer.../monochrome. That is what the pros use to convert to black and white. And also that is the reason why pros shoot in colour even when they want the result to be black and white, 3 times more image information to play with at least (in JPEG.. even more when it was a RAW and you have the image in 16 bits in photoshop).
    Canon EOS 350D, Tamron SP AF 90mm F/2.8 macro, Sigma 18-50mm F2.8 DC EX, Canon EF 70-200mm f/4 L USM, Tokina AT-X124 Pro 12-24mm F4, Soligor 1.7x C/D4 DG Teleconvertor, Manfrotto 724B tripod, Canon Powershot S30

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    1,205
    Quote Originally Posted by coldrain
    Hmmm you have photoshop on your computer, you say. So why do you need any other software?

    Image/Adjustment/Channel mixer.../monochrome. That is what the pros use to convert to black and white. And also that is the reason why pros shoot in colour even when they want the result to be black and white, 3 times more image information to play with at least (in JPEG.. even more when it was a RAW and you have the image in 16 bits in photoshop).
    I have wondered: How does converting a color image to B/W with Image/Adjustment/Channel mixer.../monochrome in PS compare to DSLRs that shoot in B/W originally? From what I understand DSLRs that shoot in B/W actully shoot in color and convert in camera to B/W? Does PS does a better job with B/W Conversion than in camera? I guess it depends on the camera.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    6,590
    Not all B/W is the same. You have green, red and blue, and a "standard" way to make a pic B/W is by taking about 60% of the green channel, 30 or the red channel and 10% of the blue channel. You end up wit a bit depth of just 256 bits per pixel.

    If you use the channel mixer in monochrome... you have 256 bits per colour channel (or more, if your picture is 16 bits per colour channel instead of 8 bits), giving you a lot more to play with and a bigger dynamic range. You can also get the right balance between the 3 colour channels for your photo, because the standard 60/30/10 (G/R/B) is not ideal at all most of the times.
    Canon EOS 350D, Tamron SP AF 90mm F/2.8 macro, Sigma 18-50mm F2.8 DC EX, Canon EF 70-200mm f/4 L USM, Tokina AT-X124 Pro 12-24mm F4, Soligor 1.7x C/D4 DG Teleconvertor, Manfrotto 724B tripod, Canon Powershot S30

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Northern Colorado, USA
    Posts
    2,225
    I'm not suggesting you go out and buy one, but there are dSLR cameras with B&W mode. The D200 has it. I would not be surprised if the D2 cameras (at least the new D2Xs) have it. I don't know about the Canons or other brands.

    The software suggestions are probably the way you should go, just don't let anyone tell you there aren't any cameras with B&W.

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