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Default Import settings in LR for Nikon Files

BrianSBrianS Member
edited April 2012 in post-processing
A while back I thought I saw that Neil posted his import settings in LR for his D3. I can't seem to find it though.
I'm curious as I seem to have to much red/magenta in my nikon files.
Does anyone else experience this?



  • this is a very interesting question and im curios as to what other nikon shooters set there defaults to also, as far as sharpening contrast etc, although i suspect it may need a different amount of tweaking for different Nikon bodys,

    also in LR3 u were able to view the flat raw file by dragging the contrast,blacks,brightness etc to 0, but in LR4 the sliders r at 0 to begin with but there is contrast etc, already applied, is there a way to edit or view raw photos with out ANY default adjustments applied
  • TrevTrev Moderator
    edited April 2012

    Sorry no, I used to have that showing in Canon, and it's an inherent trait of digital to emphasise the reds. You could easily adjust that in camera though, and I take it you are shooting RAW? Since you have to process RAW first up, it's no problem with WB to get it right.

    Edit: Brian, sorry I just realised I hijacked your thread. But wanted to answer Naftoli.


    That is a great question re stuff already applied. I have a question of my own I have discovered, and NOT for the good with LR4.

    First for your problem, re contrast, I always take it off, so you could go to the Tone Curves, Point Curve drop down, and in the contrast menu, select Linear, then adjust via that Tone Curve manually.


    My problem/concern is, Adobe in its infinite wisdom, have decided us mere mortals cannot adjust to suit and the old 'Recovery' slider, which is now the 'Whites', has a bloody behind the scenes auto adjust even though it's showing zero. I **know** this because the same file, in LR3 or ACR shows much more clipping. [pic of kid wearing a jacket].

    His forehead in ACR and LR3 shows highlight clipping, along with the yellow jacket, but in LR4 only the jacket. A good thing?????

    You may think that's a good thing, but it's not if other parts of the image are clipped, since clipping overall can be reduced via the exposure slider, which in turn, and this is *important*, it gives back the true color of the image, same as if underexposed, you adjust overall to bring up the exposure which in turn generally fixes the WB.

    In my humble opinion, the exposure should be the very first thing you fix, not the WB, since adjusting exposure alters colors. Tabs should be reversed in order to work your way down.

    Now, if a behind the scenes 'Whites' [old Recovery] has an auto adjust but other parts are still clipped, and you reduce exposure to suit, the already auto adjusted real highlights go a dirty shade of color, not good for skintone. I found myself having to deliberately adding clipping in the Whites so I could then reduce the overall exposure for the entire image, another damn slider to wang all over the place.

    However, this was on an image I knew to have such clipping, so if I open any new files in LR4, and don't see any skintones, or even other parts of the image showing clipping you can assume it's right?.... Absolutely not. I am amazed at how far I can push exposure on images now, waaaaaay too light before highlight clipping shows its warning. That's because the Whites [recovery] now has a damn auto behind the scenes adjustment applied before you get a chance to fix manually.

    So it's either all ACR based now or back to LR3, unless I can set an import preset to give a certain +Whites, which is not the way to go.

    My rant over.


    Edit: By the way, that's now also the default way in the new CS6 in ACR, but at least in that you can go to the Camera Calibration Tab, and in the 'Process' drop down select 2010 [2012 will be the default] and save as an import preset.

    I must see if there is the same option in LR4, even though I don't edit in LR, I still need to correct exposure, then WB then action adjust in Photoshop to taste.

    Just discovered something else not good. I opened a file which I knew was badly clipped in certain highlights, so adjusted and my histogram showed I had recovered them, but, when I edited in PS, the whites were totally 255 across the board, yet my histogram said I was fine. See image.

  • I found that the best thing I did to achieve pleasing color for my cameras was create a Custom Camera profile using the free Adobe DNG Profile Editor (Please note, you do not need to convert all your images to DNG, only those images you use to create the profiles) By capturing images of an even lighted and properly exposed Color Checker chart ... you can create a profile that will more accurately render color. Once created, the profiles can be tweaked, seasoned to taste then saved for Lightroom or Camera RAW to use ... they can even be applied as default (applied automatically upon import) based upon the camera serial number and/or the ISO used. You can even match color across different models and even different brands.


    I was never really happy with the color using the canned profiles that came from Adobe, or that were applied under the hood in Nikon software. Add to that that no two cameras, even if they are the same brand/model, render color quite exactly the same. There are always subtle nuances that can be quite noticeable.

    At one point I owned four different Nikon D200 bodies. They all were "off" a little bit ... using the Profile Editor, I was able to dial in the color and get a very reasonable match across all of them ... as well as the cameras I use.

    By creating the custom profile, you can keep all your color and tone settings at default or zero when the images are imported because all your custom adjustments are carried out by the profile behind the scenes.
  • TrevTrev Moderator

    Good link, shall look into that.
    As a side note, Doh!!! I just realised in my rant above I can change LR4 back to 2010 Process in Camera Calibration tab, so that's good.

  • Trev i also find myself recently dragging the highlights to the right sometimes to give some nice contrast to the skin tone instead of using the whites, also if u change the proccess version to 2010 then ur not getting any benefit to LR4 upgraded develop panel?
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