Highlights ans shadows do not have the same white balance


I have been using Negative Lab Pro for a long time now, and overall it is satisfactory, except for one problem that always happens to me: the white balance varies between light and dark tones. This is particularly noticeable in photos of gray objects, such as stone statues or monuments. Dark areas tend to be slightly blue or green, and lighter areas come out in orange tones. It is obviously subtle, but it is visible. If I were to shoot a perfectly neutral gray gradient, it would be rendered with blue areas and other orange areas, depending on the density of the area.

I am using a flash as the light source (Nikon SB 600), and a Nikon D750 DSLR. I tried with another flash, same result. I put a UV filter in front of the flash, no change. I used two different macro lens, no change.
Films may vary (new Kodak Portra 160, expired Portra 400, archival color negatives of various brands, etc.), but the problem is still there.

Do you have the same problem?

Here is an example (it’s a crop) :

1 Like

Do you get the same colour shifts if you use a different backlight e.g. a sunlit white wall or paper, or halogen bulb etc.?

It’s a good question, and I was just telling myself that the source of the light could be involved. I will try using daylight and also a tungsten light source.

I thought however that the electronic flash had an excellent IRC? In addition, I tried two different devices (Nikon SB 600 and Vivitar F280 flashs) with same results.

I’ve noticed this and I believe is something inherent to negative film. It would be cool if there was an easy way of doing some sort of 2 point white balance, one from the film rebate and another one from the darkest part of the negative. I am using a video led as light source but I seriously doubt the light source has anything to do with it.

Thank you for your answer. I am happy to learn that I’m not the only one to have noticed this defect.
It’s a bad news if the problem does not come from the light source, because it means that there is no simple solution to solve it.
The problem would therefore come from the negatives, but they are not involved, because at the time they were printed with an enlarger, it was perfect. I would say that this is a problem for converting the negatives to positive by numerical methods.
It is absolutely necessary to find a way to solve this problem. As far as I’m concerned, it hinders me a lot. It is impossible to photograph a gray gradient without breaks of tones, it is not acceptable.

But I will still try to try with different sources of lights.

Hello again,

I downloaded the examples of files made available on the site by its creator, and I notice that none of its negatives presents this problem of white balance.

So I have a problem in my method. I will do new tests, changing source of light, device, lens, etc.

Here is a link to see another example, where the problem is very visible.


Hi @titisteph

PM’ing you now… there are some circumstances where this may happen in v2.2, but should be correctable in v2.3 (in beta) by changing the engine settings to “smooth” or “auto.”


1 Like

Hello Nate,

I’m so glad you saw my problem because I downloaded the beta as you suggested. I chose the smooth option. And it is miraculous!
Now it works perfectly! It’s awesome…
And the colors are much more accurate.

I am even happier, because I no longer have to doubt the quality of my workflow. Yesterday I spent a lot of time redoing tests by changing the light (Flash, Tungsten, LED, Ipad, etc!), I did not have time to analyze them, but I know that from now on it is useless . It’s perfect, because for me, the use of flash was ideal: no need to be in complete darkness, no worry about motion blur.
Thanks again for solving the problem!

Here is a sample : Pasteall.org

Wonderful! So glad that resolved it for you!

I’m just fixing up a few bugs here and there with the beta, so the final v2.3 should be announced very soon!


1 Like