Mono manual Picture controls
Your Nikon D-SLR has a Monochrome Picture Control – should you use it?
Nikon’s Picture Controls offer you different renditions for your photos, from Standard to Vivid… and Monochrome. In fact, the Monochrome setting offers further options, including the ability to simulate traditional black-andwhite filters, such as yellow or red. But how useful is this, and are you better off shooting in colour and processing the images yourself?
The key thing to understand is that Picture Controls only apply if you shoot JPEGs. If you shoot RAW, the situation becomes a little more complicated, and depends on which RAW conversion software you use.
You’ll find your Nikon’s Picture Controls in the Shooting Settings menu. The Monochrome option will help you judge the composition and balance of your black-and-white shots, but shooting RAW gives you added flexbility later.
If you open your RAW file in ViewNX 2 or Capture NX2, your picture will be in black-and-white, but you’ll be able to change it because you still have all the RAW data. But if you don’t use Nikon software, it’s a little different…
…Adobe Camera Raw will display your RAW file in colour, even if you shot it in black-and-white! That’s because it ignores Nikon’s Picture Control settings – you’ll need to apply the black-and-white conversion yourself.