Nikon soft­ware

Ge­orge Cairns re­veals how to use Pic­ture Con­trols for one-click edit­ing

NPhoto - - Contents -

Nikon Cap­ture NX-D is com­pat­i­ble with your cam­era’s Pic­ture Con­trols – and that means you can ad­just your im­ages with a sin­gle click, re­duc­ing the time you have to spend it post-pro­duc­tion

All Nikon D-SLRs en­able you to se­lect so-called Pic­ture Con­trols, which ef­fec­tively ap­ply some in-cam­era pro­cess­ing to

your im­ages. The Por­trait Pic­ture Con­trol, for ex­am­ple, gives skin a sub­tly smoother look, while the Land­scape Pic­ture Con­trol boosts blues and greens. Land­scape also in­creases con­trast to help de­tails stand out. Pic­ture Con­trols such as Flat pro­duce a photo with less con­trast. This is a sen­si­ble Pic­ture Con­trol to use as you want to do your own pro­cess­ing on the im­age.

If you shoot in JPEG for­mat then you’ll be forced to ac­cept the look pro­duced by the se­lected in-cam­era Pic­ture Con­trol set­ting, and it will be much harder to ad­just the colours, tones and sharp­ness of the shot in Nikon’s free Cap­ture NX-D app. How­ever, if you shoot im­ages in the RAW (NEF) for­mat, you can then use Cap­ture NX-D to ex­per­i­ment with al­ter­na­tive Pic­ture Con­trols, or even fine-tune an ex­ist­ing Pic­ture Con­trol to cre­ate one of your own.

It’s worth not­ing, though, that the ef­fects of Pic­ture Con­trols are only vis­i­ble in Nikon’s own soft­ware – other pro­grams, such as Pho­to­shop, can’t read the in­for­ma­tion.

Post-pro­duc­tion tweaks

If you’d pre­fer to spend more time shoot­ing and less time pro­cess­ing pic­tures, it’s worth ex­per­i­ment­ing with the pre­sets and slid­ers in Cap­ture NX-D’s Pic­ture Con­trol panel. You can use th­ese Pic­ture Con­trol pre­sets as a spring­board to ex­per­i­ment with dif­fer­ent looks, and then use the var­i­ous of slid­ers to man­u­ally fine-tune prop­er­ties such as colour, sharp­ness and con­trast.

You can even use Pic­ture Con­trols to ex­per­i­ment with dif­fer­ent mono looks, to help par­tic­u­lar sub­jects stand out in a black-and-white con­ver­sion, as our walk­through op­po­site ex­plains.

We’ve also put Nikon’s Pic­ture Con­trols through their paces in our ac­com­pa­ny­ing video les­son, so that you can see this ver­sa­tile post­pro­duc­tion fea­ture in ac­tion.

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