D7100 - I need help solving the "green shadows" in skin tones problem

Started Apr 3, 2013 | Discussions thread
mosswings Veteran Member • Posts: 8,037
Re: not a camera issue

RudyPohl wrote:

mosswings wrote:


Take a breather, line up your ducks, so to speak, and re-engage.  Find yourself a GOOD Nikon shooter to mentor you and answer your questions. It took you 15,000 shots with your Panny before you knew you were ready for something with more potential.  A good mentor will ease your transition into a much more capable system. As an experienced videographer you are probably well aware of that.

And slow down and enjoy.

Hi mosswings:

I was able to sneak in on my break and quickly check-in to see if there were any more responses to my post. WOW, I had no idea I would set off such a firestorm! I've only been able to scan a few of the posts, but from what I've read so far, I'm afraid to read any further. However, I did look at the most current response at the time which turned out to be yours. Thanks for your kind and encouraging words. I appreciate it.

All I would ask is that folks try to put themselves in my shoes for just a bit... One of the first worrisome things I noticed two weeks ago on the forum was a big green shadow underneath the chin a posted indoor portrait, other posters on that thread noticed the same thing and asked about. The answers that were given, as I recall, didn't really do much to address this issue in a reassuring manner. A few appeals were subsequently made by some people, including myself, for people to post some facial close-ups using this camera, but very few images were ever posted reinforcing, in my mind anyway, that while this camera seems to be great for wildlife, doing facial close-ups was going to be a problem.

Then I spotted your (mosswings) comment about Nikon clipping the blacks resulting in green deep shadows and the potential problem this might become with the D7100 (that really got my attention), and finally I had the entire camera staff confirm to me that this is a long-standing problem with Nikons and that a lot of people return cameras because of this issue. Iit's not what I needed to hear on the last free evening I had before my trial period ran out.

What is a Nikon newbie like me supposed to think? One of the horror stories I heard from a staff member last night was about what happened to another staff member who is an accomplished fashion photographer from Korea. Apparently he was successful in Korea, but when he started shooting white (Caucasion) people here in Canada, he couldn't get rid of the green shadows, and so in the end he sold his Nikon gear and went Canon. Again ask you, what was I supposed to think in the moment, especially with my safety-valve trial period running out tomorrow and me not being able to get to the camera store? I remembered that a long-time friend of mine has been doing wedding photography for years and all he's ever used was Nikon. Surely he's not getting green shadows or no one would by his photos, but I wasn't able to contact him. in the moment.

The fact that I said I love this camera and want it to work, and that I am remaining in this thread and taking the heat, that I am willing to spend whatever time and effort is required learn the system and to get my portraits looking good and without green shadows or least get them much reduced, and most of all, that fact that I have called the camera store and told that I am working on this issue so please hold the camera for me for a few days, which they have agreed to do, should tell people where my heart is regarding the quality and the promise of this camera.

I could have simply walked away and concluded that this was not for me, or worse, bad-mouthed the camera, which I have not done. Instead I have asked for assistance in finding a post processing solution that will work no matter how much or how little green appears in the files.

It sure will be interesting to see where this all comes out, I hope we can all still be friends if I end up re-purchasing the camera and sticking around this forum... I sure hope that that will be the outcome.


Glad to be of service, especially since I seem to have offered a branch for you to grasp while falling that wasn't strong enough to hold your weight.

You have some very good courses of action here:

1) have a good long talk with your Nikon-shooting wedding photographer friend, right now, while the store staff is willing to wait.  As you've guessed, if there is a problem with skin tones and shadows, a good wedding photographer will be sure to find them. Arrange for some 1:1 time with him.  Pay him for the privilege.  Have him shoot with the D7100 and see what he thinks. It will be money well spent.

2) take what your photo store's staff say with a grain of salt.  I'm a little leery of that fashion photog's comments.  What workflow/postprocessor did he use?  Was he talking about shooting JPGs?  Maybe he just found he liked Canon better.

3) recognize that in the end there's nothing magical about Nikon's products.  They're excellent, yes, and their sensors do outperform Canon's, but Canon's best bodies are faster at initial AF acquisition and folks like Art Wolfe and many many wildlife photogs have made superb images with them.  And those bodies have....(organ music)...really BAD banding!  Bottom line, check out a Canon 7D as well. You might like it better, and maybe that fashion photog is right...Nikons are only good at shooting Asian people.  Sheesh.

4) remember that you can sell your Nikon equipment for easily 80% of what you paid for it 6 months from now.  That's only a $400 learning risk cost, and well worth it for the time it buys you to truly learn the camera. Accept this as an entertainment expense, if you will.

5) Birding, like nighttime sports, is a highly demanding subspecialty, both of equipment and photographer. Assess whether your desire to have a supremely competent wildlife camera kit squares with your ability, both in time and expense, to afford it.  A lot of our qualms about these purchases lie in the (denied) affordability issue.  It's one of the reasons I remain satisfied with my consumer zoom kit and think 4 times before grabbing the newest shiny thing; the benefits obtained often don't justify the outlay.  Hogan and others have always said that the order of upgrade should always be:





They're right.

 mosswings's gear list:mosswings's gear list
Olympus XZ-1 Olympus Stylus 1 Nikon D90 Nikon D7100 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR +5 more
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