Canon EOS 30D Review
The EOS 30D provides control for image sharpening, contrast, color saturation and color tone. You can also select output in sRGB or Adobe RGB color space. The EOS 30D features the now standard "Picture Style" parameter presets, these are slightly different than found on other digital SLR's as the Picture Style used can affect both the contrast curve and color map.
Image parameter adjustments
- Picture Style: Standard, Portrait, Landscape, Neutral, Faithful, Monochrome, User def 1 - 3
- Color space: sRGB, Adobe RGB
- Image parameter adjustments
- Sharpness: 0 to 7
- Contrast: -4 to +4
- Saturation: -4 to +4
- Color tone: -4 to +4
Each Picture Style can be thought of as being similar to different types of 'film', each one is made up of a tone curve, color map and default sharpness. The camera comes with six programmed Picture Styles but you can download other styles from Canon. The disappointing aspect of Picture Style is that the tone curve and color map are not revealed to the user, you have to experiment to understand the effect of each Picture Style. An approximate summary of the available Picture Styles are as follows:
|Picture Style||Canon description||Tone curve||Color|
|Standard||Vivid, crisp general setting usable for variety of conditions.||Type 1
|Slightly more saturation|
|Portrait||Produces a soft texture and beautiful expression of skin color.||Type 1
|Medium saturation, skin tones get a pink hue|
|Landscape||Sharp expression with particularly vivid results for blues skies and green hues.||Type 1
|High saturation, blue and green emphasis, hue chg.|
|Neutral||With post-processing in mind, saturation and contrast are low.||Type 2
|Low saturation, neutral hues|
|Faithful||Faithful production of the subject's colors, with no exaggeration.||Type 2
|Low saturation, colormetrically accurate|
|Monochrome||Monochrome expression in black & white, sepia, etc.||Type 1
|B&W, can use filters (red, green, orange, etc.)|
For a reference of how each of these Picture Styles relate to older EOS digital camera parameter settings please refer to the chart at the bottom of this page on canon.co.jp.
Picture Style default parameters
Pictures Styles compared
Place your mouse over the label to see a ColorChecker chart shot in the respective mode. The differences in both color response and tone are fairly easy to make out in this comparison. You can see that Standard and Neutral have similar color responses apart from saturation and contrast, portrait is designed to enhance skin tones and landscape for bluer skies and more natural looking greens.
Picture Styles 'real life' example
Below are six images in different Picture Styles produced from the same RAW image. Each was saved at a reduced size to aid full size display / download speed (in these examples we're only interested in tone and color).
|Neutral||Faithful||Monochrome (red filter)|
Picture Style variances, DPP vs. RIT, RAW
We first spotted this potential issue in our EOS 5D review and it still stands true for the EOS 30D and the latest versions of Canon's RAW converters (RAW Image Task 2.3 in ZoomBrowser EX and Digital Photo Professional 2.1).
RAW Image Task (in Zoombrowser) is essentially a 'DSP emulator', that is it emulates the image pipeline in the camera to deliver results from RAW which are identical to the camera. Digital Photo Professional however has always been the 'outsider' using its own RAW conversion it has a different 'look' to its images (often preferable).
Picture Styles now pose a little bit of a problem for Canon, because obviously they are supposed to be a 'standard look' that you will expect to be the same from the camera and through whichever RAW converter. I'm fairly comfortable accepting some variance between RIT (same as camera) and DPP but to be frank the difference is more stark than that.
Color / tone difference
Detail / brightness difference (100% crops)
* Note that by default Neutral would have a sharpness setting of zero (0) but when changing Picture Style in DPP the sharpness setting does not change, hence remains at level three (3) when switching from Standard to Neutral. For comparison we also set sharpness to level three (3) in RIT.
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