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Author Topic: Editing in a dark room: results  (Read 14814 times)

Frans Waterlander

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Editing in a dark room: results
« on: September 13, 2016, 12:38:47 am »

As covered in another thread, I have maintained that editing in too dark a room will result in a tendency to tone down the image brightness, resulting in prints that are too dark and here is the proof. My digital darkroom lighting causes the viewing area on the right site of my monitor to be around 28-30 lux; on the left side it is around 5-7 lux. With the lighting off, it's 0 lux everywhere. I edited the same image with the lights on and off, using Curves to vary the midpoint, trying to make the image look as I remember it. The results in % brightness:
lights on                            lights off
average: 54%                    average: 49%
wall: 97%                          wall: 89%
sky: 82%                           sky 58%
tailgate: 72%                     tailgate: 47%
shadow: 12%                     shadow: 6%
The averages were obtained by selecting the whole image and using filter/blur/average.

This suggests that the room brightness at lower levels (below 32 lux) does indeed have a big impact on brightness perception and editing results.
 
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Jeremy Roussak

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2016, 03:27:23 am »

You may be right, I suppose, and those more knowledgeable than I will argue the point; but nobody with a vestige of scientific knowledge or training would describe a single-image trial, undertaken unsupervised by a man who already believed he knew what the result would be and so had a (perhaps unconscious) vested interest in the outcome being in accordance with his preconceptions as "proof".

Jeremy
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Mark D Segal

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2016, 07:26:54 am »

As covered in another thread, I have maintained that editing in too dark a room will result in a tendency to tone down the image brightness, resulting in prints that are too dark and here is the proof. My digital darkroom lighting causes the viewing area on the right site of my monitor to be around 28-30 lux; on the left side it is around 5-7 lux. With the lighting off, it's 0 lux everywhere. I edited the same image with the lights on and off, using Curves to vary the midpoint, trying to make the image look as I remember it. The results in % brightness:
lights on                            lights off
average: 54%                    average: 49%
wall: 97%                          wall: 89%
sky: 82%                           sky 58%
tailgate: 72%                     tailgate: 47%
shadow: 12%                     shadow: 6%
The averages were obtained by selecting the whole image and using filter/blur/average.

This suggests that the room brightness at lower levels (below 32 lux) does indeed have a big impact on brightness perception and editing results.

The missing element in this discussion is the relationship between monitor brightness and environmental brightness in terms of their impact on the predictability of your softproofing. They can offset each other or aggravate each other depending on how handled. Much has been written about this.
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GWGill

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2016, 07:54:09 am »

As covered in another thread, I have maintained that editing in too dark a room will result in a tendency to tone down the image brightness, resulting in prints that are too dark and here is the proof.
That's certainly consistent with expected color appearance phenomena - specifically the Stevens Effect and Bartleson-Breneman Equations. (See Mark Fairchild's  book, "Color Appearance Models", chapters 6.7 and 6.9).
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schertz

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2016, 10:27:46 am »

As covered in another thread, I have maintained that editing in too dark a room will result in a tendency to tone down the image brightness, resulting in prints that are too dark and here is the proof. My digital darkroom lighting causes the viewing area on the right site of my monitor to be around 28-30 lux; on the left side it is around 5-7 lux. With the lighting off, it's 0 lux everywhere. I edited the same image with the lights on and off, using Curves to vary the midpoint, trying to make the image look as I remember it. The results in % brightness:
lights on                            lights off
average: 54%                    average: 49%
wall: 97%                          wall: 89%
sky: 82%                           sky 58%
tailgate: 72%                     tailgate: 47%
shadow: 12%                     shadow: 6%
The averages were obtained by selecting the whole image and using filter/blur/average.

This suggests that the room brightness at lower levels (below 32 lux) does indeed have a big impact on brightness perception and editing results.

I agree completely with Jeremy (kikashi) above. As a working scientist at the largest university in Canada, the idea that this is a well thought out experiment and/or "proof" of anything is ridiculous...
If YOU are happy to print in a bright or dark room and are getting the results YOU are happy with, then just go ahead and edit and print away... The amount of time that has been spent arguing over this issue the past week or two is mind boggling...

MS

(Edit for typo)
« Last Edit: September 13, 2016, 10:37:05 am by schertz »
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N80

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2016, 10:28:36 am »

You may be right, I suppose, and those more knowledgeable than I will argue the point; but nobody with a vestige of scientific knowledge or training would describe a single-image trial, undertaken unsupervised by a man who already believed he knew what the result would be and so had a (perhaps unconscious) vested interest in the outcome being in accordance with his preconceptions as "proof".

Jeremy

Yep. This test is fairly meaningless as application for anyone else.
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digitaldog

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #6 on: September 13, 2016, 10:40:11 am »

A good example of how not to propose a sound testing methodology Frans, as other's have suggested.
BTW, what device did you use to measure the lux?
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Jim Kasson

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #7 on: September 13, 2016, 10:45:52 am »

As covered in another thread, I have maintained that editing in too dark a room will result in a tendency to tone down the image brightness, resulting in prints that are too dark and here is the proof. My digital darkroom lighting causes the viewing area on the right site of my monitor to be around 28-30 lux; on the left side it is around 5-7 lux. With the lighting off, it's 0 lux everywhere. I edited the same image with the lights on and off, using Curves to vary the midpoint, trying to make the image look as I remember it. The results in % brightness:
lights on                            lights off
average: 54%                    average: 49%
wall: 97%                          wall: 89%
sky: 82%                           sky 58%
tailgate: 72%                     tailgate: 47%
shadow: 12%                     shadow: 6%
The averages were obtained by selecting the whole image and using filter/blur/average.

This suggests that the room brightness at lower levels (below 32 lux) does indeed have a big impact on brightness perception and editing results.

What was the surround value (a specification of your editing space and a triplet in that space is sufficient), and how big was it compared to the image?

Jim

digitaldog

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #8 on: September 13, 2016, 10:58:45 am »

That's certainly consistent with expected color appearance phenomena - specifically the Stevens Effect and Bartleson-Breneman Equations. (See Mark Fairchild's  book, "Color Appearance Models", chapters 6.7 and 6.9).
I've got that book, the equations are out of my pay grade. But I do see this specifically on page 140: The Stevens effect indicates that as luminance levels increase, dark colors will appear darker and light colors will appear lighter. The Stevens effect can be demonstrated by viewing an image at high and low luminance levels.(Andrew Rodney:this image is or isn't an emissive display?) A B&W  image is particularly effective for this demonstration. (Andrew Rodney: Fran's used the wrong kind of image to test). At low luminance levels (Andrew Rodney:undefined), the image will appear to have a rather low contrast (Andrew Rodney: Contrast or perceived brightness?). White areas will not appear very bright and, perhaps surprisingly, dark areas will not appear very dark. If the image is moved to a significantly higher level of illumination, white areas appear substantially brighter and dark areas appear darker.


Nowhere do I see anything that states or suggests editing images on an emissive display in a dim environment produces images or prints that are too dark.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2016, 11:54:20 am by digitaldog »
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TonyW

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #9 on: September 13, 2016, 11:48:18 am »

You may be right, I suppose, and those more knowledgeable than I will argue the point; but nobody with a vestige of scientific knowledge or training would describe a single-image trial, undertaken unsupervised by a man who already believed he knew what the result would be and so had a (perhaps unconscious) vested interest in the outcome being in accordance with his preconceptions as "proof".

Jeremy
I agree and would add that it can be very difficult once one has a theory about how something works to be really subjective.  This can lead us human beings to embrace those theories that coincide with our own and reject automatically those that don't - this is not the same of course as purposely misleading for ones own ends.

I have edited and printed both in a very dark environment up to fairly bright and not observed this particular phenomena as long as print viewing illuminated adequately I have usually been happy with the print outcome.  Just my subjective view of course
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Jeremy Roussak

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #10 on: September 13, 2016, 01:17:54 pm »

I agree and would add that it can be very difficult once one has a theory about how something works to be really subjective.

Objective, I think!

Jeremy
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TonyW

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #11 on: September 13, 2016, 01:25:26 pm »

Objective, I think!

Jeremy
You are correct, that's what I meant.  I think the error due to me being in the dark  :)
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Frans Waterlander

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #12 on: September 13, 2016, 01:53:30 pm »

A good example of how not to propose a sound testing methodology Frans, as other's have suggested.
BTW, what device did you use to measure the lux?

Never claimed this to be a sound testing methodology, but it's my effort to test, with the gear I have, the idea that a dim editing environment has an impact on editing. I just didn't think that the impact of room brightness would cease to exist below a certain level. I tried this on many different images, not just the one I posted, and the results were similar. Yes, I'm well aware of possible biases, but I tried to be as objective as possible. If anyone has a better idea, I'm all ears. And maybe folks should run their own tests and see what happens.

The ambient light measurement function of SpectraView II with the SpectraSensor Pro was used to measure the lux values.
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digitaldog

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #13 on: September 13, 2016, 02:02:09 pm »


Never claimed this to be a sound testing methodology, but it's my effort to test, with the gear I have, the idea that a dim editing environment has an impact on editing.
And your peers (if I can be so kind) have dismissed it. And no, you didn't prove your idea.
Quote
Yes, I'm well aware of possible biases, but I tried to be as objective as possible. If anyone has a better idea, I'm all ears.
Well for one, listen to the two color scientists and the ISO, referenced in the locked post, that dismiss your ideas based on their recommendations for ambient conditions! One stating a lux of 4!
Quote
The ambient light measurement function of SpectraView II with the SpectraSensor Pro was used to measure the lux values.
Of the room?
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Frans Waterlander

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #14 on: September 13, 2016, 02:19:03 pm »

Yes, of the room.
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digitaldog

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #15 on: September 13, 2016, 02:27:31 pm »

Yes, of the room.
So you also missed SpectraView's recommendation for Lux that of course jives with the ISO (what do they know.....)  :o :
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Frans Waterlander

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #16 on: September 13, 2016, 03:05:35 pm »

So you also missed SpectraView's recommendation for Lux that of course jives with the ISO (what do they know.....)  :o :

Didn't miss that and my setup meets those recommendations. They don't imply or guarantee that within the ranges recommended there won't be an impact on brightness perception and editing.
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digitaldog

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #17 on: September 13, 2016, 03:08:33 pm »

Didn't miss that and my setup meets those recommendations. They don't imply or guarantee that within the ranges recommended there won't be an impact on brightness perception and editing.
They don't suggest that, because there's zero evidence, that using an ambient light as low as 32 Lux, causes images to appear or print too dark. That's your flat earth theory of which there is still no proof. Actually just the opposite.
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Frans Waterlander

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #18 on: September 13, 2016, 03:14:10 pm »

They don't suggest that, because there's zero evidence, that using an ambient light as low as 32 Lux, causes images to appear or print too dark. That's your flat earth theory of which there is still no proof. Actually just the opposite.

My theory and testing seems to indicate otherwise.
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digitaldog

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Re: Editing in a dark room: results
« Reply #19 on: September 13, 2016, 03:15:52 pm »

My theory and testing seems to indicate otherwise.
Only to you. As other's have correctly pointed out.
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