About Nikon’s SOOC colors

This is just a short pondering of the SOOC Nikon colors. There are six different main color profiles, Picture Controls, in Nikon Z cameras. Of course there are also many filter-kind of profiles, but as they are more like special filters, I do not count them to the main profiles.

The main profiles are (in no particular order) Standard, Neutral, Vivid, Portrait, Landscape and Flat. Coming from Fujifilm ecosystem having used and tweaked a lot of different film simulations, I am used to the idea of having different color profiles for different purposes.

With Fujifilm cameras the film simulations are mostly very different from each other. Their colors have different saturation, luminosity and even different color shifts. Some of them, of course, are only slightly deviating from a “neutral” color scape.

When I started testing the Nikon Picture Control color profiles, I couldn’t even think that those would not have a variety of different color shifts. But to my surprise it seems that Nikon sticks to one, and only one, colorscape giving the different Picture Controls only different contrast curves and slight tweaks of saturation in different areas of color spectrum. And the surprise was that there are no color shifts between the Picture Controls. Of course such tweaks can be found in those extra filters, but I don’t count them being useful to many if any situations.

After I bought Nikon camera I was quite surprised that there is not much talk of the Picture Controls in the web. And now I know the reason, there is nothing to talk about. Nikon has made their decision, but I personally think Nikon, as all other camera brands, should open their color profiles for tweaking. I would even pay per install if I could be the one that chooses what Picture Controls my Nikon (or any other brand) camera includes. This same I have said about Fujifilm’s film simulations. And I believe this is a direction the world is going, eventually.

Well, I can live with the Nikon’s colorscape for SOOC jpegs as I happen to like it. I have personally used the Portrait profile with my tweaks (mentioned in this post), unless I want to use B&W. And when ever I want to play with the colors I just go to Capture One. But somehow, in modern digital world, I feel that these kind of limitations in-camera don’t belong to the era I live.

These were my observations and I hope to hear your thoughts in comments. Have I missed something with my observations?

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