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.

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Custom Picture Control profiles for Nikon Z6 II (Classic Contrast B&W Soft and Portra II)

My previous attempt at the Classic Contrast B&W produced a very strong contrast B&W -look that was aimed at a kind of “urban” look. Backing up a bit with sharpness (and clarity, which added quite a bit of contrast) without touching the tone curve I made a new custom picture profile. The original was set up without color filter. I usually like processing B&W images without filters as I just don’t like emphasizing some colors. But with this profile I used the yellow filter.

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Custom Portra Picture Control for Nikon Z6 II

I like to use Capture One for post processing. On the other hand I love to explore what kind of looks I can get in-camera. And I really want to find some look that I want to use as a base look. So I did A LOT of tweaking with my Nikon Z6 II camera and processed photo after photo in search of a look that I could like. I published in my earlier post some settings that I started with. This time I wanted to explore the Portrait setting more deeply. I compared the Portrait look (Picture Control) to the Portra 400 Capture One -style that I have made earlier. And I tuned this Custom Picture Control to look like that style, not the original film (though the style has been tuned at least to some extent to look like Portra 400 film).

Nikon Portrait color profile has very much similarities with the Portra 400 colorscape. There are differences and as the Nikon Picture Controls cannot change individual colors (their hue, saturation or luminosity) one has to settle to the colors the Picture Control color profiles offer. But as I said the colors are quite close with Portra 400, at least to my eye. And so I tuned a custom curve and custom Picture Control for this look and named it as Portra 400.

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Nikon Z SOOC photos (Custom Picture Controls)

Okay. Coming from Fujifilm and it’s gorgeous film simulations, jumping to the “boring” Nikon was a step of faith. I knew I can get the looks I want with Capture One, especially as I do make my own styles (and even share them here freely). But what can one get straight out of camera? Can you get SOOC images from Nikon that, like with Fuji, stands on their own.

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