Lightroom: contrast increases when increasing exposure

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  • Updated 7 years ago
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When I increase exposure in Lightroom (RAW), the picture gets too contrasty. Is there anyway to avoid this?
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Jinn Leong

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Posted 7 years ago

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Steve Sprengel, Champion

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Increasing contrast causes bright areas to become brighter and the dark areas to become darker.

Are you saying that increasing the Exposure makes dark area darker?

You might attach a before and after screenshot of the photo to illustrate what you mean.
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Eric Chan, Camera Raw Engineer

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Suggestion: move Contrast slider to the left.
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Jinn Leong

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It's not enough though.
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Jinn Leong

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I don't know. I don't want to show the entire picture, but here's one part. It looks ugly... Brightness don't seem to have this problem. http://img39.imageshack.us/img39/5156...
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Steve Sprengel, Champion

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If Brightness works then use that, then. The toning parameters have different effects so use the one that works the best.

What appears to be happening, here, is that the image is so dark to begin with that parts of it really are black--the red, green, and blue channels clipped to zero, while others have the blue and green clipped to zero and only the red is brightened, where finally, some have the blue clipped to zero and the red and green channels rise a little above zero so you get yellow. You are basically revealing the bottom few bits of color that were almost too black to see and now are 16-times brighter. Exp +1 is 2 times brighter. Exp +2 is 2^2=4 times brighter. Exp +3 is 2^3 =8 times brighter. Exp +4 = 2^4=16 times brighter.

What your calling "contrasty" is merely the banding of the shadows due to lack of bit-depth in the data but this shadow-banding brightened enough to see.

Without having the actual RAW file to play with, that is about as much as I can guess with just one example.
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Rob Cole

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Jinn,

In theory there is no difference between practice and theory, but in practice - there is: Forget what these ISO-less "enthusiasts" are telling you and figure out for yourself how to correctly expose your photographs.

The "contrast" phenomenon is due to the darker tones being so far slammed against the left of the histogram, that the exposure slider can not resurrect them. It can however lighten the lighter tones, so it does...

Its not just about noise, per se, but about having enough data to work with - Lightroom can not create something out of nothing...

Rob
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Jinn Leong

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ISO is the same thing - it amplifies the bottom bits.
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Jinn Leong

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It is right - but I think my DxO Optics Pro + Lightroom workflow is the culprit.
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Jinn Leong

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Yes, my workflow is the culprit - DxO Optics Pro is increasing contrast without telling me -.- Lightroom picture - http://img689.imageshack.us/img689/17...
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Jinn Leong

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I fixed the problem, thanks for all your help - I could edit my picture like normal again.
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Rob Cole

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Your subject needs to be exposed more with light, and less with lightroom.
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Jinn Leong

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Any better way to decrease contrast without that greyish midtone?