UPDATE (April 11, 2019): Recently, I don’t know when this became available, I noticed a new profile in Lightroom. The new profile is called “Adobe Standard v2” and if you use this new profile then the white balance works as expected. Selecting this profile will allow you to use the standard white balance presets such as Daylight, Cloudy, Shade, etc. and the results will be much better. The only downside is that if you use custom profiles such as DVLOP, the standard white balance presets will still be off.
Us early adopters like to live dangerously, don’t we? X-T3 Lightroom white balance handling has a bit of a bug. Lightroom was updated today to version 8.0 with the ability to support X-T3 .RAF files. Yay! However, there seems to be an issue with how Lightroom handles the white balance of these new .RAF files. I saw a discussion about this on Facebook. There was a user in the group who said that the “As Shot” white balance from Lightroom as different for .RAF files decoded by Lightroom and .DNG files processed with Iridient X-Transformer. I was ready to chalk it up to user error on the part of the original poster. Perhaps he had some setting or camera profile different for the two files. However, just to debunk him, I imported some shots from around town to check it out. I was surprised to be that he was right!
Same Image, Different Settings
I checked and the “As Shot” white balance for the X-T3 file from Iridient was 5050K/+12. The same file processed by Lightroom had settings of 4950K/+66. The images look exactly the same so it’s a bug that we can live with until Adobe fixes it, but it still seemed strange to me that the X-T3 Lightroom white balance settings were so off. Here is a screen shot of the two photos side by side. They are the exact same image file, just with the raw information handled by different programs.
(Click on any of the following images to open the full size image in a new tab.)
Before I go on any further, I’m not one of those who complains incessantly about Lightroom. I’m not going to tell you to switch to Capture One, which is the popular suggestion these days. I am simply pointing out this bug here for anyone wondering what is going on with their X-T3 Lightroom white balance settings. My hope is that it helps people know that they are not crazy and it’s just an apparent bug that will most definitely be remedied by Adobe very soon. You can always continue using Iridient if you need to better match your X-T3 files with other cameras.
See the X-T3 Lightroom White Balance Bug in Action
To really see the problem, I went to Lightroom’s White Balance setting for Daylight. This photo was taken in Daylight so it should look pretty close to accurate at this setting. Two screenshots below show how different they are.
The first image is from the Lightroom processed file with “As Shot” white balance and it looks OK. Good enough to accurate to my eye.
Lightroom, RAF, “As Shot” White Balance
The problem is when you take the Lightroom file and try to apply any of the white balance presets (Daylight, Cloudy, Shade, etc.). This next screenshot shows the same RAW image set to Daylight white balance.
Lightroom, RAF, “Daylight” White Balance
WOW! It looks terrible! Look how green it is! Yikes!
To show that it is indeed a problem with how Lightroom processes the X-T3 RAW file, below are the files processed by Iridient X-Transformer. This first image shows the file with “As Shot” white balance
Iridient X-Transformer, DNG, “As Shot” White Balance
Looks pretty good to me. Next, here is the image with the Daylight white balance preset..
Iridient X-Transformer, DNG, “Daylight” White Balance
Again, it looks just fine. Iridient X-Transformer processed RAW files will not have the same issue as Lightroom processed files.
I’m sure a fix is coming soon so be patient.
But rest assured, your camera is not broken!
Lightroom and how it handles white balance of X-T3 files definitely have issues in Lightroom 8.0. It’s nothing a little slider movement won’t fix, but it’s worth knowing about. Especially if you often work with multiple cameras and often sync white balances. I do this all the time when shooting weddings.
I am totally expecting a fix from Adobe soon. I went on the forums and saw that their staff has been made aware of the issue.