Nikon D800, 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 VR lens @ 28mm, f/11, 7 frame HDR, finished in Photomatix Pro.
Chromatic aberration may show up as a colored halo in your images, usually surrounding a dark object placed against a bright background, like a mountain against the sky. In my experience, the color is usually pink or green or both, but I’ve also had purple.You may even find a purple halo around sparkling jewels on a wedding dress shot in bright sunlight. It depends on the characteristics of your particular lens. All lens manufacturers make lenses that show this chromatic aberration, but their more expensive lenses use materials (like fluorite lens elements) to help minimize it. There are also some things you can do to minimize it’s negative effects in your images.
First of all, you can close your lens down a little bit. You’ll have the biggest trouble with chromatic aberration when you shoot with the aperture wide open, and especially if you shoot wide open focussing at a longer distance, like a landscape shot on your fast 50mm lens at f/1.8. Try shooting at f/5.6 or f/11 on the same lens and you’ll probably have less trouble.
Even better, Lightroom (and ACR in Photoshop) have simple sliders to help correct for chromatic aberration. Start by going to the Lens Correction tab in the Develop Module, click on the Basic tab, and choose the box that says, “Remove Chromatic Aberration.” For RAW images, this button has always corrected the problem for me 100%. I always apply this correction before I start my HDR plugin.
Occasionally, editing in other plugins may enhance the aberration and when the TIFF or JPG file comes back to Lightroom I may need to make more corrections. Still in Lens Corrections, click on the Color tab to find more adjustments. You can try moving the sliders around until you get the result you’re after, but I recommend picking the dropper tool and using it to click on the colored halo you want to remove. You may need to zoom in to greater than 1:1 to use the tool more accurately.
Chromatic aberration is just a fact of photography, but by stopping down the lens and using Lightroom’s excellent tools, it doesn’t have to be a problem.
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