E-M10 & Auto ISO

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by dechoder, May 26, 2014.

  1. dechoder

    dechoder Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 1, 2013
    Hi all, I have recently bought an E-M10 and been trying to familiarise myself with the camera. A question I have is the Auto ISO setting. I was taking some test shots indoor last night. The camera was set to Aperture priority mode (F4/F4.5), noise filter was Low and Auto ISO was consistently set to 5000 and above.

    Previewing the shots on the camera I could see that noise was prominent in all the photos after zooming in (5x or 7x). Then I manually set the ISO to 600/800 and took some more test shots. There was a lot less noise in the photos this time round.

    So my question is, why did Auto ISO pick such a high ISO? I know it's based on the shooting conditions but the photos are not usable. Wouldn't I be better off setting it manually?
  2. vloher

    vloher New to Mu-43

    Apr 1, 2014
    Apex, NC
    Real Name:
    Vic Loher
    Hi Dechoder,

    As you stated the camera picked the high ISO based on the shooting conditions. You have a couple of choices: (1) You can set the limit on the highest ISO that you are willing to let the camera select if you stay with Auto ISO or (2) As you stated, you can select the ISO manually. I usually use Auto ISO with a high setting of 1000. However, if I am shooting real low light, I may opt to set a higher setting, but I make that choice, not the camera.

    • Like Like x 2
  3. Harvey Melvin Richards

    Harvey Melvin Richards Photo Posting Junkie

    Feb 15, 2014
    Southwest Utah
    I rarely use auto ISO on my E-M10. I want to be able to decide where I want it. If you go to the E menu, Exp/?/ISO, ISO-Auto Set, you can set the high limit for the Auto ISO.
    • Like Like x 1
  4. Yycdave

    Yycdave Mu-43 Regular

    Feb 26, 2014
    Set the ISO limit in the menu (*E,ISO-Auto Set) to a High Limit suitable to the ISO you would like. It's a personal choice but I have mine set to 1600, and while there is a bit of noise at that setting most shots are very usable. I find that 3200 introduces just a bit too much noise for my liking.
    • Like Like x 1
  5. dechoder

    dechoder Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 1, 2013
    Thanks guys. My high limit for the Auto ISO was set to 6400. That was after reading Robin Wong's review of the E-M10. But then I suppose he shot in raw and the photos were cleaned up after. No worries, I shall reset to a lower ISO.

    One more question, when AUTO ISO was on and it would start to blink. What does that mean?
  6. barry13

    barry13 Super Moderator

    Mar 7, 2014
    Southern California
    Real Name:
    Probably means you don't have enough light.


    Sent from my iPad using Mu-43
    • Like Like x 1
  7. Klorenzo

    Klorenzo Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 10, 2014
    With the auto iso, in A mode, the EM-10 will try to give you a shutter speed roughly equal to twice the current focal length (like the old rule) with a minimum of 60/80.

    You can see this by setting the camera in aperture mode and pointing it to a bright area until the iso drops to 200. Then slowly point the camera away from the bright area until you see that the iso starts to increase keeping the same shutter speed. Do this with a 150mm lens and the target speed will be 250/300. I do not have longer lenses.

    Of course you are framing different things with different light so the exposure needs to change but to me is quite evident that there is a target speed involved.

    In S or M mode looks like it does the only thing reasonable: rise it as needed to get the correct exposure.
    • Like Like x 1
  8. kirschm

    kirschm Mu-43 Regular

    May 4, 2014
    In a german forum we are just discussing the same... so far it seem that those are the 'kings'... in this order:

    1) 1/(Brennweite mal X)... ist X=2?
    2) Flash-Sync-Speed
    3) Auto-ISO

    1) 1 / (focal length x X)... is X equal to 2?
    2) Flash-Sync-Speed (yes, sounds strange, but this is a key parameter, even if not using flash)
    3) Auto-ISO

    Any thoughts regarding those 3 kings... and their order of influence?
  9. Klorenzo

    Klorenzo Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 10, 2014
    I did a quick test setting the flash "slow speed" to 1/10 (before was 1/60). Now the "target speed" at 14mm drops to 1/30.
    It's like: rise the iso to keep the speed at the maximum value between focal x 2 and Flash slow speed. So I think it's a draw :)

    This also means you can use the flash "slow speed" to set a minimum shutter speed for aperture priority. Nice.
  10. Ulfric M Douglas

    Ulfric M Douglas Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 6, 2010
    Simply set maximum auto-ISO to 800 to suit your own noise tolerance
    and live with the resulting slow shutterspeeds in dim light.

    Personally I'm fine with Noise-filter OFF and max auto-ISO 6400 ... easily pleased :)
    • Like Like x 1
  11. barry13

    barry13 Super Moderator

    Mar 7, 2014
    Southern California
    Real Name:
    Does this apply to the E-M1 also?

  12. adi10times

    adi10times Mu-43 Regular

    Apr 24, 2010
    Bandung, Indonesia
    Real Name:
    Michael Adi P.
    Although EM10 IBIS works really nice, I found out that with long lens (I use 40-150), auto iso sometimes reaches max limit even when I believe I can use slower shutter speed :)
    My setting which works for me :
    - I set auto ISO max to 3200
    - assign arrow pad (bottom) to ISO/WB for quick changing ISO
    - for manual ISO, I change the iso step to 1 EV. With auto ISO I believe camera still uses 1/3 EV ISO step