E-pm1 ibis - how to test?

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by redington, May 18, 2012.

  1. redington

    redington Mu-43 Regular

    Apr 28, 2012
    I have a refurbed epm1. I'm now reading that some of this model have problems with the ibis system. I haven't been thrilled with the low light performance/clarity of my unit. It's not terrible, but I was hoping for better. What should I expect? Under what circumstances does the ibis kick in? Is there a good method for testing (street light at night?)? Thanks for any help.
  2. Kelton

    Kelton Mu-43 Regular

    Aug 13, 2011
    San Diego, CA
    The kit lens is not a great low light performing lens... that's why I got a 20mm f/1.7.

    I left IBIS on, and just saw if I got blurry pictures under my normal use. I haven't so I didn't worry too much about it. Don't worry about the few negatives, and enjoy all the positives.

    Just my two cents.
  3. redington

    redington Mu-43 Regular

    Apr 28, 2012
    Oh, trust me, I'm enjoying it. My only shot at a better lens in the near future is through an fd adapter and I need to wait a paycheck or two for that. After that I'll have a couple 50mm to play with. I'm going to miss the old focus system from my ae-1 program days, but I'll get used to the mf system on this one.
  4. WT21

    WT21 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 19, 2010
    If you want to test, here's what to look for: the bad one ghost/double image around a shutter speed of 1/100 second +/-. Set your camera up to test at that shutter speed, hand held (not on a tripod), and take a BUNCH of test photos. I would say at least 20. Then compare. Mine had the issue, I sent it to Oly, and they fixed it, and I've VERY happy with it.
  5. redington

    redington Mu-43 Regular

    Apr 28, 2012
    OK, so I pegged it at 1/100 and shook my hands pretty good. Most results looked like the attached. If I get the AF tracking on a kid in lower light, will the IBIS help to keep them clear or am I just SOL with them in low light?

    Attached Files:

  6. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    IBIS won't help tracking your kid. If anything it's detrimental for any action shots as it will cause a slight lag in the shutter release and you need a faster shutter speed to stop the motion of your subject, making IBIS ineffective or useless.

    At 1/100s you won't see much if any effect from the IBIS. Anywhere from about 1/4s to 1/30s you should be able to see the difference noticeably. Testing is quite easy... photograph one object with the same lens and same focal length, at a shutter speed where you can just barely get a decent photo hand-held with IBIS off. This will probably be slower for a wider angle and faster for a telephoto. For instance, for a 50mm it might be between 1/10s to 1/15s, whereas with a 25mm lens it might be between 1/4s to 1/8s, but it really all varies depending on the person and other factors. Choose a shutter speed where you can occasionally get a sharp image but not consistently (with IS off).

    Next, take a lot of photos at that shutter speed with IBIS off, and a bunch with IBIS on. The more photos you take, the more accurate your testing will be, so run off as many frames as you have patience for. You should notice the photos to be consistently sharper with IBIS on. If it's the other way around, you have a bugged IS.

    My favorite subject for these tests is a headshot of a porcelain doll with a 50mm lens. I like to see those sharp eyes. ;) Just about any subject will do though. Make sure to keep the lighting consistent.

    I had one Mini that had the problem (a refurb like yours), and one which didn't (not a refurb). The problem went away as soon as I updated the firmware on the bad camera, and it is now good (except for the other Mini bug, failing to remember date/time. xP ).
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