EM10 - EV observation maybe a setting error?

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by dancro11, Aug 14, 2015.

  1. dancro11

    dancro11 Mu-43 Rookie

    Jun 11, 2015
    I love the EM10. i recently came from a canon 550D and the size and weight reduction has made the camera worth its money already, the versatility makes me more than glad i purchased one and i really cant see my canon getting much use any more.. BUT there is one thing i have noticed that annoys me.

    i was taking images of my cat last night, low lighting and i wanted to capture the mood of him actually sleeping and not trying to remove my fingers or anything else he finds fun to attack. I was taking pics in aperture mode, auto ISO and EV set to 0, given the low lighting when using the canon, 0 EV meant an exposure would be the same as what the current lighting level is depending on where you took the reading. I was using centre weighted metering and every image i took came out over exposed for the situation. it wasnt that i was taking bad readings, it really seemed the camera decided that 0 EV means daylight level lighting as opposed to current lighting. once i dialed in -0.7/-1.0 EV it would produce the images i would expect at 0 EV.

    anyone have similar experience or an idea of a solution?
  2. eteless

    eteless Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 20, 2014
    I've done it when I bumped the AEL lock button before, other than that the metering is normally pretty accurate.
  3. Yong

    Yong Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 25, 2014
    Camera doesn't take 0 EV as day light level. Rather, 0 EV means center-positioned histogram depending on metering method.
    For example if you choose ESP metering method, camera try to evaluate every bit of lights across the whole scene equally and suggests you aperture/shutter speed/ISO value to produce well averaged Histogram.
    For center weighted metering method, it would weight more on center area(usually center of interests locates here) than peripheral area when calculating EV.

    I don't know what you're meaning when you saying "over exposure". If it's overexposure of overall Histogram, It may be not true. Unless there is significantly bright or dark object in peripheral area, Histogram always remains well without clipping as what it supposed to be. That said, I feel Olympus metering tends to be conservative.

    But if you mean "over exposure" by difference between camera's reading on light and your own reading of the scene(I believe this is the case), there always exist difference between them. You would expect 0 EV to matching the scene you're seeing when you're shooting, but Camera can't read the expectation in your mind. Every people has different perception and expectation about light and luminous scenes, so it just assumes that 0 EV compensation should produce center-postponed Histogram. And that doesn't matches your feeling on mood and light of the scene exactly.

    One of goodness of mirror-less camera is its live view. You can see simulated result of metered scene by camera before the shot, so can make proper compensation to match your vision in mind. It's far more nice and easy than doing exposure guess game with optical finder.(I admit the game is fun sometimes) Chimping for getting expected exposure isn't so smart, either.

    Please forgive my pomposity. It's one of my deeply interested themes in photography, so I was bit too excited.
  4. manju69

    manju69 Mu-43 Veteran

    Jul 1, 2011
    Stroud, UK
    Real Name:
    I don't know if this is the same thing, but when I first got m E-M10, I found it over exposed more than I expected (viewable in the histogram). I changed the picture settings to vivid and the histogram changed and was better. After a month shooting like that I changed the picture mode back to "natural" and found it was now ok - very odd. You can change how the camera exposes at a root level also - though forget how right now.
  5. Phocal

    Phocal Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 3, 2014
    Some photos to go along would really help in determining what is going on. One question tho, what color is your cat?
    • Agree Agree x 1
  6. b_rubenstein

    b_rubenstein Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 20, 2012
    Melbourne, FL
    Cameras measure the reflected light coming from what you see in the viewfinder. Since different things in the scene reflect different amounts of light (appear lighter or darker), camera makers give the option of using different metering modes for calculating the best exposure.
    Now, imagine and evenly illuminated medium grey wall. All properly calibrated reflected light meters and cameras should all give the same exposure reading regardless of metering mode. Put a large white, or black square in the middle of the wall and all the cameras and meters may give different exposure readings from each other and from each metering mode.
    What the photographer has to do is figure out how a camera meters and which metering modes give the best results for different lighting conditions. Mirrorless cameras make this easier since what you see in the viewfinder is how the camera is handling the metering. The EM-10 can be configured, in the menu, to show real time over and under exposure in the viewfinder. This is done by going into the "Gears", Display settings: D, info settings, LV high light and shadows = ON. EV compensation can then used to shift the exposure to taste.
  7. gary0319

    gary0319 Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 26, 2014
    Sarasota FL
    I kind of depends on what you mean by overexposed. Is the entire image is over exposed or if just the highlights areas are over exposed. I find that if I set the in-camera curves (Fn2) to -2,-3 on the highlights, I get better results, especially in areas here there is a wide contrast range.
  8. dancro11

    dancro11 Mu-43 Rookie

    Jun 11, 2015
    first of all thanks for your replies.

    By over exposed, i dont mean loss of detail, in fact, the images were fine. The images taken appeared to be taken during daylight hours, and not in the darkened lighting that they were.

    I was half pressing then recomposing, so maybe the fact my cat is grey/black may have had something to do with it, especially as i was using CWM as opposed to the entire frame, and getting as close as i could to the cat.

    Coming from DSLR im not used to live view, i think to take full advantage of the camera im going to have to make a conscious effort to use it.
    I think maybe its more of a user error than a camera one and ill have to spend some time with it.
  9. Gary_Berg

    Gary_Berg Mu-43 Regular

    May 27, 2012
    I would indeed expect what you experienced. The camera was trying to make the cat 18% gray, but since the cat was darker than that it added extra light.

    The Olympus bodies have an option in metering to expose for highlights or shadows. I'd try the shadow metering on the cat.
  10. Dragos101

    Dragos101 Mu-43 Regular

    May 1, 2015
    Bucharest, Romania
    Real Name:
    First of all, the picture you were probably trying to take is a low key shot - one where the "average" is supposed to be lower than 18% grey. The camera generally can't know that and that's exactly where you need to use the exposure compensation.
    Second, using center weighted might not be the best mode depending on what's in the center of the image. If the center is a dar spot than the camera will bump the exposure because it's trying to bring that to 18% gray. In that case you would've been better off with the matrix exposure which would've average the exposure better. If the center is a lighter spot than the camera would bring the exposure down trying to bring it to 18% gray.
    There are also some other metering modes as explained, but in general, since the biggest advantage of mirrorless is the WYSIWYG EVF, I find that matrix with EV compensation is the easiest and most reliable mode. You can always adjust the overall mood of the pic with just o couple of wheel turns and you're always in control.