Help with omd em5 exposure compensation

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by cimiano, Jun 6, 2013.

  1. cimiano

    cimiano New to Mu-43

    3
    Jun 6, 2013
    In M mode, the exposure compensation in my Olympus OMD EM5 camera is set at -3 and I can't figure out how to change it. The two dials on the right top change the aperture and speed, but not exposure compensation. Could someone please help? Thanks a lot!
     
  2. With_Eyes_Unclouded

    With_Eyes_Unclouded Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 17, 2012
    Vassilios
    Welcome to the forum! :smile:

    Are you familiar with the "exposure triangle" concept? In short, a "correct" (meaning 18% grey, but that's another subject) exposure, would show your exposure mettering at zero. This is dependant on aperture, shutter speed and ISO (hence "triangle").

    In manual mode you are in control of all three parameters. So, if you are underexposed (-3EV or more, in your case) you have to either open the aperture (say, from f/4 to f/2.8 or larger), decrease the shutter speed (e.g. from 1/1000th to 1/250th of a sec) or increase the ISO value. Probably a combination of the three, according to what you are trying to do with your exposure. Since you have a "deficit" of 3+ stops, you have to compensate by that amount.

    All the above go out of the window when you use flash in manual mode, since there enters a fourth parameter which is the relative power of the flash (a combination of flashpower and distance to subject).

    Hope this helps and haven't perplexed you further!
     
  3. szanda

    szanda Mu-43 Regular

    Isn't that -3 for flash compensation? Icons look almost the same, it happened to me before when I was fiddling with flash comp and worrying about exp comp not working :)

    Sent from my GT-I9100 using Mu-43 mobile app
     
  4. With_Eyes_Unclouded

    With_Eyes_Unclouded Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 17, 2012
    Vassilios
    No, you can end up with -3 (when flashing it means more than 3 stops) underexposure even without using flash. Flash compensation is for auto flash modes and TTL. If you use a flash, either on camera or remotely, in manual mode (I mean, the flash in manual mode), exposure indication means nothing. You have to either test shot (and read the histogram, highlight/shadow exposure, etc) or use a light/flash meter.
     
  5. klee

    klee Mu-43 Veteran

    367
    Mar 20, 2013
    Houston, TX
    Kevin
    maybe your ISO is stuck at 200. You can enable AUTO ISO for M mode in the menus. (AUTO ISO > ALL instead of P-A-S)
     
  6. cimiano

    cimiano New to Mu-43

    3
    Jun 6, 2013
    Thanks for your answers but now I'm more confused. In A or S modes, you can change the exposure compensation with the dials on the top right of the camera. Are you saying you cannot do the same in M mode and you have to adjust the aperture or speed to overcome the -3 setting in the exposure compensation? Just to clarify, it's not that I'm trying to take a picture and it's undersposed. The problem is that the settings at the botom of the pannel shows that the exposure compesation is set to -3
     
  7. With_Eyes_Unclouded

    With_Eyes_Unclouded Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 17, 2012
    Vassilios
    The "exposure compensation" dial works (in all cameras) only in priority modes. These are Shutter (S) or Aperture (A) priority. What it does is change the SECOND parameter, the one "without priority" which you cannot change in either mode. It doesn't work "by itself" in Manual mode, since, in the latter, you can change everything manualy. In this mode what you see is just an indicator of exposure.
     
  8. Robstar1963

    Robstar1963 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    902
    Jun 10, 2011
    Isle of Wight England UK
    Robert (Rob)
    Actually this is incorrect
    Very usefully on Panasonic Cameras such as the G3 and G5 etc there is an IAuto + (plus) mode which is like the ordinary iAuto mode but with the added ability to make adjustments to some additional parameters including Exposure Compensation which works the same as it does with Priority modes by pushing in the rear thumbwheel
    Also a second push of the thumbwheel allows you to change (overide) the aperture that the camera has selected automatically so that you can control the depth of field (a little sliding bar icon comes up at this stage indicating that the depth f field is changing from "landscape" type setting where everything from near to far is in focus to a more narrow "portrait " type setting where depth of field is narrower
    These are very useful features for those starting out wanting a little more control among others
    Regards
    Rob
     
  9. David A

    David A Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 30, 2011
    Brisbane, Australia
    In M mode what you are seeing is not an exposure compensation value, it's a readout of how much you are under or over exposed according to the meter. What it is showing you is that you are 3 or more stops under exposed.

    You can't set exposure compensation in M mode. Exposure compensation tells the camera to under or over expose by a set amount, but that requires the camera to be setting the exposure. In M mode you have told the camera that you don't want it to set exposure and that you're going to do that yourself. What the camera gives you then is just information on where the exposure you have set lies in relation to the meter's recommendation.

    In M mode one of the 2 dials controls aperture and the other shutter speed (you can choose which controls which in the settings). So, if you have the display telling you that you are 3 or more stops under-exposed you simply choose whether you want to open up your aperture, use a slower shutter speed, or change your ISO setting. Change one and the readout of how much you are under-exposed will change, but it may take a big change in the settings to get it to change. The display can only show a reading up to +/-3 stops and if you are underexposed by 10 stops, for example, you are going to have to increase your exposure by more than 7 stops before that value will change.

    So, check your settings to find out which dial controls aperture and which controls shutter speed in M mode, decide which of the 3 parameters (aperture, shutter speed, and ISO) you want to adjust—you can use one parameter or a combination of any two or all three of them if you wish—and adjust your exposure to the value you want.

    You have to remember that you may not want to have the readout show "0". If in one of the auto modes you wanted it to show "+1" to provide some detail in a backlit object, you are going to want it to show +1 in M mode for exactly the same reason.
     
  10. RobWatson

    RobWatson Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Yup. Think of that display as your light meter. Sometimes it is almost right ...
     
  11. Mikefellh

    Mikefellh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    939
    Jun 7, 2012
    Toronto, Canada
    In M mode the Exposure Compensation indicator becomes the Light Meter indicator. When it says "-3" you are three stops underexposed! To get to the exposure the camera thinks it should be you have to either open up the aperture or slow down the shutter speed, or a combination of both.

    It makes no sense to have exposure compensation in M mode because there's nothing to compensate for, you have full control over the exposure controls...it's not like A, S, or P modes where the camera is choosing what it thinks is the best exposure and you need exposure compensation to override it!

    In fact you don't need to even pay attention to the light meter...again it's telling you what the CAMERA THINKS is the best exposure. If I do a studio shoot and set the camera to 1/125-f/8 the camera will tell me I'm very underexposed, but when I take the picture and the flash fires I'll have a perfectly exposed image.
     
  12. carpandean

    carpandean Mu-43 Top Veteran

    827
    Oct 29, 2010
    Western NY
    I like to think of it this way:

    In M, you control both the shutter speed and aperture (also ISO) directly to choose the exposure, which the meter estimates how far from "correct" it is at the bottom.

    In S, you control the shutter speed directly, but let the camera (meter) "guess" the appropriate aperture for "correct" exposure. You can than adjust it from this guess by telling the meter that you want it more or less exposed than its guess through the exposure compensation adjustment.

    In A, you control the aperture directly, but let the camera (meter) "guess" the appropriate shutter speed for "correct" exposure. You can than adjust it from this guess by telling the meter that you want it more or less exposed than its guess through the exposure compensation adjustment.

    In other words, S is like M, but turning the second wheel doesn't adjust the absolute value of aperture, but rather a relative (from the meter's guess) value of it. Likewise, A is like M, but turning the second wheel doesn't adjust the absolute value of shutter speed, but rather a relative (again, from the meter's guess) value of it.

    Adding in Auto ISO (versus a fixed value) complicates this a little, but you get the idea.
     
  13. David A

    David A Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 30, 2011
    Brisbane, Australia
    Just to correct a slight error:

    Not quite. You are at least 3 stops underexposed, you may be more underexposed than that. The maximum readout is "-3" so if you're 3.3 stops underexposed, or 5 stops underexposed, or 10 stops or more underexposed the readout will only show "-3".

    The only way to know that you are 3 stops underexposed, or 3 stops overexposed (the same limitation exists at the other end of the meter scale), is to adjust your exposure until you are less than 3 stops under or over exposed and then adjust it back until the number changes to "-3" or "+3". Go one click or more beyond that and you're back to being more than 3 stops under or over exposed and the readout is stuck at the "-3" or "+3" level.

    It's important to recognise this fact so you know why you can find yourself in the position of adjusting your exposure to bring you back to "0" and the reading stays stuck at "-3" or "+3" despite the fact that you'e increased or decreased your exposure respectively.
     
  14. robbie36

    robbie36 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 25, 2010
    Bangkok
    rob collins
    Wow. You learn something new everyday. Who would have thought you could have auto iso in manual?

    Does anyone use auto-iso in manual and, if you do, why?
     
  15. iamseanism

    iamseanism Mu-43 Regular

    75
    Mar 15, 2013
    Singapore
    I'm a noob myself.. But I've discovered when you magnified to MF there's an info button, press that & you'll see if you're overexposed or underexposed, from there it allows you do the necessary A or S settings till you've got right!

    Sent from my GT-I9505
     
  16. Mikefellh

    Mikefellh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    939
    Jun 7, 2012
    Toronto, Canada
    Actually I was NOT in error, I just didn't give the FULL answer...

    - If both the light meter number is -3 (or +3) and the number and bar are NOT flashing, then you are three stops under (or over) exposed.

    - If both the light meter number is -3 (or +3) and the number and bar are FLASHING, then you are BEYOND three stops under (or over) exposed.

    Hopefully that clears it up.

    BTW, if you are in any mode other than M, and you see the shutter speed and/or aperture number flashing, that means you are beyond the range of exposure.
     
  17. David A

    David A Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 30, 2011
    Brisbane, Australia
    You're right. That makes 2 of us who didn't give the full answer and also makes me wrong for saying that there was no way to tell that you were more than 3 stops under or over exposed.

    I think we're finally getting to the definitive answer.
     
  18. cimiano

    cimiano New to Mu-43

    3
    Jun 6, 2013
    Thanks everyone, I've learned a lot from this discussion
     
  19. klee

    klee Mu-43 Veteran

    367
    Mar 20, 2013
    Houston, TX
    Kevin
    What if you want a shot with specific dof, and a minimum shutter speed of 1500, but don't care what iso you use? Freezing motion for small objects for example.
     
  20. Mikefellh

    Mikefellh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    939
    Jun 7, 2012
    Toronto, Canada
    Auto ISO rubs me the wrong way. I guess I come from the days of film...you think what lighting and what your going to be photographing that day, choose the ISO you think would be best, and then load your camera with that speed film. And I do the same thing with digital...except with digital it's easy to change the ISO if conditions change, compared to having to unload a roll of film that's only half exposed.

    Manual mode is supposed to be about having FULL control of the camera, being fully creative...AutoISO defeats that. Say I'm doing a studio shoot with manual (not TTL) flashes. This type of shoot requires fixed ISO but if you selected AutoISO the ISO would be boosted due to the lower ambient lighting, and the shot would be blown out due to the bright flash.