How the shutter works in a m43 ( specifically with e-pl3)

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by a_hit_of_meth, Jan 25, 2012.

  1. a_hit_of_meth

    a_hit_of_meth Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 7, 2012
    I'm asking because usually when I take a shot, I hear the click, sometimes two clicks with slower shutter speeds and a high pitched noise immediately after the second click, similar to the startup noise on the e-pl3.

    Now sometimes when I take a shot, I hear the click when i press the button, the second click and there is an noticeable interval before the high pitched noise is heard. I first noticed the other day when I took some long exposures. Again this evening, the shutter would sound when I pressed it, then another click depending on the chosen shutter speed and about a second or two before the high pitched noise. I thought it may have had something to do with the IBIS with longer exposures but it was also noticeable with faster shutter speeds, I'd hear a click and an interval before the high pitched noise. It went away after i put it in sequential mode and fired off a few shots at 1/2000s.
  2. fredlong

    fredlong Just this guy...

    Apr 18, 2011
    Massachusetts USA
    Real Name:
    I don't know what the high pitch noise is, but here's the shutter sequence.

    While viewing and focusing the shutter is open.
    When the shutter release is pressed the shutter closes.
    Then opens and closes for the exposure. On longer exposures you can hear two discrete clicks.
    Finally the shutter opens for viewing.

  3. photoSmart42

    photoSmart42 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 12, 2010
    San Diego, CA
    Sounds like something's broken. I've never heard a high-pitched noise from any of my cameras.
  4. a_hit_of_meth

    a_hit_of_meth Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 7, 2012
    Lol, it's not really a high pitched noise but the noise that you hear when turning on the e-pl3. I used to think the sound was made by dslr mirrors, but I guess it's the shutter going back up again. I think it's sometimes referred to as the re-cock but I'm not sure.

    Anyway from fred's description, it opens when it's released for as long as the sutter speed is set, and closes but then there is an interval before it opens again...
  5. Aegon

    Aegon Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 3, 2011
    Portland, OR
    The second period before the shutter opens again is the dark frame subtraction. An image is taken with the same duration as the exposure, except the shutter is closed. The camera uses the dark frame to reduce noise in the exposure. You can turn this setting off, but I wouldn't.
  6. a_hit_of_meth

    a_hit_of_meth Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 7, 2012
    I'm hoping you're right but how come it doesn't happen all the time? It seems to have gone away after I fired off some high shutter speeds in sequential mode and I don't seem to be able to recreate the interval "effect". I haven't changed the NR settings in my e-pl3 so it's still set at auto if that helps.
  7. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    With NR on Auto, Dark Frame Subtraction only happens on exposures of 1 second or longer.
  8. punkman

    punkman Mu-43 Regular

    Dec 30, 2011
    By the way, don't confuse Noise Reduction with Noise Filter. I made that mistake at first.

    Somewhat related: A relative of mine is a photographer and when I showed him my PEN, the first comment was that it sounded a lot like a film SLR.
  9. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    That's right... On Olympus cameras Noise Reduction is just the dark frame subtraction for long exposures. Noise Filter is the one that filters out the noise all the time, like what we call "noise reduction" software for post-production.

    Personally, I always turn Noise Filter OFF in all my cameras but I leave Noise Reduction on the default Auto (only activates on 1 second exposures).
  10. a_hit_of_meth

    a_hit_of_meth Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 7, 2012
    Thanks. I'll look into those settings.

    I tried more long exposures, the interval between the shutter noise hasn't come back but i'll look out for it and try to make a recording when it next presents itself.

    Hopefully it's not a sign of a defective shutter mechanism.