Long exposure help M1

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by woollyback, Jul 17, 2016.

  1. woollyback

    woollyback Mu-43 Veteran

    Oct 20, 2015
    Real Name:
    Morning folks,

    Been getting to grips with my M1 over last few months and fancy having a punt at some long exposure stuff and have a few questions

    1 what is the best ND filter for use on 12-40, what are the options. I was thinking of a circular screw in jobbie

    2. Ibis on or off as will be tripod based, off I am assuming

    3 any tips and settings to get me started would be great


  2. robcee

    robcee Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 10, 2016
    Real Name:
    Rob Campbell
    hi @woollyback@woollyback.

    1. filters: I have a set of cokins I wouldn't really recommend because of their red cast on long exposure. The lee filters are highly regarded.

    2. If on a tripid, turn off IBIS, generally. It's harder on the battery, and your tripod should be able to keep your shot steady.

    3. Manual exposure and Manual focus. If on a tripod, you should have time to check your settings. Set up a button for focus magnification and peaking, if using MF. Use a delayed shutter or external cable for firing. Lower ISOs ar better, obviously. 1600-2000 is the best. 3200 if pushing it in dark light.

    have fun!
  3. mcrosa

    mcrosa Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 26, 2013
    Miami, Florida
    Real Name:
    Mike Crosa
    I am trying to learn here so not sure I understand the thinking of using an ISO
    of 1600-2000 for a long exposure. I thought the idea of the nd filters was to reduce the exposure thus causing longer shutter speeds.
  4. pdk42

    pdk42 One of the "Eh?" team

    Jan 11, 2013
    Leamington Spa, UK
    Filters - I have a couple of Haida 10-stop ND filters and they work pretty well. Slight colour cast, but nothing that would cause issues on raw files.

    IBIS - I generally leave it on "auto". The camera seems to sort itself out.


    - Live composite is sometimes better than a single long exposure. Doesn't cause long exposure noise and if the objective is to blur motion (water, headlights etc), then it does pretty much the same thing.

    - Use lowest ISO possible. I rarely use anything other than 200.

    - Focus can be tricky with an ND filter fitted. Worst case is to focus and then fit the filter. I find manual focus difficult with an ND fitted but if you choose a strong contrast edge, the AF will usually lock on with a bit of tril and error.

    - Long exposure noise can be problematic on the E-M1. Try not to go over 30 seconds or so. If you do, make sure that dark frame subtraction is turned on. If you do a lot of long exposure work consider getting a cheap E-M5 classic - it manages much better.

    - Livetime is great, but you will to play with the update time to get the image right before you run out of samples.
  5. robcee

    robcee Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 10, 2016
    Real Name:
    Rob Campbell
    higher ISO is needed for night sky, astrophotography.
  6. woollyback

    woollyback Mu-43 Veteran

    Oct 20, 2015
    Real Name:
    Thanks all,

    Will have a look around for some ND filters and set up M1 as described

    Thanks again

  7. Phocal

    Phocal Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 3, 2014
    Based the OP asking about ND filters it's a pretty good guess that he is looking at doing long exposures during the day and is wanting to create motion blur like I'm water or cloud movement. For this he is going to want to use ISO 200. You are correct about astrophotography, but he never even mentioned it.

    @mcrosa@mcrosa you are correct. For the type of photography the OP is asking about you want a low ISO.
  8. woollyback

    woollyback Mu-43 Veteran

    Oct 20, 2015
    Real Name:
    Sorry folks yes during the day and water is probably the first target
  9. lightmonkey

    lightmonkey Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 22, 2013
    because long exposure requires so many changes from normal shooting, i set it as a MySet and program it to one of the mode dials (Art).

    IBIS off
    MF (ael sets focus lock)
    Manual exposure, with starting values: Shutter 15s, Aperture F8

    so, toggle mode dial to the group, use front body buttons to punch zoom, focus with ael button or manually, thread ND filter on, dial in iso/shutter/aperture as required to meter reading
  10. RakSiam

    RakSiam Mu-43 Regular

    Oct 11, 2013
    I invested in the Formatt-Hitech filter system for this purpose. Their Firecrest filters are very color-neutral. The 85mm filters work fairly well with the 12-40. There is a little bit of vignette, especially at the widest focal lengths if you stack a couple of filters. Quite a bit less expensive than the Lee system. The graduated NDs and reverse grad NDs can be quite useful dependin on your subject matter.

    I always leave IBIS in "auto" and haven't noticed any negative consequences.
  11. DoofClenas

    DoofClenas Who needs a Mirror!

    Nov 9, 2012
    Traverse City, MI
    Real Name:
    Here's what I use.
    Haida 10 stop filter. Screw in works for me.
    Filter dude holder for 100x150 Haida reverse grad nd filters.
    Holder fits 12-40, then I use step down rings for the 75 and 25.