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OM-D Exposure bracketing -- Am I missing something?

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by meyerweb, Aug 1, 2012.

  1. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Sep 5, 2011
    Please tell me I'm missing something.

    In order to turn on Exposure Bracketing, this is the only sequence of events I can find:

    1. Press Menu
    2. Press \/
    3. Press >
    4. Press \/
    5. Press \/
    6. Press >
    7. Press >
    8. Press \/ (1 to 11 times)
    9. Press OK
    10. Half press shutter release

    Turning it off is the same sequence of events. Is this REALLY the only way to turn AE bracketing on and off?

    Yes, I know about mysets, but I don't think I can use a myset to control ONLY AEB. A myset records ALL camera settings except PASM, I believe. So if I'm shooting with my base exposure using -2/3 EC, and the myset has 0 EC, that's going to change, too. Or, if the myset was created using Auto WB, but I'm shooting using tungsten, turning AEB on via the myset will change WB, too, right?

    Is there any way to just turn AEB on and off, simply and easily, without potentially changing other settings and without 10 to 20 button presses?

  2. Brian G

    Brian G Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 16, 2010
    Victoria, BC
    Yep. Sounds about right. I use AEB for HDR, and this is driving me crazy. I did set up a Myset to include the right settings, but as you correctly point out, it introduces other setting changes that you may not want.

    Coming from a GH2, where switching to AEB and out again is easy-peasy, makes Olympus look particularly Neanderthal where ease of access to AEB is concerned.

    I said this in another thread - if Olympus doesn't fix this in a firmware update, the EM5 is my first & last Oly product.

    EDIT: I could get along fine if you only had to select single frame or multi frame using one of the buttons around the navigation button array, and providing that you could have the AEB configuration you want preset in menus, but it seems that leaving AEB preset to anything other than off affects single-shot mode as well as multi-shot.

    All Olympus would have to do is allow AEB to be configured, but only active when multi- shot is selected. seems like a bug.

  3. krugorg

    krugorg Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jul 18, 2011
    Minnesota USA
    Hmmm, didn't realize it was that many steps. :eek: 

    I played with mysets for a while, but found this to take longer (with errors, overwriting, etc) than just going through the manual steps.

    I am not sure why they don't just add a bracketing icon on the SCP that also triggers continuous shooting (limited by the bracketing selected, of course).
  4. Sammyboy

    Sammyboy m43 Pro

    Oct 26, 2010
    Steeler Country
    You have 4 mysets, so to use them all, you will actually to set the camera up 4 times, I'm sure you know that.
    So if I'm shooting with my base exposure using -2/3 EC, and the myset has 0 EC, that's going to change, too .... If -2/3 EC is set on the dial, then that is now indexed to 0.
    Or, if the myset was created using Auto WB, but I'm shooting using tungsten, turning AEB on via the myset will change WB, too, right? .... Again, you will have to select your WB, just like setting up the camera for the first time. That's the easy part, the hard part is remembering what all the mysets have programmed in them. But to answer your question, the easiest way to do bracketing is the myset. Don't forget to set the burst mode when doing bracketing.
  5. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Sep 5, 2011
    The easy part? No, I don't think so. If all I really want to do is turn AEB on, I shouldn't have to worry about whether I also need to reset WB, or EC, or anything else. As Brian suggests, this is so easy and obvious on the GH2: just click one mechanical switch. Nothing changes except whether AEB is on or off.

    I use AEB a lot whenever I find myself in very contrasty lighting situations, or very brightly backlit scenarios. The difficulty of just turning this on and off on the OM-D may be a deal killer for me. I don't expect, and should't have to try to remember, whether selecting AEB via a myset will also change something unrelated that I don't want to change.

    I'm OK with having all those button pushes to change the AEB options. But turning it on or off should be a one button operation. It doesn't even seem possible to assign it to a function button.
  6. Sammyboy

    Sammyboy m43 Pro

    Oct 26, 2010
    Steeler Country
    You're missing the point, you don't have to change or reset anything, that info is set in the myset. Once you set it up, that's it, it's very easy to use. You're making a mountain out of a molehill.
  7. Mikefellh

    Mikefellh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 7, 2012
    Toronto, Canada
    There used to be a BKT option in the drive options, and that was fine when there was only one continuous speed and only one type of bracketing (you still had to set the BKT options in the menus).

    Now some people want low speed bracketing, others high speed, and still others want single shot bracketing...that's why they changed it giving you the option...and now you have many different types of bracketing, not just one...so that's why you now have to do everything the way you do.

    If you use the same bracketing options each time, suggest you save them to a MySet as that's what it's there for.
  8. DekHog

    DekHog Mu-43 Top Veteran

    May 3, 2011
    I think you're making hard work of the MySet option.... it's there to do what you want it to.....

  9. st3v4nt

    st3v4nt Mu-43 Veteran

    May 26, 2011
    Jakarta, Indonesia
    If only Olympus allowed us to utilize the additional button more flexible none of this will happen, OMD+grip+12-50 lens have 5 additional buttons and 2 dials (the additional/on body shutter button and dial, B-Fn1, B-Fn2, and L-Fn). Duplicating and limiting the function that can be add is really a blunder.
  10. dre_tech

    dre_tech Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 31, 2012
    I don't use MYSET often, but I know what it does (have used custom modes on GX1 more), but I'm not sure that he's missing anything. I think I understand what he's saying because I agree with the problem with MYSET.

    It doesn't only change bracketing, but overrides all of the settings as you have originally set your MYSET. It's not like lightroom when you copy only the settings whose checkboxes are set.

    Example: I'll set up my exposure for a shot in A mode with custom WB and ISO200 let's say, then I realize that I need more DR, so I open MYSET1 (I've set as A, auto-iso and autoWB, AEB 5shot 1EV apart, and sequential shooting High rate) but that MYSET will override ISO200 customWB, am I right?

    If I have to readjust every setting of my exposure I'm better off going to just turn on AEB through the menus, which is what I do now to deal with the molehill.

    It's much easier even on regular panasonics, AEB is in the drive menu, that's why we notice. If we knew nothing better then it'd be wonderful. :wink:

    I fully agree, if a fn could take you to AEB it would be so much easier!
  11. SkiHound

    SkiHound Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 28, 2012
    I just use the mysets. I have myset 1 as my basic set up and myset 2 has the same settings but with AE bracketing. I don't THINK there is any to turn bracketing on other than through the menus. Once I learned how to use mysets I find them very useful. Using them is not especially transparent at first. And I do wish they had a dial position for mysets. Or build in an option to use the art/scene dial setting to call up mysets. That would make the mysets feature much quicker to access. That could be done in a firmware update.
  12. michaeln

    michaeln Guest

    This is certainly one place where Panasonic is doing it WAY better than Olympus. On my GX1 I have C1 set up for HDR, all I have to do is switch to C1, connect my remote release and shoot.

    I have an OM-D arriving this morning from Amazon, I'm sorry I hadn't investigated this prior to ordering. I did check that it can do AEB up to 7 exposures 1EV apart, but had no idea of the convoluted way you have to enable it! The camera may be going back to Amazon if it's as much of a PITA as this, as I shoot a LOT of HDR stuff.
  13. newbert

    newbert Mu-43 Veteran

    Jul 22, 2012
    Glens Falls, NY
    I understand the frustration of the OP. I shoot a lot of HDR and have fn1 set to invoke a Myset that I've set up for the AEB. While this basically works, there really are two problems with it:

    1. The Myset also contains settings for ISO, WB, aperture, etc all of which cannot be changed while holding down the fn1 button. So basically, I'm stuck with these settings unless I dive into the menus to invoke the Myset. Not to mention that it's an exercise in finger dexterity. :smile:

    2. So, you need to continue to hold the fn1 button as you're shooting in order for the Myset to be active. It would be much better if the fn1 button would act as a toggle - ie: press fn1 once to invoke the Myset; change whatever settings you want; shoot your bracket(s); press fn1 again to return to where you were.

    Right now, mapping a Myset for AEB to a function button is a barely tolerable workaround.
  14. Brian G

    Brian G Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 16, 2010
    Victoria, BC
    I agree with meyerweb - it's a major issue for those of us who use AEB frequently, for whatever reason.

    Using a Myset to FN1 is a crippled option, because it encompasses so many parameters, and you can't select which parameters it alters.

    You can easily map Multi-exposure (drive mode) to one of the arrow buttons, and this would be the easiest solution, except for a BUG (IMO), which is:

    You can't have AEB configured and on in it's menu setting, without it causing problems when in single-frame mode. Just try it - set AEB to 5 exposures, 1 stop apart. Go ahead . . . I'll wait! Then go back and shoot standard, single-shot. After the first shot, the viewfinder will then show an underexposed image - it's ready to expose the next frame in the sequence, which is underexposed. (Going from memory, so if my recollection of the exposure sequence is off, it's not the important point.)

    When I first received my EM5, I'd configured the menus, including AEB, before using the camera. Couldn't figure out why the exposure system seemed so erratic, until I found that setting AEB to "off" solved that problem. But left me with one just as serious, at least to me.

    If setting AEB to on, with your choice of number of exposures, etc. didn't muck up single-frame mode, everything would be fine. This is how the GH2 works, i.e. AEB menu preferences have no impact until you switch to multi-frame mode. That's how it needs to work.

    It's a BUG!

    To michaeln: re: AEB at 1 stop apart, that works for 5 frames, but you can only get .7 EV changes when you set 7 frames. No reason why Oly need to limit it this way, and could be easily fixed in firmware, but they probably won't.

  15. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Sep 5, 2011
    No, you're missing the point. Choosing a myset changes EVERYTHING to the settings in the myset, when all I want to change is the AEB. Let me be explicit:

    I create a myset that mimics my "normal" settings, but with AEB turned on: for example AWB, EC 0, auto ISO and AEB 3 exposures +/- 1 stop.

    Now I'm in the field, and for whatever reasons I'm shooting with a custom WB and forcing ISO 200.. Now I want to turn on bracketing, so I choose the myset. Oops, now I no longer have my custom WB or forced ISO, I'm back to AWB and auto ISO, and need to go in and manually change BACK to the shooting modes I was just using. I can't really create a myset wth a custom WB, since my it's very nature custom WBs are situation dependent, or for every manually chosen ISO I might want to use.

    The nicest word I can come up with to describe this system is "stupid."

    No, that's why you separate the options for bracketing from turning it on and off. Panasonic requires you to go into the menus to choose how many exposures and the number of stops between exposures. But it then lets you turn bracketing on or off (using the choices you already made) with one switch. And choose single or burst mode bracketing, with one switch. On and off should be separate from the choice of options. I don't have to reprogram the radio in my car every time I turn it off and back on; it remembers the radio stations I programmed, and even what station I was listening to when I turned it off. If it worked like Oly's menus, I'd have to turn the knob to choose my station every time I started the car.

    No, that doesn't simply turn AEB on and off. It potentially changes lots of things. See above. Simply put, there is no easy way to just turn AEB on and off on the OM-D. You either have to navigate through a dozen or more button pushes, or you have to use a mysset which controls many settings, not just AEB.
  16. michaeln

    michaeln Guest

    The more I hear about this, the more I think I oughta just refuse delivery from UPS this morning and let amazon refund me.
  17. Mikefellh

    Mikefellh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 7, 2012
    Toronto, Canada
    That's nuts...things look worse in writing than actually doing them.

    Having used Oly cameras for 10 years I don't even think about it...I just do the sequence.
  18. michaeln

    michaeln Guest


    Thinking about it, the times when I actually *need* 7 exposures 1EV apart are pretty much close to never. Most of the time, +/- 1EV is enough. No camera is perfect, and this one seems to have enough cool stuff to make crap like this worth dealing with.

    This will be my first Olympus since my original brand new OM-1 back in the 1970s (my first 35mm camera!).
  19. Brian G

    Brian G Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 16, 2010
    Victoria, BC
    Michael, FWIW, I use 5 AEB's hand-held more frequently than 7 exposures, which I tend to go to when using a tripod. For tripod use, it's more practical to use (2) different sequences, as long as nothing important is moving in the frame. So I'm not as worked up over the lack of 1 step variations for 7 frames (I just think it's a bone-headed decision!).

  20. krugorg

    krugorg Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jul 18, 2011
    Minnesota USA
    +1 I used mysets for a while, but then just found it easier and quicker to manually change. Once you know the sequence it doesn't take a whole lot of seconds to change the bracketing. Like you said, it looks a whole lot worse when you write down the steps.
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