OMD EM-5 kit flash FL-LM2 diffuser

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by whatisaw, Jan 11, 2015.

  1. whatisaw

    whatisaw Mu-43 Rookie

    Jan 4, 2015

    I have been experimenting with FL-LM2 which comes bundled with EM-5. I am not sure if I will go far on the path of Flash Photography. So I am not going to spend money on Olympus FL600-R. FL-LM2 is not tiltable.
    Is there any way I can make the light softer?
    I have been looking at Flash diffusers and benders and Lightspheres.

    I will be mostly taking pics of people from close distance.
    My lens is 25mm f1.8.

    What you use and how are the results?

  2. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    A plain diffuser can't increase the effective area of the light source by much, so there's not much to be gained. The best thing to do with a flash that size is bounce (for rooms that aren't too big). You can use some white or silvered card angled at about 45 degrees to bounce light from the ceiling, but you'll lose a lot of power like that. You could also use a flash bender backwards to do this, or there's this: (apparently you have to tell them it's for an FL-LM2 when you order as it needs to be angled differently from normal pop-up flashes).

    IMO the FL-LM2 is only usable for a bit of direct fill, or as a commander. I actually find the even tinier popup flash on the GM1 more useful, as you can tilt it directly rather than relying on a bounce card. I use the flash on that more than I do the FL-LM2. Since the FL-LM2 is effectively a hot shoe flash anyway (with one more connector plug to deal with in fact) I'd rather just use a proper hot shoe flash with the E-M5. If you want something puny with TTL and can tilt, have a look at the FL-300R or Metz 24 AF-1 (4/3 version).
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  3. AlanU

    AlanU Mu-43 Veteran

    May 2, 2012
    Please take hours of reading this many times...

    Read the right hand side column in blue.

    TTL is nice that you can have fast shutter speed (beyond max flash sync of camera) and you can shoot wide open with your prime. This is where you can be in bright outdoors and hit the subject with flash so you can do double exposures both in available light (back ground) and flash exposure on the subject. This is where you wont have dark shadows on the subject if you expose to the background or if you use available light on the subject the background will be blown out severely over exposed (if you shoot large apertures.). Sorry this isn't on the topic "soft fill flash" but this is where in some cases outdoor flash is absolutely critical.

    I've dedicated my M43 as a natural light shooter but I'm truly considering buying a large external flash to change my usage and use more flash.

    I echo the joe demb flipit if you want to buy something. You can also go to any art store and use white foam and a rubber band.

    You cannot soften light with a small light source unless you increase it with a light modifier or bounce flash. Lightsphere's can be a "light bomb" but it'll eat batteries and its' flat soft non dynamic light because there is no direction to the light on the subject.

    With my dslr I use a spinlight 360 aswell as joe demb flipit products. For an m43 the demb flipit is lighter and extremely versatile. However depending on the flash you maybe slightly limited to bounce flash over your right shoulder rather than left. This is why the spinlight 360 has full 360degrees of directing light.

    Read Niel's website and try to adapt to his bouncing skills. If your getting critical about soft light with flash you must bounce it and to be honest directional light is more technical rather than hitting the subject with a lightbomb battery eating light sphere. However if your run/gunning sometimes you compromise and hit fill light flat and get results. When your closer to mastering bounced flash you'll really appreciate the hard earned skilled of practice, practice and practice. I've killed 3 canon 580exii's over a span of 5yrs (painful aprox 1100 dollars gone repairing cct boards/bulb etc). Learn flash because it's very important skill to learn imo.

    good luck and happy shooting. This is where practice teaches you angles. Bouncing flash you can achieve studio high aperture photos bouncing off white walls.
    • Like Like x 1
  4. klee

    klee Mu-43 Veteran

    Mar 20, 2013
    Houston, TX
    Real Name:
    I made this. it's just a card with a mirrored surface held on with a rubber band. I made it mirrored instead of a white diffusing surface because I wanted the ceiling to be the point of diffusion. So essentially, the flash is pointing up.

    it works great indoors. In some cases, you get a little too much shadow under people's eyes and cheeks.
    I got tired of that so I bought an FL600R which I can use to bounce off the walls also. So far I've been very pleased with my indoor shots, especially when you have to deal with mixed lighting.
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  5. Dave in Wales

    Dave in Wales Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 5, 2011
    West Wales
    I fiddled about with various ideas for a diffuser, the neatest, IMHO, is shown below.
    Diffuser by Dave in Wales, on Flickr
    • Like Like x 3