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  • E-M1 mark ii - flash compensation

    Hello all, I'm new to her so please excuse my lack of knowledge if I'll do something wrong.

    I have an OM-D E-M1 mark ii couple with with an FL-900R. Whilst working in pure MANUAL mode (camera) and TTL flash, I'm trying to do flash compensation on camera, even trying the extremes (-3EV to 3 EV) and I'm not noticing any change in the results - really and truly I'm seeing them overexposed. I've made sure that the exposure compensation setting on camera is just for the flash (not flash + camera although this won't make any difference when being used in Manual mode). It seems that when I switch the FLASH to AUTO instead of TTL, which is not the best setting as it will not communicate with the camera, the compensation settings do work.. which is strange. Can anyone help me out with this please?

    THANK YOU!

    regards
    david

  • #2
    Re: E-M1 mark ii - flash compensation

    Hi David and welcome to the site. Must try to visit your interestiung island some time

    You make an ineresting point about adjusting the flash in the way you describe.

    Can I ask if you are simply trying to adjust the flash brightness by using the camera instead of using the control on the flash itself? Or are you doing something complicated like using auto exposure somehow despite the flash being in manual mode, or vice-versa. If you can describe what you are trying to do a little more precisely we may be able to help better.

    Ian
    Founder and editor of:
    Olympus UK E-System User Group (http://e-group.uk.net)
    Four Thirds User (http://fourthirds-user.com)
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    Twitter: www.twitter.com/ian_burley
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    • #3
      Re: E-M1 mark ii - flash compensation

      Hello Ian,

      Thanks for your response. Basically I have an FL-900R mounted on the OM-D E-M1 mark ii and the flash is set to TTL (which is supposed to be the best setting for full communication of exposure and WB with camera). No intensity adjustments have been made to the flash unit.

      The camera is set the MANUAL and the exposure values are somewhat in the region of f4 at 1/80s shutter speed at ISO 1600 which give an underexposed image by more than -3EV so as to ensure that the subject is mostly illuminated by just the flash and not by ambient and flash which may give a result of overexposure.

      The flash power is being adjusted 'in-camera' through the flash customisation setting in camera and I'm not noticing any difference in the exposure of the picture - adjusting it from the minimum - to the maximum +. Surprisingly it seems, I'm not sure though, but it highly seems that when the flash is set to AUTO instead of TTL, the flash adjustment settings from the camera seem to work fine and give the desirable result. However for me it's frustrating getting to know the with the flash being set to AUTO, most of communication with camera is lost and the only component which is used is the light receiver of the flash unit. I'm somewhat confused and sad and disappointed with this to be honest.

      THANK YOU!

      Regards
      david

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      • #4
        Re: E-M1 mark ii - flash compensation

        Hello David,

        You have a fantastic and powerful flash unit. Depending on flash to subject distance, it could be emitting a minimal amount of light and still producing a strong exposure. Try setting camera exposure f4 at 125th and ISO 200 and then see if shifting flash exposure compensation (in camera) has any effect.

        Mark

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        • #5
          Re: E-M1 mark ii - flash compensation

          Hello Mark,

          Many thanks for your suggestion, however I believe that, that would kill the ambient light, so it can't be really and truly used as a 'fill-in'..

          Thank you

          regards
          david

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          • #6
            Re: E-M1 mark ii - flash compensation

            You have not mentioned the distance to the subject. This is a very powerful flashgun and may be providing too much light at its minimum setting, if the subject is fairly close. Have you tried using the wide-angle panel, which effectively reduces the light output?

            I tried the settings you describe with my own smaller flashgun and everything worked as I expected.

            It is odd that you said the results were OK when you selected AUTO mode on the flashgun. In this mode, the flashgun does not communicate with the camera. Is it possible that there is a problem with connections at your hot shoe? You could try cleaning the contacts and making sure that the flashgun is seated correctly in the shoe. I have occasionally experienced problems with the contacts, when using an extension lead.
            Mike
            visit my Natural History Photos website:
            http://www.botanicdesign.co.uk/Natur...story/home.htm

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            • #7
              Re: E-M1 mark ii - flash compensation

              Dear Mike,

              Thank you for your response. Effectively when I used the wide angle panel, the results were much, much better.. but shouldn't that be used for lenses whose angle is less than 12mm? In my case I was using the 12-40 lens on a 12mm angle. The distance was.. say between 100cm to 170cm. I was using it on an OLYMPUS bracket, it's the BK01 with the shoe cable CB02, and tried it again with a direct mount on the hotshoe but nothing changed.

              Thank you!

              Regards
              david

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              • #8
                Re: E-M1 mark ii - flash compensation

                Hi David,
                First of all I might mention I grew in 'Little Malta' in the west of Sydney, NSW as we were surrounded by Maltese neighbours (50 odd years ago) & a number had their market gardens too, including using our backyard at one point. At least we got to enjoy the produce as well.

                Anyhow, back to your flash situation, I think you might be better served the way you're using it with ambient light to use FP TTL Auto instead, as it will allow you to use whatever shutter speed you may need. You should be able to make flash compensation adjustment in both camera & flash & I think they might add to each other as well (that is how it used to be in past DSLR models). Hope that helps.

                Ross
                I fiddle with violins (when I'm not fiddling with a camera).
                Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/ross-the-fiddler/
                Cameras: OM-D E-M1 & Mk II, Olympus Stylus 1, OM-D E-M5.
                Lenses: M.ZD7-14mm f2.8 PRO Lens, M.ZD12-40mm f2.8 PRO Lens, M.ZD40-150mm f2.8 PRO Lens, MC-14, MC-20, M.ZD45mm f1.8, M.ZD12-50, M.ZD60 Macro, M.ZD75-300 Mk II, MMF-3, ZD14-54 II, Sigma 150mm F2.8 APO Macro DG HSM.
                Flashes: FL36R X2, FL50R, FL50.
                Software: Capture One Pro 10 (& Olympus Viewer 3).

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                • #9
                  Re: E-M1 mark ii - flash compensation

                  Originally posted by uop879 View Post
                  ..........The distance was.. say between 100cm to 170cm. ...........
                  If you look at p26 of your flashgun manual, there is an example of the display when on the TTL-AUTO setting. In the lower line of the display, it shows Range 0.7~8m. I expect this display will change, depending on the camera settings. Have you checked the Range display with your settings and are you too close?

                  The wide-angle diffuser simply spreads the beam from the flashgun, allowing it to be used with wide-angle lenses but it also reduces the amount of light in the central area of the beam. This is probably why it improves your result.

                  I often use some form of diffuser (a paper tissue will do), to reduce and spread the light, when working at short distances (<2m)

                  You could also try using the 'catch light plate' as shown on p32 of the manual. This will reflect a small proportion of the light forward when the gun is pointing upwards. This may also control the light on your subject.
                  Mike
                  visit my Natural History Photos website:
                  http://www.botanicdesign.co.uk/Natur...story/home.htm

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                  • #10
                    Re: E-M1 mark ii - flash compensation

                    Another thought - what type of metering were you using on the camera? If you were using evaluative (ESP) metering, it may have been trying to increase exposure of the background, so over-exposing the subject. You could try selecting spot metering off the subject itself.
                    Mike
                    visit my Natural History Photos website:
                    http://www.botanicdesign.co.uk/Natur...story/home.htm

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                    • #11
                      Re: E-M1 mark ii - flash compensation

                      Right - now I understand. Originally I thought you were trying to control the actual power output of the flash in manual mode using the camera control panel setting.

                      Using an FL-600R I have recreated the scenario you describe and I can definitely say that I can successfully bias the brightness in the method you describe.

                      So the only thing I can think of is that the scene is already bright and the flash is making very little difference to the total brightness, or there is some other camera setting that is interfering with the desired goal.

                      Ian
                      Founder and editor of:
                      Olympus UK E-System User Group (http://e-group.uk.net)
                      Four Thirds User (http://fourthirds-user.com)
                      Digital Photography Now (http://dpnow.com)
                      Olympus camera, lens, and accessory hire (http://e-group.uk.net/hire)

                      Twitter: www.twitter.com/ian_burley
                      Flickr: www.flickr.com/photos/dpnow/
                      Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/ianburley/
                      NEW: My personal BLOG ianburley.com
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                      Comment

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