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Olympus Pen E-P3 The third-generation Micro Four Thirds flagship Pen model from Olympus, complete with capacitive touch screen!

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  #1  
Old 9th November 2011
esskay
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Question Problem in adjusting f-number in aperture mode

Hi,

I just bought an EP3 with the kit lens of 14-42 mm. When operating in the aperture mode, I can decrease the f number to 3.5 the first time and click. However, the aperture value after the first shot refuses to to be decreased beyond a certain aperture (f-number) value from then on. Say, it won't come down from 5.3. But I can increase it as much as I want (till 20).The same phenomenon is seen in the shutter mode as well, when after the first shot, the shutter speed can't be adjusted beyond a certain value.

Can you please suggest where I might be going wrong, am I turning on some auto-control feature unwittingly? Or, auto-control takes over by default, if yes, what should I turn off if I want a free hand with the values in their respective modes?

I tried searching for it online, apart from scouring the user manual but in vain.

Thanks in advance for your help.

Bests,

newbie DSLR user
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Old 9th November 2011
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Re: Problem in adjusting f-number in aperture mode

Hi and welcome to the e-group

Can you tell us which control you are using to make the adjustments?

Ian
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Old 9th November 2011
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Re: Problem in adjusting f-number in aperture mode

As you describe it, iIt seems to work as designed. Maximum aperture varies from 3.5 at 14mm to 5.6 at 42mm.
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Old 9th November 2011
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Re: Problem in adjusting f-number in aperture mode

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Originally Posted by Kees View Post
As you describe it, iIt seems to work as designed. Maximum aperture varies from 3.5 at 14mm to 5.6 at 42mm.
That doesn't explain the associated issue with the shutter setting though?

Ian
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Old 9th November 2011
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Re: Problem in adjusting f-number in aperture mode

True. Maybe the touch screen is active and touched at the moment of adjustments? With the old software this rendered the controls inoperable.
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Old 9th November 2011
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Re: Problem in adjusting f-number in aperture mode

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Originally Posted by Kees View Post
True. Maybe the touch screen is active and touched at the moment of adjustments? With the old software this rendered the controls inoperable.
It still does with the new software I see. The new software only fixed this problem with the VF-2.
It's the reason I disabled touch screen.
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Old 10th November 2011
esskay
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Re: Problem in adjusting f-number in aperture mode

Thanks and hello to both of you.

Kees, what does this mean -- "Maximum aperture varies from 3.5 at 14mm to 5.6 at 42mm." What is the relation of the mm measurement of a lens with the f number? Just a pointer will do since I understand this must be a very basic question.

Ian, I checked what I was doing in the shutter speed mode. It seems when not using flash, it let's me crank the value without problems. However, if I use the in-built EP3 flash, it wouldn't let me go beyond, say, 180 in shutter speed. Can you please explain why this is happening? Again, I realise, it must be a very basic question...but not one usually explained in 'tips for new dslr users'...

As for the control that I am using, i am pressing the main dial's up and down buttons to make the changes.
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Old 10th November 2011
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Re: Problem in adjusting f-number in aperture mode

Just to jump in, you have 2 good points here.

Firstly, most zoom lenses have a variable maximum aperture depending on focal length. The longer the length, the smaller the maximum aperture, so in your lens' case, by the time you zoom to 42mm the maximum aperture the lens can achieve is f5.6.

Secondly, I think I'm correct in saying the maximum flash sync speed on the E-P3 is 1/180th, so you simply cannot set a faster speed if the flash is activated.

Hope this helps.
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Old 10th November 2011
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Re: Problem in adjusting f-number in aperture mode

Thank you Stephen. Yes, that sort of lights quite a few bulbs. The focal length-aperture relation is why people say that some lens will automatically have a greater depth of field than others. Can you tell me then, what is the kit lens -- 14-42 mm most suited for? Is it supposed to be an all-rounder or good at something particular. That way I can know which lens should be on my list next.

Also, if shutter speed will be limited when using flash, can the ISO setting in any way help work around it? I know, higher shutter speeds are needed for moving objects and higher ISOs and flash mainly for shooting in the dark (as is lower shutter speed). So, if I were to combine these -- moving objects in low light conditions -- then will ISO help when I can't increase shutter-speed?

Thanks again for all the help!
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Re: Problem in adjusting f-number in aperture mode

To answer your second question first, although I'm no flash expert (or fan), you must remember that the flash duration is much, much shorter than any shutter (within reason) so movement will almost inevitably be frozen. Someone better versed in flash than I can give you more advice on this topic.

Secondly, the kit lens is really a jack of all trades and master of none. Get used to using the camera with the kit lens first, then decide what subjects you prefer to shoot. That will help us to advise you on the most appropriate lens to get.
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Re: Problem in adjusting f-number in aperture mode

Quote:
Originally Posted by esskay View Post
Thanks and hello to both of you.

Kees, what does this mean -- "Maximum aperture varies from 3.5 at 14mm to 5.6 at 42mm." What is the relation of the mm measurement of a lens with the f number? Just a pointer will do since I understand this must be a very basic question.

Ian, I checked what I was doing in the shutter speed mode. It seems when not using flash, it let's me crank the value without problems. However, if I use the in-built EP3 flash, it wouldn't let me go beyond, say, 180 in shutter speed. Can you please explain why this is happening? Again, I realise, it must be a very basic question...but not one usually explained in 'tips for new dslr users'...

As for the control that I am using, i am pressing the main dial's up and down buttons to make the changes.
Every lens has a maximum aperture value. The relation to the focal distance is that the wider the lens, the more light it can potentially let in, the larger the maximum aperture is ( = the lower the f-number). Zoom lenses are many lenses packed in one, so they have a different maximum aperture for every setting. This ranges from the widest setting to the tele setting of the lens and varies between trhe two f-numbers specified on your lens.
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Old 10th November 2011
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Re: Problem in adjusting f-number in aperture mode

Quote:
Originally Posted by StephenL View Post
Just to jump in, you have 2 good points here.

Firstly, most zoom lenses have a variable maximum aperture depending on focal length. The longer the length, the smaller the maximum aperture, so in your lens' case, by the time you zoom to 42mm the maximum aperture the lens can achieve is f5.6.

Secondly, I think I'm correct in saying the maximum flash sync speed on the E-P3 is 1/180th, so you simply cannot set a faster speed if the flash is activated.

Hope this helps.
Nicely explained, Stephen

Ian
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Old 10th November 2011
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Re: Problem in adjusting f-number in aperture mode

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kees View Post
Every lens has a maximum aperture value. The relation to the focal distance is that the wider the lens, the more light it can potentially let in, the larger the maximum aperture is ( = the lower the f-number). Zoom lenses are many lenses packed in one, so they have a different maximum aperture for every setting. This ranges from the widest setting to the tele setting of the lens and varies between trhe two f-numbers specified on your lens.
And the Top Pro Zuiko lenses have a fixed aperture over the whole zoom range.
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Old 10th November 2011
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Re: Problem in adjusting f-number in aperture mode

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Originally Posted by Shaw View Post
And the Top Pro Zuiko lenses have a fixed aperture over the whole zoom range.
Which is, if you think about it, rather clever; because whilst the barrel may get longer/shorter as you zoom in/out the size of the lens at the front doesn't change

I suspect another dimension in space/time is involved. Rather like those automated weaving machines where it's obvious that the shuttle has to pass outside of reality in order to turn round and make its return journey.

Nick
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Old 10th November 2011
esskay
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Re: Problem in adjusting f-number in aperture mode

Thanks all of you for replying and helping out! Though, I must say, Nick's joke sort of flew over my head, squinting hard as I am to make sense of DSLRS But thanks, really

I will now try ISO settings and the Manual mode.
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