EX1 - looooooooooooooooong exposures

Started May 10, 2012 | Discussions thread
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Peadingle
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EX1 - looooooooooooooooong exposures
May 10, 2012

I bought one of those (cheapish) variable ND filters with the aim of trying some long exposures with my EX1.

First off, it should be said that you get what you pay for with this filter.

It can only be used with the focal length set to around 50mm or above, or you will get an odd effect where the darkened area only covers part of the view.

Secondly, you do get colour casts that get stronger as the exposure gets longer.

Despite those issues, I would still say that the filter is worth the money but I'll let you be the judge of that after seeing some pictures that I took the other evening.

All exposures are 16 seconds (the maximum allowed on the EX1).

Now the accepted method of taking pictures with a strong ND filter is to meter the scene you are taking (using MANUAL EXPOSURE) with the ND filter OFF the lens. Then add the ND filter and make an adjustment to the exposure to compensate for the filter.

However, I find a quick and easy method is to set the camera to manual focus and focus on the scene (without the filter in place), then add the filter. Set the exposure to 16 seconds (or whatever you want to use) and the aperture to something small eg f4.0 or smaller. Then rotate the filter until you get the correct exposure shown in the viewfinder. All of my samples were done in that manner.

I find the colour casts can be fairly well sorted in post-processing but sometimes leave them alone if they can add a bit of interest (as in the first picture).

The fourth picture down has had some HDR toning applied in CS5.

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