Exposure Issues with SEL16F28

Started Jul 10, 2012 | Discussions
Jerry Canon
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Exposure Issues with SEL16F28
Jul 10, 2012
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I am finding that my recently acquired SEL16F28 constantly gives me very under exposed images on either my 5n or 7 bodies. I realize exposure is tricky with wide-angle optics due to their large field and the fact that it is apt to contain areas of extreme brightness differences, but seems that exposure with this lens is just a pain in thr butt no matter if I set the camera to "multi" or "spot". Is there a trick here that I'm not doing? I always shoot RAW.
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GaryW
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Re: Exposure Issues with SEL16F28
In reply to Jerry Canon, Jul 10, 2012

Jerry Canon wrote:

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I am finding that my recently acquired SEL16F28 constantly gives me very under exposed images on either my 5n or 7 bodies. I realize exposure is tricky with wide-angle optics due to their large field and the fact that it is apt to contain areas of extreme brightness differences, but seems that exposure with this lens is just a pain in thr butt no matter if I set the camera to "multi" or "spot". Is there a trick here that I'm not doing? I always shoot RAW.
http://500px.com/JerryBrendle

I get reasonably exposed photos usually, but adding the UWA, I realized that I was getting enough sky (I assume) that the subjects might be a bit underexposed. I dialed in +.7 EV on my last outing. This overexposed some photos, so it's not like things were all that severely underexposed, just in some cases.

Usually if I take a photo that is severely under-exposeed, I've forgotten that I'm in manual mode. Try taking a photo in the daylight and see if it's still underexposed. Try using Aperture priority mode or manual mode.

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Gary W.

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John Bean (UK)
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Re: Exposure Issues with SEL16F28
In reply to Jerry Canon, Jul 10, 2012

Jerry Canon wrote:

Is there a trick here that I'm not doing? I always shoot RAW.

The "trick" is nothing more complicated than to learn how to meter accurately with the aid of the histogram, adjusting EV compensation appropriately. Then it doesn't really matter which lens you use.

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Bruce Bowman
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Re: Exposure Issues with SEL16F28
In reply to John Bean (UK), Jul 10, 2012

John Bean (UK) wrote:

Jerry Canon wrote:

Is there a trick here that I'm not doing? I always shoot RAW.

The "trick" is nothing more complicated than to learn how to meter accurately with the aid of the histogram, adjusting EV compensation appropriately. Then it doesn't really matter which lens you use.

+1... I think John's got it right. Several lenses have similar transmisivity issues to your 16mm, especially when you add filters like a polarizer or converters like the 16mm's UWA or fisheye.

How far off are your images? I haven't seen a huge error with my 16mm.
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S3ZAi
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Re: Exposure Issues with SEL16F28
In reply to Bruce Bowman, Jul 10, 2012

If you have sky and ground objects in your photo, perhaps you could try hdr and see if that makes a difference? If all parts of the photo are still underexposed, you might have an ondocumented problem? Just an amateur speaking here though...

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Jerry Canon
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Re: Exposure Issues with SEL16F28
In reply to Bruce Bowman, Jul 10, 2012

Bruce Bowman wrote:

John Bean (UK) wrote:

Jerry Canon wrote:

Is there a trick here that I'm not doing? I always shoot RAW.

The "trick" is nothing more complicated than to learn how to meter accurately with the aid of the histogram, adjusting EV compensation appropriately. Then it doesn't really matter which lens you use.

+1... I think John's got it right. Several lenses have similar transmisivity issues to your 16mm, especially when you add filters like a polarizer or converters like the 16mm's UWA or fisheye.

How far off are your images? I haven't seen a huge error with my 16mm.
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They look about a stop to 1 1/2 under usually.
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boardsy
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Re: Exposure Issues with SEL16F28
In reply to Jerry Canon, Jul 10, 2012

Jerry Canon wrote:

Bruce Bowman wrote:

John Bean (UK) wrote:

Jerry Canon wrote:

Is there a trick here that I'm not doing? I always shoot RAW.

The "trick" is nothing more complicated than to learn how to meter accurately with the aid of the histogram, adjusting EV compensation appropriately. Then it doesn't really matter which lens you use.

+1... I think John's got it right. Several lenses have similar transmisivity issues to your 16mm, especially when you add filters like a polarizer or converters like the 16mm's UWA or fisheye.

How far off are your images? I haven't seen a huge error with my 16mm.
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They look about a stop to 1 1/2 under usually.

Using what mode - is the camera claiming they're exposed correctly and then they come out dark?

My SEL16 seems to work ok (allowing that the NEX-5 over-exposes in bright light, so -3/-7 is 0-equivalent):

Alan

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D Cox
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Re: Exposure Issues with SEL16F28
In reply to John Bean (UK), Jul 10, 2012

John Bean (UK) wrote:

Jerry Canon wrote:

Is there a trick here that I'm not doing? I always shoot RAW.

The "trick" is nothing more complicated than to learn how to meter accurately with the aid of the histogram, adjusting EV compensation appropriately. Then it doesn't really matter which lens you use.

It is generally more difficult to get the right exposure with a wide angle lens, because the images include regions which are very differently lit. A long lens is usually looking at a small part of the scene, all of which is lit much the same.

Boardsy's picture of a trolley car is a good example - the shadow areas are very much darker than the sky and have come out underexposed by 2 or 3 stops - in real life you would easily see detail in those shadows. There is a limit to what a camera can record in one exposure.

A long lens aimed at the shadow area would have given full exposure with details.

I found the hardest case was when using panoramic film cameras. It is often impossible to get an exposure that will cover both the brightest and darkest parts of a panorama on film. (Although now that you can scan them into a computer, "Highlights and Shadows" can help.)

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Jerry Canon
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Re: Exposure Issues with SEL16F28
In reply to boardsy, Jul 10, 2012

boardsy wrote:

Jerry Canon wrote:

Bruce Bowman wrote:

John Bean (UK) wrote:

Jerry Canon wrote:

Is there a trick here that I'm not doing? I always shoot RAW.

The "trick" is nothing more complicated than to learn how to meter accurately with the aid of the histogram, adjusting EV compensation appropriately. Then it doesn't really matter which lens you use.

+1... I think John's got it right. Several lenses have similar transmisivity issues to your 16mm, especially when you add filters like a polarizer or converters like the 16mm's UWA or fisheye.

How far off are your images? I haven't seen a huge error with my 16mm.
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Bruce

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They look about a stop to 1 1/2 under usually.

Using what mode - is the camera claiming they're exposed correctly and then they come out dark?

My SEL16 seems to work ok (allowing that the NEX-5 over-exposes in bright light, so -3/-7 is 0-equivalent):

Alan

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I always shoot aperture priority. The camera says it's right but the images are considerably underexposed.
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boardsy
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Re: Exposure Issues with SEL16F28
In reply to D Cox, Jul 10, 2012

D Cox wrote:

John Bean (UK) wrote:

Jerry Canon wrote:

Is there a trick here that I'm not doing? I always shoot RAW.

The "trick" is nothing more complicated than to learn how to meter accurately with the aid of the histogram, adjusting EV compensation appropriately. Then it doesn't really matter which lens you use.

It is generally more difficult to get the right exposure with a wide angle lens, because the images include regions which are very differently lit. A long lens is usually looking at a small part of the scene, all of which is lit much the same.

Boardsy's picture of a trolley car is a good example - the shadow areas are very much darker than the sky and have come out underexposed by 2 or 3 stops - in real life you would easily see detail in those shadows. There is a limit to what a camera can record in one exposure.

A long lens aimed at the shadow area would have given full exposure with details.

Given all that, I wouldn't call the image mysteriously under-exposed though - this was mid-day sun and the shadows were & should be darker than the sky! Obviously RAW (or even from JPG) one could push the shadows & pull the highlights, but overall it's a good exposure as chosen by A mode.

I don't think Jerry would complain about a shot like this. Or maybe he would - can you post an example pic Jerry? Otherwise we're all just speculating.

Alan

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Crono_DL
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Re: Exposure Issues with SEL16F28
In reply to Jerry Canon, Jul 12, 2012

You mentioned having tried using spot and multi segment metering, but have you also tried center? I find that center gives me better exposures than multi, on my 5n and my friend's nex5 as well.
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Mark_McD
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Re: Exposure Issues with SEL16F28
In reply to Crono_DL, Jul 12, 2012

Crono_DL wrote:

You mentioned having tried using spot and multi segment metering, but have you also tried center? I find that center gives me better exposures than multi, on my 5n and my friend's nex5 as well.
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The trick is that all metering types function relatively the same way.

Spot finds the best compromise between all pixels within the area metered. Center does the same thing but for a broader range. Multi does the same but over the entire frame.

If you have a high contrast scene where you can't help but have some highlights blown out or shadows crushed, use the one most suitable for your scene to meter what you'd want to be properly metered. If you want the best compromise for the entire scene, use multi.

I usually change metering methods depending on what I'm shooting. If it's a landscape, I often find matrix the best, but I'll typically use the reading with a grain of salt and try to adjust to find the best compromise to my eyes and the histogram.

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Jerry Canon
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Re: Exposure Issues with SEL16F28
In reply to Crono_DL, Jul 12, 2012

Crono_DL wrote:

You mentioned having tried using spot and multi segment metering, but have you also tried center? I find that center gives me better exposures than multi, on my 5n and my friend's nex5 as well.
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That makes sense, I'll give it a try.
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Bruce Bowman
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Re: Exposure Issues with SEL16F28
In reply to Jerry Canon, Jul 12, 2012

Jerry Canon wrote:

...
--They look about a stop to 1 1/2 under usually.
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That's a bunch, Jerry! Earlier comments mention the issues with WA exposure and that may be a contributor. But if you're dialing in +1.5 EV to get what you recall of the scene, there seems to be an issue.

If you're using Spot exposure metering, one thought would be to try the broad area exposure metering. I'm not a fan of 'averaging gone crazy', but it may be a help.
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