Getting best Dynamic Range with OMD.

Started Jan 17, 2013 | Discussions thread
richarddd Veteran Member • Posts: 3,119
Re: Getting best Dynamic Range with OMD.

Macx wrote:

I'm not really an expert on this, but until one comes along, I'll give you a bit of advice.

The OM-D is very conservative about its normal exposure and tends to underexpose, so if you feel you lack dynamic range, and want to get the most out of the sensor you need to expose "to the right". That is, get as much exposure as possible without blowing the highlights. For this, you need to shoot raw.

And for this, I wouldn't recommend the live histogram, but instead use "the blinkies" (highlight/shadow warning) which shows you what part of your picture is currently over-exposed (orange) or under-exposed (blue). Set the warning level to the highest in the setup menu, and just increase the exposure until you start to see orange blots in the viewfinder. Some stop there, some stop just before and some stop a bit after. I stop there.

This, I find, is the easiest way to get the most of the camera, out of the box. Some have calibrated the white balance setting to get more precise metering with success, but that takes a bit of work.

Now, if you find that you otherwise always use the levels, just turn off the other viewfinder modes except for the blinkies, and it's easy to switch between the two modes by holding down the info-button and turning a dial.

Slight amendment to underlined portion: just increase the exposure until you start to see orange blots in areas you want to preserve. In other words, it might be ok to blow highlights in areas in which you don't care about preserving detail.

Exposure means light on the sensor, which are controlled by aperture and shutter speed. Of course, you don't want to decrease shutter speed to the point you get unacceptable blur or increase aperture to the point you lose desired DOF.

If increasing exposure isn't enough to get orange blinkies, consider increasing ISO. Going from 200 to 400 is often a good idea, but any benefit falls of rapidly and 800 or perhaps 1600 is as far as you'd want to go with for this technique. Higher ISO helps with noise (with rapidly diminishing margin returns), but hurts dynamic range. The forum has many technical posts on the subject.

You should be shooting in RAW and adjust the image in post processing.

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