Help request - Blown highlights with my E-P5

Started Aug 17, 2014 | Discussions thread
Anders W Forum Pro • Posts: 21,468
Re: Good catch ...

veroman wrote:

Maklike Tier wrote:

Rich K wrote:

Certainly has something to do with the "problem".

The highlights would still be blown, that's the problem. If the highlights are right, the rest of the shot is under-exposed.

I'm not sure what you mean by this. +0.3 EV would certainly be the wrong setting if your highlights are overexposed.

In any event, are you using the red and blue blinking indicators for setting exposure? If not, you should be. Used in combination with the histogram, the red and blue blinkers are very, very helpful in determining the best balance between exposing both highlights and shadows in high contrast and/or very highlighted areas in a scene.

Using the EV control, you adjust until the red (highlight) and blue (dark) areas are roughly equal in intensity. If red blinking is dominant, then you need to turn down the EV setting. If blue is dominant, you need to increase EV. The rest is up to your post-processing skill.

Although I too rely on the live view blinkies, that's not the way I use them. If you clip the highlights they can't be pulled back in PP. If you give the shadows too little light, they can be pushed in PP. Shadow pushing will increase the noise level in the shadows but at least there will still be a signal. And the DR of current MFT sensors is sufficiently good that a bit of shadow pushing at base ISO is certainly not much of a problem. So as a rule, I expose for the highlights.

Of course, if you encounter a scene with extremely high dynamic range, you may have to compromise or choose another strategy. One possibility is to bracket exposure and then select the best compromise in PP. Another is to stack multiple exposures using software for HDR or exposure blending.

My E-P5 is almost always set to -0.3 EV. From there I go up or down as-needed and determined by the red and blue "blinkies."

One of the nicest and most beneficial things about the E-P5 is its dynamic range. With the blinking areas balanced out to the best possible setting, the E-P5's D/R gives you plenty of latitude for lifting shadows and recovering highlights without much effort or worry.

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