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Thread: I could use some help/information!

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    Question I could use some help/information!

    I am far from new to photography, but I am new to this format. There are a lot more differences than I was aware of and I keep tripping over them. I just got the second lens for my Pen E-PL1, the 40-150mm zoom. While I was aware that the "effective distance" for this format vs. slr was 2X, I did NOT know that effectively, F stops change too and that effectively, one will get the same DOF at F4 that one got in SLR at F8. Which explains a lot of fuzzy pictures that resulted from super slow shutter speeds when I was trying to work in what I thought was reasonably good light (bright, overcast) using aperture preferred at F8. I wound up with shutter speed as low as 1/8 sec., which even with IS is way below what I could even in my prime (many years ago!) hand hold.

    So now that I have this effectively very long and rather slow zoom, I have a strong feeling that there is more I don't know than I do know and I am not sure where to get the knowledge I need.

    I have been recently limited in my experimentation by being too sick to go out and do much, but hopefully that's a temporary issue. Is there a book? Books? Website? Someplace where essential basic information that explains the differences in the two systems in plain English is available? I live WAY out in the boonies, so the local library is not a big help. I think i donated most of their books myself.

    Suggestions? Information would be VERY VERY much appreciated! I have the Olympus PEN E-PL1 with the newer 14-42mm and now the 40-150. I hope that I get richer and can get just one really super Leica lens. Have my eye on the not-yet-available 25mm prime. Meanwhile, I have what I have. Oh, still waiting delivery of the VF-2 viewfinder.

    Best,

    Marilyn

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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    I have the same camera plus others. I am still learning about this E-PL1. You can do what i did which mite help you, see if you can find this book " Olympus Pen E-PL1 for Dummies". You can down it from Pirate bay. I don't think their are any other books.
    Last edited by Angelo G; 09-04-2011 at 08:13 PM. Reason: wording
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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    Quote Originally Posted by teepee12 View Post
    While I was aware that the "effective distance" for this format vs. slr was 2X, I did NOT know that effectively, F stops change too and that effectively, one will get the same DOF at F4 that one got in SLR at F8. Which explains a lot of fuzzy pictures that resulted from super slow shutter speeds when I was trying to work in what I thought was reasonably good light (bright, overcast) using aperture preferred at F8. I wound up with shutter speed as low as 1/8 sec., which even with IS is way below what I could even in my prime (many years ago!) hand hold.
    I think you've misunderstood.

    In terms of exposure, f8 is f8 is f8 - it will give you the same exposure on a point & shoot, Four Thirds, full-frame or medium-format. So, for instance, f8 @ 1/100" and 100iso will give identical exposures (assuming there's no slight variations, which there always will be...). THIS IS NOT WHY YOU'RE GETTING SLOW SHUTTER SPEEDS!

    The only thing that changes is depth of field, although in reality this doesn't actually change either. A 100mm lens at f8 will also give the same DoF regardless of format, the difference being that the field of view changes - so you're shooting with a 100mm lens, but the field of view is the same as a 200mm lens (on full-frame) - and obviously a 100mm lens has less DoF than a 200mm lens at the same aperture...
    Panasonic GH2, Panasonic 7-14/f4 ASPH, Panasonic 14/f2.5 ASPH, Panasonic 20/f1.7 ASPH, Voigtlander Nokton 25mm f0.95, Olympus m.ZD 40-150 MSC.
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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    Thanks. Ordered it!

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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    I am confused. Okay. So. Then why did I get such extremely slow shutter speeds? Okay, obviously the camera discerned less light than my eyes thought was there, but I'm pretty sure that I could have shot the same scenes at more or less the same lens length on my Canon and gotten much better shutter speeds. Was it all a trick of the light? Or me being tricked by the light? or the PL1 reading the light differently? And where IS the "sweet spot" on that lens. I was just going by prior DSLR experience that F8 is a pretty good middle of the road F stop for aperture preferred. I think I'll try a nice 1/60 shutter speed preferred given the same lighting conditions next time and let the camera play hey diddle diddle with the aperture. Should I have bumped up the ISO? Or was I just doomed from the start? Inquiring minds want to know.

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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    Quote Originally Posted by teepee12 View Post
    Then why did I get such extremely slow shutter speeds?

    Honestly no idea. Was the ISO the same? If you're shooting in full auto some cameras will boost the ISO before others...

    Okay, obviously the camera discerned less light than my eyes thought was there, but I'm pretty sure that I could have shot the same scenes at more or less the same lens length on my Canon and gotten much better shutter speeds. Was it all a trick of the light? Or me being tricked by the light? or the PL1 reading the light differently?

    Short of actually setting both cameras up to shoot the same scene with the same lighting it's impossible to say... The exposures should be the same...

    And where IS the "sweet spot" on that lens. I was just going by prior DSLR experience that F8 is a pretty good middle of the road F stop for aperture preferred.

    A basic rule of thumb for Four Thirds and Micro Four Thirds is that the sweet-spot is about 1-2 stops down from wide open. Generally you don't need to stop them down as far as full-frame lenses. I've found the m.ZD 40-150 fine at f5.6 (at 150mm).
    Panasonic GH2, Panasonic 7-14/f4 ASPH, Panasonic 14/f2.5 ASPH, Panasonic 20/f1.7 ASPH, Voigtlander Nokton 25mm f0.95, Olympus m.ZD 40-150 MSC.
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    Cool Re: I could use some help/information!

    Quote Originally Posted by teepee12 View Post
    I am confused. Okay. So. Then why did I get such extremely slow shutter speeds? Okay, obviously the camera discerned less light than my eyes thought was there, but I'm pretty sure that I could have shot the same scenes at more or less the same lens length on my Canon and gotten much better shutter speeds. Was it all a trick of the light? Or me being tricked by the light? or the PL1 reading the light differently? And where IS the "sweet spot" on that lens. I was just going by prior DSLR experience that F8 is a pretty good middle of the road F stop for aperture preferred. I think I'll try a nice 1/60 shutter speed preferred given the same lighting conditions next time and let the camera play hey diddle diddle with the aperture. Should I have bumped up the ISO? Or was I just doomed from the start? Inquiring minds want to know.
    It depends on what lens you had on the Canon, what ISO you had the camera at, what metering mode you had the camera in. Also, note the human eye can see at extremes more than the camera can.

    For example, if you had the Canon on auto ISO, and the Olympus on a fixed ISO, the Canon would be able to take the picture in much worse light. Or perhaps you had the Olympus in spot meter mode pointed at something dark.

    Have you read the first part of the manual where it goes over the basic camera operation? It sounds like you are just picking up the camera and expecting the defaults to be the same as your previous cameras. Maybe you've read the manual cover to cover, but it doesn't sound that way.

    We really can't help you without more concrete information, such as a picture with full EXIF information, so that we can tell what mode you were in.

    When you are shooting, hit the info button several times until you come to a screen that overlays what shutter speed and aperture will be used. That way you can see what settings will be used. My one complaint is for many Olympus bodies, the auto ISO is not displayed before you take the picture.

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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    ISO was at 200 and never moved. Why? No idea. Maybe I set it to not be automatically reset. I am not sufficiently familiar with the menus as I will get to be. It is possible that I am the culprit.

    I think it's possible that my eye really DID see more light than was "really" there. Although it was midday, I live in a woods. There are many shadows and it was possible that I was shooting right into them.

    Meanwhile, I can't understand the manual and I wrote manuals for 30 years. I'm a fine tech writer. I know computers and have a good understanding of most things technical, so I need to get a grip on this. IF the lens is really the problem, I can still send it back.

    Haven't had it long ... less than a week. I wish I weren't sick so I could get out and do something to run it through its paces in a way that would show me, for good or ill, what it can or can't do. I have NO problem at all with the 14-42mm. And as may be getting obvious, I am pretty frustrated.

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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    I very much doubt it will be the lens. Having changed cameras far too many times, one thing I've noticed is that different bodies, and especially different brands, go about the whole job of taking pictures quite differently.

    For instance, my E-3 always tried to boost exposures in low-light. It also avoided raising the ISO until it absolutely had too...

    My GH2 always exposes for the highlights and therefore often under-exposes the rest of the scene. It also likes to keep shutter speeds fast and therefore often boosts ISO and uses the widest aperture.

    My K20D always exposed for the centre of the composition, even when in matrix metering...

    And so on and so forth...

    So first, you need to get comfortable with the set-up of your camera (Olympus and Panasonic manuals are notoriously bad, so asking here is a good alternative).

    Second, get used to the way your camera meters and exposes. The best way to do this is simply trial and error - shoots lots of photos in different conditions and pay attention to what happens
    Panasonic GH2, Panasonic 7-14/f4 ASPH, Panasonic 14/f2.5 ASPH, Panasonic 20/f1.7 ASPH, Voigtlander Nokton 25mm f0.95, Olympus m.ZD 40-150 MSC.
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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    I ordered "PL1 for dummies." I can't understand the manual it came with ... It's written in a short hand that don't get ... and it's not for want of trying. It's also not organized in any way I recognize. It's all these tables and they each refer to something else, so every time I try to get some simple information, like how do I download pictures from my card to my computer, I can't find it. Also crappy index. I will give it another go round, but I am not expecting miracles. I found the settings for downloading entirely by accident. I still haven't found any information in the manual.

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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    i'm going to explain what the problem you are having is...

    you are used to looking at an optical viewfinder where you see what light is really there. now you are looking at an electronic viewfinder where you see as much or as little light as the camera is about to capture. so if you have the camera set on anything besides M, every scene you see will pretty much always appear to be the same brightness. when the camera meters and sets your settings to expose properly, that is the image you are seeing in your viewfinder.

    example: if you meter a scene at f4 and then change your aperture up to f16, you will see on your viewfinder the same brightness at both stops...which is not possible. but because the camera will be adjusting the shutter speed, it keeps the levels the same.
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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    Do you have the right manual? It seems very clear to me, and I've never even picked up an E-PL1 before:

    http://www.olympusamerica.com/files/..._Manual_EN.pdf

    I find it hard to believe you found difficulty with copying images from the card to your computer. You say you've had a Canon before, the process should be the same. Stick card into card reader, copy, paste, done.
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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    Quote Originally Posted by thebinaryman View Post
    Do you have the right manual? It seems very clear to me, and I've never even picked up an E-PL1 before:

    http://www.olympusamerica.com/files/..._Manual_EN.pdf

    I find it hard to believe you found difficulty with copying images from the card to your computer. You say you've had a Canon before, the process should be the same. Stick card into card reader, copy, paste, done.
    Specifically, look at page 36 onward for typical shooting instructions in each mode.
    -Mark
    E-PL2 | WCON-07 | 14mm F2.5 | 20mm F1.7 | Pentax 25mm F1.4 | 35mm F1.7 c-mount | FL-50 | MA1 | SEMA-1

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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    Don't have a card reader and I use the USB connector. Why don't I have a card reader? I just don't. Never saw any particular urgent need for one. Maybe someone will buy me one for a birthday some day, but meanwhile, I connect the camera to the computer via USB cable, a perfectly reasonable way of doing it. The PL1 then provides a set of options, the second of which MTB, is the one I need. NO explanation is offered anywhere in the book about this screen. None. I finally took a guess and voila, pictures. I'm not a dummy ... but I never had a camera that had different transfer settings ... and without any explanation, I was left guessing, which is NOT the most efficient way of learning basic information.

    Additionally: A camera without complexity -- which is what adverts are suggesting? Uh ... were that but true! There is quite a bit of complexity to this little gem. Loving the camera (and I do!) does not preclude the need for some studying up on how it works ... which no matter what (as I have learned the hard way) you know from previous cameras, is likely going to be different. As a simple, but important example: You have to set the camera to save metadata for the pictures you take. This is automatic in DSLRS, but not in the PEN series. And good luck finding what setting will do that because there is no place in the TOC or Index listing Metadata or data or file data or anything that would send you to the right page!

    What is more, when you change a setting in a other-than-auto mode on the PEN, you might (as I did) assume when you shift back to iAuto or full Auto, the camera will revert to its default settings, right? WRONG! If you change the ISO setting in P mode, it will STAY changed in Auto or iAuto. You have to be very aware of each change you make because it will affect the camera in all or most of its settings, whether that is what you intended or not. Although this may be a convenience for a few, it is a limitation to many of us who intentionally set up different parameters for different settings to make it easier to shift on the fly. I am learning. But some of these lessons need to be learned fast and early or you'll pay with ruined pictures and you'll have no idea why! And the manual is NOT very good. Yes, the information is there ... usually, anyhow ... but finding it? Good luck with that. I ordered "Olympus PEN E-PL1 for Dummies" because that, at least, is written in English I can understand!

    Wise for all who read others posting NOT to assume that we all have card readers or any other equipment that you may consider basic. I never used one, never felt I needed one, was perfectly content and still am using USB for this. Am I Neanderthal or something? No. I have an amazing computer that will put most others in the dust that I bought with a clear intention to edit film and still, so it is maxed on memory and graphics functionality, but is missing some bells and whistles that I just didn't care about. One man's necessity is another woman's "why bother?" We are not the same ... and viva la difference.

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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    I have actually not ONLY read the manual as far it it is readable (using the rest for reference as issues arise, which as a writer of manuals, I know is NORMAL for manual readers!) but I've gone through it multiple times. I've got the basic stuff, but that's no longer what I'm looking for. Now I want to know how to configure for specific kind of shooting conditions and finding the manual woefully inadequate to the task. Trial and error? Yeah, well, that'll work, over time. I'm not any kind of spring chicken and don't feel like spending days in the field doping out what settings do what for which purpose. Call me whatever you like. I asked for HELP. No one mentioned that the automatic settings are not like auto settings on any other camera I've ever used, and I've used a few (would you like a list? It's VERY long). EVERY other camera, when you click it back to Auto or i Auto or whatever it's called, cancelled other setting you made in different modes and reverted to default settings. None of you mentioned this ... and of course, neither does the manual. I don't particularly LIKE asking for help, but I never presented myself as an expert on this camera and I do not expect to get knocked for not knowing what I already said I don't know! If I already KNEW it, I wouldn't need help, now would I!

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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    @ Mark: Thank you VERY miuch for the information on which F stop is a good choice for working aperture preferred with the 40-150. That was important for me and no, it ain't in the manual. A lot of this kind of stuff just isn't. And I didn't get that information that you should double the f-stop to arrive at an equivalent out of thin air. Some self-styled expert on another forum told me so and I said "Really? Never heard THAT one before ... " Probably never heard it because it isn't TRUE!

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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    @ Eric. Okay, THAT is why people have said "you can't entirely trust the viewfinder!" So I have to keep an eye out to make sure that whatever F stop I'm using is ALSO giving me a shutter speed that I can use ... which suggests to me that aperture preferred is not necessarily going to work out as well as it has in previous rigs. I got some pretty decent results on P, more by accident than by designed and some on M, again, more by accident than design. I was just playing with setting at that point to figure out what really worked and what doesn't. And I don't HAVE the VF yet! It is on the way and taking it's own sweet time arriving ... grinding my teeth in the meantime!!

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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    Quote Originally Posted by teepee12 View Post
    I ordered "PL1 for dummies." I can't understand the manual it came with ... It's written in a short hand that don't get ... and it's not for want of trying. It's also not organized in any way I recognize. It's all these tables and they each refer to something else, so every time I try to get some simple information, like how do I download pictures from my card to my computer, I can't find it.
    Chapter 9: Connecting the camera to a computer.
    That should explain how to hook your camera to a computer and download the pictures. By selecting "Storage" you basically turn the camera into a USB device that the computer can see, and you can simply copy the pictures over.
    E-30, 7-14, 14-35, 35-100, 50-200, 50mm f2, EC-14, mecablitz 58AF-1, Feisol CT-3342 tripod, Photo Clam PC-48NS ball head

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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    Quote Originally Posted by teepee12 View Post
    Don't have a card reader and I use the USB connector. Why don't I have a card reader? I just don't. Never saw any particular urgent need for one. Maybe someone will buy me one for a birthday some day, but meanwhile, I connect the camera to the computer via USB cable, a perfectly reasonable way of doing it. The PL1 then provides a set of options, the second of which MTB, is the one I need. NO explanation is offered anywhere in the book about this screen.
    I see. It's usually faster to use a good card reader though. On the cameras I've had, it's about 4-5x faster to transfer from a reader than using the camera. Besides, you need to have the camera powered on if you transfer using the camera, and I'd rather not waste battery power.

    It's fully explained on page 87. The camera defaults to STORAGE mode, which is what most people use when transferring images using the camera instead of a card reader. The camera appears to the computer just like a storage device (hard drive, flash drive, etc). From there you can browse files on the device, and copy your images off of it.

    The MTP setting is used when you want the camera to appear to the computer as a CAMERA device. In this mode, you will NOT be able to browse through the folders/files on the device. This mode requires special software such as Olympus Master or other camera management software to transfer images.
    -Mark
    E-PL2 | WCON-07 | 14mm F2.5 | 20mm F1.7 | Pentax 25mm F1.4 | 35mm F1.7 c-mount | FL-50 | MA1 | SEMA-1

    OM-2n | 28mm F3.5 | 50mm F1.4 | 135mm F3.5 | Sigma 600mm F8 | T-20 | 2x Vivitar 2800

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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    I tried that and none of the software I had (PhotoShop, Corel) would read it. And in Win 7, unlike XP and other previous versions of windows, there is not native software to do this simple thing. They do have one downloadable program which I don't like at all ... part of their "Windows Live" set-up which doesn't work dependably. But that's not camera-related, that's just MicroSoft being MicroSoft.

    Looking at page 87. THAT is exactly what I did and the computer did NOT recognize the camera. It did not see anything at all, as a matter of fact. Nothing. Nada. Zero. So I unplugged the cord, turned off the camera, tried again (maybe it hadn't registered ... always worth another try). SAME results. Win 7 is different from XP for which the manual was no doubt written. It ought to be that simple. I was expecting it to be simple. According to Olympus, the camera is fully Win 7 compatible, but I'm not sure what that means. It may work with Win 7, but NOT the way it says in the manual. Lord knows I wish it did. I have configured PhotoShop to download from the camera. Fortunately, that was not hard. If the camera is in MTP, it will pull the images on the card and dump them into a file using the current date. I would have preferred to review the images first and dump those I have no use for. Without native Windows software to just view and delete unwanted pictures, it is surprisingly difficult to accomplish this otherwise simple feat. Yes, I could buy yet MORE software, but frankly, I've blown my budget already. When ever I think I know something, a Great Mind feels obliged to fix it and I have to start over. I am weary of this stuff. I'm 64, dealing with cancer, and tired. I just want to take good pictures and be able to edit them. This should NOT require this much effort and I am tempted to just dump the whole thing and go back to the best P&S I can afford. Call me stupid, call me a wimp, call me whatever. I think I'm beat. I didn't want a fight. I wanted a camera.

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    Cool Re: I could use some help/information!

    Quote Originally Posted by xwingkiller View Post
    i'm going to explain what the problem you are having is...

    you are used to looking at an optical viewfinder where you see what light is really there. now you are looking at an electronic viewfinder where you see as much or as little light as the camera is about to capture. so if you have the camera set on anything besides M, every scene you see will pretty much always appear to be the same brightness. when the camera meters and sets your settings to expose properly, that is the image you are seeing in your viewfinder.

    example: if you meter a scene at f4 and then change your aperture up to f16, you will see on your viewfinder the same brightness at both stops...which is not possible. but because the camera will be adjusting the shutter speed, it keeps the levels the same.
    One thing that throws a monkey wrench into this is Live View Boost (page 74). If you are wanting to set the camera to manual mode and adjust things until they look exposed, you want live view boost set to off (which is the default). The only time I could imagine wanting to use live view boost is when I'm shooting in dark conditions, and will be using a flash, but using boost would allow me to have the LCD (or VF-2) enhance the light so that I can frame the shot, and later the flash will provide the illumination.

    The rest of this is to the original poster and not xwingkiller:

    It may be a useful exercise to reset all of the settings to the factory defaults. You may have set some default by accident, and that may be adding to your problems. Then start with the camera in Program mode (not, iAuto, Aperture priority mode, etc.) and take pictures. Get comfortable with the camera, and let it make the metering decisions. Once you've gotten past this step, then you can go to aperture priority or other modes. It sounds like you are trying to get everything all at once. In Program mode, you can experiment with things like metering, ISO, etc. and the camera will honor those, while in iAuto, it will likely try to override things. Be sure to experiment with only one option at a time.

    In general, there are two types of people when it comes to learning. There are people who can learn by digesting a manual and there are people who learn by doing. Both are normal, and if you are in the second category, do it as small steps in terms of experiments. In general, I find whenever I try to do several things at once, it usually goes wrong. I don't recall where you live, but maybe there is somebody local who can help you through the process.

    Note that many of the people responding have been using Olympus for a while, and we might forget some of the nuances that we encountered when we first got an Olympus camera (I'm coming up on 10 years using various Olympus cameras).

    I can't help you with your problems under Windows 7, as I use Linux. I do use the camera to upload images all of the time. I suspect for Windows 7, it may be that you will have to load Viewer 2 or id to load your images. However, another possibility is maybe it's the particular USB port. Often times there is the suggestion that if you are having problems, plug the USB cable directly into the computer, and don't use a USB hub, since it eliminates some variables. Also try different USB ports on the computer, particularly if you have multiple USB cards in the computer. Before I set the default to Storage, I recall that the camera would pop-up a menu item on the LCD asking what mode I want to use. Maybe you had the back facing elsewhere and didn't see the menu (been there, done that).

  22. #22
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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    Thank you. VERY much. I am going to take your suggestion and aside from the setting to show metadata (really want to be able to see what the settings were when I took the shot or I'll never learn anything!) I think I currently have gone back to all the originals ... except for AF which I set for AF + MF because I like to be able to make a final adjustment. AF is right usually, but it has a strong preference for focusing on objects in the foreground and blurring backgrounds rather than blurring the foreground. This has been true with DSLRs too ... I think it's a design issue and the only way around it is manual focus. This only comes up if I'm shooting landscape.

    I have one final question: I thought, from what I read, that the flash was supposed to pop up automatically, but it never has yet done so. I have to pop it up manually and THEN it will, if it deems it necessary, fire. Assuming I've left adequate reboot time for the flash to get back up to full power ... otherwise, I get some pretty interesting "half" shots where it seems the flash either fired way too late, or only partially ... literally half the image will be dark and the other, light. Never seen that before on any camera. Usually the flash either fires, fires at less than full strength, or doesn't fire, but never have a seen this half of the frame lit and the other dark. If I could predict it, might make some interesting portraits, but as it is, it isn't predictable. Just wondering if you or someone else knows what that is ... I suspect late firing of the flash? Slow synch? I haven't touched the flash settings at all, so whatever it is, it's built into the camera's physics.

    I suppose I am hands on. Even when I wrote the manuals (HUNDREDS of them), I had to get my hands ON the software I was writing about. I did not entirely trust engineering specs or QA. I have a good grip on what people need to know and how to make it easy to find info, so I had know how it would be used before I could make sense of an application. My process was always use it, learn it, break it if I could (that's how you find bugs), THEN document it. No one does that any more. It's not cost effective.
    Last edited by teepee12; 09-05-2011 at 12:32 PM. Reason: correcting more typos

  23. #23
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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    Altough there are many pen users with excellent information on this site, another good resource for your questions would be here;

    http://www.mu-43.com/forum.php

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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    Although it hasn't been updated since the original EP-1, the Magic Lantern guide is excellent and most of the subjects covered would also be applicable to your camera.

    http://www.sterlingpublishing.com/ca...=9781600596711

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    Default Re: I could use some help/information!

    @nickthetasmaniac: Sensible advice that I will gladly take. Fortunately, I have reason to hope we'll have some great weather and fine shooting coming along with our New England autumn ... and I am bound to feel better one of these days (patience, patience).

    The camera IS quirky. It is unique amongst the many camera I've used. Each new camera has needed some getting used to. This one rather more than anticipated. I find the menus difficult to navigate. I find the explanations of what the settings do and how they affect OTHER settings unclear. Arguments to the contrary notwithstanding, the manual is godawful. If you don't already know where to look for information, you won't find it. Manuals aren't meant to be read sequentially: they are supposed to be REFERENCE documents which means including a good TOC and INDEX, neither of which this has. I have hopes for the book I ordered. I need better explanations. There is no easy way to find the original settings either ... no "reset to default" option. All I wanted was a way to figure out what it means, for example, if I change the WB Auto to WB Flash. Which I tried, only to discover that as far as I can tell it stopped giving me the metada I NEED, but did not make the flash pop up and fire automatically (what I'd hoped for).

    Despite turning out pictures so dark that NO software could fix them it has never "thought" it needs flash. In iA, it will bump up the ISO, if it is set to Auto ISO, to as high as it will go, but in P, won't touch it even if it must set the shutter speed to 1/2 second! Forget Aperture preferred ... NEVER changes the ISO, only the shutter speed. Shutter speed preferred? It will still leave the ISO at the bottom, let the picture go to black, and not pup up the flash. There is something downright weird in its software decision tree. The only GOOD pictures I've gotten were in i A. Sad, but true. So I'm going back and starting over, one single setting at a time.

    If the only way the flash will ever fire is for me to pop it up manually, okay, I can live with that. Not sure WHAT to do about the ISO but probably I find a happy medium point, maybe 400 ish and see how that goes using P or S. Focus is a bit slow sometimes, but usually okay if there's reasonable light, tho it keeps changing its mind about what IS reasonable light ... I can take the same picture using the same light source twice and have it focus fine once and refuse to focus at all a second time. Why? I dunno. The itty bitty guy inside the camera is in a bad mood?

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