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Old Mar 1, 2015, 12:16 PM   #1
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Default Saturday February 28 Dan Burkholder Dallas Seminar

I made a hotel reservation for Friday night near the studio where this was to take place because there was an ice storm forecast. It tuned out to be so bad, I kept my car in the office garage and took a cab to the hotel, then Uber from the hotel to the event and Uber again from the event to my office garage Saturday afternoon. We do not do snow and ice well down here....

The event went from 9am to 4pm. As I figured, a large part of the day was spent with new E-M5 users getting to know the menus. I helped a few around me out as the class went on, but I suspected there might be a few nuggets of information and there was, making the day worthwhile.

The Olympus rep who was there had the whole system available for everyone to play with. Most of it didn't interest me since he didn't have a prototype of the upcoming 7-14mm f2.8, and I have most of what he did with one or two exceptions. The new E-M5 II is very, very nice. The newly shaped thumb grip on the right and more substantial front grip makes the camera much easier to hold and the twin dial placements are so much better in terms of their placement on the top deck. When I go back to my E-M5 after having used the E-M1, the rear dial is too far left and feels awkward to get at. They shifted that rear dial further right and it's a much nicer "feel". In fact, the overall feel of the E-M5 II is, it is a much more substantially built camera than the original E-M5. Still, I much prefer the grip and feel of my E-M1.

The new version of the 14-150, which is now also weather sealed, has a much nicer, high-end feel to it compared to the old model, although I was told optically it is the same with the exception of the newer coatings. The one I have is a rather weak performer at 14mm. From about 17-120mm or so, it's a really nice lens.

The rep also is of the opinion Olympus is going to wind up releasing an E-M1 firmware update at some point adding the new 40MP capture option.

Has anyone around here with the E-M1 or E-M5 II (not available on the E-M5) tried the "Live Time" or "Live Composite" options?

For anyone who never used a manual camera, at the end of the shutter speed range there lived two types of long exposure options. BULB and TIME. With BULB, you open the shutter and have to continue holding the shutter button down (or lock a cable release in the pressed position), then released the shutter button when you were ready to end the exposure. With TIME, you pressed and released the shutter release and the shutter opens and stays open until you press the release again, which closed the shutter, ending the exposure.

These two options are modern versions of the TIME option, with one huge difference. With LIVE TIME, as the exposure builds, the screen shows you how much the exposure has built, based on the intervals you choose to see, as often as every two seconds or as long as every 60 seconds. Based on the ISO you are using, there is a maximum number of previews you can select to see during the exposure. For example, at ISO 100, you can have as many previews during the exposure as 24, so if you choose 2 second intervals to see how much the exposure has "built" to that point, the total exposure is 48 seconds. If you choose to see a preview every 60 seconds, the exposure can last up to 24 minutes. At any point you can end the exposure once you see the image looking like what you want to see and the camera then does a dark frame subtraction to eliminate the long exposure noise of about the same time as the exposure, so each image capture can be rather long, meaning you don't want to start one of these with a near-exhausted battery.

With the LIVE COMPOSITE, it operates much the same way as above with one exception. You do a single shot for the camera to analyze the scene. When you then release the shutter, the camera starts to build the exposure and stops applying exposure to the highlight areas once they are exposed properly, but continues applying exposure to the dark areas until you end the exposure. He did a couple of sample shots in-class and the results were amazing.

You have to go to manual exposure mode to get at these functions and scroll down the list of shutter speeds until you get to the longest timed speed, which is 60 seconds. Beyond 60 seconds, the next click you will see BULB, then LIVE TIME, then LIVE COMPOSITE

Last edited by Greg Chappell; Mar 1, 2015 at 12:20 PM.
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Old Mar 1, 2015, 10:06 PM   #2
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Hi Greg,

Looks liker the seminar was very interesting and very nice you had chance to see and play with the new OMD-E5 MKII and the 14-150mm lens, those are not on display at B&H so I have to wait to try by myself.

The Live Time is available on the E-M5 and I use it all the time, it is a great took for long exposures because it shows how the exposure of the picture is adding light to the scene. I use it with intervals of 0.5 seconds.

The Live Composite looks like it is a very nice feature and innovation on the new OMD-E5.

Thank you for sharing with us..!!
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Old Mar 1, 2015, 10:55 PM   #3
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I'd never been down that low on the shutter speed dial before, on either the E-M5 or E-M1. I will now when the opportunity presents itself. Fireworks shooting, astrophotography and the like.
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