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omd:spot_metering

spot meter modes of Olympus cameras

introduction

  • for most situations, ESP exposure metering in Olympus digital cameras works wonderfully well
  • unfortunately, it does not really help you to learn what it is doing, nor how to take control of the the exposure yourself
  • on the other-hand, spot metering, although it takes some time to understand and master, can really make you into a much better photographer:
    • you can get far more accurate and consistent exposures, particularly in high contrast situations
    • YOU LEARN to DECIDE HOW YOU WANT a subject rendered

Olympus spot meter modes

  • spot meter is always the centre spot - NOT the AF selection
  • the spot metering data also displays as the green area in the live histogram in Olympus cameras even in ESP exposure metering in Olympus digital cameras
  • in an exposure mode that is not manual, you MUST lock the exposure, otherwise as you recompose, the exposure will vary wildly depending upon the reflective brightness of the target in the spot (in manual mode, the metering reading will change but not your exposure as you have full control over it)

normal spot meter

  • meters assuming the subject is an 18% gray card
  • if you expose according to the reading giving 0.0EV, the target will be rendered as 18% gray even if it is actually black or white - this is how camera meters work by default

HI spot meter

  • this is designed to be aimed at a target which you want to appear as white but not blown out
  • it is similar effect as using normal spot meter and using a meter reading of +2.3EV

LO spot meter

  • this is designed to be aimed at a target which you want to appear as black but not be blocked out
  • it is similar effect as using normal spot meter and using a meter reading of -3.0EV

to really learn to use the spot meter modes, learn Zone System first

  • the light meter does NOT KNOW how light or dark a person's skin is and will always get the metering WRONG UNLESS you adjust it properly:
    • for example once you have learned that a Caucasian face is in Zone VI and 1 stop LIGHTER than Zone V where 18% gray card is and where the light meter wants to put your face, you will realise if you meter of such skin, you need to use an exposure compensation of +1EV in order to render the skin tones accurately!
    • if instead, you meter off an almost black African face which is in Zone III, you need to set exposure compensation to -2EV.
  • do yourself a favour and experiment with spot metering in manual exposure mode
  • with practice, you will learn where these subjects and more should appear on your live histogram
omd/spot_metering.txt · Last modified: 2014/09/30 14:12 by gary1