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Tips and Tricks Using the OM4 metering... add yours?

  1. beegee675

    I'm trying to collect a bunch of tips and tricks using the Oly OM 4's meter in various situations. I'm personally exploring it's black and white capabilities as well as the usual color films with it, and I thought maybe there's still enough users out there who have their own approaches to getting the exposures they'd like to share. Discovered one today about hitting a spot point twice or close to each other to get a biased averaged exposure in that area. I don't have a OM3, but as I understand the meter is the same... so welcome those, too.

    Bob G.
  2. Allan Swindles
    Allan Swindles
    beegee675, forgive me, but I don't see where this is going. There will never be a subject in which all parts are exposed to perfection. That's due to the latitude of the film whether it be monochrome, colour print or colour positive and more importantly, what YOU require, as as finished result. I believe that there are no perfect results, only acceptable one's.
  3. beegee675
    Well, I thought there might be different ways some would take the same shot, or maybe using the spots more or less in certain areas to get the exposures they wanted using a particular film. Oh well, too many variables, I guess.
  4. RDWestPR
    A collective spot-meter 'average' simply allows you to bias the exposure more accurately than a single 'middle shade of gray' reading like on an OM-1 (unless you know how to bias it). The Dmax of the film will be an issue no matter what. Another approach is to use the ASA/ISO knob to bias the exposer towards darker or lighter values. I usually shoot ''Aperture Preferred' AE with a step-less shutter (OM-2 or OM-4) with the ISO set up or down a little, according to the conditions. This worked great for 35mm Slides. Shooting in snow or at night are classic examples of needing to bias the values. The OM-3 is the 'best of both worlds'. ISO becomes a very import part of the exposure process. Do you shot from a monopod or tripod?
  5. Hilo
    I think the secret of the OM4(Ti)'s spotmeter lies in how functional it operates. Not so much in the different ways one can use it.

    Many camera's force you to keep pushing / holding the spot button . . . After having used the OM4Ti I find that a poor way, in particular when it is the shutter button you must keep pushing (Leica R for instance). And right away after that it is about the ease of clearing what you "spot metered" and doing it again. Olympus designers got it all very right - it is a fantastic tool !
  6. thuggins
    Olympus' center weighted metering gives good results in most situations. But in tough light situations try taking a couple spot of the highlight, a couple of the darkest and a couple neutral. When on a cruise to Alaska, the combination of low sun angle, bright clear sky and snow covered mountains really threw off the meter. Two spots on the bright snow, two on the dark evergreen forest and two on light grey rock gave me perfect exposure every time.
  7. beegee675
    Good technique! But why two each? Wouldn't one suffice? And how close were the double "points" on the meter scale... close together , or with maybe one dot between? Mostly handheld shooting, but it seems that the more points you indicate, the more fixed the camera should be...
  8. thuggins
    You can certainly try one point, but the more you take the more of an average you'll get. No two points will meter exactly the same.
  9. M6F6E6
    Yeah, definitely worth two or so clicks on the "one" spot to get it accurate. You can do up to eight spots and the 4ti will average them out, and I think you can just keep spotting and it will disregard the first ones and just use the last eight. It sure is a brilliant layout on the 4ti, being so easy to clear it and start again without taking your eye off the viewfinder and fiddle with some stupid multi-purpose button while watching the electronic screen... almost as dumb as touch screens in cars to control the a/c or radio - gotta take your eyes off the road to adjuxt them. Who are the idiots who design/build/approve such idiotic and slow and dangerous vehicles. Older cars just had levers and dials - so simple that you could learn them off by heart within weeks and not have to take your eyes off the road at all.

    Anyway back to the 4ti - you cannot beat this camera for light metering simplicity and accuracy. Just look after it cos apparently there are no more circuit boards when it fails. All the ones i have used that failed have at least done so slowly over a few months. A very polite little camera!

    They are absolutely without peer when it comes to panning shots of race cars or whatever. I used Canon and Nikon for a few years, and always got intermittent results, as when you pan the car often goes in and out of shadows. My mate showed me his OM results - all were perfect. The real time OTF light metering is just fantastic.

    Hope you are getting used to yours better than before.
  10. ChrisLL
    Does no one else use the Hilight and shadow buttons on the OM4Ti?In a scene with snow, for instance, I take several spot readings, including the brightest bit of snow. Pressing the hilight button sets the exposure such that the drightest spot is rendered white. Genius.Shadow dous a similar thing. Make sure one of your spots is something you want to be black and press shadow. It's a fantastic feature on a fantastic camera.
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