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04-26-2011, 08:47 AM   #16
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as others have noted here, use of the zone system just about precludes the use of auto metering modes, BUT, what I do, when using especially long tele lenses, is use spot metering and use Tv mode, to ensure that I get a minimum shutter speed,

With Wide angle lenses And shooting general scenes I use Av mode, and matrix metering, and let the camera decide. generally the matrix metering will let the camera blow the highlights out of one or 2 areas, because it considers them to be too bright relitive to the remainder of the scene.

If I shoot manual, I do as Jeff has said, decide what part of the scene is important to me, and expose for that part. the rest will go where ever the exposure takes it relitive to the lattitude of the sensor.

04-27-2011, 09:08 AM   #17
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bymy141, calicojack, wizofoz, Lowell Goudge, bymy141 and others thanks for those valuable inputs. Jeffjs thanks once again for that lengthy explanation.
Jeffjs - 'once again' cropped up because I was in a blind state when i started the thread then with replies it looked as if I was gaining ground but after your reply I thought I was missing something all this crops from the fact that I wanted to make sure I was not missing out any techniques from all your years of experience since I am totally new. Therefore I was not trying to blame you, it was me and my learning process. I never knew zoning system and the EV comp methods are two different things while I was looking at it as a same thing!?(hope that statement is right )

bymy141 - no i am not from the olden days film camera scholar, I am new comer into dslr world all that i was playing with before was a canons semi-manual point and shoot 990IS. I was using it without knowing the proper metering techniques while thinking that I had mastered the metering.

I think this place is full of experience and very proud to be part of it and I can call it a photography university. Thanks all once again for taking your time to come type in some worthy replies.
04-27-2011, 11:05 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by sany Quote
bymy141 - no i am not from the olden days film camera scholar, I am new comer into dslr world all that i was playing with before was a canons semi-manual point and shoot 990IS. I was using it without knowing the proper metering techniques while thinking that I had mastered the metering.
Sany, sorry about that.

I've been making photo's for as long as I can remember and I'm still not mastering the metering problem.
My approach to metering is very much depending upon the type of shoot.
On the street, in a crowd, a wedding, sports, game, etc making a picture (a good picture) requires fast response.
Looking for the right composition and the right timing, IMHO is much more important than metering.
So, in most (not all) occasions I use the P mode and use the wheels to get the right T or A values.
With Auto ISO at 80-3200 (K-5) I let the camera do the metering.
Later (I shoot RAW) I correct all my pictures in Lightroom 3.
And that works for me.

I allways check the preview (for which I have the histogram and the dark / high light blinkers on).
As soon as I see that the exposure is far off, I use the Ev knob to compensate.
I've mapped exposure bracketing to the RAW button, so, bracketing exposure is the other (fast) option available.

Since I'm not a studio photographer, I'm not that much into metering....

I Hope this has helped you understand my personal (not necessary the best) approach.

Cheers, Bert
04-27-2011, 11:36 AM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by sany Quote
bymy141, calicojack, wizofoz, Lowell Goudge, bymy141 and others thanks for those valuable inputs. Jeffjs thanks once again for that lengthy explanation.
Jeffjs - 'once again' cropped up because I was in a blind state when i started the thread then with replies it looked as if I was gaining ground but after your reply I thought I was missing something all this crops from the fact that I wanted to make sure I was not missing out any techniques from all your years of experience since I am totally new. Therefore I was not trying to blame you, it was me and my learning process. I never knew zoning system and the EV comp methods are two different things while I was looking at it as a same thing!?(hope that statement is right )

bymy141 - no i am not from the olden days film camera scholar, I am new comer into dslr world all that i was playing with before was a canons semi-manual point and shoot 990IS. I was using it without knowing the proper metering techniques while thinking that I had mastered the metering.

I think this place is full of experience and very proud to be part of it and I can call it a photography university. Thanks all once again for taking your time to come type in some worthy replies.
I was only saying I didn't remember replying to you in any other posts. That's all.

To expand on my last answer a little bit regarding EV Compensation. I have a Black dog. He's so black in fact that it's difficult to get a good shot of him. Where I mentioned opening the aperture or slowing the shutter to get Whites exposed properly, the exact opposite is true with Black. That is, close the aperture or speed up the shutter. Since the dog is typically on the move and constantly goes from bright sunlight to shade or the clouds cover the sun etc, the lighting on the Dog is always changing. Using spot metering in one of the auto modes (in this case, Av), and setting EV Comp to minus 2, my exposure on him will always be close enough.



Exif | K5JS5084_mDA50135_SiA_April26_2011 | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

Here is one done in Shutter Priority (Tv) the same way.



Exif | K5JS5129_mDA50135_SiA_April26_2011 | Flickr - Photo Sharing!

You may notice, particularly in the bottom frame, the rest of the frame is properly exposed as well. If I just let the Auto mode dictate while spot metering on the dog with no adjustments (EV Compensation) the grey concrete as well as the house would be completely blown out.

Where this method completely falls apart for getting it right in the camera, is if I meter something Besides the dog. That is where I find it useful to meter a neutral object, make any corrections I want to make, and then just point and shoot. If the light isn't changing very much, that works out quite well.




04-27-2011, 04:49 PM   #20
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Hi there!

I'm a first time poster, being a relatively new amateur into the world of photography. I picked up a K-r less than 2 months ago and am still learning the ropes of how to properly use my camera, as well as exposure and composition amongst other things.

I recently purchased a SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7, and my idea of metering was just to point the camera at my subject and meter from there (center-weighted). I've been reading this thread and it seems like I'm approaching this the wrong way. However, what I began to do (as most of my photos ended up too bright) was just to compensate by increasing shutter speed until it "feels just right". Is this a valid approach or am I digging my own grave here?

Sorry for the long babble, but this forum really is amazing =D
04-27-2011, 05:17 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by bakamera Quote
Hi there!

I'm a first time poster, being a relatively new amateur into the world of photography. I picked up a K-r less than 2 months ago and am still learning the ropes of how to properly use my camera, as well as exposure and composition amongst other things.

I recently purchased a SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7, and my idea of metering was just to point the camera at my subject and meter from there (center-weighted). I've been reading this thread and it seems like I'm approaching this the wrong way. However, what I began to do (as most of my photos ended up too bright) was just to compensate by increasing shutter speed until it "feels just right". Is this a valid approach or am I digging my own grave here?

Sorry for the long babble, but this forum really is amazing =D
With an M lens, you HAVE to shoot in Manual mode because otherwise, you are always shooting wide open at f1.7 (in the case of the 50 f1.7). That's probably why your photos are over exposed until you speed the shutter way up. The short answer is yes, without knowing it, you're kind of digging yourself a grave (if you're using the Auto modes with that lens). That's all if I understood your statement/question correctly.

Welcome aboard by the way.

04-27-2011, 05:25 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by bakamera Quote
Hi there!

I'm a first time poster, being a relatively new amateur into the world of photography. I picked up a K-r less than 2 months ago and am still learning the ropes of how to properly use my camera, as well as exposure and composition amongst other things.

I recently purchased a SMC Pentax-M 50mm F1.7, and my idea of metering was just to point the camera at my subject and meter from there (center-weighted). I've been reading this thread and it seems like I'm approaching this the wrong way. However, what I began to do (as most of my photos ended up too bright) was just to compensate by increasing shutter speed until it "feels just right". Is this a valid approach or am I digging my own grave here?

Sorry for the long babble, but this forum really is amazing =D
Aside from the point that Jeff raisess about the fact that in any mode other than manual any lens that does not have an A position, or you are not in the A position, will only shoot wide open you need to consider a few other things.

Not all cameras meter perfectly with non A lenses, so the first thing you might want to consider is doing a test of your camera and lens at each aperture, by photographing a uniformly lit uniform surface (paved road or block wall work very well for this) and then press the green button to meter. either look at the histogram in a photo editor, (preferred) or on the camera during review, and note how the peak of the histogram moves with each shot. on a camera the divisions of the histogram either side of center are about 1 1/2 stops. In a photo editor, the peak should be at about 120 with each 40 greyscale being one stop. It is very important with manual lenses to know how your camera will meter, otherwise, when just starting out, you can get frustrated with trying to nail exposure.

Once you know how your camera meters, you can then consider doing the following. Meter off a surface under the lighting conditions you are shooting under, with the aperture you want to use (the camera will pick shutter) make any corrections (test photo) perhaps, and then leave the settings alone until the light changes.
04-27-2011, 07:06 PM   #23
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Thanks for the help there. Actually, I've always been in M, and I use the Green Button for metering, which sets my shutter speed accordingly, if I'm not mistaken.

My question was more about where to use my Green Button. As I read above, there were many mentions of metering on a tone of grey. I've tried reading up on similar things, but I haven't really found a simple explanation on what exactly I'm meant to be metering on. As such, I've been using M mode and pressing the Green Button to set my shutter speed when I have my subject in the middle. Maybe I'm just confusing myself, but should I be pressing the Green Button when I have some tone of grey in the middle of my screen instead of my subject?

Sorry for the confusing explanations!

04-27-2011, 09:31 PM - 1 Like   #24
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That is exactly what the green button does. What you want to watch for now is exposure warnings. If you peg the limits of your shutter speed (it will flash) with the green button then you need to open (smaller f number) or close (larger f number) your aperture and re-meter. You may also adjust the ISO if needed. When in doubt (with spot metering or even CW metering) set your aperture and point the camera at some concrete (dry, if available) and hit the green button. With that, you will typically have at least a Saveable photo. The final thing you want to account for is WHAT you are taking a picture of. Is it a moving or stationary object? Do you want a Lot of Depth to the photo or very shallow? Things of that nature.

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