Monday, February 27, 2017

Soft, Sharp, and Saturated, Olympus XA1

Soft, Sharp, and Saturated, Olympus XA1 01
Soft, Sharp, and Saturated, Olympus XA1 02
Soft, Sharp, and Saturated, Olympus XA1 03
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Olympus XA 1

Analog Diary:

Soft, Sharp, and Saturated, Olympus XA1

'Five frames with the Olympus XA1, soft, sharp, and saturated colors with a fun and exciting point-and-shoot compact'

The Olympus XA1 has only 2 film ISO (ASA) speed settings - ISO 100 and ISO 400. While ISO 100 speed film has finer grain, ISO 400 film have light-sensitive materials which are larger in grain sizes and requires less light for proper exposure. Photos, however, may show up with visible grain.

Olympus XA1

When using the faster ISO 400 speed film, in a typical bright light situation, you can get away from motion blur and achieve great depth of field as the fast film speed lets you shoot with faster shutter speed and smaller aperture.

One of the fun things you can do with the Olympus XA1, when you are stuck with the slower ISO 100 speed film, and where the light is insufficient for you to get a properly exposed shot, is to use the exposure lock trick.

Olympus XA1

What you need to do is first to point the camera at the brighter light source, half-press the shutter release to activate the metering, then turn the camera to frame the composition and take the shot.

The shots, of course, will have a varying degree of underexposure, which can be enhanced with post-processing.


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Monday, February 20, 2017

The Portrait Format, Olympus Pen EF

The Portrait Format, Olympus Pen EF 01
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The Portrait Format, Olympus Pen EF 03
The Portrait Format, Olympus Pen EF 04
The Portrait Format, Olympus Pen EF 05
Olympus Pen EF

Analog Diary:

The Portrait Format, Olympus Pen EF

'Five frames with the Olympus Pen EF, looking at the 3:4 image aspect ratio or portrait format photography'

I am dedicating this and other posts in this series to the 3:4 image aspect ratio, as photographed on the Olympus Pen EE-S, Pen EF, Pen FT and other half-frame format film cameras that I have or may collect along the way.

Olympus Pen EF

A half-frame camera, also known as a single-frame or split-frame, captures images at half the size (18x24mm) of a standard 35mm negative film (24x36mm). You can shoot twice as many pictures and get 72 exposures on a 36-exposure roll, 48 on a 24-exposure roll. Most half-frame cameras are manufactured with a vertical film framing setup, meaning that they shoot in a vertical (portrait) orientation as opposed to the horizontal (landscape) orientation of standard 35mm cameras.

Operating the camera, not unlike any other point-and-shoot, is equally easy and can be done one-handed. Metering is by the standard Selenium 'electric-eye' system with the red pop-up flag that locks the shutter in low light condition. With the Olympus EF, however, you can override this lock by activating the level to power the flash unit, cute.

The scanned images were post-processed on Olympus Viewer 3 (OV3), which includes cropping the doubled-scanned images into single images, and tweaked with edits including Auto Tone Correction, Brightness & Contrast, Gamma, Hue & Saturation, Sharpness & Blur, Unsharp Mask, and Noise Reduction.


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Monday, February 13, 2017

Digital Moments, Zuiko OM 300mm F4.5

Digital Moments, Zuiko OM 300mm F4.5 01
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Digital Moments, Zuiko OM 300mm F4.5 03
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Digital Moments, Zuiko OM 300mm F4.5 05
Olympus Pen E-P5, Olympus OM Zuiko 300mm F4.5

Digital Moments:

Zuiko OM 300mm F4.5

'Five frames with the Olympus Zuiko OM 300mm F4.5, trial shots with the Olympus Pen E-P5'

Took the Olympus  Olympus Zuiko OM 300mm F4.5 out of the dry-box and mounted it on the Olympus Pen E-P5 with the OM Adapter MF-2, just to see how it feels and handles, and what will it takes to lug it around on a shoot or assignment.

Olympus E-P5, Olympus OM Zuiko 300mm F4.5
Olympus E-P5, Olympus OM Zuiko 300mm F4.5
On the Olympus E-P5, the lens will be equivalent to an f/9 600mm super-telephoto lens. Lined the combo up on the front porch, and grabbed a few test shots, wide-open, of my immediate environment.

The combo looks and feels great, fits the E-P5 rather well, and for a lens that is light on the budget (comparatively), and super sharp even at wide open, the 300mm F4.5 is the one to look at if you are into wildlife or mountain photography. On the E-P5 the lens is still handholdable though it normally comes with its own tripod collar which allows for a free rotation for both horizontal or vertical shots.

With a build quality that is simply outstanding, the lens also features a built-in retractable lens hood and comes with a large filter attachment that accepts threaded 72mm filters. Images as you can see here, are tack sharp all round with little or no diffraction, and good contrast and saturation with the colors. The lens can also be used with the Teleconverter 1.4X-A.


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Monday, February 6, 2017

Moments, Olympus Pen EE-S

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Moments, Olympus Pen EE-S 03
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Olympus Pen EE.S

Analog Diary:

Moments, Olympus Pen EE-S

'Five frames with the Olympus Pen EE-S, nostalgic moments of a place often frequented'

Moments brings me back to my favorite hangout where I frequent when selling used and vintage 35mm film cameras, manual focus lenses, and other film camera accessories.

Olympus Pen EE-S

Those were the days, enjoyed my time there, and with the half-frame Pen EE.S, a fixed focus point-and-shoot camera with a 28mm f/3.5 lens with a shutter speed of 1/60 second, images to reminisce the moments. These images were tweaked on the Olympus Viewer 3 (OV3) for Auto Tone Correction, Tone Curve, Brightness & Contrast, Hue & Saturation, Sharpness & Blur, and Noise Reduction.

The Pen EE.S is a bit of a gem, and a true classic, easily recognized by the selenium meter window around the lens. It is well built, feels solid and robust, fits snugly in the palm of your hand, and has a very quiet shutter that is hardly audible beyond a short distance. Shooting and working both the film advance and the shutter release with one hand is as easy as eating a pie.


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