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UPDATE: In the process of attempting some objective comparison between images from my camera and those helpfully submitted, I found that the exposure relationship between RAW and embedded preview isn't even consistent from my own camera, with no change in settings, and no "magic" options enabled. So, for now I consider the personal aspect of this question "on hold", but if anyone has experienced what I'm describing and can contribute an answer that would be generally useful, please do.


I've been using the Oly 60mm f/2.8 macro on an E-PL6 body which makes for a nice, compact rig that works great for my purposes. Oddly, though, the camera wants to compensate for the effective aperture of macro-range shooting with in camera processing instead of adjusting actual exposure, and this includes the preview (and as far as I can tell, the histogram).

Essentially, the RAW files that appeared to be ETTR are actually underexposed. I can work around this by compensating manually, but it's not much fun to have to do this every time you change your working distance a little under awkward conditions with subjects that might vanish at any moment.

The other issue is that this process leaves me with disconcertingly blown-out preview images that are difficult to evaluate in-camera. My question, therefore, is whether this behavior is common to all Olympus bodies when using this lens, or if perhaps the higher-end models do things differently, so that I can take this into consideration when the time comes for the next purchase.

I'm hoping for responses based on actual experiences shooting RAW at 1:1 with this lens on Olympus bodies, since this type of information doesn't tend to be available in documentation or reviews. I'm not in the market for a Panasonic body, but would find information about that use case interesting, too.

And just for the record, all firmware is current, and yes, I've investigated every single deeply-hidden menu option that could possibly relate to this, and have the lens correction options that are presented turned off. I have a good understanding of the RAW development software that I use - this is purely an issue of the camera trying to be "smart" in a way that I consider really dumb (abusing all that lens-correction capability built into the Micro Four Thirds system) when shooting at distances where "effective aperture" is a significant factor.

All of that said, huge thanks to anybody who can provide the specific information requested! :)

  • I have an E-P5 and I also have this lens. There are no pictures online yet. Firmware 1.7 and I have a Metz Ringflash. What kind of sample picture would you like to see? I'm open for experiments. Not a specialized macro photographer. – knb Aug 23 '16 at 19:44
  • @knb: If you would be willing to make available a RAW file taken at 1:1 magnification, it wouldn't really matter much what the subject was, as long as it allowed for evaluating the exposure of the embedded preview vs. the RAW data (the 2-stop difference is pretty obvious). If the E-P5 behavior turns out to be different from the E-PL6, it might make sense to start a community wiki answer where people could add the info for different models to a list... – junkyardsparkle Aug 23 '16 at 19:58
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Here on google drive I have provided 5 images taken with an E-P5 ( Firmware 1.7), 60 mm 2.8 macro lens, and a Metz Ringflash.

Right now it is night here in Europe, so I just took a few pictures of items on my desk in bad LED light and with the flash.

I am not sure what you are looking for (in the EXIF data ?); hope it helps nevertheless.

  • 1
    It might be better to take back-and-forth diagnostic work to Photography Chat, and post an answer when you have a result. – mattdm Aug 23 '16 at 21:58
  • @mattdm: Fair enough. I'll try to get a simple dcraw command line for generating a comparison into the question shortly, to make it easier for anyone to evaluate themselves. – junkyardsparkle Aug 23 '16 at 22:02
  • @knb: The 1:1 close-up of the yellow label is just what I was looking for, thanks! – junkyardsparkle Aug 23 '16 at 22:25
  • Making this the accepted answer for now, until I can can come up with a more methodical process for comparing results. – junkyardsparkle Aug 23 '16 at 22:51
  • @junkyardsparkle Just for my curiosity, what's the punchline? Is it different? – mattdm Aug 24 '16 at 0:03

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