Olympus OMD EM-5.2 makes good images of servers. This is part two of yesterday's Hi-Res Mode saga.

Yesterday I wrote about using the Olympus EM5-2 on two jobs but I only showed the salad we shot at Cantine on the second job of the day. I wanted to come back and show one of the products we shot in the morning for our tech client, Salient Systems. I love the fire engine red front bezels for their server units. They look really cool all stacked up in a rack mount configuration.  

I didn't have time yesterday to do the post processing I needed to do on the job before I wrote yesterday's blog (a consequence of being a one man band) but I did finish up clipping paths and dust spotting around midnight last night so I thought I'd show this example while it the whole topic was still fresh in my mind. 

The server was shot in the company's conference room. I brought a short roll of white seamless paper and rolled it out from a set of background stands across the end of a big, conference room table. The room has a wall of windows that were covered by shades but the shades were not completely opaque; in fact, the sun through the shade material lit the room beautifully. I used three Fotodiox 312AS LED panels to light the server from different sides. In a departure from my usual practice I used the three lights without any modifiers other than the plastic diffusers that come with the lights. I also used a Fotodiox 508AS as my main light; again without additional modifiers. 

The OMD EM5-2 was outfitted with a 12-35mm Panasonic X lens set at f8.0. I started out by doing a customer white balance, setting my ISO at 200 and going into the camera's Hi-Res mode. I hadn't checked to see if the latest rev of PhotoShop CC had a converter for the raw version of this mode so I set the camera to the finest Jpeg setting. I focused in manual so I could more accurately distribute focus across the product. 

When shooting at 7296 x 5472 pixels you get to see all the specks of dust you really can't see with your naked eye unless you are twelve inches away from the product. My post production consisted of creating a clipping path around the product so the client can "lift" the image and put it into different layouts, and a more or less
meticulous spotting of those pesky pieces of dust.

While one cannot shoot moving objects in the Hi-Res mode I think we omnivorous commercial photographer will find lots of uses for the extra resolution. I wondered if the lenses for the m4:3 format were up to the task of providing additional, actual resolution and I am happy to report that they do. At least the ones I have used so far. I am sure that Olympus's two pro lenses, the 12-40mm f2.8 and the 40-150mm f2.8 will do so handily as well. 

Our twelve product shots from yesterday morning have all been clipped and sent to the client. Now I'm back to work on that restaurant video....Also shot with the EM5-2. Seems that camera is getting a workout this month.


Mark Davidson said...

I saw that Olympus limited the aperture to a minimum of f8 in Hi-Res mode. Is that accurate? I wonder if it is an issue of diffraction?
If so, one might have to resort to image stacking where lots of depth of field is required.
Other than that I love the idea of this for architectural work (without people of course).

Michael Reed said...

Now if Sony can do sensor shift with their new A7r II!

Kirk, the IQ of these Olympus images using the sensor shift are really good.

I read one of your earlier blogs on the potential of this tech and I agree it does have its uses.

Kirk Tuck said...

Hi Mark, Keep in mind that your pick up additional depth of field because of the sensor size. According to some it's about a two stop difference. That would mean you're getting the same DOF as f16 with full frame cameras.

Robert Hudyma said...

Nice to see great product images made with a micro 4/3rds camera and lens. I made many images of computer equipment some 30 years ago using a 4x5 view camera and tilts to extend the depth of field in my equipment images (using the Scheimpflug principle).

Seems that you can do this today with the affordable 24mm Rokinon (a.k.a. Samyang) tilt/shift lens. There is a micro 4/3rds version offered too.

I have this lens, in Sony alpha mount, and I find it wonderful for distortion correction and providing an extended depth of field in my downtown building photos these days.

Although I have not tried this on the mirco 4/3rds sensor, it has the potential to be a winning combination since the small sensor images will have more depth of field and you get a lot of additional depth of field from the double tilt.

Nigel said...

Don't think the Ssamyang tilt/shift is available in m4/3 ?

I've been using the new Panasonic 30mm macro recently. A really good lens, and the OOF character is quite a lot better than that of the 12-35 (which is nonetheless also an excellent lens).