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Thread: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

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    Senior Member MikeEvangelist's Avatar
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    Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    I had turned on silent shutter mode while shooting in a very quiet setting this evening and unfortunately forgot to turn it off afterwards. So when I grabbed this 7-vertical-shot pan of a foggy night in Minneapolis, it was ruined by banding. Dang.

    Lesson learned.

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Thanks Mike. A Nice image anyway. I like it.
    What shutter speed did you use? TIA.
    With best regards, K-H.

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    Senior Member MikeEvangelist's Avatar
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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by k-hawinkler View Post
    What shutter speed did you use? TIA.
    It was 1/100.
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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Thanks Mike. How exactly does this happen? No problem with EFCS? TIA.
    With best regards, K-H.

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by k-hawinkler View Post
    Thanks Mike. How exactly does this happen? No problem with EFCS? TIA.
    When you use the silent shutter, the camera returns to 12bits colors instead of 14bits; adds that plus perhaps a higher ISO (? No indication as to whether it was handheld or on tripod) and you get banding instead of subtle tones gradations. Interesting that the banding is vertical and not horizontal. May be because he used the camera in vertical mode.
    Last edited by Annna T; 17th November 2015 at 03:19.
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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Annna T View Post
    When you use the silent shutter, the camera returns to 12bits colors instead of 14bits; adds that plus perhaps a higher ISO (?) and you get banding instead of subtle tones gradations. Interesting that the banding is vertical and nit horizontal. May be because he used the camera in vertical mode.
    Thanks Annna. Those are pretty sharp vertical lines I see on the left side. I think you explained the vertical. But why so sharp? TIA.
    Couldn't one map them out though?
    With best regards, K-H.

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Hi,

    With the electronic (silent) shutter the sweep is slow. Light is oscillating with AC-voltage. So what you see is variation of light during exposure.

    With EFCS you will not have the same problem.

    Best regards
    Erik


    Quote Originally Posted by k-hawinkler View Post
    Thanks Annna. Those are pretty sharp vertical lines I see on the left side. I think you explained the vertical. But why so sharp? TIA.
    Couldn't one map them out though?
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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Banding ruined several shots I took at a recent family wedding.

    I was using the A7S and was using silent shutter for obvious reasons.

    I won't be making that mistake again any time soon.

    LouisB
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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    So, in natural light one shouldn't have this particular problem?
    With best regards, K-H.

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    Senior Member ErikKaffehr's Avatar
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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    That's right!

    Erik

    Quote Originally Posted by k-hawinkler View Post
    So, in natural light one shouldn't have this particular problem?

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    ...With EFCS you will not have the same problem....
    Are there any limitations using EFCS?

    TIA

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    Hi,

    With the electronic (silent) shutter the sweep is slow. Light is oscillating with AC-voltage. So what you see is variation of light during exposure.

    With EFCS you will not have the same problem.

    Best regards
    Erik
    Thanks for your explanation. It makes sense. But I'm wondering : we aren't in a closed room with only a few lights, but in open space, with many many different lights, some brighter, some weaker, some reddish, some yellowish and some very white. So are they all flickering at the same rhythm, even if they comes from different sources and different technologies ? Are they not cancelling each others ? Or may be the brightest one dominates all the others ?

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Hi Annna,

    Here is great article on how the silent shutter works: http://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3885998

    I would guess that most light flicker with power line frequency, 50 or 60 Hz depending on where you live. The power lines are in very good sync. So that is the reason they don't cancel out.

    Best regards
    Erik



    Quote Originally Posted by Annna T View Post
    Thanks for your explanation. It makes sense. But I'm wondering : we aren't in a closed room with only a few lights, but in open space, with many many different lights, some brighter, some weaker, some reddish, some yellowish and some very white. So are they all flickering at the same rhythm, even if they comes from different sources and different technologies ? Are they not cancelling each others ? Or may be the brightest one dominates all the others ?
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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by BJNY View Post
    Are there any limitations using EFCS?

    TIA
    EFCS works well up to 1/2000 sec exposure. Beyond that the shutter will start to be seen on one side of the image. Need to turn it off at that point.

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by chrisd View Post
    EFCS works well up to 1/2000 sec exposure. Beyond that the shutter will start to be seen on one side of the image. Need to turn it off at that point.
    Thank you.

    Any limit to shutter speed at the opposite end?

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    What I posted on the Fuji forum:

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    Of late, I have been using a Panasonic GM1 (only e shutter with non system lenses) and am yet to see any banding! AFAIK, there is no global shutter involved.

    The Sony A7s (silent shutter) is unpredictable. Under multiple lights, no signs of banding.
    No idea how Panasonic do it.

    To be cautious, it is better to turn the silent shutter off in Sony cams.

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    Senior Member MikeEvangelist's Avatar
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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by k-hawinkler View Post
    Those are pretty sharp vertical lines I see on the left side. I think you explained the vertical. But why so sharp?
    If you mean those very fine lines on the far left, those are cables hanging from a construction crane just outside the frame.

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by chrisd View Post
    EFCS works well up to 1/2000 sec exposure. Beyond that the shutter will start to be seen on one side of the image. Need to turn it off at that point.
    IIRC Jim Kasson now recommends to use the mechanical shutter for speeds faster than 1/1000 s to avoid uneven exposure.
    With best regards, K-H.

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    If the banding is AC cycle originated ( which I have no reason to doubt) can't it be avoided using silent shutter at a shutter speed above the cycle like we do with regular shutters and flor lighting in studios to cancel the 60 cycle hum banding?

    Just thinking aloud... I never use silent shutter anyway but did learn early how to eliminate 60 cycle hum in my studio images with shutter speeds.
    Last edited by Jim DE; 17th November 2015 at 08:33.

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Hi Jim,

    No, shutter travel time is around a 1/12s. Just to say, if you would shoot cars racing by, you would also see the tilted wheel artefacts.

    Many modern fluorescent tube armatures have electronic ballast, blinking at much higher frequencies. So it is not necessarily a problem. Incandescent lamps are more stable.

    It also means flash sync speed is very low.

    Best regards
    Erik

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim DE View Post
    If the banding is AC cycle originated ( which I have no reason to doubt) can't it be avoided using silent shutter at a shutter speed above the cycle like we do with regular shutters and flor lighting in studios to cancel the 60 cycle hum banding?

    Just thinking aloud... I never use silent shutter anyway but did learn early how to eliminate 60 cycle hum in my studio images with shutter speeds.

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim DE View Post
    If the banding is AC cycle originated ( which I have no reason to doubt) can't it be avoided using silent shutter at a shutter speed above the cycle like we do with regular shutters and flor lighting in studios to cancel the 60 cycle hum banding?

    Just thinking aloud... I never use silent shutter anyway but did learn early how to eliminate 60 cycle hum in my studio images with shutter speeds.
    I've read banding in SS mode will be avoided at 1/100 sec. shutter speeds and slower. As mentioned, it appears with artificial lighting, mostly fluorescent of CFLs.

    I love silent shutter mode in situations where total quiet is needed. It makes a huge difference shooting in family situations.

    --------

    Edited for proofreading error.
    Last edited by dandrewk; 17th November 2015 at 22:56.
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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by dandrewk View Post
    I've read banding in SS mode will be avoided at 1/100 sec. shutter speeds and faster. As mentioned, it appears with artificial lighting, mostly fluorescent of CFLs.

    I love silent shutter mode in situations where total quiet is needed. It makes a huge difference shooting in family situations.
    If the banding is caused by fluorescent lighting, then a shutter speed of 1/60th or slower will be needed to avoid the banding. Some lights may require 1/50th or slower. Shutter speeds of 1/100th and faster are very likely to show banding.
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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Yes indeed, I got it backwards and fixed the post. It's -slower- than 1/100 second, not faster.

    I read somewhere that anything 1/100 or slower will effectively eliminate banding. But if possible, I'd go slower.
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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post
    Hi Annna,

    Here is great article on how the silent shutter works: How fast is the a7RII silent shutter?: Sony Alpha Full Frame E-mount Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review

    I would guess that most light flicker with power line frequency, 50 or 60 Hz depending on where you live. The power lines are in very good sync. So that is the reason they don't cancel out.

    Best regards
    Erik
    I was rather surprised to see the effect. My reasoning was that each street is probably supplied with a different phase of a three phase supply (to equalize transformer loading). So the combined skylight from several streets would have an average value with a low intensity ripple of six pulses per cycle superimposed. A lamp is bright on the negative and positive voltage peaks of each cycle. I guess the 360Hz ripple is what you are seeing in the photo. An indoor photo with a single lamp or several lamps supplied by the same phase would show much wider and more intense bands due to the 120Hz flicker.

    Bob.
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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Parsons View Post
    I was rather surprised to see the effect. My reasoning was that each street is probably supplied with a different phase of a three phase supply (to equalize transformer loading).
    My guess is that the banding is caused primarily by the lights on top of the central tall building. They were contributing most of the illumination to the fog, and are probably all running off the same power phase. You can see that the effect seems centered on the top of that one building.

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by dandrewk View Post
    I've read banding in SS mode will be avoided at 1/100 sec. shutter speeds and slower. As mentioned, it appears with artificial lighting, mostly fluorescent of CFLs.

    I love silent shutter mode in situations where total quiet is needed. It makes a huge difference shooting in family situations.

    --------

    Edited for proofreading error.
    I was playing around with this last night in the kitchen where our fluorescent lighting is terrible. I could not get a shot without banding using silent shutter on the A7rii no matter the shutter speed. I would recommend having image review on for 2 seconds with this mode for a check to see if your image is ruined. Lovely feature though and I wouldn't expect it to be as good as EFCS or mechanical shutter images.

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by k-hawinkler View Post
    IIRC Jim Kasson now recommends to use the mechanical shutter for speeds faster than 1/1000 s to avoid uneven exposure.
    He posted on this subject today @DPR and said 1/2000th is his threshold before switching to mechanical shutter.
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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Thanks. URL?
    With best regards, K-H.

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by k-hawinkler View Post
    Thanks. URL?
    Here you go: http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/56807297
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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Is there a way to use one of the configuration presets on the function dial for silent shutter?
    The idea is to setup a configuration with silent shutter for 1 or 2 so that when its needed just turn the dial to 1 and the silent shutter is activated. Then back to M, Av or Sv and its mechanical.

    Even better would be to setup 2 for electronic front curtain.

    Any ideas?

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Hi,

    I don't know what is included in the presets, but it is worth trying. Personally I have preset 1 for handheld shooting and preset 2 for tripod mounted work.

    I always use electronic first curtain, but I seldom use fast shutter speeds, never seen a problem.

    EFCS allows for less lag, without EFCS the shutter needs to be closed before exposure. Shutter lag with EFCS is around 3 ms (I think) while without EFCS it is more like 100 ms or so. I have never used non EFCS on a modern Sony like A77, A99 and A7rII - all models I have.

    Presets are good, I would like to have more of those. The A7rII has four additional presets that it can save on the memory card, but those are less complete.

    Best regards
    Erik

    Quote Originally Posted by dmward View Post
    Is there a way to use one of the configuration presets on the function dial for silent shutter?
    The idea is to setup a configuration with silent shutter for 1 or 2 so that when its needed just turn the dial to 1 and the silent shutter is activated. Then back to M, Av or Sv and its mechanical.

    Even better would be to setup 2 for electronic front curtain.

    Any ideas?

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    Senior Member Annna T's Avatar
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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikKaffehr View Post


    Presets are good, I would like to have more of those. The A7rII has four additional presets that it can save on the memory card, but those are less complete.
    Yes two are really not enough !

    One to memorize your usual settings and restaure them easily and then only one for specific situations that is really few.

    I have to look for storing additional ones on a memory card (I'm still new to the A7r2), that sounds interesting. But what succeed when you format the card ? Are they kept ?

    Also as a former Canon shooter I like to use the back AF/AEL button to focus and hold and have only AEL with shutter. But if you want to use the camera apps (the remote or time lapse ones that I use from time to time for instance), or the scene modes (a convenient way to change all settings quickly for people photography) then you have to dig into the menu to reset yourself to AF with shutter. But there is no way to add that option to the Fn menu or to a button. Really annoying : you can't always use your favorite focusing button and you can't find a way to change that quickly.

    Having several custom modes (at least 4, but ideally 6) would allow us to create our set of personal scene modes.

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Common problem with electronic shutters and fluorescent lighting. Shoot at less than 1/60th sec and you should avoid it. I have even had it happen with EFCS on the A7s so be careful with that as well.

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Viramati View Post
    Common problem with electronic shutters and fluorescent lighting. Shoot at less than 1/60th sec and you should avoid it. I have even had it happen with EFCS on the A7s so be careful with that as well.
    Thanks David. "Less than" means faster or slower? TIA.
    With best regards, K-H.

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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Slower than 1/60th but it depends on the lighting and I have sometimes found I can go up to a little higher to 1/90th and get away with it. Also if there are a lot fluorescent lights together you will find as they cancel each other out and the banding won't show and this is why in some places you will see 3 tubes mounted together.https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fluore...icker_problems
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    Re: Argh! Silent shutter got me.

    Hi,

    I guess this is pretty much a focal plane shutter issue really. Modern focal plane shutters have fast travel times, making these issues less obvious. The "silent shutter" has a slow travel time, exacerbating any inherent problems.

    I don't think there would be a difference between EFCS and normal mechanical first curtain in this case as shutter travel times would be similar.

    Best regards
    Erik

    Quote Originally Posted by Viramati View Post
    Slower than 1/60th but it depends on the lighting and I have sometimes found I can go up to a little higher to 1/90th and get away with it. Also if there are a lot fluorescent lights together you will find as they cancel each other out and the banding won't show and this is why in some places you will see 3 tubes mounted together.https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fluore...icker_problems

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