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Old June 30th, 2010, 05:40 PM   #1
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What is the TLCS?

Hello,
can soemone help me with the TLCS settings for ex1r?
Thanks
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Old June 30th, 2010, 10:00 PM   #2
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It's the Total Level Control System! Just a silly name for the Full Auto mode. It will show up on your LCD regardless of Full Auto being on or off, because it shows what type of Auto mode you will enter if you turn it on. You can have a Standard auto mode, backlight, or spotlight... but honestly if you aren't using full auto you can just remove it from the display with no worries.

Andy
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Old July 1st, 2010, 05:15 AM   #3
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Actually, it's Total LEVEL Control System. Avoid using it.
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Old July 1st, 2010, 06:12 AM   #4
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That's what I meant :)
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Old July 1st, 2010, 06:49 AM   #5
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I knew that's what you meant, but I couldn't resist correcting it anyway. :-)
It's a stupid name for a lazy function.
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Old July 2nd, 2010, 02:07 AM   #6
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TLCS can be useful for long period timelapse sequences where you may be going from a brightly lit day shot to a dark night shot. It is a full auto function but you can program it to restrict how far it goes. So for a day to night timelapse shot where you don't want to start switching in and out ND filters or messing with gain settings during the sequence you can use TLCS to control the shutter to compensate for too much light with no ND and then to limit the gain for the night part of the shot. At the same time you can restrict the minimum iris setting to avoid diffraction limiting.

It is better than a plain vanilla full auto mode as you can control the way it works, restricting gain etc. I often hand off an EX1 to a flight crew on military flights. I don't expect them to manually expose etc, so I set up TLCS to limit gain etc to useable limits and let them use that.
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Old July 2nd, 2010, 02:54 AM   #7
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Long timelapse is probably the best example of TLCS usefulness.

If only some limits its built-in "intelligence" can use were more flexible (like e.g. the fastest shutter speed only being 1/250th; sometimes too restricting when you would rather keep gain and/or iris on manual, and cover all the light changes with auto shutter)...
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Old July 2nd, 2010, 05:44 AM   #8
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I don't recommend TLCS for long timelapse sequences. You're better off to lock down the the exposure from the very first frame. I've seen examples where people claimed auto-exposure (programmed to change very slowly) during an timelapse looked good -- but it rarely does. Any change in exposure changes the look of the timelapse effect. Period. In some shooting situations the lighting may vary quite a bit during the timelapse, but that's partly what the timelapse is all about. Those changes are natural and you don't want to articifually compensate for lighting changes. Once in awhile you might get lucky and TLCS will pay off, but I think you're much more likely to ruin your shot.

Okay, if you're going to hand the camera off to a total non-professional shooter who isn't willing to spend 5 minutes to learn how to adjust the exposure, maybe TLCS is a a good idea. But for the rest of us, it's almost always a bad idea.

I receommend thinking twice before using TLCS.
Just another point of view.
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Old July 2nd, 2010, 05:56 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug Jensen View Post
In some shooting situations the lighting may vary quite a bit during the timelapse, but that's partly what the timelapse is all about. Those changes are natural and you don't want to articifually compensate for lighting changes.
As an artistic tool, timelapse may be "about" movement and light, or the movement alone. The latter may require constant DoF (thus requiring fixed aperture), or allow some changes (or even be "about" such changes, as well) - etc., etc. Possible combinations are endless.

Not to mention those spanning full daylight and dusk...
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Old July 2nd, 2010, 06:11 AM   #10
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Piotr,
I agree with you. You are helping make my case for not using auto . . . unelss you WANT to record abnormal exposure fluctuations as an "artistic" choice. In those rare cases, by all means, let everything change as much you can. The rest of the time, lock everything down.
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Old July 2nd, 2010, 06:26 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Doug Jensen View Post
Piotr,
I agree with you. You are helping make my case for not using auto . . . unelss you WANT to record abnormal exposure fluctuations as an "artistic" choice. In those rare cases, by all means, let everything change as much you can. The rest of the time, lock everything down.
Doug,

I agree with you about the auto-iris fluctuations - they can be minimized by changing the speed to the max setting.

I'm also for all manual in most cases, Doug - one thing you seem not to take into consideration though: in threads like these, we're trying to help those new users understand what auto iris, or TLCS, are all about - so that they can understand those tools better, and make their own decisions. Therefore, giving examples of when they might by used and how, is not the same as advocating using them all the time!
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Old July 2nd, 2010, 08:11 AM   #12
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Piotr,

Just the opposite!!
I DO TAKE INTO CONSIDERATION WHO READS THESE THREADS and that is why I have to disagree with you and Alister so strongly. I disagree with your approach of giving people training wheels.

I think it s counter productive to explain to inexperienced shooters techniques or camera funtions that you and I wouldn't use. Why get them started off on the wrong foot? Why encourage them to struggle with inferior shooting modes that will never take them to the next level? Why not suggest the best, most professional techniques right out of the box? It is much easier to learn to do things properly right from the start that it is to correct bad habits or toss asisde the crutches later.

This isn't rocket science. Nothing in this business is beyond the ablities of your average person with an IQ over 100. Give me someone that has never used a video camera in their life (if there is such a person) and I will have them shooting in manual iris mode within the first hour.

I don't buy the argument that you need to understand TLCS before you decide not to use it. That is a total waste of time. Whenever I'm trying to learn somthing new from an expert, and that expert says, don't bother with that function or this other setting, I am quite happy not to waste my time. I say thank you! Time wasted learning something I won't ever use after I understand it better, would be better spent mastering the right technique in the first place.

I don't believe in training wheels water wings.
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Old July 2nd, 2010, 08:27 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug Jensen View Post
I don't buy the argument that you need to understand TLCS before you decide not to use it. That is a total waste of time. Whenever I'm trying to learn somthing new from an expert, and that expert says, don't bother with that function or this other setting, I am quite happy not to waste my time. I say thank you! Time wasted learning something I won't ever use after I understand it better, would be better spent mastering the right technique in the first place.
Doug,

I guess the above quote best describes the difference between the attitudes each of us represents (and is fully entitled to).

Personally, whenever I'm learning anything new, I just need to understand it fully before I can feel comfortable about adopting, or rejecting it.
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Old July 2nd, 2010, 08:38 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Piotr Wozniacki View Post
Doug,
I agree with you about the auto-iris fluctuations - they can be minimized by changing the speed to the max setting.
!

One more thing, and then I'll try to shut up. I have to disagree even with your satement because it is not what I said earlier.

The slowest auto-iris speed change is too slow to react for normal shooting situations, thus resulting in shots that are incorrectly exposed while the iris slowly changes. On the other hand, if you change the speed settings to make the iris react faster, then it is likely to change unexpectedly (and visibly) in the middle of a shot.

And for timelapse, even the slowest setting can be too fast between captures if it happens to occur between two frames. You show me a timelapse that was shot with TLCS or auto-iris, and most times the expsure changes are visible. Sometimes it won't matter, but usually it does.

1) I don't trust auto-iris or TLCS to get the exposure right. There are usually too many variable for a dumb camera to determine what is best.

2) I don't trust auto-iris TLCS not to change the settings right in the middle of my shot.
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Old July 2nd, 2010, 09:07 AM   #15
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The 2 of us discussing various aspects of TLCS (or auto-anything) proves my point that it's essential for a newcomer to grasp the idea of how these tools really function - don't you think, Doug?

But I'm really shutting up now :)
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