Olympus E-PL1 "Bounce Flash"?

Olympus E-PL1 Flash

Many of us were thrilled when Olympus added a popup flash to its latest PEN, the E-PL1, but after using it for a while, it has another feature that I hadn't heard discussed as much: You can angle the flash for bounce too.

The popup flash head is attached to an ingenious "arm" mechanism that raises it above the camera body. This helps control red eye and lowers shadows a bit. But what's really cool, is that this "arm" swivels at the base. So you can angle the mechanism back on a 90 degree angle so the flash is pointing directly upward. Yes, you can bounce the built-in flash.

I used this bounce technique when I had to take a quick shot for this week's podcast, Wireless Photography. Direct flash would have caused an unwanted reflection in the glass screen of the iPad. (I was already taking a picture of another camera flashing directly at me.)

For best results, increase your ISO to 400 or 800. This will extend the range of the flash when bouncing it off white surfaces.

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