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When shooting raw images at low sensitivity settings, it is possible to recover some of these shadows without introducing too much image noise.
Those photographers who primarily shoot JPEG images will benefit from using the DRO feature and setting it to help lift the shadow areas.
For more precise metering, the centre and spot modes work well. When I tested both of these against a grey card I found that they measured 130 out of 255, making them almost an exact midtone.