Sekonic L-508 problems with shadow mettering

Discussion in 'Lighting' started by romunas, Jul 12, 2011.

  1. romunas

    romunas Member

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    I've got an Sekonic L-508 lightmeter and was unpleasantly surprised that it has a big troubles with shadow metering in spot mode. It just shows low light signal on display while trying to meter some shadow area. I prefer to shoot landscapes on slide and b/w films and i need to have accurate data from my lightmeter. So i'm going to change my Sekonic to another model or even manufacturer. But i don't know which lightmeter is better for my purposes. I need a spotmeter and a lightmeter for incident light. Have you any advices? I will be very grateful for any solutions. Thanks

    By the way in incident mode L-508 works perfect. But in landscape photography very often you don't have a possibility to use a lightmeter in that mode.

    P.S. I'm not very experienced in English, especially in photographic terminology, so i could made some mistakes in description of my problem. Will be grateful for corrections.
     
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  2. lifthard1

    lifthard1 Member

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    Have you double checked to see it the dial on the eyepeice is turned to spot .
     
  3. romunas

    romunas Member

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  4. CGW

    CGW Restricted Access

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  5. romunas

    romunas Member

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    All of them: 1 degree and 4 degree. Shutter speed and ISO was set correctly.
    But how a coverage function can affect a possibility to meter shadow area?
    I think the problem is in low sensitivity of metering sensor.
     
  6. CGW

    CGW Restricted Access

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    How could that be if your incident readings are OK--or are they? Any dirt or crud on the spot meter lens surface?
     
  7. romunas

    romunas Member

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    Lightmeter is in good condition. Spotmeter works good scenes with a lot of light. But even at the middle of the day it can has a problems with shadow metering. And sometimes it is quite critical, especially shooting on slide film
     
  8. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member

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    Generally a smaller spot reduce the sensitivity of the meter thus it won't measure low light well. However, I read the manual for the L-508 and it said in spotmode it can measure down to EV3 which should be sufficient. There could be something wrong with the meter.
     
  9. jp80874

    jp80874 Subscriber

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    While you are checking things, does the battery measure in good shape? I have been very happy with this model meter for about four years.

    John Powers
     
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  10. Diapositivo

    Diapositivo Member

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    I use a Minolta Spotmeter F which only has the 1° spot mode, in ambient light with 100 ISO goes down to EV 1 according to the producer. If you are planning a new (second-hand) purchase, I find the Minolta very good stuff, but it's inconvenient to have two different lightmeters, one for spot measuring and one for incident metering.

    As Chan Tran says, your Sekonic goes down to EV 3 but that should be more than sufficient in normal situations. Maybe it's a stupid advice, but I would check battery contacts and clean them well.

    Certain lightmeters have two different cells for highlights and shadows (Pentax spot meter IIRC). Maybe your lightmeter has two different cells too, and one is out of calibration (or damaged somehow) while the other is not.
     
  11. romunas

    romunas Member

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    Hmmm... I'l try once more to meter with 4 degree spot...
    One of my familiar also has L-508 and also has the same problem as my, so i don't think that it is the problem of spotmeter rather it is the feature
     
  12. romunas

    romunas Member

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    I use new battery. In normal light it works good. But i like to shoot at evenings or early in the morning. At that time it has problems with metering
     
  13. romunas

    romunas Member

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    I'd like to have one lightmeter, not two. But thanks for advice i'l try to find a Minolta Spotmeter F at my friends and try it.

    I'm surprised with that: "Certain lightmeters have two different cells for highlights and shadows..." I didn't knew that. Thanks a lot for educating me :smile:
     
  14. romunas

    romunas Member

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    !!!! Damn! I'm really a little fool!
    Thanks a lot to Chan Tran! I try to meter in spot mode with a wider angle (4 degree) and it meters good!
    It is strange that it did not meter with different angles before... I changed a battery a week ago. May be this was one of the problems.

    Thank you for your advices!
     
  15. Diapositivo

    Diapositivo Member

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    No problem, we are all here for help, helping each other is our purpose in life.
     
  16. romunas

    romunas Member

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  17. Chan Tran

    Chan Tran Member

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    If you don't want 2 meters then the discontinued Sekonic 558r, the current 758, the Gossen Starlight and the discontinued Minolta flashmeter VI or the Kenko 2000 would do both spot and incident.