What light meter

Discussion in 'Medium Format Cameras and Accessories' started by chorleyjeff, Sep 1, 2006.

  1. chorleyjeff

    chorleyjeff Member

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    My old Leningrad meter has become completely useless and needs replacing.
    I shoot urban and rural landscapes plus other things as the mood takes me with B&W and colour negative films.
    Any recommendations for a cheap and effective metering solution? I guess a true spotmeter would be ideal but they seem expensive. What about a secondhand Western Master? Are there any brands that are known to be reliable and accurate and not very expensive.
    Or should I buy a lightweight and cheap (say Miniolta Dynax) camera with multi segment metering and lens to use as a lightmeter?
    Any advice gratefully received.
    Cheers
    Jeff
     
  2. mark

    mark Member

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    I LOVE my Luna Pro. My Sekonic is good but for some reason, when shooting on the fly, my Luna Pro is the go to meter when doing MF. not to mention I have never had to change the battery, I got it used and I would hazzard a guess that the batteries are the original ones.
     
  3. jonathanbennett120

    jonathanbennett120 Member

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    I recently bought a Voigtlander VC Meter II for my Rollei sl66 and it has served me well. Very consistent exposures, very easy to read, and it looks very nice and right at home on old cameras. The newer VC Meter II cost me 175 new, but the first version can be found for closer to 100-125. The only real difference is the read-out arrangement. I needed the ability to adjust the shoe mount that the VC II has and the new readout was a bonus. it's a very cool, very small/lightweight meter.
    For more info see:
    http://www.cameraquest.com/voivcmet2.htm

    or

    http://www.cameraquest.com/voivcmet.htm
    [​IMG]
    This one is going soon:
    http://cgi.ebay.com/Voigtlander-VC-...ryZ29965QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 2, 2006
  4. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    hi jeff

    for what it is worth, i have a lunapro sbc a sekonic and a minolta. the sekonic -- just like this one for not very much money. it is the meter i use most often. never read a situation wrong. i don't do any spot metering, just ambient and it is a nice little thing.
    even though i have 3 meters and use them in differnet situations, if i was to get and use just one meter and nothing else i would get a sekonic no questions asked.

    good luck!
    john
     
  5. game

    game Member

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    from my little experience I can tell I really should go for a digital meter.
    I have rather old digital sekonic and it does the job perfectly.
     
  6. derekh

    derekh Member

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    I have a Sekonic L-398M like the one in jnanian's post. I found that it is pretty much useless for anything but outdoor shots in fairly bright light. Its photocell is not very sensitive and has problems metering shady late afternoon scenes. Don't even think about using it indoors. I replaced it with an old Luna Pro F which is great, it can handle just about any situation, but it's a bit bigger, though.
     
  7. P C Headland

    P C Headland Subscriber

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    If you want something cheap, flexible and accurate, you could try a Sverdlovsk 4 meter. Has ambient & "semi-spot" functions, and takes just about any 3.5-4.5 volt battery or combination that will fit. You could pick up a good one off ebay for less than $30.

    See here for details.
     
  8. Dave Miller

    Dave Miller Member

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    The Western Master meters, also sold under the Sangamo name, are cheap and reliable for landscape work since this is not generally too demanding of metering systems. The later Euromaster probably being the best buy. For greater accuracy in more difficult situations you should consider something with spot metering capability such as a Soligor spot meter, although no longer made they surface occassionally on eBay.
     
  9. Mark Pope

    Mark Pope Member

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    FWIW, I don't think buying a lightweight camera is a viable solution. It will be MUCH heavier and more unwieldy than a separate meter.
    Have a look on the : ffordes website There are quite a few secondhand meters on there, including some lunasixes amd westons. There is a secondhand Seconic l508, but I suspect that at £229 that is probably outside your price range. Nice meter though if you can afford it.

    Hope that helps

    Cheers
     
  10. Helen B

    Helen B Member

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    Used Gossen Profisix SBC (also called LunaPro SBC, or something, elsewhere) meters come up on eBay often, and go for low prices. They are big, very sensitive ("possibly the most sensitive meter in common use"), use PP3-type 9-volt batteries and they can do incident and reflected readings. With an adaptor (also common on eBay) they can also do 15° and 7½° readings - not really spot, but usable. They do flash, but only with an adaptor. I have never used the flash adaptor, so can't comment on it. If you don't mind the size, I think that the Profisix is great value nowadays.

    When teaching and doing workshops I have seen Sekonic L-308 meters provided. I think that these are very good, simple meters for flash and continuous light, reflected and incident. There is no spot function or accessory that I know of.

    The simple little Sekonic L-208 does what it does just as it should do it. It has a useful indicator to show the angle of acceptance of reflected light. It also does incident light.

    I have had a Weston Euromaster for donkey's years. I find that the 'Invercone' falls off too easily when the baffle is in the low-light position. It's not a big deal though. I prefer the Sekonic L-398, but that is just a personal preference - I'm not saying that one is better than the other.

    Best,
    Helen
     
  11. buze

    buze Member

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    I use a tiny Gossen Digisix; it easily fits into a pocket (any pocket) is extremly light and was quite cheap too. It has other "features" like timers (for long exposures) and exposure range over a scene. From my experience it's quite accurate, I've been using it in really tricky situations and was never let down.
    There is an adapter to mount it on a hotshoe, but I prefer to keep it in hand, or around the neck.
     
  12. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    helen,

    have you ever used the "darkroom attachment" on your luna pro ?
    i have one (new in box, now misplaced of course) and have never used it.

    john
     
  13. Helen B

    Helen B Member

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    Hi John,

    I'm too ditzy to risk taking a meter out of a camera bag to use it in the darkroom. I seriously considered it, and tried one in the shop to see how they worked, but bought an Ilford EM10 when I eventually decided to get a simple meter for B&W enlarging. Besides, I think that the EM10 was cheaper at the time than a Profi-Lab or whatever it is called.

    Best,
    Helen
     
  14. Bob F.

    Bob F. Member

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    Well, if you go up to the Yorkshire Dales and look around on the ground, you might find my Sekonic L-308 that I dropped up there somewhere... I've been using my Sologor spot or, when feeling silly, my Zeiss Ikophot; but with colour, you may want something more modern and accurate than the Ikophot (though it agrees very closely with my Soligor).

    I am probably going to buy an all singing & dancing spot/incident/flash meter but if I only wanted standard + flash, I'd buy another L-308, or possibly the little Digiflash.

    Cheers, Bob.
     
  15. Russ Young

    Russ Young Member

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    Another vote for the tiny Gossen Digisix. Reads reflected and incident (I always use the incident) and is as accurate as your shutter. I have a Luna Pro-F for the studio but you don't want a meter larger than your camera and you certainly won't need to read strobes in the field...It's so small that it might be easy to loose- so mine has a brilliant orange lanyard...
    Good shooting,
    Russ
     
  16. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    i know the feeling helen -- i think that is why i elected to lose it soon after it was in my possession. :smile:

    but a simple enlarging meter does sound interesting ....

    thanks!
    john
     
  17. Claire Senft

    Claire Senft Member

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    I have been extremely satisfied with my Minolta Auto Meter IV. It has been extremely dependable for me. This model has been superceded and may be available at a low price.
     
  18. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Member

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    I've got an Ikophot which my father gave to me. It is surprisingly accurate - even for colour transparency film.



    Steve.
     
  19. sanking

    sanking Member

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    My favorite meter is a Sekonic L-508, which has both incident and spot metering modes.

    I also have a Minolta Autometer IV which I usually carry as a back-up. I like this meter but it has some kind of kill battery feature that depletes battery capaicty in 3-4 months even when it is not being used.

    Sandy King
     
  20. Jim Jones

    Jim Jones Subscriber

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    I used a Gossen darkroom attachment many years ago and found it to lack enough sensitivity.
     
  21. chorleyjeff

    chorleyjeff Member

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    Thanks one and all for your replies.
    I'll start trawling the second hand photo dealers for Sekonic and Gossen series.
    Bit dodgy to buy of Ebay for sensitive items like lightmeters I think.
    Cheers
    Jeff
     
  22. Dave Miller

    Dave Miller Member

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    Dam! I didn't know that, brought three that way so far, must be more careful in the future. :surprised:
     
  23. leeturner

    leeturner Subscriber

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    I also use the Profisix and the spot meter attachment (imaginatively called the ProfiSpot) has 1, 5 and 10 degree spot metering. The attachment is a bit of a lump and makes the meter look like a cine camera.
    The same battery has lasted 6 years plus it's nicely marked for zone and EV readings.
     
  24. Helen B

    Helen B Member

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    "I also use the Profisix and the spot meter attachment (imaginatively called the ProfiSpot) has 1, 5 and 10 degree spot metering.'

    Yes, sorry. I forgot to mention the spot attachment as well as the cheaper, simpler 15° and 7½° Tele attachment. All that stuff is very cheap on eBay now.

    Best,
    Helen
     
  25. chorleyjeff

    chorleyjeff Member

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    And they are accurate and reliable? :smile:
    Cheers
    Jeff