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  1. #1
    Trail Images's Avatar
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    Best Neutral Metering Card(s)

    Like many I've carried a neutral gray or grey card into the field with me for years. However, the old Kodak 18% card is about done for and I started looking on line for a decent replacement that is somewhat "weatherproof" if not totally "waterproof".

    In searching on line with a large variety of vendors there seems to be a lot of products offered up as 18% gray, but immediately followed up with statements of confusion and product reviews of more or less 12% gray and or used for white balance too. Say what? Is it a true 18% or not?

    So, I'm looking for a product that is say 4x6 inch card, weatherproof, and must be considered 18% or neutral gray. Specific product names or direct links would be of help.......thank you!

  2. #2
    jwd722's Avatar
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    My search turned up a Kodak 18% gray card not followed by any disclaimer as to being only 12%. http://www.amazon.com/Kodak-1903061-.../dp/B00009R7B0
    I have had my Kodak gray card for about 25 years, I sprayed it with Krylon Matte Finish which makes it not totally waterproof but pretty darned weatherproof. It measures 4.5 by 6.5 and it's in a plastic folder which I'm not sure where I got but it works great.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails gray card 003.JPG   gray card 002.JPG   gray card 001.JPG  

  3. #3
    wiltw's Avatar
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    I have found all of the following are both neutral in WB and also 18% tonality
    • Douglas gray card (vinyl)
    • PhotoVision (coated cloth)
    • Kodak grey card (cardboard)

  4. #4
    Trail Images's Avatar
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    Thank you for this information, both comments are helping me narrowing things down to what I need. I appreciate the input.

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    Alan Klein's Avatar
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    Camera meters and light meter are calibrated for 12% gray cards not 18%. That means they're off by approx 1/2 stop. See this discussion or google it. There are loads of links discussing this issue.

    http://www.modelmayhem.com/po.php?thread_id=252541

  6. #6
    Trail Images's Avatar
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    Good point Alan, which leads to the question, where do you find a 12% card? 1/2 stop is not a deal breaker, but why not sell and advertise 12% cards I wonder.....thank you for your comment and the link too.

  7. #7
    wiltw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trail Images View Post
    Good point Alan, which leads to the question, where do you find a 12% card? 1/2 stop is not a deal breaker, but why not sell and advertise 12% cards I wonder.....thank you for your comment and the link too.
    In all my years, I have only learned of ONE product with 12% tonality, the Lastolite EZBalance 12%, and they don't seem to import it into the US (made in Britain).

    Meter 18%, add 0.5EV more exposure, per Kodak instructions.

  8. #8
    Mainecoonmaniac's Avatar
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    I like the plastic ones. I chop the 8x10 into quarters and put them in my bag.
    "Photography, like surfing, is an infinite process, a constantly evolving exploration of life."
    Aaron Chang

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    For weatherproof (I presume because it's made of plastic, but haven't used one), how about a Spyder Cube?
    OK, so it's meant to be used for digital white-balancing and all that, but it's still got an 18% grey surface or two.
    Only downside is that it's a bit small, but if you've got a 1-degree spot meter and stand close enough, it'll do the trick...
    An awful lot of electrons were terribly inconvenienced in the making of this post.

    f/64 and be there.

  10. #10
    AgX
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    Buy at the godfather of grey-cards, Dietmar Meisel.
    This guy has devoted part of his life just to designing and producing grey- and color-cards.

    http://fotowand.de/

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