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Thread: Shutter testers

  1. #1

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    Shutter testers

    Hello,

    The shutter testers are built by me. Every shutter tester will be tested before shipping.

    1. The 1/1000th of a second box shutter tester:
    - You will receive an Audacity file containing a test done at 1/1000th of a second with the actual shutter you bought.
    - No loose wires. Everything is soldered onto a board.
    - The cable is plug and play to allow you to extend it as much as you want and to prevent accidents in case someone trips over it.
    - No battery and no maintenance needed! The tester works just like an electret microphone (a microphone that does not need a power supply). Works on all PCs. Will not work on some Apple computers like the Mac Book Pro.
    - Detailed 12 page PDF english manual.
    - Very small and easy to use.
    - Needs a computer with a sound card and an audio editor for recording. I recommend Audacity because it's free, portable and easy to use. Also, this is the software used in the manual.
    - Link with a screen shot of a 1/1000th of a second test in Audacity. (click here)



    2. The 1/1000th of a second cable shutter tester:

    - You will receive an email with an Audacity file containing a test done at 1/1000th of a second with the actual shutter tester that you bought.
    - No loose wires.
    - 2.5 meter cable.
    - The cable is plug and play. You can extend it as much as you want with an extension cord.
    - No battery and no maintenance needed! The tester works just like an electret microphone (a microphone that does not need a power supply). Will not work on some Apple computers like the Mac Book Pro.
    - Detailed 12 page PDF english manual.
    - Very small and easy to use.
    - Excellent for cameras with bellows, TLRs and other cameras that have the shutter far from the edge of the back of the camera. By using a small tube you can place the tester as close to the shutter as you want.
    - Needs a computer with a sound card and an audio editor for recording. I recommend Audacity because it's free, portable and easy to use. Also, this is the software used in the manual.
    - Link with a screen shot of a 1/1000th of a second test in Audacity. (click here)



    3. The 1/2000th of a second shutter tester:

    - You will receive an Audacity file containing a test done at 1/2000th with the actual shutter tester you bought.
    - A lot of people have problems finding a light source for a tester and they never really know how good is the light source they chose. This tester solves both problems by having a light source that was tested with the device for optimal performance. The light source intensity is adjustable so you can tune it according to your camera.
    - Needs 2 AA batteries (included).
    - Very small and easy to use.
    - PDF English manual.
    - Will work on all computers (as far as I know) including the Apple computers that are not compatible with the 1/1000th of a second tester.
    - Excellent for cameras with bellows, TLRs and other cameras that have the shutter far from the edge of the back of the camera. By using a small tube you can place the tester as close to the shutter as you want.
    - Needs a computer with a sound card and an audio editor for recording. I recommend Audacity because it's free, portable and easy to use. Also, this is the software used in the manual.
    - Link with a screen shot of a 1/2000th of a second test in Audacity. (click here)



    4. The 1/2000th of a second LCD tester:

    - The tester will do at least 1/2000th of a second. It was designed to perform at 1/8000th of a second but I have no means of testing over 1/2000th of a second. I have no doubt that it can measure well speeds above 1/2000th of a second.
    - No need for a computer. It has a microchip that does all the measurements.
    - Excellent for cameras with bellows, TLRs and other cameras that have the shutter far from the edge of the back of the camera. By using a small tube you can place the tester as close to the shutter as you want.
    - The LCD has a back light that helps reading the values.
    - Has an on/off and a reset button.
    - Needs a 9 volt battery (included).
    - Can be provided with the receiver mounted on the box instead of the cable.



    Prices:

    - The 1/1000th of a second box tester: 11 euros
    - The 1/1000th of a second cable tester: 11 euros
    - The 1/2000th of a second tester: 25 euros
    - The 1/2000th of a second LCD tester: 60 euros

    Shipping rates:

    - All the prices are in euros. Because there is a character limit to a post I can't add a normal table so I added a photo. The host website reduced the size of the image. If you can't read it, PM me.
    - If your country is not on the list, PM me.
    - All the testers will be shipped from Bucharest, Romania.



    I am eBay user vfmoto. You can find 3 of the 4 testers on eBay and look at my feedback. Also, the eBay auctions have the prices in $ if you prefer $.
    You can also find me on the mflenses website. Some users made reviews of my testers. I don't know if I am allowed to post links to other websites so I won't.

    For orders PM me.
    For questions, ask here or PM me.

    Cheers,
    Florin

  2. #2

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    I've had an inquiry trough the PM about the shipping prices and I realized that I completely forgot this part.

    Shipping is calculated in 1kg increments. That means that if I ship 10 grams or 1000 grams, the price is the same.

    I can send the receipts to show that I am not inflating the prices.

    Sadly there is nothing I can do about this. I have no control over the postal service.

    I try to minimize the costs by giving accurate shipping for every country instead of slapping a flat fee that would cover the highest price and take some extra cash form the lower prices.

    There are 2 good news about this sad and expensive situation:
    - You get a tracking code for either shipping option you choose.
    - If you plan a group buy with some friends shipping will remain the same. The 1/1000 testers weigh about 100 grams. That means you can get up to 10 and pay no extra shipping cost. The 1/2000th tester weighs under 300 grams and the LCD one weighs around 400 grams (batteries included).

    Sending it trough post as a letter in an envelope is not possible. The postal service rules state that anything else except paper is considered a parcel. All envelopes are checked by the postal clerks.

    This is the cheapest option by far. DHL wanted 120 euros to ship a tester to Sweden.

    If you have any more questions, don't hesitate to ask.

    Cheers,
    Florin

  3. #3

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    I just purchased one of these a few days ago from Florin on the auction site. I haven't received it yet so no personal experience using it but have talked to various people and read on several forums that they work well. I can attest to Florin being easy to deal with and responsive on his emails. Good luck.

  4. #4
    benjiboy's Avatar
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    How do you know what tolerance in percentage of the marked speeds + or - is within tolerance ?, what is the acceptable margin of error, because unless you know this my training as a test engineer tells me that the digital readout is just numbers, so if the the marked speed is 1/500sec and the tester reads 1/410 sec is it within tolerance ?
    Last edited by benjiboy; 03-13-2011 at 07:35 AM. Click to view previous post history.
    Ben

  5. #5
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    +/- 25% of the marked speed is considered in tolerance, however in practice most shutters are far closer than that.

    Ian

  6. #6

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    I received one of these (the basic version) from Florin a couple of weeks ago (about 3 weeks shipping from Romania). It works great, and is easy to use. I posted a "mini-review" of it on the LF forum a couple of days ago. I've already discovered a couple of eye-opening things about my shutters and lenses using it. Florin is a reliable and honest businessman, and I don't hesitate to recommend him. Just be patient on the shipping, it is what it is from Romania.

  7. #7

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    Are any of these suitable for 35mm?

  8. #8

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    It is my understanding that any of these are fine for 35mm, I dont see any reason why any of them shouldn't be.

  9. #9

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    First of all thank you for the kind words. I am far from being a businessman. This has started as a fun thing that mixed my 2 hobbies for cameras and electronics. Now, I do it to fund my camera purchases. This way I don't get raised eyebrows from my family when I buy somewhat expensive photo items.

    I will be the first one to admit that shipping is the Achilles heel of the deal and most of the time the postal services from both countries are at fault. The only countries that did a top job every time were Japan and UK. Also, I've checked the postal services form other European countries and their rates are just as high. (except UK)

    Quote Originally Posted by benjiboy View Post
    How do you know what tolerance in percentage of the marked speeds + or - is within tolerance ?, what is the acceptable margin of error, because unless you know this my training as a test engineer tells me that the digital readout is just numbers, so if the the marked speed is 1/500sec and the tester reads 1/410 sec is it within tolerance ?
    I don't think I understood your question right so if my answer is different please ask again.

    If the tolerance you are talking about is the shutter tolerance than this depends on the shutter type and manufacturer. Some old Compur shutters have a tolerance of 30% (given by the manufacturer). This means that if you take a photo with an exposure of 1 second, everything between 0.7 and 1.3 seconds is within spec. To find the tolerance you need a service manual for the shutter.

    The LCD tester in the photo displays only a number. That's the time in seconds the shutter is open. In that photo a 1 second test was done.

    So in the 0.997472 test the shutter is 0.002528 seconds faster than the 1 second desired time.

    Now let's say you do a test at 1/1000th of a second and you get a reading of 0.001173. This means your tester is running at a speed of 1/852. Now depending on your shutter you might have to fix it or not. If you get a reading of 0.000972 your shutter is running at a speed of 1/1028. If you get a reading of 0.001 than your shutter is running at 1/1000th of a second.

    The tester in the photo does not display the 1/852 speed but I plan to change this and have the time on the first row and the camera time in the 1/value format on the second row.

    A display of "+17%" or "-17%" that displays the error in percentage is a tricky thing to do because the tester does not know you want to do a test at a speed of 1/125 and after that you want to do a test at 1/500. To do this you have to tell the tester the theoretical speed you are testing your camera at so the tester can calculate an error with your theoretical speed as a reference point. This would require major changes in the code and circuit board of the tester. It would also require multiple buttons that would allow the user to insert the theoretical value.

    An easier way would be to have a rotating dial with speeds like 1/60, 1/90, 1/125, 1/250, 1/500 or whatever values you desire but in this case your error display in percentage would be limited to those values.

    I could do this but I don't have the time to do it and I doubt many people would be willing to pay the extra price.

    Quote Originally Posted by akaa View Post
    Are any of these suitable for 35mm?
    Yes, all of them. Most of my cameras are 35mm. I also have TLR cameras and I had customers with Speed Graphic cameras and Calumet shutters from large format cameras.

  10. #10
    benjiboy's Avatar
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    I never needed a shutter speed tester, If I suspect my shutter-speeds are inaccurate I give the camera to the technician who services my equipment, and ask him check it and correct it if necessary, because if you test them yourself and find then inaccurate you're still going to have to get them corrected anyway.
    Last edited by benjiboy; 03-22-2011 at 11:19 AM. Click to view previous post history.
    Ben

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