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  1. #11
    CGW
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    If a meter isn't "accurate" it isn't "working".

    That would be news to quite a few big auction site sellers.

  2. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by CGW View Post
    If a meter isn't "accurate" it isn't "working".

    That would be news to quite a few big auction site sellers.
    It sure would! The same idiots who remove film from the wrapping and think a lens that's been cleaned with 80-grit floor paper has "a few marks that will have no effect on the pictures".

  3. #13

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    I have used a Gossen Digipro F for four years now and am thoroughly happy with it. ( I started with a Norwood, and then a Weston Master IV, then a Lunapro for some fifteen years . I use the new Digipro F primarily in incident mode but it converts to reflected reading by un bayonetting the Sphere. Prior to this I had come full circle, using a Seconic L-398, which my wife also owns and swears by.

  4. #14
    Sirius Glass's Avatar
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    My second hand Gossen Luna Pro from KEH works well and is in great condition. Get the best meter you can afford, you deserve it.
    Warning!! Handling a Hasselblad can be harmful to your financial well being!

    Nothing beats a great piece of glass!

    I leave the digital work for the urologists and proctologists.

  5. #15
    Leigh B's Avatar
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    Any meter that gives accurate repeatable results is fine regardless of age (avoid selenium meters).

    If the readings do not produce proper negatives in your process, change the compensation or the ASA setting.

    - Leigh
    “Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something.” - Plato

  6. #16
    David Allen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leigh B View Post
    Any meter that gives accurate repeatable results is fine regardless of age (avoid selenium meters).

    If the readings do not produce proper negatives in your process, change the compensation or the ASA setting.

    - Leigh
    I agree that THE most important quality that a meter requires is CONSISTENCY. However, I do not understand the need to avoid selenium meters. The later Weston meteres (V onwards) can suffer - sometimes - from a slow deterioration but this becomes obvious very quickly.

    My reference meter (the one that I used to undertake my film tests) is a Weston III which has a selenium cell that will not deteriorate. Over the years I have bought three or four Weston Vs at very low prices and checked them against the Weston III. All were accurate and remain in a drawer as 'spares' should I ever have a problem with my working meter which is also a Weston V.

    What I like about Weston meters are:

    Very reliable and easy to calibrate if necessary

    Small and light

    No reliance on batteries.

    Work well in extremes of temperature (have used mine in minus 25 degrees in Poland and over 40 degrees in South America)

    Very consistent

    Easy to read dial that corresponds well to the Zone System

    Cheap

    Best,

    David
    www.dsallen.de
    Last edited by David Allen; 08-10-2012 at 03:48 AM. Click to view previous post history. Reason: Typing error

  7. #17
    Roger Cole's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sirius Glass View Post
    My second hand Gossen Luna Pro from KEH works well and is in great condition. Get the best meter you can afford, you deserve it.
    Totally agree but that needn't mean new or modern. I like my Luna Pro SBC too - same meter with an updated cell and uses an available-anywhere 9v battery.

  8. #18
    Leigh B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by David Allen View Post
    I do not understand the need to avoid selenium meters.
    Selenium cells are generators. They generate electric current when exposed to light.

    As they age the capacity decreases. This happens much more rapidly if constantly exposed to light.
    For example, a camera with a built-in meter and no case, sitting on a mantle for years, will definitely degrade.

    The same is true of hand-held meters.

    The key is how long the cell has been exposed to light. If the meter is kept in a closed case except when actually
    being used, the degradation will be much more gradual, but it still does happen.

    The problem with buying a used selenium meter is that you cannot know the storage conditions, and thus the cell condition.
    Even if the meter includes a case, you don't know whether or not the meter was stored in the case, out of the light.

    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Cole View Post
    I like my Luna Pro SBC too - same meter with an updated cell and uses an available-anywhere 9v battery.
    The SBC is a great meter.
    It uses a Silicon Blue Cell (SBC) rather than selenium, so it's not subject to the degradation described above.

    That's why it needs a battery. Silicon is a resistor, not a generator, and thus requires external power.

    - Leigh
    Last edited by Leigh B; 08-10-2012 at 11:54 AM. Click to view previous post history.
    “Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something.” - Plato

  9. #19

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    My thought can you just either get yours fixed or buy another sixtomat? It seems a nice meter compared to the gossen luna pro. The sekonic 308 is ok I think too.

  10. #20
    Roger Cole's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leigh B View Post
    Selenium cells are generators. They generate electric current when exposed to light.

    As they age the capacity decreases. This happens much more rapidly if constantly exposed to light.
    For example, a camera with a built-in meter and no case, sitting on a mantle for years, will definitely degrade.

    The same is true of hand-held meters.

    The key is how long the cell has been exposed to light. If the meter is kept in a closed case except when actually
    being used, the degradation will be much more gradual, but it still does happen.

    The problem with buying a used selenium meter is that you cannot know the storage conditions, and thus the cell condition.
    Even if the meter includes a case, you don't know whether or not the meter was stored in the case, out of the light.


    The SBC is a great meter.
    It uses a Silicon Blue Cell (SBC) rather than selenium, so it's not subject to the degradation described above.

    That's why it needs a battery. Silicon is a resistor, not a generator, and thus requires external power.

    - Leigh
    Yep, the SBC uses a silicon cell; that's why they changed the name from the regular Luna Pro. The original Luna Pro I thought used a gallium arsenide cell (and mercury batteries, now can be used with the usual work arounds) but I found one source saying it was a CdS meter. That would account for Gossen's bragging ads of the time about the new silicon cell SBC, as I don't think a move from gallium to silicon would have made much difference.

    The progression of light cell technology basically goes:

    Selenium - needs no batteries but deteriorates over time as you say. Also not very sensitive in low light and have a wide acceptance angle, typically something like 60 degrees, which may be good bad or indifferent depending on ones needs.

    Cadmium Sulphide, commonly called "CdS" - much more sensitive than selenium with a narrower acceptance angle, but there's a lag after turning them on (sending current through them) - I have an old Ricoh Singlex TLS and this is apparent. When you activate the meter the needle jumps up, then settles back. They have a "memory" effect after exposure to light too, and depending on circumstances can take minutes to completely settle back to the right current reading though a few seconds is usually enough. Much smaller and more sensitive than selenium cells, with a narrower acceptance angle. Battery dependent and the spectral response is not very linear, which has to be taken into account in meter design. Battery dependent.

    Gallium and Silicon arsenide cells - largely replaced CdS and selenium. Much better spectral response than CdS, no memory effect or lag, similar narrow acceptance angle. Also battery dependent.

    I know Gossen made a big advertising push about the spectral response of the SBC (as you say "Silicon Blue Cell") when it came out, as I recall seeing ads for it in, IIRC, the mid 70s. The older Luna Pro apparently works well enough but the battery work arounds can be a PITA.

    The only drawback I find to my SBC is that it is a BIG handful of a meter. It's not a serious problem and it looks impressive to the non-photographers especially those not old enough to have seen a big analog device with complicated dials on it very often. It fits in a shirt pocket, or most of them, but that pocket will be FULL.

    If someone had an original Luna Pro that was working well I'd say to get a battery adapter and use it, but I wouldn't, and didn't, buy one. I'd look for at least the SBC, or the F, which is the same meter with built in flash metering ability. I have the flash attachment for my SBC.

    I was really just getting at the point that there's absolutely no reason to avoid "older" meters as such. I prefer how my Luna Pro SBC works to most digital meters.
    Last edited by Roger Cole; 08-10-2012 at 05:11 PM. Click to view previous post history.

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