Gossen Digiflash - a worthy gadget?
I want to know your opinion about Gossen Digiflash small exposure meter. I think it's possibly a good holiday gift for me, but if it's a crap... it is so small, it should be much easier to carry when I go fo a casual shooting with my, say, Kowa Kalloflex or Iskra. Is it precise and sensitive enough? Can I use it, say, in night scenes? Is it robust enough? Does its small diffusor give enough precision with incident metering? Well, may I use it with my LF gear and slide film, too (an especially stupid question)? Is there something really sinister in this small piece of hi-tech? It costs about $200 here, so I want to ask your opinion - some of the APUGgers should definitely use these shticks.
Cheers from Moscow,
I have the Digisix, and if it had been available when I bought it, I would have gotten the Digiflash. It's a great pocket meter. The Digisix is just as accurate as my Minolta Flashmeter III for ambient readings, but since the dome is small, you do have to be a little more careful that you're pointing it in the right direction. I use it all the time when I don't want to carry my larger meter.
It will also take reflected readings from nearby objects, and you can use it like an averaging meter by sliding the dome over and sighting over the meter to estimate what it's looking at.
It's okay in low light, but I don't think any meter is that great really at night. Better to use rules of thumb in most cases.
I too am pleased with my Digiflash. It takes a moment (but is not very hard) to learn how to key through the functions with the 2 buttons, and because the meter is small, the numbers on the dial are also small, but the meter works great and is very compact and light.
I've been using a Digiflash for a number of months now (since April 2005), and I love it. I use it mostly for incident with meterless 120 folders and with my 35mm rangefinders, and I've had good success for B&W, color neg, and color transparency films in a number of formats. It tracks well with my Gossen Luna Pro F, within 1/3 to 1/6 stop or so, in both ambient and flash metering modes. See the links below for some observations in shooting under ballasted lights, flourescent and HID lamps that cycle on and off rapidly. There are some oddities that can be worked around if you are aware of them.
I love mine. I always put it in the bag or a pocket, something I rarely did with the Luna Pro F because of bulk. It's also handy for setting an exposure and then comparing for relative adjustments as light changes (see my APUG article for that). It also works very well one-handed, which is great if you're shooting handheld and the other hand is needed for the camera.
You can find the instructions online in .pdf format, which gives all the specifications and lets you see how to work through menus. It's not all that complicated.
My suspicion is that it's PIC based, and programming takes care of linearizing response, which is very well matched to my Luna Pro F across the range of the Digiflash.
See more of my observations and others at:
I think the Dante Stella review is a bit hard on the meter. I really like mine a lot and use it constantly.
A couple of weeks ago someone jostled me at an indoor soccer game and knocked mine three feet onto a concrete floor. No damage at all, and it works fine. Karen Nakamura's put hers through the clothes washing machine and it came out working fine.