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  1. #1
    baachitraka's Avatar
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    Sekonic L-398 A Studio DeluxeIII

    I like to hear good and bad things about this meter. I am planning to use this for street or landscape photography.


    If you have any other suggestions other than this meter, I will be happy to know.
    OM-1n: Do I need to own a Leica?
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  2. #2
    Rick A's Avatar
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    I've had one of these for years, my favorite meter.
    Rick A
    Argentum aevum

  3. #3
    CGW
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    Quote Originally Posted by baachitraka View Post
    I like to hear good and bad things about this meter. I am planning to use this for street or landscape photography.


    If you have any other suggestions other than this meter, I will be happy to know.
    Plus:
    Proven design
    Cheap used
    Battery-free
    DIY recalibration

    Minus:
    Heavy
    So-so to poor low light accuracy/sensitivity
    Must use high slide for full sun metering(easy to loose, too)
    Mechanical, not shock-proof
    Incident/reflected only

    I got one 10 years ago and rarely used it. Got the small Sekonic 308(a very sweet little meter)and a Sekonic 558 a couple of years ago mainly for spot metering. Probably use the 308 the most due to its size(think deck of cards dimensions, perfect for street shooting). My 398 just doesn't see any action.

  4. #4
    chriscrawfordphoto's Avatar
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    It has very poor low-light ability and is really only usable as an incident light meter. The reflected light attachment for it gives an extremely large angle of view. For the money, you can get a used Sekonic L-508, which gives you incident and spotmetering, a lot more low light sensitivity, flash metering if you ever want to do studio strobe work, and a lot more accuracy. The L-398 was made for studio work in the days before strobes.
    Chris Crawford
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  5. #5
    M.A.Longmore's Avatar
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    The 398 is an excellent meter ! I wish I had two of them !!
    But, not very useful in low light situations, you will definitely need another
    meter for night work or dim interiors. I use an olde Gossen Luna Pro also.
    I paid $8.00 for the Luna Pro, and keep a supply of Z/A batteries for it.

    Ron
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  6. #6
    baachitraka's Avatar
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    How do you evaluate its(Sekonic L-398 A Studio DeluxeIII) accuracy under bright light and overcast conditions?

    Quote Originally Posted by M.A.Longmore View Post
    .
    The 398 is an excellent meter ! I wish I had two of them !!
    But, not very useful in low light situations, you will definitely need another
    meter for night work or dim interiors. I use an olde Gossen Luna Pro also.
    I paid $8.00 for the Luna Pro, and keep a supply of Z/A batteries for it.

    Ron
    .
    Last edited by baachitraka; 06-08-2011 at 08:14 AM. Click to view previous post history.
    OM-1n: Do I need to own a Leica?
    Rolleicord Va: Humble.
    Holga 120GFN: Amazingly simple yet it produces outstanding negatives to print.

  7. #7
    markbarendt's Avatar
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    Incident metering is great and by far gives me the most reliable results but all metering takes thought and a good dose of experience, none are magic bullets.

    Most any meter can be used well once you understand what the meter in question is telling you.

    I have the L358 which is my favorite.
    Mark Barendt, Ignacio, CO

    "We do not see things the way they are. We see things the way we are." Anaïs Nin

  8. #8
    CGW
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    Quote Originally Posted by baachitraka View Post
    How do you evaluate its(Sekonic L-398 A Studio DeluxeIII) accuracy under bright light and overcast conditions?
    It's a reliable meter, accurate meter for those conditions. Like others have already said, though, your brain is what makes it work.

  9. #9
    Michel Hardy-Vallée's Avatar
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    I have a selenium 398 (non-A) and it's really an incident meter above all. The reflected readings are one to two stops off, but the incident readings are spot on. I think it may be because the meter is keyed for highlights. Perhaps one day I'll ask Quality Light Metrics to calibrate it properly, but I love it for shooting slides and Ektar 100 outdoors. It's light, quick, and accurate.

    I just hate the easy-to-loose high slide, and wish it wasn't so damn magnetic.

    I got myself a Weston III (calibrated by QLM) for quick reflected metering, and I have a Sekonic Spot/Flash meter when I want more precision. I wish the 398 would be more precise in reflected readings, because it's really a nice tool. But so is the Weston.
    Using film since before it was hip.


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  10. #10
    baachitraka's Avatar
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    How much compensation you will set to the camera when meter reads

    Under Sunlight: F8.0 1/500s.

    Under Shadow: F8.0 1/30s or 1/60s.

    so to keep the shadow detail?
    OM-1n: Do I need to own a Leica?
    Rolleicord Va: Humble.
    Holga 120GFN: Amazingly simple yet it produces outstanding negatives to print.

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