You don't have to process each shot differently to use the Zone system. Of course there is limit to what you can do if you are forced to process all frames the same. I found the Zone system is useful for knowing what you are going to get in the final result before taking the shot. How much controls you have on this respect depends on whether you process 1 frame at a time, shooting B&W or color or you shoot transparency. But with good knowledge of the Zone system you know what your final image will look like.