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Is viewfinder light loss avoidable?


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#1 Stephen Alexander Griebel

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Posted 07 October 2006 - 12:41 PM

I keep on reading how to compensate for super 8mm reflex viewfinders' light loss and am wondering if by simply closing the eyelid on the viewfinder you can save the 1/3 stop lost by it (that's the number I have found on these forums). If so, as long as your eye is pressed firmly, wouldn't that stop the loss as well-- I know that's the way it was with my reflex 35mm Konvas but I'm not sure if the split-image viewfinder has this affect or not.
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#2 Stephen Alexander Griebel

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Posted 07 October 2006 - 12:52 PM

forgot to mention that I'm using an external meter (the internal compensates I assume).
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#3 Robert Hughes

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Posted 07 October 2006 - 02:54 PM

The light loss of any prism reflex camera (of which almost all Super 8 cameras are) is due to the light splitting prism, which redirects a small portion of the incoming light into the viewfinder optics, allowing the remainder to travel on to the film gate. In-camera lightmeters are calibrated to compensate for this light loss. If you're using an external lightmeter, you need to compensate manually for this loss, perhaps by lowering the ASA reading on your meter, or by some equivalent method.

Opening or closing the viewfinder optical path makes no difference, except if you keep it open and don't place your eye there, you will get light leakage from the eyepiece onto the film.
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