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Light meters EV readout - help please


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#1 Peter Anderson

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Posted 07 January 2007 - 10:53 AM

What exactly does the EV readout on a light meter mean? What increments does it work in - as in, what relevance does it have for deciding exposure? Is it used to determine zones of reflectance?

The manual for my sekonic doesnt provide much infomation and any text ive read on the subject is a little confusing. Can someone come to the rescue with a simplified explanation.
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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 07 January 2007 - 11:42 AM

http://en.wikipedia..../Exposure_value

The simplest explanation is that since each increase of an EV value equals one-stop, it's just a simpler way of comparing two exposures, so you can see that if one reading is EV +9 and the other is EV +11, then the second area you metered is two-stops brighter than the first, as opposed to comparing a reading that says "f/2.8" to "f/5.6". So it would be a way of judging lighting contrast ratios without looking at f/stop numbers.
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#3 Chris Keth

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Posted 07 January 2007 - 12:16 PM

http://en.wikipedia..../Exposure_value

The simplest explanation is that since each increase of an EV value equals one-stop, it's just a simpler way of comparing two exposures, so you can see that if one reading is EV +9 and the other is EV +11, then the second area you metered is two-stops brighter than the first, as opposed to comparing a reading that says "f/2.8" to "f/5.6". So it would be a way of judging lighting contrast ratios without looking at f/stop numbers.


It's a lot more useful in still photography where an EV indicates a range of f-stop+shutter speed combinations. In film where we basically have one shutter speed for 95% of production, it's not quite as useful except for what David mentions.
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#4 Greg Gross

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Posted 07 January 2007 - 02:00 PM

Yes and very useful when shooting with the "ZONE" system. Often times values will be ob-
tained via spotmeter when shooting in the "ZONE". I like David Mullen's explanation as its
to the point. Good heavens we could write paragraphs about this all day long. In certain
lighting conditions this method could be very helpful. Do not forget though that you can
train your eye to recognize quality of light,direction of light and intenstity. Thus knowimg
your film,camera, lens you can shoot without a meter. EV simply means exposure value.

Greg Gross
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Tai Audio

Aerial Filmworks

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Glidecam

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FJS International, LLC

CineLab

Technodolly

Gamma Ray Digital Inc