Jump to content


Photo

DP's What Light Meter is the tops in your book?


  • Please log in to reply
35 replies to this topic

#1 Marc_Abernathy

Marc_Abernathy
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 94 posts
  • Steadicam Operator
  • Los Angeles

Posted 19 September 2008 - 02:18 PM

All,

i am in the market for a NEW light meter. I dont have one but im finding myself wanting one of my own.

there are many out there. i shoot film including 8mm, and also HD video and SD video. so i need a one stop shop for all.

sekonic has a couple of new meters but i would rather have some seasoned opinions from the esteemed here.

thanks in advance....
  • 0

#2 Chris Keth

Chris Keth
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4427 posts
  • 1st Assistant Camera
  • Los Angeles

Posted 19 September 2008 - 05:34 PM

If I were going to buy one and was limiting myself to new meters, I would get a digital spectra.
  • 0

#3 Marc_Abernathy

Marc_Abernathy
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 94 posts
  • Steadicam Operator
  • Los Angeles

Posted 19 September 2008 - 05:44 PM

thank you for your response. is there a particular model your fond of that you would recommend?
  • 0

#4 Chris Keth

Chris Keth
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4427 posts
  • 1st Assistant Camera
  • Los Angeles

Posted 19 September 2008 - 06:10 PM

I think there is only one model of digital spectra. There are several colors, though. I like the green.:)
  • 0

#5 Marc_Abernathy

Marc_Abernathy
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 94 posts
  • Steadicam Operator
  • Los Angeles

Posted 19 September 2008 - 07:00 PM

i have no experience with or have ever heard of that brand, hence my ignorance. but thank you for our response. it helps!
  • 0

#6 Andrew Koch

Andrew Koch
  • Sustaining Members
  • 243 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Burbank, California

Posted 19 September 2008 - 09:19 PM

The spectra meter referred to here is called the Spectra Pro IVA. It is an incident meter and in my opinion a very good one (has never let me down. I use a Minolta Spotmeter F as my spotmeter. I also love this meter, but they don't make it anymore.

This topic has been covered extensively on this forum over the years. Just do a search and you will find tons of info
  • 0

#7 Marc_Abernathy

Marc_Abernathy
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 94 posts
  • Steadicam Operator
  • Los Angeles

Posted 19 September 2008 - 09:33 PM

yeah i know this topic should have been posted to death but my search for "best light meter" and "light meter" came up with posts thaat were over a year old. of course i could have missed something newer but that was my results.

im shocked you guys have not mentioned the sekonics. i was kind of raised on that brand over the years and figured that was THE meter. well chris comes up and throws me a curve ball and mentions the spectra. i did a google and i am impressed with its specs.

again thank you...
  • 0

#8 Andrew Koch

Andrew Koch
  • Sustaining Members
  • 243 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Burbank, California

Posted 19 September 2008 - 10:29 PM

yeah i know this topic should have been posted to death but my search for "best light meter" and "light meter" came up with posts thaat were over a year old. of course i could have missed something newer but that was my results.

im shocked you guys have not mentioned the sekonics. i was kind of raised on that brand over the years and figured that was THE meter. well chris comes up and throws me a curve ball and mentions the spectra. i did a google and i am impressed with its specs.

again thank you...


Those older posts are still relevant. Most lightmeters are built to last a long time. They're not like digital cameras that become obsolete after a year or two. You don't necessarily have to have the greatest latest.

In terms of Sekonic being "THE" meter, there is no such thing as one great, perfect meter, for all people and situations. It is a personal thing. Many top notch cinematographers who I respect greatly use the Sekonics and love them, while there are other equally respected cinematographers who prefer other meters. I personally am not a fan of the Sekonic combo meters, but this is just my personal preference. I like having two separate meters. In case one breaks on set, I have only broken one meter instead of 2. Kind of a negative way of thinking I admit, but I have found two meters that work for me.
  • 0

#9 Chris Keth

Chris Keth
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4427 posts
  • 1st Assistant Camera
  • Los Angeles

Posted 19 September 2008 - 11:14 PM

I personally am not a fan of the Sekonic combo meters, but this is just my personal preference. I like having two separate meters. In case one breaks on set, I have only broken one meter instead of 2. Kind of a negative way of thinking I admit, but I have found two meters that work for me.


I'm the same. I also think the Sekonics are just too expensive.

My current meter is a Minolta Autometer Vf and I love it to death.
  • 0

#10 Ram Shani

Ram Shani
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 735 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • isreal

Posted 20 September 2008 - 01:11 AM

hi

i hold sekonic for 10 years now

only the combo ones (408, 508 ,608)

the L-608cine is one great toll very easy to work with.

he never let me down even in hard conditions

i just love the all in one :)
  • 0

#11 Stephen Williams

Stephen Williams
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4708 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Europe

Posted 20 September 2008 - 02:10 AM

hi

i hold sekonic for 10 years now

only the combo ones (408, 508 ,608)

the L-608cine is one great toll very easy to work with.

he never let me down even in hard conditions

i just love the all in one :)


Hi,

I use a Sekonic 508, just as basic one. I always guess the exposure first & I am within 1/2 stop 99% of the time, actually very easy.

Stephen
  • 0

#12 Marc_Abernathy

Marc_Abernathy
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 94 posts
  • Steadicam Operator
  • Los Angeles

Posted 20 September 2008 - 07:29 AM

thanks all for the replies.

i know full well the older posts are relevant; i was not trying to imply that were not. there have been a few models come out on the scene and i wanted to see if anyone had any opinions.

again in regards to sekonic, thats all i have known so thats why i thought it was a staple in the industry. i am not a DP nor do i play one on TV, so i dont really keep up with light meters.


i really appreciate the posts and for you guys taking time to add your seasoned opinions. the spectra looks very nice and am really considering going that route.

again thanks all....
  • 0

#13 Serge Teulon

Serge Teulon
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 757 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • London UK

Posted 20 September 2008 - 07:45 AM

Hi,

I use a Sekonic 508, just as basic one. I always guess the exposure first & I am within 1/2 stop 99% of the time, actually very easy.

Stephen



Hey stephen,

Do you look down the lens?

I've seen and heard of seasoned dp's letting the light hit their hand and making an accurate judgement...but you've really got trust yourself!!
Also, its knowing the photometrics of your lights and distances.....
  • 0

#14 Stephen Williams

Stephen Williams
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4708 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Europe

Posted 20 September 2008 - 08:08 AM

Hey stephen,

Do you look down the lens?

I've seen and heard of seasoned dp's letting the light hit their hand and making an accurate judgement...but you've really got trust yourself!!
Also, its knowing the photometrics of your lights and distances.....


Hi Serge,

It's a bit of everything, working outside you just need to look at the clouds! Once you have used lights a couple of times you have a very good idea how bright are. You just need to know how bright one light is and eyeball the rest.

I have been on shoots when I only took a reading to make the director & agency seem comfortable, I did not bother to actually read the meter just called the stop. ;)

Stephen
  • 0

#15 Jesse Anthony

Jesse Anthony
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 14 posts
  • Other
  • New Brunswick

Posted 20 September 2008 - 09:38 AM

I use the Sekonic L-358 model and for me it works great and is simple to use. It also wasn't that expensive, I bought it new on ebay for around $240 and was definitely worth it.
  • 0

#16 Igor Trajkovski

Igor Trajkovski
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 289 posts
  • Other
  • Macedonia

Posted 20 September 2008 - 09:42 AM

While we are at the topic...

Not wanting to open a new thread.

I am wondering about power consuption.
The 1.5V AA powered Minolta V says 30 Hours Continuous operation
for ambient light/incident light measurement.

For the Kenko equivalent (KFM 1100, same AA battery) 50 Hours.

I have an eye also for a Sekonic L-358 using CR123 battery and
exept for extended battery life ( cause lithium battery),
i does not quote any hours or such.

Just trying to balance between battery life, availability
and cost...

Any thoughts?


Regards

Igor

Edited by Igor Trajkovski, 20 September 2008 - 09:44 AM.

  • 0

#17 Igor Trajkovski

Igor Trajkovski
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 289 posts
  • Other
  • Macedonia

Posted 20 September 2008 - 10:42 AM

Just trying to balance between battery life, availability
and cost...


By this i mean life, avaliability and cost of battery(is),
not the meter...

Best

Igor
  • 0

#18 Glen Alexander

Glen Alexander
  • Guests

Posted 20 September 2008 - 07:36 PM

I use Nikon N90 with 50mm F1.2 lens for spot metering.
  • 0

#19 Chris Keth

Chris Keth
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4427 posts
  • 1st Assistant Camera
  • Los Angeles

Posted 20 September 2008 - 11:40 PM

The minolta takes AA batteries. I always just snag a couple of spent AA lithiums from the sound guy. They're not good anymore for mic transmitters but they're more than good to run other things.
  • 0

#20 Alex Haspel

Alex Haspel
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 282 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • vienna, austria

Posted 21 September 2008 - 09:30 AM

this is the only lightmeter i ever had, and i can only highly recomend it.
what i like about it is it's simplicity, in contrary to those flashy ones with way too many things to be set wrong unnoticed.
it also seems to be very rugged, i think mine dates back to the early 90s and still is in perfect working condition.

the only downside is the batteries, they are rather expensive.

Posted Image

Edited by Alex Haspel, 21 September 2008 - 09:32 AM.

  • 0


The Slider

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Rig Wheels Passport

Technodolly

Abel Cine

Glidecam

Ritter Battery

rebotnix Technologies

Paralinx LLC

Visual Products

FJS International, LLC

Opal

Wooden Camera

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Aerial Filmworks

CineTape

Metropolis Post

CineLab

Tai Audio

Willys Widgets

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Ritter Battery

The Slider

Wooden Camera

Metropolis Post

FJS International, LLC

rebotnix Technologies

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Willys Widgets

Visual Products

Glidecam

Tai Audio

Technodolly

Paralinx LLC

Broadcast Solutions Inc

CineLab

Rig Wheels Passport

CineTape

Abel Cine

Opal

Aerial Filmworks