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Thread: It is necessary to get a light meter?

  1. #1

    Default It is necessary to get a light meter?

    Or use averaging in the spot metering mode of your DSLR? For taking studio portraits. Any comment?

  2. #2

    Default Re: It is necessary to get a light meter?

    I'm pretty sure dSLRs can't do incident metering..

  3. #3

    Default Re: It is necessary to get a light meter?

    The website below may give you some hindsight:

    http://www.cambridgeincolour.com/tut...a-metering.htm

  4. #4

    Default Re: It is necessary to get a light meter?

    Quote Originally Posted by kentwong81 View Post
    The website below may give you some hindsight:

    http://www.cambridgeincolour.com/tut...a-metering.htm
    Thanks.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: It is necessary to get a light meter?

    normally I just spot meter on the spot I want properly exposed, lock the AE, then recompose
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    Senior Member denniskee's Avatar
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    Default Re: It is necessary to get a light meter?

    i use LM for manual flash control or with cameras take doesnt have TTL metering when i slap on a filter.
    photography makes one sees things from all angles.

  7. #7

    Default Re: It is necessary to get a light meter?

    a lightmeter is pretty much the easiest way to go about it. u can do without if u are very familiar with how u want to setup the lights.

  8. #8
    Moderator ed9119's Avatar
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    Default Re: It is necessary to get a light meter?

    i used to.... until the histogram came along.... paired with AEL , it saves alot of time

    (for no-flash shooting)
    shaddap and just shoot .... up close
    Walkeast

  9. #9

    Default Re: It is necessary to get a light meter?

    You can use it, you can not use it. As long as you're comfortable with your judgement, you can not use a light meter

  10. #10

    Default Re: It is necessary to get a light meter?

    Depends on how one prefers to work.

    Assuming at least want good control of light ratios for above average results.

    Doesn't matter if shooting human subjects, or products - still have to decide light ratios.

    Method 1 - use flash meter: Set lights, take reading, adjust, re-read, re-adjust - SHOOT.

    Advantage is faster and more precise.
    Disadvantage is need to know how to use a meter, and need to buy a meter.
    Exception is if don't know about light or how to control, use the most expensive light meter also no use.

    Method 2 - use histogram and LCD preview: Set lights, no reading, estimate and wack - check Histo/LCD, adjust - re-check, re-adjust - re-re-check - re-re-adjust - re-re-re-recheck - SHOOT.

    Advantage is no need to buy anything extra or learn how to use.
    Disadvantage is unless one is very experienced with light, need a lot of time to re-check and re-adjust.
    Exception: Using Histo and LCD alone also can be very fast, IF user is familiar with light and know how to control.

    It gets a lot worse if no flash meter and using lights that have inconsistent EV and WB output.

    Hope this helps.

  11. #11
    Senior Member sinned79's Avatar
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    Default Re: It is necessary to get a light meter?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dream Merchant View Post
    Depends on how one prefers to work.

    Assuming at least want good control of light ratios for above average results.

    Doesn't matter if shooting human subjects, or products - still have to decide light ratios.

    Method 1 - use flash meter: Set lights, take reading, adjust, re-read, re-adjust - SHOOT.

    Advantage is faster and more precise.
    Disadvantage is need to know how to use a meter, and need to buy a meter.
    Exception is if don't know about light or how to control, use the most expensive light meter also no use.

    Method 2 - use histogram and LCD preview: Set lights, no reading, estimate and wack - check Histo/LCD, adjust - re-check, re-adjust - re-re-check - re-re-adjust - re-re-re-recheck - SHOOT.

    Advantage is no need to buy anything extra or learn how to use.
    Disadvantage is unless one is very experienced with light, need a lot of time to re-check and re-adjust.
    Exception: Using Histo and LCD alone also can be very fast, IF user is familiar with light and know how to control.

    It gets a lot worse if no flash meter and using lights that have inconsistent EV and WB output.

    Hope this helps.
    just curious, is Sekonic Flashmate good enough as a light meter? I know its quite basic though.... i think light meter is useful for Flash photography right?

  12. #12

    Default Re: It is necessary to get a light meter?

    The 308 series out of the box is perfectly fine if you don't need any sort of true 1 degree spot metering functions (flash or ambient), or high-end functions like wireless triggering to Pocket Wizards or endless computerized customization. At any rate, you can easily trigger a flash via radioless with just about any flashmeter that has a PC sync port and if your can plug your transmitter to the meter.

    Even the older version - 328 is perfect for metering flash or ambient light.

    Aside - the old industry standard - Minolta Flashmeter IV is still being used by many fashion and commercial photographers. To many, it still IS THE industry standard meter. It's one of those meters that just refuse to go away even though they're quite complicated to use (think MS-DOS vs Windows! ) and have been superceeded by more advanced and easy to use meters.

  13. #13

    Default Re: It is necessary to get a light meter?

    No prejudice.

    Gossen, my fav...with me since 73.

    Of coz along with Sekonic, Broncolor and Bowens meter...all reliable.
    Last edited by cabbySHE; 1st July 2010 at 02:07 AM.

  14. #14

    Default Re: It is necessary to get a light meter?

    for taking studio shots i would get one.

  15. #15
    Senior Member Anson's Avatar
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    Default Re: It is necessary to get a light meter?

    When working in a studio I am familiar, I use method 2 (as indicated by DM). Normally I need at most 3 shots/reading to get the correct exposure.

  16. #16
    Senior Member denniskee's Avatar
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    Default Re: It is necessary to get a light meter?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dream Merchant View Post
    At any rate, you can easily trigger a flash via radioless with just about any flashmeter that has a PC sync port and if your can plug your transmitter to the meter.
    hahaha, alamak, if got a transitter on hand, no need to link with LM via PC cord lar.
    photography makes one sees things from all angles.

  17. #17
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: It is necessary to get a light meter?

    Quote Originally Posted by TuaKEE View Post
    Or use averaging in the spot metering mode of your DSLR? For taking studio portraits. Any comment?
    most of the studio setups are using strobe, camera doesn't have metering mode cater for flash, you need a flash meter to take meter reading. unless you are using continuous light in the studio instead of flash.

    an alternative way as Mod DM has already shown you, it will slow you down on the learning process, so the best is still get a flash meter.
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