A&P Light Meter Time

Discussion in 'Lifestyle' started by DRAIGON, Mar 16, 2008.

  1. DRAIGON

    DRAIGON New Member

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    What is a good light meter to have? Is the one in the 40D good enough or is there a separate one thats just awesome to own?
     
  2. Spurious

    Spurious New Member

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    You really don't see too many of them when the photographer has only used digital, but I don't suppose it's a terrible thing to have. The one in the camera is perfectly adequate and the only one you'll ever really need, that said being able to spot light without your camera could be handy.

    It's not going to make you better though, it's not going to make your pictures better. With photoshop over or under exposing entire stops doesn't really matter, it's better not to, but it's easily correctable as long as you don't blow your highlights.

    I've gotten to the point where I can eyeball light when using my strobist kit to balance natural light, I'm almost never off more than a third of a stop. It's not really that hard.
     
  3. e.pie

    e.pie Active Member

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  4. DRAIGON

    DRAIGON New Member

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    I realize it wont make my photos better. Ive only taken to photography since December. I have a few months to where most of you have probably a few years and probably some proper schooling on the subject. With my career I could never take a physical class so I have to settle on some online photography courses. I have started one, and not the one advised on POTN. Im at the metering part of the course and they are explaining many different kinds plus the one in camera. I was just wondering what if any was a good one to lug around if I had to. After doing some research, I would probably want a spot meter with me if I had to absolutely have one.
     
  5. tenplanescrashing

    tenplanescrashing Active Member

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    im sure it wouldn't hurt but I don't see the added benefit with digital. i'd rather use that money towards another lens, battery, filter, etc.
     
  6. isaac86hatch

    isaac86hatch This thread sucks

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    If you have pocket wizards, having a meter that will fire the strobes while you check for hot spots is useful, but beyond that, the others are right.
     
  7. DRAIGON

    DRAIGON New Member

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    Thanks everybody for your input. I will think about it more. Im going into pro photography any time soon. For my courses the in camera will be gooder nuff.
     
  8. ThexToddster

    ThexToddster New Member

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    gooder nuff?

    :rofl:
     
  9. DRAIGON

    DRAIGON New Member

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    Hey, Im Texan :squint:
     
  10. DRAIGON

    DRAIGON New Member

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    Would a spot meter be the "best" selection?
     
  11. mojito

    mojito New Member

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    you have to understand how the in camera meter works, then think about how an external will help you. For most applications the in camera meter is fine, BUT you have to understand how it works and how/when to compensate and how much
     
  12. mojito

    mojito New Member

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    for certain applications, but no, the best (in general) is an ambient that measure the light falling on the subject
     
  13. DRAIGON

    DRAIGON New Member

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    Thank you Mojito
     
  14. emorphien

    emorphien New Member

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    Agreed, an an incident meter can be very handy for all kinds of things. I've had one for many years although to be honest since going digital I don't worry about it too terribly much and it's been sitting in a bag in my closet for the past few years. For the vast majority of what I shoot, checking a histogram works well.

    If you shoot in a studio, or shot film, then I'd suggest having one, particularly one that can take incident readings (that's the only way I ever used mine because it doesn't have a scope).

    Whether or not a spot metering mode is what you need depends again on what you're shooting. If taking a reading of a specific object/area might give you a more consistent and reliable indication of exposure then go ahead and use it. Most of the time I find the evaluative metering in my MK II works quite well for me as well when I need in camera metering.
     
  15. jared_IRL

    jared_IRL OT Supporter

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    I think that EVERY beginning photographer should have, and be forced to use and external light meter until they understand the science behind exposure and can successfully manipulate their camera to get a proper exposure on the first shot.

    There are too many morans out there who just shoot 50 shots and adjust on the fly til they get one right, without actually understanding why or what they're adjusting...

    It's breeding a generation of pretty unintelligent/lazy photographers.
     
  16. emorphien

    emorphien New Member

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    This is very true, people aren't learning exposure the same way they used to. Those who pay attention still learn whats going on but it seems to more and more people it's just a black box with some random changing numbers that result in pictures.
     
  17. DRAIGON

    DRAIGON New Member

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    Very nice info guys, I truly appreciate it all. I am trying to learn it all as it was intended. I don't want to keep burning up useless shutter actuations to figure out proper exposure. This is still a problem for me. And then what looks good on my LCD looks like shit on my desktop.
     
  18. mojito

    mojito New Member

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    learn how the reflective metering works first, spot is the same just a small sample of it.

    there's a lot of times you can't/won't want to use a incident meter.

    the basic idea is simple, there's a gray scale.

    white without detail
    white with detil
    light gray
    middle gray
    dark gray
    black with detail
    black without detail

    the camera meters for middle gray. There is a stop of light (1 full aperture or shutter speed, ie F/4 - 5.6) in between each zone of the scale.

    so if the subject is wearing a white wedding dress or is in snow, it will most likely underexpose the image thinking all that white is middle gray.

    likewise if the subject is a black dog, it will most likely overexpose the image.

    You can compensate for the meter to get a proper exposure
     
  19. e.pie

    e.pie Active Member

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    I R learned stuff
     
  20. mobbarley

    mobbarley Active Member

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    How about sending them out with camera with no meter and a text book on how a camera works. Learn to use the force.
     
  21. nastyboy132

    nastyboy132 New Member

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    what the fuck are you going on about?
     
  22. Spurious

    Spurious New Member

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    Oh you know, the usual.
     
  23. johan

    johan Active Member

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    I only use a meter when doing studio work. Its a Minolta Flash Meter IV.

    Great meter. Not much use for it anymore.
     
  24. Jcolman

    Jcolman OT Supporter

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    I have my eyes calibrated. No need for a meter.
     
  25. Spurious

    Spurious New Member

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    Impressive for someone of your vintage.
     

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