I like my Sekonic with the radio trigger built in but I can't find it right now. It's in some moving boxes. So is my other one. And I am definitely not buying a third one.
Lately I've just been chimping myself into the exposure I want, but I do like my cordless flash meter and my pocket wizards. Call me crazy.
So here's the question:
Can I hold a cheap flash meter in one hand and pop the strobes with a pocket wizard in the other hand? Do I have to get a certain kind of flash meter that has some kind of cordless mode? What is the cheapest meter I should buy that is decently accurate and consistent?
Okay, I guess that's 3 questions.
Apr 23 13 03:37 pm Link
Sacramento, California, US
Yes, some meters (Minolta for one) have a cordless mode. When the button is punched, it will sense the flash burst and then take the reading.
Apr 23 13 03:43 pm Link
Is there a good choice among used, old meters only sold in places like ebay?
Right now I'm leaning towards a new Sekonic L-308S Flashmate
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/control … details&Q=
Apr 23 13 03:51 pm Link
Cherry Hill, New Jersey, US
Yes, most have a cordless mode but you may want to check for accuracy and consistency.
A friend of mine went to a PPA class years ago and half had Minolta meters, half had Gossen. Within the brand all the meters teste + or - a tenth of a stop but the brands were a consistant difference of a third of a stop.
I use one as my back up meter and it does the job. I believe in BU for everything.
Apr 23 13 03:54 pm Link
If you're shooting digital (and of course RAW) then the only "correct" exposure for studio shots is the one that puts your whites at the very RHS of the histogram.
You can determine that with the on-camera LCD/histogram at a pinch as long as you have the contrast and other settings at neutral. A handheld flash meter will only tell you the "by the book" exposure for shooting 18% grey cards on film, not what's going onto your sensor.
Just my $0.02
I should clarify that I don't want to buy another top of the line flagship sekonic, since I have two somewhere that work fine. I will buy a low end one, though.
But it gets you off to a quick start and you can compensate for differences.
Apr 23 13 03:59 pm Link
If I get a Sekonic L-358 Flash Master Light Meter for $350 I'm going to want to add a PW chip which will put it up to $425. Starts to get expensive again. Even $350 is a fair amount more than the $233 for the 308
Apr 23 13 04:01 pm Link
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, US
That's how I meter monolights with the same L-308S Flashmate that you mention in a later post, although with Yongnuo triggers instead of PWs. While it doesn't have all of the bells and whistles over more expensive Sekonics or other brands, it is so easily pocketed for the times when I don't want bring a whole bag. Several of my cameras don't have meters, so this small size is indispensable.
Apr 23 13 04:08 pm Link
Antioch, California, US
maybe take a look at KEH?
Apr 23 13 04:51 pm Link
Olney, Maryland, US
Apr 23 13 05:04 pm Link
Las Vegas, Nevada, US
Last two L358s i purchased were well under $200 - look around more used.
Apr 23 13 05:55 pm Link
San Diego, California, US
I use the 308 and simply trigger the lights with a wireless trigger to take the reading. Works great. I can also plug a PC cord into the meter and use it to trigger the strobes.
Apr 23 13 06:31 pm Link
Jacksonville, Florida, US
Digital neutral gray is 12%...!
Apr 23 13 07:04 pm Link
New York, New York, US
They have a free cell phone app for Androids and I-phones you can use instead. You can trigger the strobes yourself. I can't speak on how accurate it is, I haven't tried it myself....
Apr 23 13 07:11 pm Link
Olympia, Washington, US
I do what you described with my L-358 and Cybersyncs. Hold the button down, pop the flash(es), and take a reading. I don't need no stinking wireless trigger in my meter.
Apr 23 13 07:51 pm Link
Las Vegas, Nevada, US
GM Photography wrote:
In flash mode, you don't even need to hold it down. Press once, and it should meter each time it detects a flash.
Apr 23 13 09:32 pm Link
Colorado Springs, Colorado, US
Instinct Images wrote:
I use a Polaris this way and it does just dandy,170 new. I have never seen one used though. I'm fairly certain it'll do anything the 308 will do.
Apr 23 13 11:16 pm Link
I have seen Lunasix Fs on sale at good prices.These were cordless only. You pressed the button to reset the meter, then manually triggered your lights. They are analogue, but accurate and easy to use.
Apr 24 13 12:01 am Link
If you do that it will accumulate the readings and give you false results. You have to press the reset button for each reading. Except of course if you are doing a multi pop exposure.
Apr 24 13 12:07 am Link
Thanks - pedantry and use of handheld meters seem to make frequent bedfellows I find.
Apr 24 13 05:20 am Link
Saint Louis, Missouri, US
Are you making fun of us guys who hold hands with our meters, Stefano?
Apr 24 13 05:36 am Link
Buffalo Grove, Illinois, US
Gossen Mark II for first reading to get in the ballpark and set ratios; Ed Pierce Target to follow for very accurate exposure using histogram; eyeballs on LCD after a shot to see if I nailed it.
Apr 24 13 07:44 am Link
Well, right and wrong. An 18% card will give the correct 12.7% reading when lit from an average angle of 45°, so an 18% card is correct, for film and for digital. Which is why Ansel Adams persuaded Kodak that 18% was the correct figure for an exposure target. Learn the cosine law.
Apr 24 13 08:24 am Link
I have never heard the cosine law invoked in a 12% / 18% gray card discussion before. I'd have to look into it more.
Apr 24 13 10:47 am Link
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
cos 45 is .707
Apr 24 13 11:49 am Link
AVD AlphaDuctions wrote:
I'll buy it.
Apr 24 13 12:11 pm Link
AVD AlphaDuctions wrote:
That's very true.
Apr 24 13 01:27 pm Link
Saint Louis, Missouri, US
So you're the guy who bought the only red one? It may be worth big bucks to a meter collector someday. Even more than another L-398 without the PW chip.
Apr 24 13 03:41 pm Link
Billings, Montana, US
I had one of these back in the olden days...
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Wein-WP500-Flas … 3cc70f462b
Apr 24 13 04:04 pm Link
Bakersfield, California, US
Minolta merged with Konica, who got bought by Sony, who sold off the meter division to Kenko (Who also markets Tokina lenses.).
Wouldn't mind owning their KCM-3100 Pro Digital Color Temperature Meter for ambient or flash temperature readings. But $1,049.00 is a bit much as little use as it may get - and it isn't an exposure meter, just a color temp. reading meter. Too bad they didn't make it do both else I might own one.
Their KFM-1100 meter looks very similar to the Minolta IV-F meter from the past for $329.00 and probably works as well as the old Minolta IV-F too. The old IV-F show up on eBay a lot for around $80. Some need the white incidents dome window contacts cleaned in the back of the swivel head else they will be off 4-5 stops (Damhik either!). Works very well as an ambient light or flashmeter out in the sun.
Adorama has the Kenko's if anyone is interested: http://www.adorama.com/catalog.tpl?op=i … ure1=Kenko
Paul Buff's CyberCommander has a digital flash meter built into it too that pops the flash wirelessly if you have his remotes too. Not a bad price if you want a flashmeter and going to wireless both. I will say the color LCD display on it is very hard to read in the sun though. Menu intensive too.
I think I still have one of those old Wein meters around here. I think it had issues out in the sun with flash though. Wasn't that accurate, maybe 1/3-1/2 stop off at times. Haven't used it since the IV-F replaced it. The IV-F has a small pot in the battery area where you can fine tune it to maybe +/- 1/2 stop and it reads to 0.1 stop. Really is a reliable workhorse.
Apr 24 13 04:52 pm Link
Los Angeles, California, US
I always end up looking in 3 or 4 different places trying to find where I put down my light meter. Red sounds like the way to go!
Apr 24 13 10:10 pm Link
Dallas, Texas, US
Not if you using Sekonic 758. Then its more precise than whatever you camera back tells you.
Apr 24 13 10:25 pm Link
Sergei Rodionov wrote:
See, that's what happens when you selectively leave out bits of what people wrote.
Apr 25 13 06:07 am Link