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Photo Accessories / Bags/ Meters / Tripods etc A place to discuss the delights of photo accessories, including bags, meters, tripods, filters, straps, camera cases, lens hoods, anything non digital that can make your gearhead life a little bit more enjoyable.

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Old 05-23-2017   #41
ColSebastianMoran
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FWIW, the VC Meter II fits on the hot shoe, looks like it belongs there.
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Old 05-23-2017   #42
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I might be late to the party. Respectful Christopher Crawford made it right with comment of staying away from old lightmeters. They are good for steampunk mascarades only, IMO.

I highly recommend already mentioned (maybe by OP) L-208, the twinmate. It is the only real lightmeter I have with my old cameras. Even with pre-war ones. It is good match in style and it was 99% accurate as soon as I find my way for how to use it. And here is not the only way, BTW.

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Old 05-29-2017   #43
David Murphy
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The most reliable and flexible meter for still photography that I've ever owned was a Gossen Luna Pro, that had been professionally calibrated and converted to use silver oxide batteries. Although the Luna Pro had a quirk or two, it was flawlessly accurate in every mode - I was very impressed by the quality and results. I've also had positive experiences with the Gossen LunaLux, an early digital meter.

Another meter that was a standout, was the Spectra Cine incident meter, which I was using in the 1970's for 16mm film work. It was an analog incident meter favored by many TV news film crews, documentary, and some cinematographers in that era (all spot news and documentary work for TV was 16mm sound film at that time). It was a professional-grade meter if there ever was one, built almost like a scientific instrument, and damned accurate. It had a simple analog pointer movement that directly indicated f-stops, and it accepted slides which set the film ASA. I suppose it assumed 24 fps since that is what we usually shot (for sound). Once the slide was in place, there were no adjustments to be made to the meter, which probably contributed to its high stability.

These days I use a Sekonic L28-c2, which is one of the later incarnations of the original Brockway, now called the Sekonic L398A (I suppose there are some minor differences). It's a fine meter for incident work. I also have a Voigtlander VC meter, which I think is a little overrated and ridiculously expensive these days, but handy sometimes and nice eye candy.

When I shoot film in daylight, I usually do not use a meter BTW. A meter reading to me is more a source of advice or confirmation, helpful for indoor lighting situations, deep shade, or when daylight illumination is unusually different than the norm.
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Old 05-30-2017   #44
David Hughes
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OK, but he wants one to go with the Silette and that means a period piece.

Bitter experience of old meters, acquired in boxes or bags of photographic junk and the one camera/lens I wanted, is that the Weston is an elderly workhorse. I'd class it alongside the Pentax K1000 and so on; meaning they usually work, technicians know them and can sort them out and - sometimes like the K1000 - they can be picked up for pennies.

I looked on ebay, they are all there from the 1930's onwards and mostly unsold, in boxes, with manuals, cases and the right Invercones. Some offered at a penny and some for the price of a night out drinking...

And any old meter that's working is superior to the funny 16 rule a lot of people use, despite it only working outdoors in summer.

Here's a peace offering:-



I've often wondered how to use it once the film is in the camera...

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Old 05-30-2017   #45
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@ChrisCrawfordphoto: Thanks for confirming that the master 3 uses ASA. I hadn't been sure although I had seen it mentioned a couple of times, but that was on the interwebnet and you can't aways believe what you read on there.

@ColSebastianMoran: I can't really say I like the look of the vc meter, and I don't really want to spend that sort of money, especially considering the generally poor and boring photos I'll probably be producing.

@David Murphy: I once wrote out an a4 sheet with a lot of exposure guesses on, based on the few suggestions that used to be printed in film boxes, for use with a fed 2. Needless to say it wasn't very successful. Actually the results were abysmal.

@David Hughes: I noticed thte range of prices for master 3's when I had a look the other day. From 99p meter and case only to slightly upwards of 29.99 with all the kit inc. boxes.

I'm not sure who your 'peace offering' is aimed at, but using it would be very simple:

1) read the information just before you put it in the camera.

2) Put it in the camera.

3) Take several photos using the the memory of what you read earlier.

4) If needing a reminder of the info:

a) Make a note of what frame number the film is at, and whether you'd just take a photo or not.

b) Re-wind film to the point where the arrows would appear in the red indicator window (if the camera has one).

c) Open the back and very, very quickly read the information again.

d) Close the back so quickly that it closes almost before you opened it.

e) Wind film on to the frame after the one it was on when you last took a photo.

Simples!
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Old 05-30-2017   #46
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Used properly even a simple - and inexpensive - meter can be a useful tool.
There are scads of good older models available used; check eBay.

I recommend something accurate that uses a currently available battery.
Gossen and Sekonic are good bets; Gossens are too big and heavy IMO.

Chris
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Old 05-30-2017   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seany65 View Post
I'm not sure who your 'peace offering' is aimed at, but using it would be very simple:

1) read the information just before you put it in the camera.

2) Put it in the camera.

3) Take several photos using the the memory of what you read earlier.

4) If needing a reminder of the info:

a) Make a note of what frame number the film is at, and whether you'd just take a photo or not.

b) Re-wind film to the point where the arrows would appear in the red indicator window (if the camera has one).

c) Open the back and very, very quickly read the information again.

d) Close the back so quickly that it closes almost before you opened it.

e) Wind film on to the frame after the one it was on when you last took a photo.

Simples!
Even easier is just to use a "simple camera", then you take photos outside, or use the flash inside. Easy.
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Old 05-31-2017   #48
seany65
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@michaelwj: That's just ruddy laziness, that is.
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Old 05-31-2017   #49
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As if by accident, I have collected light meters. Not a badge of honor, but from the start. I still have the selenium cell Sekonic I got on my 16th birthday (it'll be 44 next week), and if were easier to read, I'd still use it. I've a more recent Sekonic, but it's too honking big and waaaay over-complicated. While I agree the Six is too small.

Something mid-size like the Gossen Luna Pro works very well and is about the size of your iPhone, fits in a pocket, and will do most of what you want: Both incident and reflected/ambient light. Doesn't do spot... but you may not want/need that. For Spot, you can pick up a Pentax Digital spot for $300. Overpriced, but simple and good at what it does. Recommend if you want a spot meter, there's a large format fellow ("Ritter") who services them quickly and reasonably. They're supposed to be "calibrated" from time to time... as in truth are ALL light meters (so I'm told). Minolta had some decent meters that are highly recommended, too, but I've never used them. I think much depends on need and portability... unless it's for studio only.
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Old 06-01-2017   #50
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@roscoetuff: Over the past week or so I've collected a few of them myself. I didn't plan to. I'd bought an Ambi Silette which came with a metraphot 3 which unfortunately doesn't seem accurate at all so I began to think about getting a 'period piece' to go with the camera. Then I thought "Well, I've got a super solinette and a gevaert gevabox, so why not get contemporary meters to go with them as well?" So here I am with the metraphot 3, a Horvex 3, a sixtry and now I've just received a metrastar. This is on top of my variosix f.

Good job they were all quite cheap. The variosix means I don't have to get any 'modern' meters.

How would one calibrate a digital meter?
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Old 06-01-2017   #51
David Murphy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seany65 View Post
@ChrisCrawfordphoto: Thanks for confirming that the master 3 uses ASA. I hadn't been sure although I had seen it mentioned a couple of times, but that was on the interwebnet and you can't aways believe what you read on there.

@ColSebastianMoran: I can't really say I like the look of the vc meter, and I don't really want to spend that sort of money, especially considering the generally poor and boring photos I'll probably be producing.

@David Murphy: I once wrote out an a4 sheet with a lot of exposure guesses on, based on the few suggestions that used to be printed in film boxes, for use with a fed 2. Needless to say it wasn't very successful. Actually the results were abysmal.

@David Hughes: I noticed thte range of prices for master 3's when I had a look the other day. From 99p meter and case only to slightly upwards of 29.99 with all the kit inc. boxes.

I'm not sure who your 'peace offering' is aimed at, but using it would be very simple:

1) read the information just before you put it in the camera.

2) Put it in the camera.

3) Take several photos using the the memory of what you read earlier.

4) If needing a reminder of the info:

a) Make a note of what frame number the film is at, and whether you'd just take a photo or not.

b) Re-wind film to the point where the arrows would appear in the red indicator window (if the camera has one).

c) Open the back and very, very quickly read the information again.

d) Close the back so quickly that it closes almost before you opened it.

e) Wind film on to the frame after the one it was on when you last took a photo.

Simples!
Back in the 70's (the era in which I learned) I never saw a working professional photographer use a light meter more than as the occasional aid, usually for indoor lighting. The color emulsions in use then were quite exposure sensitive. These guys, and their still photographer counterparts (using mostly Nikon F's with the unmetered eye-level prism), were always dead on with their manually set exposure and focus. It was just one skill, among many, that they developed and were very good at. In fact they would often adjust aperture settings and focus in real time as the film rolled, all while not taking their eye off the finder as they followed subjects on the move through different lighting conditions (Sun to shade and back, etc.). Their grasp of light and its relation to film went far beyond what might have been written on the box of a roll of film.

The consummate pro at that time generally shunned any type of automation and regarded it as something of a toy solely for the amateur. I think this was the right attitude by the way and the standard to which we should all aspire. Remember, quality photography and film has been around much longer than have exposure meters or automation.
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Old 06-01-2017   #52
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@David Murphy: Yes, I know. I'm a bit jealous of that sort of skill.

I do think however, that they must have used lightmeters early on in their careers, and done so quite a lot, so that over the years they subconsciously learned what their meters would suggest and knowing what they wanted the photo to look like, and probably being able to process and print the photos, they were able to set the exposure that they wanted and compensate if necassary.
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Old 06-01-2017   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roscoetuff View Post
As if by accident, I have collected light meters. Not a badge of honor, but from the start. I still have the selenium cell Sekonic I got on my 16th birthday (it'll be 44 next week), and if were easier to read, I'd still use it. I've a more recent Sekonic, but it's too honking big and waaaay over-complicated. While I agree the Six is too small.
Hello, roscoetuff, one thing you might try is to use the slides to make your old sekonic direct reading, so you can have the asa and shutter speed known already, and read the proper aperture off the scale. It takes some figuring at the beginning to get (or make) the right slide for your usual light, but you don't have to screw around with the dial. I think roscoe neutral densities slid in the slot and tape over the slot would work too. Something that cuts 2 stops will give you 1/250th at 400 asa.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #54
davidnewtonguitars
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Does anyone know if a Gossen Sixtomat can be customized for old Leica shutter speeds: 20, 30 40, 100, 200.
I don't see anything in the manual, or am missing it.
Also the ASA values are preset, you cant select in 125 or any other nonstandard speed.
I'm probably splitting hairs, as my speeds may not be so accurate.
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