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The July Monthly Project

For July's monthly project, Tom Persinger is joining us again to explore the quality of light and how to use it effectively in our photographs. Please add your photo to the thread and enjoy the...

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lux meters

Steve Frens , Mar 01, 2008; 04:53 p.m.

Hi,

Does anyone have experience with lux meters - for example, like the ones offered on ebay for low prices? Seems hard to find good reviews about them on the internet. The ones I'm looking at go from .1 to 100,000 lux. I have found some good info about converting lux values to the ev scale. This is what the auction says, but is it believable?

"This lux meter features an extremely precise accuracy (?4% rdg) through 0.1-100,000 Lux readings in four ranges...Photo, and Film Enthusiasts have rated this as the HIGHEST QUALITY and BEST SELLING Lux Meter on eBay."

I work mainly using the sunny f16 rule with pinhole and an old minolta srt with a broken meter. The info from this site, http://www.fredparker.com/ultexp1.htm has helped me a lot with estimating exposure values but I think a meter would definitely improve things. The lux meter seems like a good option as it's affordable. A .1 to 100,000 lux meter can meter on the EV scale from roughly EV -4 or 5 to EV 15, which is good enough for me. But again the question is, has anyone used these kinds of meters with success? I suppose they just read ambient light and not reflected light which is ok with me for now.

Thanks for any input,

Steve


Attachment: lux_meter.jpg

Responses

Craig Shearman , Mar 02, 2008; 10:29 p.m.

Can't tell much from the photo, but if this meter reads out only in lux you don't want it. Lux is a measurement of light intensity (I believe one lux and one lumen are the same but double check that.). All meters read lux. But rather than giving you a reading in lux, they usually translate it into an exposure setting of a given f-stop and shutter speed for a given ISO. If they only gave you the lux reading and you had to go look up in a chart what that translates into for exposure, that would be a step of about 50 years backward in the way that exposure meters work. Not sure, but a lux/lumen/footcandle meter might be used in some cinematography applications, but not generally in still photography. If you want a meter, get a standard meter. Sekonic is probably the most popular brand.

Steve Hovland , Apr 02, 2009; 02:38 p.m.

Here's a chart for converting EV to Lux with the meter set at ISO 100

http://www.sekonic.com/support/support_2.asp

Steve Hovland , Apr 02, 2009; 02:40 p.m.

I'm just using my Sekonic meter in EV mode.
I got interested in this issue because I'm thinking of adding video ceremony coverage to my wedding work.

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