Me? Use a Hand-Held Light Meter? (Part 1)
You bet. In fact, with some of the newer designs available, you’d find they are easier to use, frequently more accurate, and will often help you improve the quality of your work!
I recently attended the Exposure Photo Expo in Toronto, sponsored by Henry’s Photo and Video. A couple of models from Sekonic caught my eye, among them the L-478 and the L-478DR. They have all-digital readouts, touch screen capability, and more. Very nicely updated designs.
Features include incident light readings, spot readings, the DR model is capable of Pocket-Wizard triggering control, enhanced HD Cine features, exposure profiling, flash power controls, flash-ambient measurements, and more.
Spot reading, as compared to incident light metering, can be much more accurate in evaluating dynamic range in a scene, and getting the right exposure in high-contrast situations.
I’ll be writing more about this topic later on, focusing on using a hand-held meter vs. an in-camera meter – probably in two more additional segments – regarding general use, and in creating lighting setups.