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03-16-2019, 04:52 AM - 2 Likes   #31
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So, some here want to measure how the camera is illuminated rather than how the object is illuminated. There is a very good reason why you hold an incident light meter in your hands and walk to the object of interest. Cameras measure reflected light form an object. If you understand the difference, you understand the problem. If you understand the problem, you can counteract and adjust exposure. Instant histogram is a huge step forward from film days. Reflected light metering done right is a huge step from no in camera light metering. Btw. you are free to use spot metering.


Companies like Gossen and Sekonic are not doing as well as during film days because not many people buy incident light meters. Why should Pentax invest in this technology?

---------- Post added 16-03-19 at 12:53 PM ----------

It is not the camera, it is the brain that assumes that a camera should be perfect.

03-16-2019, 05:12 AM - 2 Likes   #32
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QuoteOriginally posted by zapp Quote
So, some here want to measure how the camera is illuminated rather than how the object is illuminated. There is a very good reason why you hold an incident light meter in your hands and walk to the object of interest. Cameras measure reflected light form an object. If you understand the difference, you understand the problem. If you understand the problem, you can counteract and adjust exposure. Instant histogram is a huge step forward from film days. Reflected light metering done right is a huge step from no in camera light metering. Btw. you are free to use spot metering.

I think it's actually about people who have used incident meters for decades, and who understand perfectly well what their benefits and limitations are, expressing an opinion that it would be useful to have an on-camera incident metering option of some kind. So that we can use the camera as if it was an incident meter when we choose to, in situations where we can't use our handheld meters for one reason or another.

Many of the replies seem to assume that an on-camera incident meter would mean trying to get incident readings while looking through the viewfinder, which of course wouldn't work and isn't what is being asked for. What is being asked for is the option of using the camera as if it was a handheld meter when desired, to meter the light falling on the scene rather than being reflected by it.
03-16-2019, 05:13 AM   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by BarryE Quote
I'd say colour checkers are essential in critical lighting set-ups, and just plain useful on many other occasions
I'm with you on this... my x-rite "Colorchecker Passport" is my go to tool for anything that's "mission critical" product shoot wise and because it integrates so well in my workflow with LR and PS, it's easy to use.
03-16-2019, 05:31 AM - 2 Likes   #34
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a) All cameras do their metering pretty well today without a lot of extra fuss.

b) As next step everyone can use their mobile phones with corresponding apps to meter the light at specific places.

c) Then there are dedicated old fashioned light meters available.

I bet there are less than 1 person in 1,000 who would not be satisfied with the combined possibilities of a), b) and c) but still willing to pay extra for Pentax including something about this in the camera.

I see this topic as exotic minority nonsense. There is a lot more money to be made on Hello Kitty bodies than this probably.

03-16-2019, 08:38 AM   #35
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There are two challenges to adding an incident meter to the camera: 1) where to put it on the body; 2) how to keep the photographer from blaming the camera when the photographer botches the use of it.

Challenge #1 arises because the incident light that matters will mostly be coming from above and behind the camera. Light coming toward the front of the camera is NOT light that is incident on the vertical surfaces of the subject that face the camera. The camera would need a tiny fish eye lens or translucent hemisphere on the back of the camera.

Challenge #2 occurs because a camera-mounted incident meter will get incorrect readings (and cause overexposure!) anytime the photographer is near the back of the camera (e..g, camera held to their eye, photographer standing behind the tripod, etc.). To properly use the meter, the photographer needs to step to the side of the tripod or hold the camera at arms length and push some button without their fingers/hand/wrist/arm blocking any light getting to the sensor.
03-16-2019, 08:49 AM   #36
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QuoteOriginally posted by GUB Quote
Considering my cellphone has one beside the screen so it knows how bright to make the screen that is accurate and presumably close to free it is ridiculous there is not one on my K1.
Then you are saying it’s ridiculous that every SLR camera made by every manufacturer over the past nearly 6 decades have had this somehow essential component missing.
Have you considered that they aren’t put on cameras anymore, and haven’t been since the early 1960s because their extremely limited functionality makes them next to useless compared to TTL metering?
QuoteQuote:
Combined with digital preview I could home in on the appropriate setting even quicker that what I currently do - that is - take a guess and see!!
The incident meter could work in conjunction with a EV calculator app on the LCD and interact with shutter etc edials.
Given how shonky the in viewfinder metering can be when you take your eye away from the viewfinder to find the green button it would be a great step forward.
It could be an alternative programmable function of the green button.
It sounds to me like you are creating problems for yourself with poor technique and a refusal to learn how to use your gear.

---------- Post added 03-16-19 at 10:03 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Dartmoor Dave Quote
I think it's actually about people who have used incident meters for decades, and who understand perfectly well what their benefits and limitations are, expressing an opinion that it would be useful to have an on-camera incident metering option of some kind. So that we can use the camera as if it was an incident meter when we choose to, in situations where we can't use our handheld meters for one reason or another.

Many of the replies seem to assume that an on-camera incident meter would mean trying to get incident readings while looking through the viewfinder, which of course wouldn't work and isn't what is being asked for. What is being asked for is the option of using the camera as if it was a handheld meter when desired, to meter the light falling on the scene rather than being reflected by it.
The only time, in nearly half a century of photography, that I have found an incident meter to be useful is in the studio. I every other photography situation I have been in, and about the only type of photography I haven’t done is going into outer space, the ambient meter has stayed in the bag. I recall when I started out that I used an old Fujica rangefinder from the mid 1950s, and I used a handheld meter with it. In rapidly changing conditions it was useless. In anything but ideal conditions it was useless.
TTL meters were the answer to a very real metering problem, that being ambient light meters.
I could see a return of the built in viewfinder blind being quasi useful, but ambient meters with a sensor on the top of the prism someplace? Not a chance. I simply cannot think of a single situation where it would be better than a TTL meter.

Last edited by Wheatfield; 03-16-2019 at 09:05 AM.
03-16-2019, 10:04 AM - 1 Like   #37
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
The only time, in nearly half a century of photography, that I have found an incident meter to be useful is in the studio.
Pity...

Except for taking a TTL incident reading from a gray card (equivalent to a hand-held incident meter reading*) this photo on Fujichrome 100 (not Velvia) would have been hopelessly underexposed as a single shot attempt with a center-weighted averaging meter. Given that it was taken two days of trailless travel from the car and six days travel yet to go and with film supplies limited to what was in the pack**, bracketing was not a reasonable option and neither was guessing at appropriate EV comp or manual exposure.



FWIW, I was lucky in that the film had sufficient latitude to render what was most assuredly zone VIII to IX in the snow without blocking up. Kodachrome 64 would not have been so kind, I suspect. The same scene using multi-segment metering on my K-3 would likely require multiple attempts with adjustment by chimp. Spot metering with the K-3 might allow proper placement of the snow to its appropriate exposure. HDR might also have be appropriate if shot with modern gear.

It may not be apparent on some displays, but even the bright area at lower center has detail in the original slide with shadow detail being retained throughout the frame.


Steve

* The gray card was perhaps a bit easier since no filter factor compensation was needed for the polarizer. All that was needed was to fill the frame with the card (eye to viewfinder to avoid biasing the meter) and press the AE lock button on the Ricoh XR7 before taking the shot.

** I shot the last frame of my last roll about eight miles from the end. It seems I cut it a bit close in my film estimate.

Last edited by stevebrot; 03-16-2019 at 10:26 AM.
03-16-2019, 10:16 AM - 1 Like   #38
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Pity...

Except for taking a TTL incident reading from a gray card (equivalent to a hand-held incident meter reading, though perhaps a bit easier since no filter factor compensation was needed for the polarizer) this photo on Fujichrome 100 (not Velvia) would have been hopelessly underexposed as a single shot attempt. Given that it was taken two days of trailless travel from the car and six days travel yet to go and with film supplies limited to what was in the pack*, bracketing was not a reasonable option and neither was guessing at appropriate EV comp.

FWIW, I was lucky in that the film had sufficient latitude to render what was most assuredly zone IX in the snow without blocking up. Kodachrome 64 would not have been so kind, I suspect. The same scene using multi-segment metering on my K-3 would likely require multiple attempts with adjustment by chimp. Spot metering with the K-3 might allow proper placement of the snow to its appropriate exposure. HDR might also have been appropriate.


Steve

* I shot the last frame of my last roll about eight miles from the end. It seems I cut it a bit close in my film estimate.
If you have a spot meter, set it on the bright snow and set that at Zone VIII plus or minus a bit if prior experience tells you to. I learned to open up a bit when metering snow scenes in Photography Kindergarten. The shadows will fall where they will. You are showing one of the few scene types where an incident meter has a good chance of success from the camera position. This doesn’t have to mean a TTL meter wouldn’t also nail the exposure. It’s not a performance teeter-totter.

03-16-2019, 10:42 AM   #39
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
If you have a spot meter, set it on the bright snow and set that at Zone VIII plus or minus a bit if prior experience tells you to.
Yep, that is the best metering solution if one has a hand-held spotmeter in the bag.

QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
You are showing one of the few scene types where an incident meter has a good chance of success from the camera position.
Yep, my choice of image was intentional as was inclusion of the gray card in my kit for the trek (Ptarmigan Traverse in the North Cascades of Washington state). I used it frequently. I found an excellent article on the route with many photos including one taken from a point within the scene in my photo above.

The Country's Most Beautiful Mountaineering Route | Outside Online


Steve
03-16-2019, 10:50 AM   #40
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Yep, that is the best metering solution if one has a hand-held spotmeter in the bag.
These days almost everyone has a spotmeter in the bag if they have a camera in the bag. Even in the film camera world, many of the decent bodies had a built-in spotmeter.
03-16-2019, 11:18 AM - 1 Like   #41
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QuoteOriginally posted by photoptimist Quote
These days almost everyone has a spotmeter in the bag if they have a camera in the bag. Even in the film camera world, many of the decent bodies had a built-in spotmeter.
A grinned at your comment. Improper use of spot metering is one of the more common causes of poor exposure complaints on this site. As for film cameras, there were some, but I am struggling to remember the models beyond the one I own (Mamiya 1000 DTL).* Such was never on the feature list in the price range where I was shopping at the time, that is a sure thing.


Steve

* A bit of thinking and Googling and I figured out that such was not uncommon in higher-end cameras in the late 1980s such that most of the Pentax Z/PZ line featured spot metering for at least some lenses. I guess that is a good indicator of the era when I stopped camera shopping.
03-16-2019, 11:26 AM   #42
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QuoteOriginally posted by photoptimist Quote
LOL!

In fairness, one would probably measure in the incident light BEFORE putting the camera on the tripod.

And a standalone light meter isn't hassle free either because there's no automatic way to transfer the meter's reading to the camera. Moreover, this filter also measures incident white balance which is something that standalone light meters don't do.

The ultimate incident light meter would be tiny, clip to the camera strap with a carabiner or slip into the hot shoe, and then use NFC, bluetooth, or the hotshoe to send the reading to the camera.

But the deeper issue is that with digital, it's so easy to take test exposures, chimp for exposure, study the histogram, etc. that it really reduces the need for incident readings.
I agree- do your metering in advance as part of setup. For me the camera's spot meter does very well. The only time I use a handheld meter is when I am using a slave flash setup to take readings for the flash output and aperture setting.
03-16-2019, 11:39 AM   #43
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Ah well, it seems that the great majority don't feel any need for an on-camera incident meter, so I'm content to accept that it'll never happen. I'm not going to respond to those who are asserting that incident metering is a completely useless thing that nobody should ever do. I'll just happily keep on going with my trusty little Sekonic.
03-16-2019, 01:17 PM   #44
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
A grinned at your comment. Improper use of spot metering is one of the more common causes of poor exposure complaints on this site.
Any time I find I am getting wonky exposures itís because I accidentally set a dial to spot metering.
QuoteQuote:
As for film cameras, there were some, but I am struggling to remember the models beyond the one I own (Mamiya 1000 DTL).* Such was never on the feature list in the price range where I was shopping at the time, that is a sure thing.


Steve

* A bit of thinking and Googling and I figured out that such was not uncommon in higher-end cameras in the late 1980s such that most of the Pentax Z/PZ line featured spot metering for at least some lenses. I guess that is a good indicator of the era when I stopped camera shopping.
What was the Spotmatic? Honest question.
03-16-2019, 01:30 PM   #45
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote

What was the Spotmatic? Honest question.
The original concept camera was presented as having a spot meter. The actual product had average metering. Inexplicably, the camera retained the Spotmatic name to the puzzlement of generations of camera enthusiasts since.


Steve
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