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Old Sep 2, 2004, 7:02 AM   #11
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minutephotos.com wrote:
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Also, both Canon and Nikon have E-ttl based flashes that negate the need for a strobe light meter.Â*

digital guy learning what film people already know.
IF, you are using a TTL strobe.

So far all the strobes I've played with are hooked up via a PC (Pin-Circle) connector which is NOT TTL.

If you're using on-camera flash that's different as you can then get a TTL flash, but that's not what's being discussed here (at least what I've read).

If you're using a 2-3 strobe setup, if you use the in-camera meter you might be measuring the light from the hairlight rather than the main strobe.
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Old Sep 2, 2004, 9:33 AM   #12
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minutephotos.com wrote:
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I think histogram is really only helpful with one strobe.
Since when ???


... even if you have a flashmeter, what are you going to meter? Ambient? High-key? Low-key?
--> If you do average then you are going to get an average picture with nothing to brag about... It's all in the photographer's head! May be thoses histograms are useful after all
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Old Sep 3, 2004, 1:09 PM   #13
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My solution to the problems I was having with digital camera and stobes was to buy a light meter, I purchased the Sekonic L-358. I think it is over priced and I probably could have gotten by with an incedent only meter.

I used my meter for a group shot recently.I took one shot and got it perfect the first time. ( I took a couple of extra's just in case though). Wish I new how to use my camera's bracketing featue...

With only using the camera or histogram I would have had to take test shots while the group was standing there posing. I feel now I am not limited to only using digital, now that I understand light better I might pick up a film camera also.

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Old Sep 3, 2004, 2:36 PM   #14
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I think you made a good choice with the L-358 and have seen it at bargain/reasonable prices. The old "spray and pray" guesswork is unnecessary now that you have the meter. Can you learn basic lighting without it, sure. But would you rather be efficient and get more done correctly or spend time guessing? Besides, there are a number of instances where the histogram can totally mislead you in evaluating your lighting, depending on what your real Center of Interest is and a high or low key background. Seeing spikes at the edges gives you little info on how well your COI is exposed and nearly nothing on lighting ratios if you want or need to use them for a specific look. And the histogram-lcd combo can also be very misleading for tone and shadow evaluation. With the Sekonic, you can do all of that and more very quickly and efficiently and it allows for calibrating it to perfectly match your camera's exposure. I'm not poo-pooing those who rely on histograms, I just feel differently. I think the histogram has its uses, but also limitations in this regard.
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Old Sep 5, 2004, 1:23 PM   #15
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So I have had a few days to play around with my new light meter.... I have found that an external light meter still does not solve all of you lighting problems. It is not like you just meter and shoot. What I have found is that you will still get over exposure if you do an incident metering of an object that reflects a lot of light. Like a white car in bright sun. I find myself still using the LCD and the histogram to confirm what the light meter may have suggeted. Then I open or close my aperture a stop or two to get the look I want.

How do you handle high contrast situations like light comming through tree branches? Where you may have an f22 in the bright spots and a f8 in the darker spots?
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Old Sep 5, 2004, 6:40 PM   #16
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Didn't I just said that? "... even if you have a flashmeter, what are you going to meter? Ambient? High-key? Low-key?"

1. Shooting an 18% grey card and check the histogram do wonder sometime...
2. Even better still shoot all three color (black, grey, and white) at once and you should have three spikes perfectly spaced: http://www.photobyseat.com/dp_pages/...r%20beater.pdf

-> If all else fail it's probably time to switch to an S3 with a 400% dynamic range extension! :-):-):-)
http://www.steves-digicams.com/pr/fu..._s3pro_pr.html
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Old Sep 6, 2004, 1:18 PM   #17
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I was told 18% grey cards don't work with digital camara's. I have not tested this but I find I get good results when I use something white in the light I am shooting versus grey. I have usally shoot RAW and have a really nice RAW converter which can change the WB setting post. Therefore I leave the canon digital rebeb on AWB which is pretty accurate.
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Old Sep 6, 2004, 1:59 PM   #18
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minutephotos.com wrote:
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I was told 18% grey cards don't work with digital camara's.
Oh yeah?

Gray Card Test
"Shoot a gray card. There have been many articles on this method of obtaining perfect exposure. Just fill your image with a gray card under your studio lighting conditions and look at the histogram. Since it's just that one color and it's a perfect medium density, your histogram should just have one spike exactly in the center. What a great idea! There are also cards and reflectors floating around that are divided into three colors—pure black, gray, and pure white. Take a picture of these and you should have three spikes lined up perfectly. (Frank Criccio is credited with this method.) If they're off to one side or the other, adjust your exposure to correct." http://www.shutterbug.net/features/1003sb_get/

... actually we had a long discussion over the Gray/White WB over the Canon forum a while back: http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/v...17&forum_id=37
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Old Sep 7, 2004, 3:25 PM   #19
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I hav had great success with AWB. I primarily shoot in RAW and adjust WB post. I like this method better than trying to set this during or before the shoot. I am getting White balance which gets the lighting color correct vs exposure. I thought a Grey card was for setting your exposure and a white for white balance. I really don't understand why anyone would ever use a grey card to set white balance???

In any case I use the Sekonic L358 and have found my colors and exposurs are now dead on perfect. I now know that when I thought my WB was not correct, it was really that my shots where underexposed causeing dull cloudy colors. Brighting these in Photoshop does not fix the problem when they are too far out. I now use a face mask process in Photoshop with the light meter and behold some of the people in this forum actually know what they are talking about.

I now believe you are not learning light until you have a meter.
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Old Sep 7, 2004, 4:14 PM   #20
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minutephotos.com wrote:
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I am getting White balance which gets the lighting color correct vs exposure. I thought a Grey card was for setting your exposure and a white for white balance. I really don't understand why anyone would ever use a grey card to set white balance???
Granted it's two different steps, but you can set both the exposure and the white balance with one grey card because there's equal amount of Red, Green, and Blue in the grey card. That's what one tries to accomplish in a white balance:
"By pointing the camera at a white (or gray) card, filling the screen completely with it, then pressing the White Balance button (or set it in the menu), the camera does its WB calculation." http://www.photoxels.com/tutorial_white-balance.html

Try to do a WB with a grey card and then repeat with a white card. Regardless of what your (or my) Canon manual says they both come out the same! :-)

Beside how do you know which is white? My Kodak, Epson, and Canon print papers are all of "different" white...



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I now believe you are not learning light until you have a meter.
How about with my two Gossen flashmeters? :lol::lol::lol:

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