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The Top 5 Best Light Meters

A light meter is an invention that has the purpose of measuring the exact amount of light in photography. With the help of digital and analog electronic circuit, it successfully determines the accurate exposure for a photograph.

It helps the photographer to decide the shutter speed and f-number for the best exposure. They are largely used in the arena of cinematography for maintaining the optimal light level for a particular shot and scene.

They are highly popular in the field of architectural lighting design where the architectures make use of it to verify the light levels for plants, and correct installation and execution of a building lighting system.

However, in the fast-growing and tech-oriented world, they are now considered to be old fashioned and have gradually been replaced with the advanced technology known as a digital camera. But it would be wrong to say that they have been removed entirely from the scene.

The digital photographers specialize in getting the accurate spot, flash, and ambient lighting levels or in some cases, color temperatures. However, you will spend more money on photographers as compared to having good light meters that do not cost a fortune.

While high-end versions can cost over a thousand dollars, the reliable models for beginners can be picked up for much lower than that which can be afforded if you plan to do so. This article comprises of a list of the five best Light Meters that you can buy to channelize the photographer in you!

The List of 5 Best Light Meters that you can use for a better photography

Here is a list of 5 best Light Meters that can help you become a professional photographer:

  1. Kenko KFM-1100
  2. Sekonic L-398A Studio Deluxe III
  3. Sekonic LiteMaster Pro L-478DR-U
  4. Sekonic C-700-U
  5. Sekonic L-308X-U Flashmate

1. Kenko KFM-1100

The Kenko KFM-1100 Auto Digi Meter not only provides easy and simple controls to measure the flash and assess mixed lighting but it also comes with a highly affordable price. If you are one of those who do not want to spend a large amount on a light meter, then you should consider buying the Kenko KFM-1100.

This light meter successfully measures and analyzes flashlight levels and ambient to determine that proper lighting ratio for the scene. It only requires a single AA battery and can be functioned with or without a cord.

The only drawback is that it can only save two measurements in memory. However, equipped with the increased light sensitivity, exposure times between 1/8000 and 30 minutes, and an aperture range of f/1.0 – f/128, the Kenko KFM-1100 gives high quality and correct meter for your photographs.

2. Sekonic L-398A Studio Deluxe III

The Sekonic L-398A Studio Deluxe III has been redesigned with the analog light meter to meet the current industry standards. It is comprised of stunning features and benefits that make it one of the best light meters available in the market.

It is completely built on the analog system with the use of dials and a needle instead of buttons and a digital screen. With the help of environment-friendly selenium photocell that generates enough power to move the needle by itself, the Sekonic L-398A Studio Deluxe III eliminates the usage of a separate battery.

It does not have a flash integration or sort of connectivity because of its being an entirely analog light meter. Its needle lock and swivel head are designed to give quick and accurate measurement readings.

Handling ISO values between 6 and 12,000 in ⅓-step intervals, from f/0.7 to f/128, the meter is flexible enough to handle most indoor and outdoor shooting requirements. Weighing 6.4 ounces and measuring 4.4 x 2.3 x 1.3 inches, it is small enough to hold easily in one hand and comes with a protective case if you plan to take it outside the studio.

3. Sekonic LiteMaster Pro L-478DR-U

Comprised of the wireless system, 2.7″ color touchscreen, and built-in radio flash power control, the Sekonic LiteMaster Pro L-478DR-U is perfect for a simple ambient and flash light metering. Enabling the entire control of the flash power, this wireless triggering system for off-camera lighting is a boon for every kind of professional photographers.

This light meter is built on the technology that allows you to control the firing and power output of flash units up to 100 feet away. Supporting Phottix and Elinchrom remote triggering, and the touch screen L-478DR-U, this light meter offers a wide array of features beyond its wireless support.

It is powered by two AAA batteries along and equipped with the firmware that is upgradeable through a USB port.  Able to measure ambient and flash lighting simultaneously, the meter displays the percentage of flash in any reading.

With its data transfer software, it allows the user to spot metering and accurate exposure using the optional 5° viewfinder. Moreover, its contrast function allows the user to compare brightness, save nine readings and have a luminance measurement.

4. Sekonic C-700-U

Exclusively designed for still and motion images, the Sekonic C-700-U is highly effective in producing quality results with the accurate subject color. It helps the user in getting an accurate measurement of lighting color temperature that is essential in professional shooting situations.

Equipped with a CMOS sensor, it does not only give the accurate color measurement but can also successfully measure HMI, LED, plasma and tungsten lamps, and fluorescent sources.

There is also a C-700R-U version that comes with built-in PocketWizard wireless support. Measurements are displayed on the touch screen as a zoomable color spectrum graph, along with CRI, Kelvin, and luminance values.

Sekonic C-700-U does not only help in displaying the light source filtration but it also gives the filter correction values in order to alter and correct light color. Therefore, if you are in search of the light meter that can provide the precise measurements of color than look no further and choose Sekonic C-700-U today!

5. Sekonic L-308X-U Flashmate

Sekonic L-308X-U Flashmate stands out with its exclusive features of being portable and a versatile meter that has both photo and video functions. It offers three different modes that include a photo mode that is used for still shooting, an HD cine mode that is used for shooting videos, and cine mode that is used for a stop accuracy.

The compact Sekonic L-308X-U is ideal when you are traveling or shooting on location, measuring just 4.3 x 2.5 x 0.9 inches, and tipping the scales at merely 3.5 ounces. Despite its small size, this portable meter does not skimp on essential features.

This light meter is able to measure both ambient and flash lighting levels at up to a 40-degree angle. The meter can measure from 0 to 19.9 EV at ISO 100 and can work with a flash between f/1.0 and f/90.9. Both shutter priority and aperture priority modes are available.

It operates on one AA battery and does double duty for both photography and cinematography. Given its reasonable pricing, small size, and versatile feature set, the Sekonic L-308X-U Flashmate is the best choice amongst all light meters.

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