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View Full Version : Soligor spot meters any good? Other ideas.



Martin Miksch
7-Nov-2007, 05:58
My good old Pentax spotmeter died and I am looking for replacement. In that bay I found that Soligors are cheap, is there a special reason for that? What I want is a meter in the same style as my Pentax was, with this wheel on the side, where it was very comfortable to "calculate" an average setting, eg. light reading was 18, shadow was 12, together is 30, half is 15. Some time ago I was using a Minolta for some time, where it moved the lens to show the settings, but this was for me much more complicated to find the average. So please be so kind to share your experience with me, or best make me a good offer on a Pentax spotmeter, I dont care for the batterie issues, a dude made a electronic circuit for me to bring the voltage of the Alkaline batteries down.
Thanks and Kind Regards
Martin

Louie Powell
7-Nov-2007, 06:27
Have you tried to get your Pentax repaired?

I purchased a spotmeter several years ago. I wanted to buy a new meter, but I wasn't prepare to pay the price they were asking for Pentax. Also, I could not find a source of new Soligor meters. But I found that Adorama had a meter with their house brand that was identical to the Soligor, and the price was within reason.

The adjustment on Soligor/Adorama meters is by means of a ring around the lens rather than a dial on the side.

Steve Goldstein
7-Nov-2007, 06:43
Richard Ritter has repaired my Pentax Spotmeter V in the not-too-distant past. This is the (newer) model that does not need a 9V battery, just the three (?) small cells. I don't know if this has any bearing on the repairability, but RIchard would. If yours does not have the Zone VI mods, you might also contact Quality Light Metric in Hollywood. George resurrected a Weston Ranger 9 and a Master IV for me a couple of years ago.

To paraphrase an old saw.. The person with one lightmeter always knows how bright it is. The person with two (or more) is never sure.

john collins
7-Nov-2007, 06:47
Martin,

I've used a Sekonic 508 since they first came out, it has proved both reliable and easy to use. The meter has a 1 to 4 degree zoom spot and also an incident mode with a retractable dome. A high and low reading can be averaged with a push of a button giving a readout on the display. The 508 is no longer made - they are up to the 758 and have made several models in between, some of which can be found used. Maybe one of these would work.

timbo10ca
7-Nov-2007, 09:19
I found a Soligor on ebay for around $100 last year- works great.

Tim

uniB
7-Nov-2007, 10:18
I've seen the Soligor being slagged off elsewhere on the forum but I've got one, tested it against a Sekonic 508 and it gives pretty much the same readings. It's easy to use. Unfortunately mines a bit temprimental and often have to bash it on my hand to get it to work – all adds to looking a bit mad whilst standing in a field with a silver blanket over my head!

Michael Graves
7-Nov-2007, 11:10
Had my Soligor digital spot for a decade without some much as a burp from it. Works great.

D. Bryant
7-Nov-2007, 11:23
My good old Pentax spotmeter died and I am looking for replacement. In that bay I found that Soligors are cheap, is there a special reason for that? What I want is a meter in the same style as my Pentax was, with this wheel on the side, where it was very comfortable to "calculate" an average setting, eg. light reading was 18, shadow was 12, together is 30, half is 15. Some time ago I was using a Minolta for some time, where it moved the lens to show the settings, but this was for me much more complicated to find the average. So please be so kind to share your experience with me, or best make me a good offer on a Pentax spotmeter, I dont care for the batterie issues, a dude made a electronic circuit for me to bring the voltage of the Alkaline batteries down.
Thanks and Kind Regards
Martin

The Adorama/Soligor spot meter is a good meter though the low light sensitivity may not be quite as good as other spot meters. The meter also has a bit of flare but on the whole it's a great bargain. I particularly like the fact that it uses an easy to find 9v battery. It's a basic spot meter but gets the job done.

Don Bryant

Martin Miksch
7-Nov-2007, 11:38
Thanks for your answers, my "problem" is that I am an North-West-Balcan inhabitant, so its very timeconsuming and costy to send the piece to US to have it repaired, beside this I am verry happy to live in this rural place.^^
Ad Soligor: If the not so good performance in low light is the only drawback is not that problem as my Pentax only died on the higher scale and just works fine on the lowe scale. I think its not easy to get repaired, my dude tried some hours to find the error but without success. He isnt a specialist and he had no service manuals but he is a pro electronics- repairman and the inside of a Pentax spotmeter isnt very difficult to understand.
I hope to get a replacment soon, I am not used to read other meters and the only other spotmeter here around died also some days ago, I hope here isnt a spotmetervirus.
Thanks and kind Regards
Martin
Edit: and thanks for the hint that the Soligor works with a scale ring around the lens, I thought it sets by motor.

Jim Noel
7-Nov-2007, 13:12
There is nothing wrong with a wewll cared for Soligor meter. The flare can be taken care of in the same manner as I use on my Pentax - find a series VI adapter ring which will screw into it, and then add several, I use 6, of the series VI retainer rings. This adaptation makes quite a difference when reading close to a bright light source.

James E Galvin
7-Nov-2007, 15:15
For the high scale on the Pentax spot the battery ground goes through the battery lid latch (that must be clean) then the battery lid hinge (also must be clean), then the screw/socket for the strap/tripod. A lug and wire pick up the ground inside on that screw(take the case off to get to that screw). If any of these are loose, the high range doesn't work. Also the spring contact at the side of the battery holder must have pressure when the lid closes, and be clean. WD40 is a good cleaner, used with plenty of paper wipes to keep it from running inside. Mine had the same problem, these fixed it.

Martin Miksch
7-Nov-2007, 16:41
James, thanks for your hints. Maybe you know a little more about the Penntaxes secrets; I loosened some small cables inside and my dude maybe didnt reconnect them correct. What works on mine is the low light scale and the light on the scale, this light also works when the 9v battery is removed, the low light scale doesnt. High light scale and battery check dont work. Is it correct that the scale light works from the 1,35v battery?
Thanks and Kind Regards
Martin

Martin Miksch
8-Nov-2007, 04:30
For the high scale on the Pentax spot the battery ground goes through the battery lid latch (that must be clean) then the battery lid hinge (also must be clean), then the screw/socket for the strap/tripod. A lug and wire pick up the ground inside on that screw....

I looked at this now, the spring contact at the side of the battery holder goes to that screw and has a cable into the circuit, but with what cable comes the ground out?

Thanks and Kind Regards
Martin

James E Galvin
8-Nov-2007, 07:03
Mine doesn't have a light. If the light works with the 9V removed, then the 1.35V battery is getting connection, and my suggestions are wrong. Try to make a diagram of the circuit, poke around with a meter...... Good luck.

Martin Miksch
8-Nov-2007, 09:11
...Good luck...

Thanks, you helped me a lot, your answer brought me to look into the meter again and I think now its not dead but just wrong reconnected, I will bring it to me dude again and I think we will find the problem.

Kind Regards
Martin

Photobackpacker
13-Nov-2007, 07:01
My first spotmeter was a Zone VI modified version. It never performed as well as I expected. Side-by-side comparison with a Pentax yielded significantly different results. This would not be a problem if the results were consistent across the scale of exposure latitude - but this was not the case.

This may well be an isolated instance. Nevertheless, I replaced the Soligor with a Pentax.

robert amsden
7-Apr-2008, 10:21
I got one that I bought in 1984 and was modifyed by zone vI in 1987, it still works good.