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Thread: "Pocket Spot" Light meter....any comments?

  1. #1

    "Pocket Spot" Light meter....any comments?

    Does anyone have any comments about the "Pocket Spot", spot meter made by METERED LIGHT. At 450.00 for a spot meter the size of a matchbook, I am very hesitant to purchase one, but if it is worth it...I might then. Because I am quite small and young, I dont like carrying all this heavy gear along with my 8x10.

    Thank you so kindly,

    Ryan

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Apr 2000
    Posts
    166

    "Pocket Spot" Light meter....any comments?

    A student brought one of these to a workshop a while back. It proved highly accurate (checked against my standard Minolta Auto Spot F). It is astonishingly small but built solid and strong. However, I couldn't get through to them on the web when I tried. Do you have a working URL for them? Are they up and going and selling the merchandise? It might sound a bit odd, but if the money isn't a problem this strikes me as the perfect "backup" meter to keep secreted in a tiny corner of an equipment case against the day you drop your primary meter over a waterfall.---Carl

  3. #3
    Eric Biggerstaff
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    1,307

    "Pocket Spot" Light meter....any comments?

    I used one owned by Alan Ross and it was great, seems bullet proof! He really likes it.

    I posted this same message several weeks ago and I know that Metered Light is still making them, but they are slow to respond. Their web site shows the meter but the link to the information page is broken.

    I had saved the cash for one, then of course blew through it and so I am back in the saving mode. Another photographer on this forum told me he called and spoke to them and that they were waiting on a part to complete production, he too is wanting to purchase on.

    From what I am told, they are a very good product, accurate, tough and the size is great. If you get one let us know how you like it.
    Eric Biggerstaff

    www.ericbiggerstaff.com

  4. #4

    "Pocket Spot" Light meter....any comments?

    Here is a link guys. They forgot to put the ".HTM" at the end of the link, so when you click on it...you get an error message. This link will give you page ONE, then you click the "more info" button to see page TWO and THREE.

    I emailed them a few weeks ago, no reply. They seem sorta sketchy to me with their service, so I wonder what that says about their product.

    I heard that they invested ALOT of money into reaseach and development of this product, so that is why I think the price is so high...they are trying to make their money back quicker. Maybe in a year or so the price will come down and it may be in my price range more. Who knows thought!

    Thanks so much, here is the link- http://www.meteredlight.com./spot1.htm

  5. #5

    "Pocket Spot" Light meter....any comments?

    I think I'd like to have one of these meters but I have a hard time getting past my reluctance to part with that much money for a little known product that is apparently made by some very smart guys who don't communicate on the usual wavelengths. If the meter was half its price I might take the plunge or if I was sure I could get it fixed for the next 20 years or so. It looks like a great little tool.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Jan 1999
    Location
    Redmond, WA, USA
    Posts
    119

    "Pocket Spot" Light meter....any comments?

    I'd buy one except I have a hard time getting them on the phone or to answer email. They seem to have a very shonky concept of sales and customer service. How can you justify charging $450 for something if 1) you can't get one and 2) you aren't sure if you can get it fixed. i may just break down and buy a pentax.

  7. #7

    "Pocket Spot" Light meter....any comments?

    Hi!

    Now I got my Metered Light Pocket Spot meter. Within very reasonable time. After an initiating phone call the 12. of august and some e-mail exchange, the meter was shipped the 20. of aug. and arrived here in Norway the 24..

    A brief examination:

    The scales are unprecise in relationship to each other. For an example: I set the film speed to 100 ISO. Say the Zone VIII measuring gives EV 16_1/3. If I aligne these 2, zone II is aligned with EV 10_1/2 rather than 10_1/3, and acordingly, the 1/15 second is aligned with f/22_1/2 rather than 22_1/3. This is only 1/6 stop off, but in a real shooting situation, it may be confusing to find out in which direction you ought to correct - up or down.

    This imprecision can in fact be seen on the picture of the meter on www.meteredlight.com./spot2.htm. On this picture, Zone V is aligned with EV 11. EV 7 is situated about 1/6 f/stop outside (clockwise) of the Zone I mark, and correspondingly, the 2 second mark is opposite f/90_1/6 rather than 90_1/3.

    The same can be seen on the picture of the meter in Paul Butzi's review, www.butzi.net/reviews/pocketspot.htm. Here, zone IX is aligned with EV 15, but Zone I with EV 7_1/3.

    To compare the Pocket with my Asahi Pentax Digital spot meter, I took some measurements of the white and grey side of the Kodak grey card, and a piece of matte black paper, under 2 different light conditions (meaning about an hour or so apart, the afternoon of an overcast day).

    I write 1/3 as 0.33

    round 1, white-grey-black
    Pocket, EV 11.66 - 9.66 - 7.33
    Asahi, EV 11.66 - 9.66 - 7.33

    round 2, white-grey-black
    Pocket, EV 9 - 7.33 - 4.33
    Asahi, EV 9 - 7.33 - 4.33

    (btw, this Asahi has been sleeping in the cupboard for some 20 years, the battery not removed!)

    The manufacturers web site (on the page given above) states that the silicon photo cell of the meter is spectrally filtered for black & white. Since I plan to shoot color, I wonder what impact this may have. I measured the color patches on a Kodak test stripe with both the Pocket and the Asahi, again at 2 times.

    round 1
    EV's for Magenta - Red - Yellow - Blue - Cyan - Green
    Pocket 10.66 - 9.66 - 9.33 - 9.66 - 10.33 - 10.33
    Asahi 10 - 10 - 11 - 9 - 10 - 9.66

    round 2
    EV's for Magenta - Red - Yellow - Blue - Cyan - Green
    Pocket 9.66 - 8.66 - 8 - 8.66 - 9 - 8.66
    Asahi 8.33 - 8.33 - 9 - 8 - 8.66 - 8

    These measurements seem to show a larger difference between the 2 meters than did Paul Butzi's readings obtained from measuring the Macbeth Color Checker. Could the reason be that Paul used incandescent light, wheras I tested in daylight?

    Can anybody see what this might mean for practical color shooting?

    An earlier thread dealing with the Pocket Spot was
    www.largeformatphotography.info/lfforum/topic/501696.html
    I fail to retrieve the posting in which Paul announces his review.

    Good light - Hening.
    Hening

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    184

    "Pocket Spot" Light meter....any comments?

    It was at the end of the post you linked.

    http://www.butzi.net/reviews/pocketspot.htm

  9. #9

    "Pocket Spot" Light meter....any comments?

    Hening-

    It's very interesting that your results seem to be at odds with the results I got.

    It's possible, of course, that the difference in light source is to blame for the difference. But Matthew Cordery and I took the meters outside, metered off various objects with varied colors and brightnesses, including painted walls, cars, foliage, the sky, etc. and got no discrepancies that were larger than 1/3rd of a stop. That would seem to rule out the difference between daylight and tungsten lighting as the source of the difference.

    I suspect, but don't know, that what we're seeing might explain the reason why some people have tested the unmodified Pentax Digital Spotmeter and the Zone VI modified Pentax meter and found large differences, and others have done the comparison and found very little difference - I think that perhaps there are two (or more) versions of the Pentax Digital Spotmeter, with the more recent versions producing results very close to the early version when modified by Zone VI. That is, I suspect that very early Pentax meters would not match up well with more modern Pentax meters. If there's someone in the Seattle area with a older vintage Pentax meter, I'd love to get together and perform a test to see if this is true.

    I say this because my meters (both an unmodified Pentax meter, purchased about 1996, and a modified meter, purchased about 1994) produce very similar results (see www.butzi.net/articles/zone%20VI%20worth%20it.htm). Those two meters also agreed very closely with the Metered Light Pocket Spot.

    And yet your presumably unmodifed Pentax meter, from something like 1985 or earlier, produces results different (in daylight) from the Metered Light meter.

    It's also possible that the meters differ dramatically in IR or UV response, and the Kodak test chart you used had some patches with UV or IR reflectivity that was quite a bit different from the visible reflectivity.

    It would be very interesting to see what results you'd get if you did the test with a real Macbeth color checker (expensive item, unfortunately), or if you compare your Pentax meter to yet another Pentax meter of more modern vintage.

    It would also be interesting to perform the test with a fresh battery in the Pentax, although I have to say I don't think that's the problem.

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Posts
    9,476

    "Pocket Spot" Light meter....any comments?

    I think the Pocket Spot is a neat little gadget but I have to wonder about the engineering capability and future viability of a company that can't create a link on a website properly.

    Oh, that would be a lot of camera companies though!

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