Thanks everyone, this really is very helpful and quite fascinating!
Leonard; I mainly like to shoot landscapes, yes, and mainly in colour transparency (although I could be convinced to use colour negative film if there were distinct advantages). I have shot B/W in the past, but to be honest once I went over to digital darkroom, I started only shooting colour (this is on 35mm) and then I could decide afterwards if a shot would be better in colour or B/W. One of the things I'm looking forward to in LF is individual sheet processing, so I can start shooting B/W film again and get into processing for zone system too. Realistically though I'll probably shoot 85% colour.
Bruce, you're right; whichever system I finally use, there's no substitute for experience! I plan to buy a lightmeter and practice with my DSLR in between using sheet film (it costs nothing when I make mistakes, and it will allow me to keep practicing with as many exposures neccessary for me to learn; also I can just go shoot anything with it - my garden - just to learn exposure, without risking missing a really nice shot).
Barry, how would you 'place' an exposure reading on a scale using the '758? Or would you just look at the reading for, say, a highlight where you want to retain some detail and then 'manually' use exposure compensation on the meter to place it in zone vii - so exposure comp of +2? Just trying to get an idea of how zones would work on that type of meter without having access to one...
Drew, I don't understand - I thought latitude was the range of stops from shadows to highlights a particular film had, or maybe I've used an incorrect term here? What I mean is making sure that the shadows, midtones and highlights will all fit into the dynamic range of whichever film is being used to avoid blowing out highlights, or having no details in the shadows, etc. As I recall, B/W negative film has about 9 stops, colour negative slightly less, and transparency about 5 or 6-ish??
I just came across this:
Any opinions? Seems like it might offer a good mix of features for me to learn on and use in the field? I like the look of the Shadow/Average/Highlight function - presumably one would use the shadow setting for B/W work and the highlight setting for transparencies, etc?