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Thread: Getting the correct lens settings for a synced strobe?

  1. #21
    (Shrek)
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    Re: Getting the correct lens settings for a synced strobe?

    I use a dSLR and the historgram function to fine tune flash exposure. Not that I do a lot of studio flash work, which is why I sold my Minolta Spot F that used to do flash. And you still need to know how the histogram/ISO setting is going to translate for whatever film/developing combo you're using, but it's the same problem if you use a flash meter. I just find the histogram gives me a better idea than taking a bunch of spot readings.

  2. #22

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    Re: Getting the correct lens settings for a synced strobe?

    I've never used a flash meter other than in INCIDENT mode. Since I'm controlling the light, I only care what light falls on the subject, not what is reflected off of it. I could not care less about a histogram of the subject -- but we each find our own way. In a pinch, I can always use the GN and get a perfect exposure -- quick as a wink, for free.

  3. #23
    wclark5179's Avatar
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    Re: Getting the correct lens settings for a synced strobe?

    "Right, go out an buy a digital SLR when a $25 flash meter is all you need."

    Stupid answer.
    Last edited by wclark5179; 28-Jan-2022 at 09:41.

  4. #24
    (Shrek)
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    Re: Getting the correct lens settings for a synced strobe?

    Quote Originally Posted by wclark5179 View Post
    Right, go out an buy a digital SLR when a $25 flash meter is all you need.

    Stupid answer.
    It's more a suggestion that anyone who has a dSLR doesn't need to go out and buy a flash meter, for $25 or whatever they cost. Not sure you can have one delivered to your door for anything close to $25. Then again, most dSLRs won't sync to studio flash systems without a trigger, which would likely cost just as much as a flash meter. But it's really a suggestion to think about what information you need for what you're doing. Any flash metering is just a starting point for correct exposure. there is still a lot to compute. If it were that easy, trained monkeys could do product photography (yes, I know, a lot of product shots do look like they were taken by trained monkeys).

  5. #25
    Pieter's Avatar
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    Re: Getting the correct lens settings for a synced strobe?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vaughn View Post
    Exposure will be a combination of aperture and flash (shutter speed is not a factor). And the aperture will depend on the subject distance. As I said, shutter speed will not be a big factor...unless it is long and starts recording a significant amount of ambient light.

    Most flashes will have a graph showing what aperture to use for what distances.
    Actually, aperture will depend on the light-to-subject distance. Use a flash meter. And a digital camera is a great tool for judging the lighting, maybe not all that accurate to use as a meter.

  6. #26

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    Re: Getting the correct lens settings for a synced strobe?

    Quote Originally Posted by Pieter View Post
    Actually, aperture will depend on the light-to-subject distance. Use a flash meter. And a digital camera is a great tool for judging the lighting, maybe not all that accurate to use as a meter.
    If you are suggesting using a DSLR as an alternative to a Polaroid to judge the light, that can be done -- but you don't need a DSLR to do that. A simple $25 digital will do that. But in the OP, Ayupchap never mentioned that he had a DSLR. It's more likely that Ayupchap has a meter -- and if not, a $25 FLASH meter (Just look on EBAY if you think they have to cost more than that) is all that's needed. But using the GN with a pencil -- or your grey matter -- is FREE.

  7. #27

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    Re: Getting the correct lens settings for a synced strobe?

    Using any digital camera (DSLR, Mirrorless, etc) can be very effective for evaluation of lighting long as the digital camera can sync to the strobes used and the ability to make the electronic image at the taking aperture (typically small apertures for view camera stuff like f16 to f45... which demands significant strobe power and more strobe power once light modifiers are added).

    Properly done, this can negate the need for a flash-light meter.


    Bernice

  8. #28

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    Re: Getting the correct lens settings for a synced strobe?

    For (big & small) strobe work, the crystal ball sez you want a flash meter...

    Even a good strobe reflector produces a blob of light that seems even, but take incident readings across "blob" and you will read a "hot" area, and further out a fall-off will start to be measured... This will be seen at first in 10ths of a stop which a digicam will not measure directly (and chrome films will record a fall-off of 2/10ths of a stop... Moving light a couple of inches will start affecting reading (of meter)... Digicam will tend to see overall scene based on (broad) metering pattern...

    With on-camera type battery flashes, the scales tend to be less light available than listed, so was common to test output with a meter and stick some tape label with actual output, so ISO could be adjusted to match... And pros would take a sample reading before and during a battery strobe shoot to ward off any evil that might develop...

    Flashmeters should be much cheaper now, as many just use on-camera type flashes with their scales or TTL, not fixed power units, and many used ones around... Get one, and you have an extra meter for your ambient exposure use...

    Steve K

  9. #29

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    Re: Getting the correct lens settings for a synced strobe?

    I just did a quick check on EBAY. There are currently about 600 flash meters -- starting at $7. Sure, the $7 one is not fancy, but it's a LOT cheaper than buying a digital camera -- just to use as a flash meter -- that connects to electronic flash units AND has manual f-stops to f45. Just sayin'.

  10. #30
    Pieter's Avatar
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    Re: Getting the correct lens settings for a synced strobe?

    The digital camera (that, as mentioned, must be able to sync with the strobe(s) and have manual settings, including ISO in the range of the film you shoot) is really only useful as a substitute for a Polaroid shot that would have been used in the past. In my experience, unless you are doing very simple lighting or are using a lighting set-up that you are quite familiar with, you really ought to preview your lighting with a digital shot. And use a flash meter for exposure.

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