This week was spent largely on the search for a light meter. I know that sounds a bit silly, but the problem is that the particular combination of features (and price) I’m after, is almost perfectly embodied in the Sekonic L-358, however this has been discontinued, and replaced with a new model, which has more features, but bundles them with a mediocre laggy resistive touchscreen.
See, here’s the thing – a touchscreen which doesn’t have zero lag as its primary goal, is a failure. You can’t make an on-screen slider control useful to the user, if the slider doesn’t track where the user’s finger is touching. That Sekonic doesn’t appreciate this, bodes ill for the company, since all anyone is going to think while using the meter is “this is SO much worse than my smartphone”. This is especially true given that numerous startups are creating lightmeter accessories for smartphones.
In an effort to get the older meter, I’ve been scouring eBay, I’ve even phoned a shop in Hong Kong. The problem is that all these shops list them as for sale or in stock, but don’t actually have them on the shelves, instead they operate on the “get an order, make an order” method. The problems are compounded by the fact that there are two versions of this meter, one for the American and one for the European (and Australian) markets. There’s numerous American versions for sale on eBay, very few of the Euro model. There are a couple of unopened new ones from Japan selling for over twice what they should cost new. It’s getting to the stage where I’m looking at buying the next model up in the range, just to get the features I want from the 358.
UPDATE: I’ve looked around some more at meters, and it turns out Gossen, a German brand who’ve been around for ever, make a meter that is able to command my lights directly. It’s a fair bit more expensive than I’d planned on buying at just under $600, but being able to command the lights directly means I can stand up next to whatever I’m metering when I’m by myself in the studio, and get the lighting correct, without having to prop the meter up, and walk back to the camera or lights to fire it off, then head back to the meter to get the reading etc.
Anyway, better news – after a 15 minute phone call to the IRS, I have my EIN, and can begin the 2 week wait for it to filter through the system so I can sign up my paid books account for the iBooks store.
Second-last week of photography saw us dabble in product and food…