Sekonic L-508 Zoom Master Light Meters

L-508 Zoom Master

A new version of the revolutionary Sekonic L-508 has been designed for the professional cinematographer. The L-508 Cine features 1°-4° zoom spot, incident, foot candle, lux and foot lambert readouts. Cine speeds from 2 fps to 360 fps. Shutter angle settings range from 5° to 270°. All combined into one rugged, compact, all-weather instrument.

User Reviews (19)

Showing 1-10 of 19  
24_26digitall   Professional [Jan 15, 2004]
Strength:

Exellent,well,I am always afraid abot eye lences not to scratch it,Lying very good in hand

Weakness:

You can not view the spot reding directly,to do that you have to use the memory and watch on the side display,so you will foget the measuring points on the scene, MUST calibrate it with some other device (maybe Spektra like me?)!

NOthing much to add,almost perfect, almost!Is something wrong? I heard some buzzing all the time the light is on the display. I hope it is normall.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
3
David Tucker   Professional [Sep 02, 2002]
Strength:

All in one product, makes life easy as I use reflective, spot and incident all the time and enjoy being able to choose without digging in the bag for another meter.

Weakness:

The biggest design flaw in this otherwise near perfect meter is in the flash spot function. If you search the manual very carefully you might come across the little mentioned fact that this meter will not read a flash that is not powerful enough to register f8 or higher. This is frankly like having a piano with 3/4's of the keys non operational. The reason for this I believe is the fact that when you have a lower quality zoom lens, the apertures will vary at the larger openings. So in this situation if it's less light than f 8, the meter just reads error. Frankly, I would be very happy without the zoom function, just give me a one degree. I'm not sure who needs a zoom spot meter?? Perhaps the solution would be 2 lenses, or a wide angle attachment? Sad to say, as far as functioning as a reflective flash spot meter, it is almost useless. I would love to see something like the 608 but nix the zoom feature. Or have a higher quality zoom lens w/o variable aperture. But, this would most likely be cost prohibitive.

Magnificaent product, best out there except for one sad flaw...see below.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
fjerins   Professional [Jul 19, 2002]
Strength:

Everything. Right on exposure. the spot readings are one of the best, incedent is on the mark. Easy to read and with the eye correction adapter with an eye cup,I can really see.

Weakness:

NONE

Ahsome. That's all I can say. I bought this when it was first introduce on a prom from Sammy's Camera mail order. When I called to order it, I was told that there was a promo going on and the price was $329, and now I see it sells at around $600. The exposures are all ways on the mark. Never have I been let down. I wish I had the new L608.

Customer Service

Fair

Similar Products Used: Gossen
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Kaligus   Expert [Oct 09, 2001]
Strength:

All in one design is well thought out, it is easy to use with one hand most of the time. very impressive reading which dont always agree with other meters (see weaknesses) All functions seem to be easy to use, though it takes some practice to figure out the multiple flash and averaged modes (shoot a couple of rolls before you ''need'' the meter) Water resistance seems to work, Great Salt Lake, snow, rivers, etc. all seem to stay out side of the meter. Of course it hasn''t been swimming (ie dropped)

Weakness:

After seeing that the reading doesnt always agree with other meters I put it to the test. One Rollei SL35E was used, every other shot on Kodak 200 slide film was from camera/meter. All who have viewed the results have picked the meters result over the cameras that having been said some mention should be made in the manual that the incident readings are not going to match. The included case is awkward and has been replaced with a department store PHD case which does a fine job! The spot meter is a bit difficult to get used to with glasses in daylight (wear a hat with a brim) as light gets in the viewing end and skews the reading but 2 or more stops

WOW! This is the first all in one meter I have used, wouldnt trade for anything except possibly the 608 (big brother). 1 to 4 degree spot is very functional though it would be nice to be able to read the unselected setting in the spot meter (nice not needed). It would also be nice to be able to turn the back light on with a switch.

Customer Service

none needed

Similar Products Used: no all in one, other sekonic and gossen single function meters
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Luping Lin   Intermediate [Aug 14, 2000]
Strength:

Accurate,versatile,compact,weatherproof and user-friendly.

Weakness:

The cap is easy to lose.

This is the only meter with all the features one may ever be in need of. I am deeply impressed with its accuracy and reliability. It is good value as well.

Customer Service

None.

Similar Products Used: Gossen Lunasix F
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
David Azia   Expert [Jul 28, 2000]
Strength:

Versatile - ambient light; zoom spot (1-4°); flash metering in incident and reflective metering modes; easy to operate; very accurate; possibility to store two different ISO settings; uses AA batteries; automatic luminescient LCD screen activates in low light.
There is also the possibility to average meter readings by taking a certain number of them and then pressing the average button.

Weakness:

Cost; the text markings on the light meter seem to have come off very easily - even after moderate use. N.B: I do not use the provided case most of the time, and instead hang it from my neck, with the meter stuck in a pocket.

If you want to make life easier, and have the money - then the L-508 is very nice. If you also want a rugged, weatherproof lightmeter then the 508 will do the trick.

Customer Service

-

Similar Products Used: Gossen Lunasix
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
geoff bland   Intermediate [Jul 23, 2000]
Strength:

Very versatile and flexible in its abilities. I use if for Cinematography and I've found it very readable and reliable. All my footage has been properly exposed so its not lying to me.

Weakness:

Eats batteries. Can't see reading through spot lens.

A very usable and friendly meter. Great for budgeting purposes, and cuts down belt clutter. Good for novice film maker/photographer.

Customer Service

nothing used yet

Similar Products Used: None
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Daniel Bacon   Professional [Jun 08, 2000]
Model Reviewed: L-508 Light Meter
Strength:

A great all peruse meter! All weather and easy of use makes this one of my favorite meters. Spot and incident readings were less then 1/10th off after testing the meter.

Weakness:

As with most meters the biggest problem is the operator especially the spot meters and a gray card. Most are unaware that you must tilt the card ½ to 1/3 from the camera towards the light source and depending on the light direction and the condition, you have to add or subtract up to 1&1/2 stops (see Kodak Professional Photoguide Daylight Exposure Meter Usage). Also, a number of the users I had talk to did not know how to take a fill-flash outdoors with is meter. The simplest way is to do the following: Set the L-508 to shutter to 1/1000th (to remove the ambient light from the reading) and take a flash reading. Lets say it was F5.6. Now take an Incident reading then change the shutter speed until the F-Stop reads F8 (I like one stop for a fill-flash) now use that shutter seed and F-stop on the L-508 for your camera’s setting (note it must be at you sync speed or below if not reduce the flash output and do it again). It takes about longer to walk back to the camera than this method.

If you do all aspects of photography like me, this is the number one meter to get. If you do a limited aspect, I would recommend the best single function meter for that particular aspect.

Customer Service

none

Similar Products Used: Minolta, Sekonic, Gossen and others.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Brian Whittred   Professional [May 05, 2000]
Model Reviewed: L-508 Light Meter
Strength:

Egronomic,rugged design with many useful features, especailly the cine version which has added features ie shutter angles and ND compensation for cinematography.

Weakness:

Inaccurate readidngs. Incident readigns seldom agree with my other meters which always agree with each other. Spot meter reading from a grey card does not match incident readings under the same light which they should. I find myself not wanting to trust this meter although I have heard of a recall on the early models due to defects. So I have some hope that the problems may be corrected. Right now it is my back up meter.

Unless Sekonic has been able to address the reliability issue with regards to the reading accuracy, stay away! Too bad because it is a good design incorporating basic spot and advanced incident all in one.

Customer Service

I don't know, but I'm about to find out!

Similar Products Used: Minolta IVF
Spectra Dgital
Minolta Spotmeter F
OVERALL
RATING
2
VALUE
RATING
2
Geoffrey Wong   Professional [Mar 05, 2000]
Model Reviewed: L-508 Light Meter
Strength:

got all the BASIC Function, just the matter of trust.

Weakness:

i dont trust the reading

i used the Flashmeter IV for over 10 yrs , going for the sekonic is my wrong move, tho its easy to use , u got every function in ur hand , but the reading is the most important !

Customer Service

never try

Similar Products Used: Minolta FlashMeter IV , V
OVERALL
RATING
2
VALUE
RATING
3
Showing 1-10 of 19  

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