If you’re a photographer who also shoots video, and believe a light meter is a tool that should reside in your kit bag, then the new Sekonic Flashmate L-308X-U is the product to buy.
Available for $219.00, which makes it, as Sekonic says, “the world’s most versatile and affordable light meter for the next generation of photographers and cinematographers” the Sekonic Flashmate L-308X-U retains, says Sekonic, “the compact and intuitive design of its predecessors, the L-308S-U and L-308DC-U. It also blends their features and functionality into one easy to use tool and adds a few new features, such as the long-awaited LCD backlight, Aperture (F) Priority Measurement (photo mode), and ISO 850, which will help cinematogaphers work more easily with today’s professional cinema cameras.”
“The versatility of today’s cameras has expanded the capabilities and creativity of today’s image makers at an amazing rate. With just one camera, today’s shooters have become multimedia image‐makers blending both still and moving images seamlessly for unprecedented storytelling. Sekonic is the recognized leader in light measuring tools for both the still and motion picture industries. We have taken our expertise and years of experience to create the perfect entry‐level light meter, ideal for the next generation of multi‐talented, value-conscious photographers and cinematographers.” stated Kenji Sawai, Executive Officer of Sales & Marketing
The Sekonic Flashmate L-308X-U appears to be a “one size fits all “ solution, priced so it attracts those looking for a entry-level light meter. Being able to to so many different things, from measuring natural light to flash in photography, or work out calculations in HD Cine and Cine mode, the new Sekonic light meter may well represent a way to move the whole concept of light meters forward, to meet a new generation of users. With the new Flashmate L-308X-U, image makers now have a simple and easy to use measuring tool for any camera and any situation.
Pocket-sized and “exceptionally accurate” – Sekonic words – the L-308X-U Flashmate light meter is a compact light measuring tool for photography and cinematography. Consistently accurate to within 0.1 EV, the L-308X-U has wide metering ranges for measuring ambient light, flash light, and illuminance. At ISO 100, the L-308X-U can measure ambient light from 0 to 19.9 EV, flash light from f/1.0 to f/90.9, and illuminance, with an optional accessory, from 2.50 to 190,000 lux or 0.23 to 17,000 foot candles. By sliding the Lumisphere to the side to reveal its 40° lens, the L-308X-U is also able to measure reflected ambient or flash light as well.
Offering three ways to meter, the Flashmate L-308X-U keeps pace with with the demands of modern image creators that move from assignment to assignment. In Photo Mode the L-308X-U offers full exposure control for photographers on-location or in the studio. Measurement data for flash and ambient light readings are clearly displayed on screen, as well as ambient EV measurement. In addition to Shutter Priority Mode, the new Aperture Priority Mode offers photographers carefree measurements where depth-of-field is critical.
For moving images, the accessory offers HD Cine Mode and Cine Mode. The first provides filmmakers and videographers using HDSLRs and mirrorless cameras with the ability to use shutter speeds and frame rates to get exposure readings accurate to within one-tenth of a stop in accuracy. Cine Mode gives cinematographers a compact solution for scouting locations or as a quick go-to solution while they are on set. The 308X-U lets users select from a range of frame rates and shutter angles, while measuring accurately, to within one-tenth of a stop. Also, the addition of ISO 850 greatly assists cinematographers by giving them the option of taking measurements in the native ISOs of many of today’s professional cinema cameras.
In all modes, users can easily switch between measuring incident and reflected light by sliding the Lumisphere to the side, while HD Cine and Cine mode users can measure illuminance in either Lux or Foot Candles with the addition of the optional Lumidisc Accessory, sold separately.