Hotshoe spirit level.

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Peter Jason, Jan 11, 2007.

  1. Peter Jason

    Peter Jason Guest

    There seem to be two types; one type has a
    clear plastic cube with columns of
    fluorescent liquid enclosed, and the other
    type has a "bullseye" level on top of a plain
    plastic cube.

    Which is best, assuming I will be always
    looking down on to the camera.
    Peter Jason, Jan 11, 2007
    #1
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  2. "Peter Jason" <> wrote in message
    news:eo46v6$12h5$...
    > There seem to be two types; one type has a clear plastic cube with columns
    > of fluorescent liquid enclosed, and the other type has a "bullseye" level
    > on top of a plain plastic cube.
    >
    > Which is best, assuming I will be always looking down on to the camera.


    I find the bullseye ones hard to use. YMMV.

    One thing to watch out for is that there is often a bit of play in the hot
    shoe mount, and sometimes "level" will be with the bubble slightly off to
    one side of dead center.

    There's one that has a 45-degree prism above it allowing you to level the
    camera from normal shooting position. The local camera store has it on the
    shelves, but I don't know if it is available online or not.

    David J. Littleboy
    Tokyo, Japan
    David J. Littleboy, Jan 11, 2007
    #2
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  3. Peter Jason

    Ken Lucke Guest

    In article <eo486d$m3a$>, David J. Littleboy
    <> wrote:

    > "Peter Jason" <> wrote in message
    > news:eo46v6$12h5$...
    > > There seem to be two types; one type has a clear plastic cube with columns
    > > of fluorescent liquid enclosed, and the other type has a "bullseye" level
    > > on top of a plain plastic cube.
    > >
    > > Which is best, assuming I will be always looking down on to the camera.

    >
    > I find the bullseye ones hard to use. YMMV.


    I agree. The bullseye ones are also worthless in portrait orientation,
    whereas the cube type can be shifted to a proper orientation.

    >
    > One thing to watch out for is that there is often a bit of play in the hot
    > shoe mount, and sometimes "level" will be with the bubble slightly off to
    > one side of dead center.


    I don't have that problem with mine - it's snug. If you find one
    that's loose, I'd imagine a little bit of scotch tape in the grooves
    would snug it up).

    My problem was frequently (and accidentally) knocking it off, often
    losing it. I bought several off of eBay for about $5 each (because I
    kept losing them). My solution was to take one of those lens cap
    retainers with the self-adhesive dot on each end and secure one end to
    the level and one to the camera. Now it sticks around if I knock it
    off, and I can take it off when I want to use the flash without having
    to stow it away somewhere.

    --
    You need only reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a
    reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating
    the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the struggle for
    independence.
    -- Charles A. Beard
    Ken Lucke, Jan 11, 2007
    #3
  4. "Ken Lucke" <> wrote:
    > David J. Littleboy> <> wrote:
    >>
    >> One thing to watch out for is that there is often a bit of play in the
    >> hot
    >> shoe mount, and sometimes "level" will be with the bubble slightly off to
    >> one side of dead center.

    >
    > I don't have that problem with mine - it's snug. If you find one
    > that's loose, I'd imagine a little bit of scotch tape in the grooves
    > would snug it up).


    Actually, it's not so much the play as a discrepancy between camera level on
    the tripod and level level on the level, which means that when you rotate
    the panorama head, you find that the camera isn't level.

    David J. Littleboy
    Tokyo, Japan
    David J. Littleboy, Jan 11, 2007
    #4
  5. Peter Jason

    Ken Lucke Guest

    In article <eo49re$mdf$>, David J. Littleboy
    <> wrote:

    > "Ken Lucke" <> wrote:
    > > David J. Littleboy> <> wrote:
    > >>
    > >> One thing to watch out for is that there is often a bit of play in the
    > >> hot
    > >> shoe mount, and sometimes "level" will be with the bubble slightly off to
    > >> one side of dead center.

    > >
    > > I don't have that problem with mine - it's snug. If you find one
    > > that's loose, I'd imagine a little bit of scotch tape in the grooves
    > > would snug it up).

    >
    > Actually, it's not so much the play as a discrepancy between camera level on
    > the tripod and level level on the level,


    "level level on the level" ... cha cha cha... <g>

    > which means that when you rotate
    > the panorama head, you find that the camera isn't level.


    Oh, OK... I get you. Fortunately, none of mine have seemed to have
    had that problem, they're been accurate as far as I have been able to
    determine.

    --
    You need only reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a
    reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating
    the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the struggle for
    independence.
    -- Charles A. Beard
    Ken Lucke, Jan 11, 2007
    #5
  6. Peter Jason

    ASAAR Guest

    On Thu, 11 Jan 2007 12:10:14 +0900, a levelheaded David J. Littleboy
    wrote:

    > Actually, it's not so much the play as a discrepancy between camera
    > level on the tripod and level level on the level


    Really? Is this really on the level?

    :)
    ASAAR, Jan 11, 2007
    #6
  7. Peter Jason

    Aaron Guest

    And lo, Peter Jason <> emerged from the ether
    and spake thus:
    > There seem to be two types; one type has a
    > clear plastic cube with columns of
    > fluorescent liquid enclosed, and the other
    > type has a "bullseye" level on top of a plain
    > plastic cube.
    >
    > Which is best, assuming I will be always
    > looking down on to the camera.


    Speaking of levels, and not meaning to hijack the OP's post, but has
    anyone ever heard of a hot shoe mounted spirit level with a small
    light powered by the hot shoe? It could potentially turn on when the
    shutter was half depressed (since the flash would receive a focus
    signal), and then turn off after a moment.

    How cool would that be?

    --
    Aaron
    http://www.fisheyegallery.com
    http://www.singleservingphoto.com
    Aaron, Jan 11, 2007
    #7
  8. Peter Jason

    Toby Guest

    I find the two separate tubes better if you are trying to achieve a level
    horizon. You get a precise reading of the horizon no matter what angle of
    tilt you use. The bullseye type usually has quadrant marks, so if you center
    the bubble in the front mark when the camera is pointed up (or the back mark
    when pointed down) you achieve the same thing, really. It's mostly a matter
    of taste, but I think the dual tube type is a bit more precise.

    Toby



    "Peter Jason" <> wrote in message
    news:eo46v6$12h5$...
    > There seem to be two types; one type has a clear plastic cube with columns
    > of fluorescent liquid enclosed, and the other type has a "bullseye" level
    > on top of a plain plastic cube.
    >
    > Which is best, assuming I will be always looking down on to the camera.
    >
    >
    >
    Toby, Jan 15, 2007
    #8
  9. Peter Jason

    Mike Russell Guest

    I'm with Toby. I recently did a series of images of houses with Christmas
    lights, and the bubble is easier to see in the dark. If you have the camera
    up on a tripod, you can see the bubble from below and behind the camera.
    --
    Mike Russell
    www.curvemeister.com/forum/


    "Toby" <> wrote in message
    news:45ab5472$0$213$...
    >I find the two separate tubes better if you are trying to achieve a level
    >horizon. You get a precise reading of the horizon no matter what angle of
    >tilt you use. The bullseye type usually has quadrant marks, so if you
    >center the bubble in the front mark when the camera is pointed up (or the
    >back mark when pointed down) you achieve the same thing, really. It's
    >mostly a matter of taste, but I think the dual tube type is a bit more
    >precise.
    >
    > Toby
    >
    > "Peter Jason" <> wrote in message
    > news:eo46v6$12h5$...
    >> There seem to be two types; one type has a clear plastic cube with
    >> columns of fluorescent liquid enclosed, and the other type has a
    >> "bullseye" level on top of a plain plastic cube.
    >>
    >> Which is best, assuming I will be always looking down on to the camera.
    Mike Russell, Jan 15, 2007
    #9
  10. Toby <> wrote:
    : I find the two separate tubes better if you are trying to achieve a
    : level horizon. You get a precise reading of the horizon no matter what
    : angle of tilt you use. The bullseye type usually has quadrant marks, so
    : if you center the bubble in the front mark when the camera is pointed
    : up (or the back mark when pointed down) you achieve the same thing,
    : really. It's mostly a matter of taste, but I think the dual tube type
    : is a bit more precise.

    : Toby

    The biggest difference between the use of a pair of tubes or a bullseye
    level is where you will be looking from. The proper way to view the tubes
    is generally from the side (tho it is possible to use from above). But the
    Bullseye is only useable viewed from above. One other concideration a
    bullseye level takes up less room as it is just one dome, frequently about
    the diameter of a dime. While a two tube device needs about a square inch
    of space.

    One thing that was hinted at above, I personally don't find a level on my
    camera overly useful. The only thing this level will do is make sure the
    camera is level. But I rarely worry about the camera being level but I DO
    care if the tripod is level. I have two seperate bullseye levels on my
    tripod. One is on the base, below the pan/tilt head, and one is on the
    base that the camera attaches to (on top of the pan/tilt). The lower one
    will give me a level base to make sure panoramas are rotated in a single
    plane parallel to the earth. The upper one is used if I need the
    rotational plane to be the same plane as the camera (a flat horizon will
    be centered in the image all the way around). I use this one much less
    frequent. Well designed cameras will have the base, which attaches to a
    tripod, parallel to the plane of the center of the lens. I have heard
    that some inexpensive cameras are not, but I have never personally had
    one in my possession that I have found to be incorrect. Thus if I level
    the top of the tripod head with relation to the earth, the camera will
    also be level.

    IMHO, YMMV.

    Randy

    ==========
    Randy Berbaum
    Champaign, IL
    Randy Berbaum, Jan 15, 2007
    #10
  11. Peter Jason

    Peter Jason Guest

    "Peter Jason" <> wrote in
    message
    news:eo46v6$12h5$...
    > There seem to be two types; one type has a
    > clear plastic cube with columns of
    > fluorescent liquid enclosed, and the other
    > type has a "bullseye" level on top of a
    > plain plastic cube.
    >
    > Which is best, assuming I will be always
    > looking down on to the camera.










    Many thanks for all replies.
    Regards
    Peter Jason, Jan 16, 2007
    #11
  12. Peter Jason

    gotbent Guest

    "Peter Jason" <> wrote in message
    news:eojf05$a1b$...
    >
    > "Peter Jason" <> wrote in message
    > news:eo46v6$12h5$...
    >> There seem to be two types; one type has a clear plastic cube with
    >> columns of fluorescent liquid enclosed, and the other type has a
    >> "bullseye" level on top of a plain plastic cube.
    >>
    >> Which is best, assuming I will be always looking down on to the camera.

    >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    >
    > Many thanks for all replies.
    > Regards
    >


    I'm a bit late to this thread, but at the risk of redundancy, I want to
    mention that a hotshoe level can disable some camera functions. It took me a
    while to figure out that the reason I could only shoot at 1/60 sec and my
    auto bracket didn't, was that there must be a mechanical switch in the
    hotshoe that signals the presence of a mounted strobe, even if it's not a
    strobe. I had erroneously thought that the presence of a strobe would be an
    electrical contact. I removed the cube level and the camera miraculously
    returned to normal.

    Camera Canon Powershot Pro S1



    --
    Posted via a free Usenet account from http://www.teranews.com
    gotbent, Jan 17, 2007
    #12
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