Last 10D question: How big a deal is no spot metering?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Paul, Sep 23, 2003.

  1. Paul

    Paul Guest

    Are people having a lot of problems with this? Or is it pretty easy to
    Paul, Sep 23, 2003
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  2. Paul

    Charlie D Guest

    I used to use the spot meter on my Olympus OM-4 exclusively, but since
    my Oly 5050 also has a pre-exposure histogram, I use that now and rarely
    use the spot meter.

    If your camera has neither, just get used to the center weighted
    averaging or whatever your camera came with. 80% of all the photos I've
    ever taken were with my Olympus OM-2n which had center weighted and no
    spot or histogram. I did just fine.
    Charlie D, Sep 23, 2003
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  3. Paul

    Tony Spadaro Guest

    Tony Spadaro, Sep 23, 2003
  4. Paul

    Charlie D Guest

    P.S. I mentioned in an earlier post that I made out fine with my Olympus
    OM-2n. That was 25 years ago.

    I think it's appalling that in 2003 a supposedly "serious" camera like
    the 10D doesn't have a spot option, though 9% at center isn't TOO bad
    for a pretend spot.

    I would think that it should be easy and free. Don't digicams meter off
    the sensor? Just read fewer pixels in the center.
    Charlie D, Sep 23, 2003
  5. Paul

    Scott Elliot Guest

    A spot meter is a useful tool for tricky lighting conditions where there is
    a big range between the brightest and darkest portions of the image. You
    can meter on the brightest portions to be certain they won't be over-exposed
    and check the shadow to see how much under-exposed they are going to be.

    I miss having spot meter on my D60 which has the same metering system and
    the 10D. This is one of the features that puts the 10D in the class of a
    hobbyist camera rather than a more advance market. It doesn't prevent the
    camera from taking excellent pictures so don't blame the lack of a spot
    meter if you can't get top notch pictures with a 10D.

    It is relatively easy to work around this shortcoming. You can bracket your
    shot if in doubt and select the best exposure later when you can view the
    image on your computer. You can look at the image histogram on the camera
    after you have taken the shot and the over-exposed areas will flash. Change
    the exposure and shoot again.

    In many ways, learning to use the review features of the 10D is better than
    having a spot meter because you can check immediately whether you got the
    exposure right and shoot again if you didn't.

    Scott Elliot
    Scott Elliot, Sep 23, 2003
  6. Paul

    Junque Guest

    I agree with you (I'd have to try the centre weighting), my Mamiya
    DSX1000 bought 27 years ago provides spot metering. In fact it was the
    spot and totally manual control that made me chose it.
    I am not sure this is the case with DSLR, in fact since you can obtain a
    light reading (essential for manual exposure) before the shutter opens
    then they can not do so.
    Junque, Sep 24, 2003
  7. I don't see it as any problem at all. I never used a 1 degree spotmeter
    very much, a 9% "limited area" circle is just fine for my purposes.

    Most of the SLRs I grew up with (Nikon F, F2, FM, FE2, F3) all had a
    fixed 60/40 centerweighted meter pattern (85/15 for the F3), and it was
    never a problem either.

    I guess it depends upon what you're used to. A 9% circle seems pretty
    tight as it is.

    Godfrey DiGiorgi, Sep 24, 2003
  8. Are people having a lot of problems with this? Or is it pretty easy to
    I am one of those that believes spot meters belong in your hand, not in
    a pentaprism.
    Randall Ainsworth, Sep 24, 2003
  9. Paul

    JPS Guest

    In message <>,
    No, they don't. The shutter is only open for the exposure, and the
    sensor is not read at all until the end of the exposure.
    JPS, Sep 24, 2003
  10. You must not do a lot of event/concert work where there are spotlights
    moving randomly. In those situations, you dial in appropriate compensation,
    spot meter on the subject's face, half-press and recompose, and get perfect
    exposures every shot, regardless of which lights are on the subject or
    pointing at the camera from behind the subject.. (As long as the lighting on
    the subject doesn't change between the half press and the shot, obviously.)

    You do have a point, though: I tried the Pentax digital spot meter in a
    store the other day for the first time, and it is clearly worlds more
    accurate than any built-in spotmeter.

    Still, I much prefer using an in-camera spot meter to in-camera
    averaging/matrixing meter. The spot meter reading is a real reading of at
    least one aspect of the scene. Everything else is random guessing.

    The fat spot on the 10D/300D can be used for spot metering if either the
    subject has a large area of the same tone or you can zoom in, and you can
    look at the histogram after the fact. But not having a spot meter is a major

    David J. Littleboy
    Tokyo, Japan
    David J. Littleboy, Sep 24, 2003
  11. You must not do a lot of event/concert work where there are spotlights
    I don't see a spot meter as being particularly useful for anything
    outside of the Zone System.

    It's been years since I did any concert photography, but I just set
    it according to the recommendation in the film box...and it worked.
    Randall Ainsworth, Sep 24, 2003
  12. Paul

    John Guest

    Don't be mislead. Although some cameras do come with true spot metering,
    many of the consumer cameras "spot" meter is really a partial meter. Owners
    just don't realize that. Partial metering is the option on the 10D and, for
    most every application, is as good or better than a true spot meter.
    Remember, you aren't shooting slide film here! You also have the segmented
    meter (extremely accurate). You do not, as someone else suggested, have to
    go back to Center-weighted. That's just silly. Center-weighted is there for
    old geezers such as myself who grew up with CW and know how to use it!
    John, Sep 24, 2003
  13. Oops. Wrong. Spot meters in consumer digitals that have them tend to be 1%
    spot meters: even better than you get on the EOS 3.
    Only if you don't know how to use a spot meter and want to operate in P&S
    mode blindly using the value the meter gives without compensation.

    With a spot meter, you determine yourself how you want a particular part of
    the image exposed, and then use the difference between what you want and mid
    gray to calculate the compensation you apply to the spot meter reading. It's
    very hard to do that when you spot is too large, because it doesn't give you
    an accurate reading of the area you based your decision on.

    Not having a spot meter is fine if you know that you will never want to
    learn how to measure exposure correctly.
    Oops. Wrong. You _are_ shooting slide film. Digital, even dSLR digital, has
    only slightly more lattitude than slide film.
    Extremely accurate _when its guess as to what you are doing matches what you
    are actually doing_. But you have no way of telling. Did you want to take a
    backlit portrait or a silhouette?
    I'd rather have something that I understand than something that's trying to
    outsmart me.

    David J. Littleboy
    Tokyo, Japan
    David J. Littleboy, Sep 24, 2003
  14. Paul

    Lionel Guest

    Word has it that on Tue, 23 Sep 2003 11:39:32 -0700, in this august
    It's a bit annoying, but I find I can live with it. 'Partial' metering
    mode seems to be the next best thing.
    Lionel, Sep 26, 2003
  15. Paul

    Lionel Guest

    Word has it that on Tue, 23 Sep 2003 18:10:09 -0400, in this august
    Yes, I've mostly found it to be an acceptable substitute.
    Yes, but the 10D's a DSLR, not a digicam. DSLRs do it the same way that
    film SLRs do it.
    Lionel, Sep 26, 2003
  16. Paul

    MarkH Guest

    I’ve never used a spot meter, but I have been in situations where it would
    be helpful. The 9% centre is nowhere near being a good substitute.

    What I use instead is the review w/info. It takes very little time to snap
    a shot, look at the histogram, adjust exposure compensation, snap another
    shot. Certainly a hand held meter and some calculations would take much
    longer and be less accurate than just snapping a shot and looking at the

    New technology often introduces new ways of doing things that are totally
    different to the old ways, but if you use them effectively they work very
    MarkH, Sep 26, 2003
  17. Paul

    Lionel Guest

    Word has it that on Fri, 26 Sep 2003 21:53:44 +0000 (UTC), in this
    That depends on the situation. As I said; I'm *mostly* found it to be an
    *acceptable* substitute. There are times when I *really* wish it had
    spot metering, but they're not all that common.
    <shrug> I do that too, & have done so as standard practice since I got
    my first digital with a histogram.
    The times when I really spot metering is with stage work, when you just
    don't have time to pull up the histogram. That's when I find that
    partial metering + histogram definitely can't compete with spot
    Lionel, Sep 26, 2003
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