What is a Light Meter and Why Use One?

A light meter is essentially a mechanical device used to gauge the intensity of sunlight. In digital photography, a good light meter is utilized to determine the correct exposure for a photo. It is basically a device that measures the amount of time and light required to reflect the light to the camera’s sensor. Here are some of the common uses for a light meter:


The most common use for a light meter is its use in conjunction with a digital SLR camera. To determine exposure, the camera calculates the exposure by measuring the amount of time the light stays within the camera’s sensor. It helps to take into account the distance of the subject and the lighting they receive, and thus the meter can accurately judge how much light is required to allow for that exposure.


With digital photography, it is no longer necessary to manually expose photos. Instead of taking pictures outdoors and exposing them, the meter automatically takes care of the exposure. This can be accomplished by holding down the shutter button. When you let go of the button, it will automatically meter the light and adjust the exposure accordingly. The best part is that you don’t have to worry about having to expose the photos manually, because the meter will do it for you.


To meter an exposure, you must be familiar with your camera’s settings. One of the most common settings is ISO. This stands for International Standard Number and refers to the minimum sensitivity level of your camera’s sensor.


ISO is typically used when shooting indoor photos because it allows for higher amounts of light to be allowed in. As a rule of thumb, the higher the ISO, the more light your sensor is capable of absorbing. By keeping this in mind, you can calculate the amount of light you require for each photo. ISO is usually found within the ‘Settings’ menu of your camera’s menu. Once you know this, you can take shots to be analyzed by your meter.


light meterLight meters are beneficial and useful tools when it comes to digital photography. Take the time to find the right one for your needs so that you don’t waste time and money taking photos without knowing your exposure meter’s settings.


If you’re still confused about using a light meter, check out our article” Digital Photography With a Light Meter”. In this article, you’ll learn everything you need to know about using your meter correctly and why using it can help to ensure the highest quality of your photos.


So what are you waiting for? Learn more about a light meter today!