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Experiences with Reveni labs light meter

  
 
Fred Miranda
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


I'm currently exploring several light meters, and the Reveni light meter stands out due to its compact design and precise readings. However, I've noticed that some users have concerns about its build quality and find its buttons a bit challenging to use compared to other brands:
https://www.reveni-labs.com/shop/p/lightmeter.

I came across a helpful comparison by Hamish, which you can read here: https://www.35mmc.com/03/05/2021/shoe-mount-light-meters-which-one-is-right-for-you/.

Still, I'm curious to know what members on FM are using when it comes to light meters.



Nov 01, 2023 at 11:53 AM
bjhurley
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


Oh my, Fred, are you going to start shooting film? (Or maybe you already started!)

I currently use the Reveni spotmeter and it's excellent. I had the Reveni incident meter (which also serves as a conventional reflected light meter), which didn't seem accurate to me and I sent it back, but the inventor tested it and it was fine so I must not have been using it correctly.

I haven't used the original Reveni light meter, which mounts on the cold shoe; I would just make a few observations:

1. It's ugly, if that matters.
2. On the positive side, it's one of the few cold-shoe-mountable meters whose display is in line with your viewfinder; most other meters have a display on top, which is unreadable in bright sunlight.
3. The button setup on the original light meter is similar to that on the spotmeter that I have, and I haven't found it challenging to use.

I bought the Hedeco Lime II, which is very well designed and has been spot-on accurate, but because the LED display is on top it's unreadable in bright conditions. By default the meter takes a continuous reading, so shading it with your hand to view the display risks changing the meter reading. But you can change that default setting so instead you have to press the button each time you want a new reading. That's what I did. It works fine, but the meter is still a bit of a pain to use because you have to view the display from above. The other issue I've had with it is that if you wear your camera on a neck strap, the wheel that adusts the settings (e.g. if you're in aperture priority, your chosen f-stop) will roll against your shirt as you move, and your settings will end up far from where they were the last time you used it. There's a workaround for that too (you can shut down the meter by double-pressing the button). The meter shuts down automatically after 45 seconds, but that's a long enough time to have the wheel make radical changes to your chosen f-stop (if you're shooting in aperture priority) or shutter speed (if you're shooting in shutter priority) as it rubs against your clothing while you walk.

If I had to do it over again I would buy this meter, which seems to have the features I like about the Reveni meter combined with the nicer design of the Hedeco:

https://www.kekscameras.com/kekskm02.html#/

I have several phone apps for light metering and they're very good, but I find a camera-mounted meter more enjoyable and simpler to use. As far as I know, all the camera-mounted meters can be killed by precipitation, and that's one advantage of a phone app. When it's raining or snowing, I use my phone for metering and leave the camera meter in the bag. I should probably just leave my camera in the bag too, but what can I say...I like to live dangerously.



Nov 01, 2023 at 12:56 PM
RustyBug
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


The Keys looks interesting, but I wish it had an incident metering, rather than a reflective metering. Cameras have reflective metering in them ... that's essentially duplication, even if it is in a different location / form factor.

When I want to augment my understanding of the light / exposure, I want to know what the incident light actually is. Having that in a cold shoe (i.e. not hand held) could be nice. Wondering if you put a white translucent material over the meter, if it could function more similar to an incident meter (even if it required an +/- EC adjustment to dial it in for the translucence transmission variance.



Nov 01, 2023 at 01:51 PM
lifef8
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


Had the Reveni non-Spot for a while. It works really well, was tiny, and provided accurate values. My only niggle was the battery life.

I think there was another one released a month or two ago that looked like it had USB-C charging maybe?



Nov 01, 2023 at 02:03 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


bjhurley wrote:
Oh my, Fred, are you going to start shooting film? (Or maybe you already started!)

I currently use the Reveni spotmeter and it's excellent. I had the Reveni incident meter (which also serves as a conventional reflected light meter), which didn't seem accurate to me and I sent it back, but the inventor tested it and it was fine so I must not have been using it correctly.

I haven't used the original Reveni light meter, which mounts on the cold shoe; I would just make a few observations:

1. It's ugly, if that matters.
2. On the positive side, it's one of
...Show more

Appreciate the advice. Indeed, I have an M2 camera to play with. I primarily rely on the Sunny16 rule for exposure, but there are occasions when a specialized light meter is more reliable than a smartphone app.

Shawn @lifeandmylens also suggested the KEKS KM02. While it's not as compact as the Reveni, it offers the convenience of USB-C charging and, as you pointed out, seems to have a more robust build.

The Reveni is so small and light though (only 9 grams vs 29 grams). The KM02 is shorter at 15mm (vs Reveni's 18mm) but it's 2x wider.




Reveni






KM02




Nov 01, 2023 at 03:18 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


lifef8 wrote:
Had the Reveni non-Spot for a while. It works really well, was tiny, and provided accurate values. My only niggle was the battery life.

I think there was another one released a month or two ago that looked like it had USB-C charging maybe?


Yep, The LR44 battery for the Reveni only lasts 3 hours.
I think the USB-C option was added their spot-meter.



Nov 01, 2023 at 03:19 PM
bjhurley
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


RustyBug wrote:
Cameras have reflective metering in them ... that's essentially duplication, even if it is in a different location / form factor.
.


Not all cameras! Only two of my four film cameras have built-in meters. A lot of older cameras had no metering system.



Nov 01, 2023 at 03:55 PM
bjhurley
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


Fred Miranda wrote:
Yep, The LR44 battery for the Reveni only lasts 3 hours.
I think the USB-C option was added their spot-meter.


Three hours of life could actually get you a lot of time, since the meter is only operating for a few minutes at a time while you're shooting. The battery in the Hedeco is supposed to last for about a year of normal use, and so far I think that's right -- I started using it in April or May and the battery life is still at 80 percent.

I do think the Reveni standard meter is the smallest and lightest option currently available. I don't think Reveni has any USB-charging options for their meters, unless they haven't updated their website with that info yet. The spotmeter does have a better battery pack now, but it's powered by AAA batteries.



Nov 01, 2023 at 03:59 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


bjhurley wrote:
Three hours of life could actually get you a lot of time, since the meter is only operating for a few minutes at a time while you're shooting. The battery in the Hedeco is supposed to last for about a year of normal use, and so far I think that's right -- I started using it in April or May and the battery life is still at 80 percent.

I do think the Reveni standard meter is the smallest and lightest option currently available. I don't think Reveni has any USB-charging options for their meters, unless they haven't updated their website
...Show more

You make a great observation about the 3-hour limit not being as restrictive as it might seem. Matt mentioned that they're planning to introduce a rechargeable version of the Reveni in a couple of months.

_____________________

Hi Fred,

Thanks for the message. I'm working on a rechargeable version using micro USB because of size constraints. It's going to be announced in a couple of months after the last of the LR44 powered meters have sold.

Another compact choice is the Chinese DOOMO. It's also rechargeable. Although it's not as tiny as the Reveni, it appears to be well-constructed and slightly shorter in size. It's also not as wide as the KM02:
https://www.doomomade.com/products/new-doomo-meter-s-brass-version-long-battery-life-customizable-service



Nov 01, 2023 at 04:16 PM
madNbad
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


I had both an original kickstarter version and an early second version of the cube meter. As much as I loved them, the battery would die at inconvenient times. I emailed Matt Bechberger and he said it was a slow drain from the OLED and he was working on a solution. He had a protype of the cube that ran on a single AAA battery instead of the LR44, which improved battery life but it never left the prototype stage. I donated both of the cubes to a local high school photography class but I did buy a spot meter mostly because I'm a fan of their innovation and want to support a small business.

M4 with Reveni double shoe:




Nov 01, 2023 at 04:17 PM
 


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bjhurley
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


Fred Miranda wrote:
Another compact choice is the Chinese DOOMO. It's also rechargeable. Although it's not as tiny as the Reveni, it appears to be well-constructed and slightly shorter in size. It's also not as wide as the KM02:
https://www.doomomade.com/products/new-doomo-meter-s-brass-version-long-battery-life-customizable-service


The Analogue Insights guys on youtube like the DOOMO meters. I would point out, though, that like the Hedeco meter this one has a wheel that juts out and if you wear your camera on a neck strap it's probably going to make that wheel rotate as it moves against your clothing. And like the Hedeco the DOOMO has the OLED display on top and that's going to be hard to see in bright sunlight.

I will say that the Reveni spotmeter has been really useful for harder-to-meter situations; it has quite a following among the zone system crowd since you can spot-meter different parts of a scene; it can also average two different spots if you want to ensure detail in both shadows and highlights. It's easy to carry in a pocket, but of course it doesn't mount on the camera.

I liked the incident meter but I must have been using it incorrectly as all my photos were coming back badly underexposed. I sent it back to Matt who tested it and said it was fine, so clearly it was user error; I exchanged it for the spot meter which has done a perfect job so far.


Edited on Nov 01, 2023 at 04:41 PM · View previous versions



Nov 01, 2023 at 04:40 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


Matt mentioned that the new version with micro USB charging will last 10 hours in continuous mode!

madNbad wrote:
I had both an original kickstarter version and an early second version of the cube meter. As much as I loved them, the battery would die at inconvenient times. I emailed Matt Bechberger and he said it was a slow drain from the OLED and he was working on a solution. He had a protype of the cube that ran on a single AAA battery instead of the LR44, which improved battery life but it never left the prototype stage. I donated both of the cubes to a local high school photography class but I did buy a spot meter
...Show more



Nov 01, 2023 at 04:41 PM
RustyBug
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


bjhurley wrote:
Not all cameras! Only two of my four film cameras have built-in meters. A lot of older cameras had no metering system.


Yes, not all cameras. But, I would suggest that far more cameras in use over the last 50 years have some form of metering. And that in camera metering is always reflective ... never incident.

I've used hand-held incident meters in the field, and find them to offer an alternative to reading your light, rather than reading reflectance ... which can readily fool metering results in various lighting scenarios. Knowing the lighting EV value gets fooled far less less than reflectance metering does.



Nov 01, 2023 at 05:25 PM
RustyBug
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


bjhurley wrote:
I liked the incident meter but I must have been using it incorrectly as all my photos were coming back badly underexposed.




How were you using it?

Were you aiming it at your subject? Source illumination? Or


As to reflective metering in camera ... my fav was the match needle (Nikon FE).



Nov 01, 2023 at 05:27 PM
OregonSun
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


I use a Gossen Variosix F2 (US model was Luna-Star F2) for most of my film photography. It's a hand held electronic flash meter from the '90s that is a nice medium size.

It does incident or reflected, but I always use incident. There is a spot meter attachment, but I don't have it.

I don't meter every shot, just check direct light and shadows periodically and adjust somewhere in between based on what part of the frame I want properly exposed.



Nov 01, 2023 at 05:55 PM
madNbad
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter




Fred Miranda wrote:
Matt mentioned that the new version with micro USB charging will last 10 hours in continuous mode!



Iíll probably buy one when they become available. The little cube has a fairly large angle of acceptance, 45 degrees, so you do have to be careful about what is being metered. I like my Sekonic 308 but having the cube on a lanyard is really convenient. Easy enough to measure a small section and the OLED screen is readable in any light. I find the build quality to be very good and the 3D printed nylon quite robust.



Nov 01, 2023 at 06:18 PM
bjhurley
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


RustyBug wrote:


How were you using it?

Were you aiming it at your subject? Source illumination? Or


That meter has two sensors and can be used as either an incident or ambient reflected-light meter and I mainly used it as a reflected-light meter. I did use it occasionally as an incident meter (using proper incident meter technique); in both cases the photos came back underexposed. I thought it could have been the camera, but once I switched to the Hedeco all my photos were fine, and since Matt tested the meter and found no problems I must have done something wrong or accidentally changed a setting somewhere in the menu that was causing it. Who knows? I exchanged it for the spot meter which I'm very happy with. I would certainly recommend the Reveni incident meter; it's quite handy and easy to use.



Nov 01, 2023 at 07:12 PM
Desmolicious
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


I had the Reveni and I think I sold it to MadnBad! I didnít like it because the battery life was awful - that 3 hours is from when you insert the battery it seemed. Whether you use it or not.
I also found it very fiddly and really too small.
There are so many hot shoe meters out there now, some of them seem to not actually provide accurate readings.
I have since gone back to the OG - the Voigtlander VCII - which has been excellent, accurate, very simple and quick to use, really nicely made, and lasts forever on one 1.5v button cell. Which you also can buy anywhere.
I also have a serviced Leicameter which has been adjusted to run on modern batteries, but hardly ever use it because it is kinda ungainly and you have to be really careful not to scratch your top plate when you mount it. It is cool though how it synchronizes w the shutter speed dial.



Nov 01, 2023 at 07:34 PM
Desmolicious
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


Wait, does this mean we are finally going to get a film forum?




Nov 01, 2023 at 07:37 PM
Fred Miranda
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Experiences with Reveni labs light meter


Desmolicious wrote:
I had the Reveni and I think I sold it to MadnBad! I didnít like it because the battery life was awful - that 3 hours is from when you insert the battery it seemed. Whether you use it or not.
I also found it very fiddly and really too small.
There are so many hot shoe meters out there now, some of them seem to not actually provide accurate readings.
I have since gone back to the OG - the Voigtlander VCII - which has been excellent, accurate, very simple and quick to use, really nicely made, and lasts forever on one
...Show more

Yes, that was the main issue with the Reveni. But the upcoming version will have a rechargeable battery that can last for 10 hours of continuous metering. There will also be an improvement in 3D printed material. Matt told me, "The new prints are now chemically vapor-smoothed, which greatly enhances their appearance."



Nov 01, 2023 at 09:50 PM
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