— Jon Fauer, ASC, in Film and Digital Times
“I don't always carry my Spectra or Minolta meters but I do have my phone with me and it gives me the confidence to have extremely accurate light and kelvin and green-magenta shift readings. I have used it on scouts and production with good results. If you are a cinematographer at any level it is the perfect app to have with you at all times.”
— Roberto “Ganzo” Schaefer, ASC, AIC (DP: Quantum of Solace, The Kite Runner, Finding Neverland, etc.)
One of “6 Best Apps for Filmmakers: Cinematography”, Indiewire
“It’s becoming one of those things I can’t live without.” — Christopher O‘Grady
At present, all iDevices running iOS 9.3 or later versions work properly with “Use Computed Brightness” off.
Lumu Power cannot be used with Cine Meter II. Only Lumu’s own Light Meter app can talk to Lumu Power.
Cine Meter II turns your iPhone®, iPod touch®, or iPad® into a reflected light meter, an RGB waveform monitor, and a false-color picture monitor. Cine Meter II works on any iDevice with a camera running iOS 6 or higher. It expands the original Cine Meter app with several added features:
- Cinematographer-oriented controls let you set shutter angle, ND filter compensation, and arbitrary filter factors, while Still Photo Mode hides shutter angles and frame rates for stills-friendly metering.
- Use the front-facing camera for "lightmeter selfies" – use yourself as the model when lighting a set (not available on iPhone 3GS).
- The zoomable spotmeter lets you measure light precisely from a distance (requires iOS 7 or newer and iPhone 5, iPod touch 5G, iPad Air, iPad mini 2G, or newer devices).
- Incident-light readings including lux/foot-candle measurement with Luxi™ ($10–$30) or Lumu™ Lite attachments. (Lumu Lite has been discontinued. The newer Lumu Power is NOT supported in Cine Meter II).
- True Color Metering with bidirectional correction calculation: find gels to match the measurement to your target, or to convert your preset color temperature to match measured conditions, or to match one light to another using Difference Measurement (requires iOS 8 or newer and a Luxi photosphere. Lumu is not supported for color measurement).
See the light: Cine Meter II not only gives you exposure information, it shows you at a glance how evenly your greenscreen is lit, and where high-contrast hotspots and shadows are. With Cine Meter II, you can walk around, light your set, and solve problems long before your real camera is set up, making pictures, and running down its batteries.
- The light meter shows you your stop as decimal readings (such as 3.2, good for cameras with EVF iris readouts) or full stops and fractions (like 4.0 ⅓, good for cine lenses with marked iris rings). You can meter using shutter speeds, or shutter angles from 5.6º to 360º (especially useful when using Digital Bolex and Blackmagic cameras). You can add neutral density filter corrections and arbitrary exposure compensations. Adjust shutter in ½, ⅓, or ¼-stop increments and iris in ½, ⅓, ¼, and ⅙-stop increments (plus tenth-stop resolution in fractional displays).
- You can set any of shutter, aperture, ISO, or ND values
to "float": that value will change with the light. It's
like aperture-priority or shutter-priory, extended so you can
calculate ISO or ND as well as shutter or aperture.
- The waveform monitor shows you how light levels vary
within and across a scene. It
shows you how even the lighting is on a greenscreen or white cove,
and lets you see hotspots and imbalances at a glance. The waveform’s
RGB mode shows you color imbalances in the image and gives you a
handy way to check for color purity on a greenscreen or bluescreen.
- The false-color picture lets you define allowable contrast ranges, and see instantly which shadows are underexposed and what highlights risk clipping:
- You can lock exposure and white balance see how the camera responds to changing light, or use Difference Measurement to see how light and color vary from your locked setting.
- Log Recording lets you capture brightness and color values over time for later analysis
Cine Meter II runs entirely on your iDevice: it doesn’t use WiFi or mobile data. No ads, no in-app purchases, no tracking. If you have power in the battery and light in front of the lens, it will work.
Otherwise, Cine Meter II may not show up.)
Cine Meter II is inspired by the original Cinemeter II exposure system, a digital/analog light meter designed for cinematographers by Thomas Denove and William Blowers.
Cinemeter II has separate dials for ISO, FPS, and shutter angle. A row of white flip switches lets you include compensation for an 85 filter (for shooting tungsten-balanced film stock in daylight) as well as ND filters from .3 to .9. It truly was (and is) a light meter created by cinematographers for cinematographers. Cinemeter II earned Denove & Blowers a Technical Academy Award in 1990.
My thanks to Steven Lighthill, ASC, for telling me about Cinemeter II.
iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. App Store is a service mark of Apple Inc.
ChromaDuMonde® charts seen in Cine Meter II screenshots used with kind permission of DSC Labs. DSC Labs is not responsible for any images viewed with Cine Meter II, or how they appear in Cine Meter II’s pictures.
© 2015–2020 Adam J. Wilt. Last updated 2020.03.18