Since their hugely successful Kickstarter campaign last year Lumu has been offering the smallest accurate incident lightmeter for stills photography. This week Lumu launched a new app that is targeted at videographers. The small, lightweight sensor goes in your pocket or can be carried with the practical necklace adapter. We looked at the new app with the Lumu device.
Inside the box is a small leaflet, the Lumu and the necklace adapter that can be carried around the neck and hold the Lumu on demand.
There’s also a small leather case where the Lumu can be stored and protected if desired.
The necklace actually looks cool and only a little nerdy. The Lumu is held firmly though if accidentally pulled out on a shoot there’s a chance it can get lost.
Everything is rather straight forward. The app is simple to use, probably simpler than an actual light meter, like my Kenko I’ve consulted for comparison.
When compared to the readings on my Kenko light meter the Lumu iPhone app shows a value about half a stop lower than the light meter. [UPDATED:] I have re-calibrated the Kenko light meter, and I can confirm that the Lumu meter is very accurate.
In any case the Lumu light meter app even has a setting to calibrate the meter in case it is off. Unfortunately when I tested the app the calibration process only worked for the lux meter (which is also a feature), but would reset the values on the video meter screen, so I could not calibrate it. [Update: The Lumu developers told me the bug is fixed and will be resolved in version 1.1 of the software which has already been pushed to the app store]
The Lumu seems very responsive with no delay whatsoever, making it very easy to measure light and the experience is much like with a common light metering device. It is very easy to change framerates, shutter speed or ISO values and you can dial in ND’s quickly too.
Very useful is the double tap option to allow for continuous measurement when you don’t want to hold the “measure” button all the time. Additionally all values including exposure time display, ISO step sizes, aperture step sizes, and ND filter notation can be adjusted in the settings menu.
The incident meter uses a silicon photo diode. It can be used facing the front or back of your phone and the phone can be used facing up or down.
In conclusion the Lumu seems like a very cool idea for those who want to measure light accurately. Two thumbs up for the Lumu.
The Lumu costs $149 and is available in black or silver. www.lu.mu