The L-398A Studio Deluxe III 70th Anniversary Edition is a tribute to the “Studio Deluxe” meter first launched in 1956. It might look like a vintage throwback, but the L-398A meter this is based on is still perfectly effective today, both for stills and cine-photography, and uses an environmentally friendly battery-free amorphous silicon photocell.
Like other handheld light meters, the Sekonic does something that in-camera light meters can’t – as well as measuring ‘reflected’ light in the normal way via its Lumigrid, it can also measure ‘incident’ light with its Lumidisc. Incident light is the amount of light falling on to your subject, and a more accurate measure of true light levels for many ‘difficult’ subjects. The metering cell is in a rotating head which can be turned in any direction.
With handheld light meters you need to transfer light readings to the camera manually, but used correctly they can provide much more meaningful light readings from different parts of the scene, and an indication of the brightness range you’re trying to capture.
The Sekonic L-398A Studio Deluxe III 70th Anniversary Edition is based on the regular Sekonic L-398A’s, a design which makes it a great accessory for retro fans and old film cameras, but it’s also a thoroughly practical modern light meter, and its vintage look makes it the perfect choice for this Sekonic 70th Anniversary Edition.
The burgundy and rose gold special edition will come with a Japanese Lacquer Box with Cushion for Storing, a Special Leather Case and Strap, 70th Anniversary Edition Plate and also includes a Lumisphere (normal black ring), Lumidisc, Lumigrid and High slide.
We don’t know the pricing yet (the regular Sekonic L-398A Studio Deluxe III is around $218, while the regular L-398A is a little cheaper) and you will need to sign up to the Sekonic mailing list for early access – only 700 Sekonic L-398A Studio Deluxe III 70th Anniversary Edition meters will be made, and it is due to arrive in October 2021.
In the meantime, why not find out more about how handheld meters work, and which are the best light meters today?
• Best hand held light meters
• How to use a hand held meter
• Best film cameras
• Retro cameras
• How to capture atmospheric portraits