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Lumu Light Meter

Brandon Creel • June 2020Online ExclusiveRoad Tests • June 26, 2020

We read articles about new products all the time, but it’s not often we see anything about a light meter. And that is because, well, there isn’t much new to talk about, until now. Lumulabs started in 2012. In 2013, they launched their Lumu Lite concept via the crowd-funding platform Kickstarter. Now, they have a second generation of light meters called Lumu Pro, Lumu Power and Lumu Lite. Lumu is the world’s smallest professional multi-light meter.

Lumu is about the diameter of a quarter, has a stainless steel and Lexan polycarbonate housing and Apple’s lightning connector. It was designed for Apple iOS devices — sorry, non-iPhone people! Once you plug it into your iPhone/iPad and you’ve downloaded the free app, you now have a functional meter.

Lumu is dual sided with different sensors on each side. The flat side has a true color sensor (color meter) for illuminance, color temperature and chromaticity. The dome side has a fast silicon photodiode (flash meter) for photo ambient, cine/video and flash exposure. It can also do spot measuring — even for free without the Lumu device, as it uses your phone’s camera. It is a useful way to download and try out the app.

The Pro, Power and Lite versions all use the same device, but the Power and Lite have some features locked. The Power version has all the features of Pro minus flash color temperature. The Lite version only has ambient exposure, flash exposure and cine/video. Regardless of which version you buy, you can always upgrade at a later time using the app.

Screen 1

Illuminance can be displayed in footcandles (fc) or lux. It can take individual readings by the push of a button, or continuous readings, plotting the data in real-time, as well as showing the average (see Screen 1). I use this frequently for measuring brightness and evenness of a stage wash and house light coverage.

Screen 2

Color temperature measures color in Kelvin (K) ranging from 1,600K to 18,000K. You can even measure two sources and it will tell you what gel is needed to make their color temperatures match. First, you have to select your preference of color filters: Kodak Wratten, Lee, Rosco Cinegel, or Rosco E-color. Then measure light 1 and then light 2. Underneath of light 2 is the results, which states which gels go to which fixtures (see Screen 2).

Screen 3

Chromaticity plots the measured light on the CIE 1931 color space while displaying the correlated color temperature and illuminance, all on the same screen (see Screen 3). Duv, how close the light is to the black body curve, is shown to five decimal places. Know that it does not measure light spectrum and thus does not provide Color Rendering Index (CRI) or Color Quality Scale (CQS).

Cine/Video measures f-value. Set your ISO, FPS and shutter speed. Photo flash measures the exposure of the flash and works with high-speed sync (HSS) flash.

Overall, the app is extremely intuitive and easy to use. It automatically rotates so Lumu can be at the top. Choose what you want to measure and the top of the screen will indicate which side of the Lumu meter it will use (flat/dome) and hit start. Lumu is small, affordable, comes with a leather protective snap case and 30-day trial with free shipping and returns.

At a Glance:

A Bright Idea

Lumu is a light, color and flash meter for your iPhone/iPad that is small enough you can carry it everywhere you go. But it’s strictly for use with Apple devices.

Lumu Light Meter

PROS: Small, lightweight, connects to your phone

CONS: Only for iOS

FEATURES

  • True color sensor
  • Fast silicon photodiode sensor
  • stainless steel and polycarbonate housing

STATS

  • MSRP: $249 / $299 / $499
  • Manufacturer: Lumulabs
  • More info: www.lu.mu

 

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