NEWS: Negative Supply Light Meter LM1 – Kickstarter launch

By Josh Foster

Yesterday, Negative Supply launched a new Kickstarter campaign for an elegant and very useful looking digital incident light and colour meter – the Light Meter LM1. The campaign has already smashed its goal!

If you’ve not previously heard of Negative Supply they’re the producers of premium digitising equipment, starting back in 2019 with their Film carrier MK1. NS have since continued to grow in leaps and bounds with a full system of scanning tools and accessories now available.

The light meter is therefore a bit of a deviation from previous products. The NS team felt that light meters on the market were “bulky, plasticky, and didn’t live up to the look and feel of all the cameras we know and love” and wanted to bring something to market that better matched the quality of some of the beautiful cameras we use.

There has actually been a bit of a flurry of digital light meters hitting the market in recent times, though all of them are reflected light meters and most are shoe mount. Hamish has reviewed a lot of them, with a bit of a guide to what’s on offer here.

Unlike all those meters though, the Light Meter LM1 isn’t a reflected light meter, or a shoe mount meter. In fact, it’s a pocket meter that can come with an optional leather case and lanyard strap. And then there’s the fact that it is also a colour temperature meter allowing the user to measure ambient colour temperature.  Handy for both filmmakers and photographers alike.

As NS state on their Kickstarter page, it’s the most complex design challenge they have undertaken to date but they have taken it in their stride to come out with something that for me looks to give a perfect balance between form and function – I would guess this has always been their ethos.

Key Features

Pocket-sized design Measuring 44mm x 90mm (and just 15mm deep), the LM1 is only slightly larger than a roll of 120 film. Once it’s in your pocket, you’ll forget it’s there.
– Color Temperature sensor. Filmmakers, rejoice! Measuring the temperature of ambient light is now easier and more affordable than ever with the LM1. Photographers can also take advantage of this sensor when using daylight film with non-daylight illumination, to confirm consistent color temperature with on-set lighting, and to determine correct compensation filters.
– Built to last. The LM1 features an all-metal body, CNC-machined from aviation-grade aluminum or solid brass. Multiple scratch-resistant anodized color options (or, on brass models, a high-quality black finish that will age beautifully), custom aluminum buttons, and a custom-molded bulb, all add up to make the LM1 a mighty, small meter.
– Integrated, long-life battery. No more carrying spares: the LM1’s Lithium-ion battery charges in under 2-hours (via USB-C), and offers up to 2 weeks of use.
– Multiple color options. In addition to the standard black aluminum enclosure, LM1 is also available with special anodized finishes in 3 gorgeous colors: Satin Metallic Green, High Gloss Slate Grey, or Satin Metallic Silver.
– Backlit display. Our backlit, 144 x 168px resolution, reflective active-matrix TFT-LCD display is readable in the brightest sunlight and pitch-black night, while remaining incredibly power efficient. This is one screen you won’t mind looking at all day.

Negative Supply have a good rep for producing high quality products, which I am sure will be carried over into the LM1 to create a light meter that will be enjoyed by photographers for years to come. I’m excited more things like this are being brought to market!

They also have some really neat ideas for potential stretch goals which are worth having a read about too. You can read more and back the Kickstarter here!

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