A multimeter, also known as a volt-ohm-milliammeter or VOM, is an electronic device that can help you measure a variety of appliances and materials and it can also combine several other functions for increased versatility. Whether you need to test some batteries or perform some electrical repairs, a multimeter can help you get the task done.
You get to measure voltage, resistance, and current, as well as other parameters such as TDS, pH, and temperature with a quality multimeter that you can use in a wide range of applications.
Test your batteries
If you want to check out your rechargeable batteries and see how much their total capacity has decreased, then a multimeter is the right tool for the job. This handy device can measure both alternative current or AC and direct current voltage or DC.
You can also check out your car battery to ensure that it doesn’t let you down when you really need to get going as fast as possible. You can measure the voltage and see if you need to recharge the battery to keep it ready to start your car anytime.
You can also spot a battery when it is reaching the end of its service life. If the readings show 9 volts or less even after you’ve just fully charged it, then you might need to get a replacement. The bad part is that you’ll need to spend some money on a new car battery.
The good part is that an inexpensive multimeter just saved you from a possible scenario where you’re just leaving on a long trip around the country and the car decides to break down right in the middle of nowhere.
Test the lights in your home
You can also use a VOM to test light bulbs and lamps. If you’re experiencing problems with your lights, then you could spot the problem so you know how to fix it. You can check the bulbs and see if they’re causing the flickering, or check the sockets and lamps. In some cases, the switch might be the culprit, and the good part is that you can use a multimeter to test it.
With a VOM, you can easily save yourself from hours of work or from buying a replacement you don’t need for your lighting system. You also get to repair the light switches that your wife has been nagging you about for months and get more brownie points for being a handyman.
However, if this is your first multimeter, you should take the time to learn how to use it properly. Read the instructions carefully and make sure you understand how to use it properly, and just as important, what you should never do, such as touching the metal parts of the probes and not the well-insulated plastic handles.
Before you perform any measurements on electrical circuits and devices, you should always remember to shut off the circuits and to unplug appliances. If you’re unsure of what you’re doing, it would probably be a better idea to get a certified electrician to help you out.
Check and fix appliances in your home
If you learn to use a multimeter properly and are skilled with your hands, there is no reason why you could not improve your knowledge and techniques that would allow you to test a wide range of appliances and even fix some of them. There are lots of do-it-yourself guides online that you could read and learn from.
While a VOM won’t instantly turn you into an expert, with enough practice and perseverance, you could become quite good with fixing electrical circuits, power outlets or some appliances and get to save a lot of money by not having to pay a load of money on hiring a professional.
You could easily troubleshoot a basic device such as a food blender and see if the switches need to be replaced, inspect your vacuum cleaner, or check the fuses on your air conditioning unit. Don’t forget the basic safety rule that requires you to unplug the appliance first before working on it.
Measure light and create the perfect atmosphere
You can find multimeters that also come with built-in light meters. These are not suited to photography, but to measuring ambient light in different environments. You get a lux meter that can help you find the right illumination appliances for your home.
You can also use this instrument to ensure that each room gets the right amount of light for its intended use. You can set up a set of bright lights in your working office or kitchen while choosing some soft lamps do create a special atmosphere in the living room or even the bedroom.
There’s also the possibility of getting a multimeter which also features a sound measuring device so that you get to optimize your stereo system’s output to normal sounds levels.
You can get one of the specialized multimeters which aren’t built for measuring electrical devices and circuitry, but liquid and semisolid solutions. You can find a model that can measure TDS or total dissolved solids, temperature, pH, as well as water salinity.
The higher the TDS level, the more minerals are dissolved in the water, which would indicate that the quality of the water isn’t great. High TDS levels could also harm your plumbing elements due to deposits or corrosion.
These specialized multimeters also come with pH meters which allow you to check the pH of water and other solutions, but soil as well. You can see if your tap water is too acidic, or measure the pH of your garden soil and see if you need to add some compost to reduce or increase alkalinity.
You can use this highly versatile multimeter for both home and field work and get to enjoy reliable measurements that are accurate every time.
Whether you need to take your temperature to check for fever, want to ensure optimal temperatures when cooking, or wish to see if your fridge is cold enough, getting a good thermometer is a great idea. This device can provide you with accurate readings every time you need it. You’d be surprised to learn just in how many ways you can use it.
Check for fever
If you or one of your beloved family members falls ill, then taking the temperature is a good way to know whether you need to see a doctor or not. While even a mild case of the common cold can cause a fever, in some cases you want to know exactly how bad it is, especially if the sick person is a child, so that you can administer the proper treatment or call for help.
There are many thermometers you can choose from, starting from the old glass types to digital models to infrared thermometers. No matter which type you go for, you should make sure that it can give accurate readings and that it is easy and comfortable to use.
Measure temperatures outdoors
You could get a thermometer and hang it outside on your porch so that you can check it before getting out of the house. While the internet is filled with weather forecasting channels, many make erroneous predictions, and it’s never a bad idea to see how hot or cold the weather is in your area.
Getting precise temperature readings will enable you to know which clothes to wear, or if you should postpone the morning jog because of the heat. If you live in a humid environment, you can also choose a waterproof model.
Use a food thermometer to grill the perfect turkey
You can look for one of the specialized thermometers that can offer you accurate readings when cooking or roasting your favorite meat cuts. Some units are highly resistant to heat and can take the temperature of both the grill and the food. You could roast the perfect turkey without having to repeatedly open the oven, as the thermometer should tell you when the meat is ready.
Some models come with metal probes which allow you to poke the meat to get a temperature reading, while others can be placed inside the meat. You could opt for a wireless model that sets off an alarm when the temperature of the food reaches the desired target.
With one of these thermometers, you can ensure that the meat is perfectly done without overcooking it or undercooking it and risking a variety of health problems.
Take your dog’s temperature
If you have pets around the house, then you surely want a thermometer to check their temperatures when they’re looking unwell. Using a thermometer can tell you when your dog is ill and is a must-have tool to take with you when going with your canine friend on walks during hot summer days.
Some dogs tend to overheat easily, and since they can’t sweat, it’s always a good idea to check your companion’s temperature from time to time to ensure that you know when to give it a break and some water to keep it feeling great.
You can opt for one of the rectal thermometers on the market, or could choose a non-touch model that can get temperature readings through infrared technology. You can check some dog thermometers reviews to make sure you pick the right model for your dog and preferences
Ensure that the fridge is cool enough
While many refrigerators come with built-in thermometers, these aren’t usually reliable. If you often find spoiled food when you know it should have lasted longer, then you definitely need to get a thermometer to check how cold your fridge really is so that you can ensure that you keep temperatures cool enough to prevent food contamination
With a thermometer, you can make sure that you can keep food safe from spoiling while also saving money on energy bills since you could adjust the temperature controller to an optimal value without having to err on the safe side and set the fridge on a higher setting than needed.
You could also spot if your appliance is getting old and unable to maintain safe temperatures without having to risk eating food that’s unsafe for you until you figure it out.
Ensure accurate temperatures for safe cooking
You don’t have to be a famous chef to benefit from a cooking thermometer. Many types of foods and especially various meat cuts need to be cooked at precise temperatures for a particular period of time to ensure that all harmful bacteria are killed.
Not only do you get to eat food that’s safe for you, but you can also cook according to precise recipes and make sure that you obtain meats, vegetables, or pastries that have the right textures, aromas, and looks. You can also prevent ruining great food by eliminating the risk of overcooking it so that food will stay tender and juicy.
Measure from a distance and spot heat leaks in your home
There are also quite a few inexpensive infrared thermometers on the market that you could go for. These are ideal when you need to measure the temperature of surfaces that are too hot to touch. You can also prevent surface contamination or even take the temperatures of moving parts.
These models are easy to use, and many come with advanced functions so you might want to check some infrared thermometer comparison reviews. For example, you can use one to measure the temperature inside your home and find drafts that are sucking heat away. You could then fix insulation problems and ensure that you don’t pay high heating bills in winter.
Brew the perfect beer
Every good brewer knows that a thermometer is one of the most important tools in the process of brewing beers and other alcoholic beverages. You need a reliable thermometer to make sure that the mash has the right temperature at various stages of fermentation in order to get quality beer consistently.
You could purchase a floating thermometer, a digital model, or even a dial unit that can instantly give you accurate readings.
A refractometer is a device that can be used to measure the index of refraction of various materials. This device works according to the optical principle that when light passes through a material, it changes its angle depending on its density. This is called refraction.
You can use a refractometer to look at various samples of liquids that can have different compounds such as proteins, sugars, or salts. The light will bend at a specific angle and fall on a scale that you can read by looking through an eyepiece. You can then use the data to calculate the specific gravity of a particular compound and then figure out how much of it is in the mixture.
There are many applications for this device, from laboratory experiments to industrial processes to even home use. Here are a few things you can do with a refractometer, as well as reasons why you should probably own one.
Brew the perfect beer
You can use a good refractometer for brewingto measure the concentration sugars in beer wort. The beer wort is the aromatic mixture of sugars which were broken down by enzymes from starches. You want to measure the amount of sugars in the wort before it starts fermenting so that you know how much is going to get converted into alcohol.
By measuring wort with a refractometer, you can also control other aspects of the beer besides alcohol concentration, such as flavors, consistency and texture, color, etc.
You can get a brewing refractometer that can measure samples in Brix units, which are specific to the wine brewing industry. However, since beer doesn’t have sucrose as wine does, but maltose, you will need to do some math and calculate the specific gravity of the sugars you’re trying to measure so that you can control the fermentation process and obtain quality beer.
Check the salinity of water in your fish tank
If you’re trying to recreate a seawater environment for your marine fish and invertebrate species, then maintaining the proper salinity is vital to ensure that your little inhabitants don’t just survive, but thrive.
Both hyposaline and hypersaline environments can harm your species and be unsuitable for maintaining a marine habitat in the long term. This is why it is important that you can constantly check the salinity of the water and make adjustments to maintain a stable level in your aquarium.
The good news is that you can use a refractometer to get an accurate reading of the specific gravity of water and do some calculations to get the actual salinity levels. While hydrometers can also be used for such purposes, they need larger samples, and they cannot be calibrated, so you’ll get more accurate readings with a refractometer as long as you remember to calibrate it.
Make high-quality animal glue
While glue made of animal parts such as hide or bones hasn’t been really popular in the past few centuries, it has seen a reemergence among people who work with quality wood or who restore paintings and other artifacts.
Just as an expert woodworker put it, animal glue is easier to work with, and it won’t swell the joints just like commercial glue, where you often need to use a hammer to get two parts together. Instead, animal glue acts as a lube until it dries, making it easy to work not only with wood, but with glass, and a variety of other materials.
The great part about having a refractometer is that you can check the glue-to-water ratio when making glue at home to ensure that you can get quality results consistently. This is important because you and other people who will use the glue want to get some predictability in their craft.
Use a refractometer in a laboratory
Whether you have a small laboratory at home or work in a large institution, refractometers are indispensable tools that can be used for a variety of purposes and experiments. With a refractometer, you can measure the total amount of proteins in plasma, or measure the specific gravity of urine to check for drugs or other substances.
There are loads of experiments where you need to check for the concentration of various compounds, from specific sugars to proteins to DNA, or you can also use it to study gemstones.
You can check crop yield and quality
You can use a refractometer to measure the amount of solids in plant sap. You can obtain sap from plant tissue and then measure the amount of nutrients in it. The values you obtain can give you an idea of yield potential as well as give you warning signs if the plants might be affected by pests such as fungi or insects so that you can take the appropriate safety measures.
You can also monitor the concentration of various compounds such as Calcium in crop tissue, boron, as well as other indicators that could help you better manage your crops.
Measure the water content in honey
With an effective honey refractometer, beekeepers can check the water concentration in honey. Too much water can cause the honey to ferment, which is the last thing a prospective beekeeper wants.
You can use a refractometer to check when the honey is ready for harvest, as well as to ensure different qualities for specific honey types by controlling the concentration of water between 10 and 20 percent and keep the honey fresh.
Get a modern device with extra functions
You can opt for a classic refractometer or for a modern variant that comes with a lot of features and functions. For example, there are refractometers that come with both Brix and specific gravity scales so you get SG values without any math in case you’re brewing beer.
You might also want to go for a model that features an automatic temperature compensation feature, as the refraction index also changes with temperature. That way you get accurate readings without extra work.
There are also digital refractometers you can look at. While less precise than their normal counterparts, these handheld devices can allow you to measure the amount of various materials on the go while also getting results on a large and clear LED display.
If you want to get a simple but effective tool to help you track sudden weather changes, be more successful when fishing, or tend to your garden better, then a barometer is the ideal pick. This instrument can measure atmospheric pressure which in turn can tell you many secrets about weather patterns and nature, helping you understand and enjoy these more.
A few things about barometers you probably didn’t know
A barometer is an instrument that allows you to measure atmospheric pressure. These instruments are usually used by meteorologists to make predictions concerning weather changes and patterns in the short term.
Atmospheric pressure can be explained as the force with which the atmospheric layers press against the Earth as they are pulled by its gravity. As heavier or lighter weather fronts interact with and replace each other, the atmospheric pressure can change locally.
A sudden change in pressure can be caused by a low-pressure weather front that is coming, which can translate into a drop in temperatures and possible precipitations, or it could signal that the weather might be improving in case the pressure rises.
However, you don’t have to be a meteorologist to be able to use a barometer. There are loads of models on the market that feature a simple design, with dials or digital displays that can easily indicate sudden weather changes even for the uninitiated eye.
Check the weather before you go adventuring
With a good barometer, you can check out the barometric pressure in the morning of a planned day trip. You can then monitor the device, and any sudden drop in pressure would probably mean that a low-pressure air front is coming, which might make it a good idea to postpone the trip so that you don’t get caught by a storm on the way.
The good thing about barometers is that they are small and light so you can easily carry one in your pocket and have a quick look from time to time. For example, a barometer can keep you dry when you’re hiking in the mountains. If you’re high up the mountain, there’s a chance that you can clearly see an approaching weather front.
However, if you’re between two peaks or just climbing from a valley, things might not be this obvious. Using a barometer could give you an early warning sign that a storm is approaching so that you have enough time to prepare. You can then decide to leave for a safe spot or even set up camp quickly so the changing weather finds you prepared.
Navigate better with an altimeter
An altimeter looks and works just like a barometer, but it measures the difference of pressure between the normal value which is 1 standard atmosphere at sea level (0 meters) and the pressure at the elevation you’re currently at.
While these two devices perform slightly different, you can find a lot of barometers that also incorporate an altimeter. By knowing your elevation, you can better approximate where you are since mountains are 3-dimensional.
With such a device you get to know when the weather is getting worse or improving, as well as get a better grip on the surroundings, especially if you also carry a compass with you.
Know when the time to go fishing is right
Anglers can also benefit from using a quality barometer. This device can warn them when the conditions will be right for fishing and when it’s better to stay home. If you’ve ever been fishing in the same spot for two days in a row, using the same equipment and under similar weather, then you probably experienced being extremely successful in a day and failing miserably in another.
The explanation could lie in atmospheric pressure. Objects in water tend to weigh less in water, so even small changes in barometric pressure can have a greater effect on fish. This effect can result in physical or behavioral changes, such as fish lying on the bottom of the lake or changing feeding patterns.
By learning to use a barometer and observing how changes in pressure influence fish behavior, you will improve as an angler while also solving the mystery that many amateurs mistake for luck when it comes to fishing.
Get a barometer for your garden
You can greatly benefit from getting a quality barometer to hang in your garden. With this instrument, you get to see sudden changes in atmospheric pressure so that you can plan accordingly. For example, if you see that the pressure is dropping fast, you might want to postpone planting those seeds.
You can also plan accordingly when you get an early prevention system that could warn you of approaching storms, or sudden drops in temperature, which could help you protect your fragile plants.
With an accurate barometer, you can also save water in the long run. This is because you can learn to read the signs of approaching rain so you don’t waste water sprinkling your flowers and vegetables only to get pouring rain a couple of hours later.
Get an inexpensive model for simple weather predictions
You don’t need to get the most expensive barometer on the market, as a cheap model with a simple design would suffice for most uses. You can either get a mechanical barometer with dials or a digital variant.
Mechanical barometers are easy to calibrate and set by following some simple instructions while electronic devices will give you accurate readings with no extra effort. You can also choose a model with color-coded dials for easy-to-read weather predictions, and you get a unit which displays values in your preferred system, be it either metric (mm HG) or (imperial in HG).
Use a digital barometer to control conditions in artificial environments
Whether you own a greenhouse garden or a small lab, a quality barometer can help you monitor as well as control conditions so you can keep them within optimal parameters. You can buy a digital barometer that comes with other built-in sensors for temperature and humidity readings.
With these, you ensure that you can create perfect conditions for your plants to grow and thrive, or for storing important or sensitive materials, chemicals, or even paper archives. Modern barometers also come with memory functions to store previous conditions so you can keep track of what’s happening and which adjustments you need to perform.
Whether you are a chemistry student, a wine brewer, or an environmental technician, then getting an excellent pH meter is a great way to perform quality control and ensure accurate tests every time. These scientific instruments can precisely measure the activity of hydrogen ions and give you readings of pH levels, or the acidity or alkalinity of liquids and semi-solids.
There are many types and sizes to choose from
These instruments come in various types and sizes so you can rest assured that you will find one that best suits your specific needs. For the best accuracy, you can purchase a benchtop pH meter which can provide you with the most precise readings. While this might be one of the more expensive variants, it is ideal for laboratory work.
There are smaller models that are easy to use both inside and outside the laboratory. Some are so small that they can fit into your pocket so that you can easily take it with you to perform field tests.
Just don’t forget that every pH meter requires calibration before use so if you want to ensure consistent and accurate results every time, you will need to calibrate it with at least two buffer solutions, one with a 7 pH and another with an acidity or alkalinity close to the substance you need to measure.
Ensure accurate chemical laboratory analyses
While educational or medical institutions are all equipped with modern pH meters, you might need such a device at home. You could either experiment with various solutions or prepare for a chemistry exam, especially since it is always easier to learn by doing than by reading.
With a quality pH measuring unit, you will get accurate readings so that you won’t get errors and invalid results which could have you doing the experiment all over again. Many commercial pH meters are inexpensive and easy to use for a variety of purposes while ensuring precise readings every time as long as you remember to calibrate them.
Check out the water quality
You don’t need to be a scientist to check out the pH of your tap water. While the amount of hydrogen ions in drinking water probably doesn’t have major impacts on health, an abnormal pH value could indicate pollution with various chemicals and contaminants.
If your readings show extremely high or low pH values that aren’t within the normal 6-9 range, then you should definitely consider either getting a filter or calling a water treatment expert to come and inspect the problem.
Check the quality of alcoholic beverages
Every brewer that’s worth his salt knowns that pH levels play an important role in the production of fine alcoholic beverages such as beer, cider, and wine. Measuring the acidity of beverages is essential to control quality as well as to prevent contaminations.
You can easily monitor the pH of your beer mash so that you can easily adjust it and ensure proper values to stimulate fermentation as well as to prevent too low values which could inhibit fermentation and lead to off-flavors and other problems.
With even an inexpensive pH meter you can do a good job at checking the brewing process at all stages so that you can make adjustments on the go and ensure that the next batch is going to have the flavors, texture, and quality you expect.
Test the acidity of foods
While most pH meters work in liquid solutions, there are also models that are meant to be used to check the pH of foods. It is essential that you are able to test and maintain adequate acidity levels for many types of products, as doing so will inhibit the growth of bacteria which could lead to food poisoning.
With the ability to measure and control the pH of various products, you can ensure a consistently high quality while making the food safer for consumers and meeting industry standards and regulatory requirements.
Examine environmental samples
If you are interested in environmental sciences, then you could easily test the quality of aquatic as well as terrestrial habitats and get indicators of pollution or other activity of wildlife. You can easily test the pH of water, with results being able to tell you about the bioavailability of certain nutrients or toxicity levels.
The pH of water and soil samples won’t provide you with a breakdown of organic and inorganic compounds, but it will still give you strong indicators, such as acidic values caused by rain, contamination from drainage, or heavy metals.
Ensure that your plants have the right conditions to thrive
Whether you are cultivating crops on a large field or just have a few plants in your backyard, getting a pH meter can help you determine the acidity of the soil and allow you to make adjustments on the go.
You can read some soil pH meter reviews and pick a model that’s suited to your needs. With a good device, you can also select the right plant species for the type of soil you have, or check for nutrient availability and decide if you need to add fertilizers.
Many plants can only thrive in soil with a particular pH, and that’s why it is essential to measure it in the first place. A higher pH could lead to less available iron, zinc, and magnesium, while phosphorus concentrations would actually increase. A pH that’s too low or too high could lead to an abundance of certain chemicals which could be toxic to plants.
The good thing is that you can test the soil with a pH meter and then perform corrections by adding compost or other chemicals.
Benefit from an easy operation
With a pH meter, you can easily test the hydrogen-ion concentration of solutions and ensure precise readings without any effort. This device is a lot easier to use than pH indicator paper, which not only is intended for single use but also isn’t nearly as accurate as a professional device.
With strip paper, you could also have trouble getting a precise reading if you can’t actually get a differentiate the test colors from the legend, which might make getting an accurate result quite difficult. With a pH meter, you could even be colorblind and still be able to properly test the pH of solutions and products and ensure consistent results every time.
While digital cameras have been incorporating light meters for more than 2 decades, there are still quite a few reasons to get a light meter. It has uses beyond just shooting on film, with speed, quality, as well as exposure precision being among the main reasons why you can still benefit from a new light meter.
Light meters can give more accurate info than camera sensors
Light meters come in both analog and digital variants, with models that measure incident or reflected light. This device can measure the amount of light in a given scene so that you get to expose photographs or videos correctly.
Virtually all digital cameras have a built-in light meter, but the problem is that these are designed to aim for an average scene reflectance of 18%. If the scene isn’t close to that reflectance, then the camera sensor will most likely suggest a wrong exposure, which in turn can lead to missed shots and a load of other problems.
A light meter won’t make any guesses, but give you precise readings of the light levels of any given scene and even calculate exposure. You can also make sure that you expose both highlights and shadows correctly, or that you know which way to compensate to obtain satisfactory results without clipping any color channels.
Save time by getting the right exposure the first time
One of the best things about using a light measuring device is that it enables you to get the proper exposure after only a few tries. While working with natural light or just one light source is doable even with the built-in camera sensor and enough time, when it comes to complex lighting setups, the last thing you want is to waste half an hour before you manage to get the first exposure right.
With a light meter, you can save a lot of time and also ensure that you won’t be missing shots, which is highly probable if you’re shooting spontaneous action. Contrary to chimping, or looking at the LCD after every shot and wasting time as well as opportunities, you can set the correct exposure the first time and then be able to concentrate on shooting.
Shoot amazing photos on film
In the past, photographers had to use light measuring devices before any shooting sessions. This was because film and processing were expensive, and they also took a lot of time. Rather than risk a failed photo shoot, a professional would use a light meter to get a good light reading of the scene, set the desired exposure, and then shoot.
If you plan on trying to shoot on film, then getting such a unit is highly recommended. Not only will you save a lot of money on films, but also avoid frustrating scenarios and repeated failures that could prematurely end your newfound passion before you managed to discover the real beauty of shooting on film.
Keep your clients focused
Owning and using a light meter is also a must when you’re dealing with lots of clients. While some could be extremely patient and cooperative, others might wish to speed through the shooting session and then take off as soon as possible. You really need to make every photo count so you definitely want to get the right exposure from the first few frames.
If you were to only rely on your camera, you could risk fiddling with the exposure and lighting setup for too long and have the client becoming bored, frustrated, or downright angry, all of which are undesirable for both you and the customer.
You can avoid this scenario by coming to the shoot prepared and measuring the light so you can obtain the desired effects without too much fiddling and chimping.
Improve your flash photography
If you’re new to flash photography, then you most likely have no idea what a guide number is. The GN is a measure that can tell photographers what f-stop they need to use after accounting for flash-to-subject distance, ISO values, as well as flash power. The GN implies that you calculate the correct parameters so that you can get the right exposure without taking multiple test shots.
However, many young photographers aren’t in the mood for solving mathematical calculations before they shoot, especially with all the TTL flashes out there. The good news is that you can still ensure that the scene is properly exposed for flash photography with a light meter, which would work like an automatic GN without you having to do any math.
You can find a light meter for every budget
While it is true that there some professional models that can cost several hundred dollars, you can also get an inexpensive one for 50 bucks or less and still get all the functionality you need, just without all the bells and whistles. You probably won’t get any of the fancy features but would still enjoy correct light readings.
These modern devices will also tell you which ISO values you need to use for which f-stop and shutter speed so that you don’t lose image quality from accidentally under- or overexposing.
You can expose for multiple light sources fast
Whether you’re shooting photos or videos, if you are using multiple flashes and strobes to light up the scene, you definitely need to use a light meter. Without one, obtaining even a decent exposure could be a nightmare, not to mention the fact that you’d probably need at least half an hour worth of test shots until you’re ready to start with the real shoot.
A light measuring device becomes essential when you’re shooting at a paid location or with impatient clients that don’t have all the time in the world to wait until you nail that perfect exposure.
You get to look like a pro
Using a light meter will also make you look like a pro and help impress your clients. While such a device won’t be able to compensate for sloppy work and poorly executed images and videos, it would still give the impression that you know what you’re doing.
And unless you really want just to maintain the appearances, you might as well learn to use it properly and make sure that you set up the right exposure every time so that you end up with the highest possible quality from every scene.