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Hi LF users,

I would like to find a timer device that screw on the shutter release, then once it activated it will hold the shutter open for a preset time (eg. you set for 4 sec. and it will hold for 4 sec). Mechanical or electronic is ok. I have heard about this kind of device few years ago but never had a chance to get one. Any inputs/links from anyone? I appreciate it dearly. Thanks.

-- dan nguyen (dan@egmail.com), June 15, 2000


Hey ! Bob!

What's that thingamajig you guys sell???

B&H has it too? does times up to 30 seconds?

How much is it?

-- Sean yates (yatescats@yahoo.com), June 15, 2000.

Not what you're looking for, but I've been using a metronome to time long exposures. I set it to 120 and count two beats per second. If you're a musical sort of person and are accustomed to keeping a precise beat, you can do this pretty accurately.

-- David Goldfarb (dgoldfarb@barnard.edu), June 15, 2000.


Pay no attention to sean.... every house has its pests...

The device you are looking for is not necessary, that is why not many places stock any kind.

If you are "shooting" with shutter speeds in seconds, then a watch with a second hand [or an LCD that reads seconds] is more than good enough. Yes, your reaction delay in opening and closing the shutter will effect the exposure; but not enough to make any perceptible difference in the densities. The error is certainly not worth the purchase of the timer.



-- Jason Kefover (jkefover@york.tec.sc.us), June 15, 2000.


the item I was referring to is the "Prontor Professional Timer", sold by B&H as recently as '98, and presumably Bob Solomon at H.P. Marketing carries it as well.

It retails for $638.95. A bit steep in my neck of the woods.

Older versions do crop up on occassion. It is a mechanical timer attached to a cable release and allows exposures from 2 to 32 seconds - and variably adjustable within that range.

-- Sean yates (yatescats@yahoo.com), June 15, 2000.

I paid $5 for mine, marked down from the MSLP of $15, several years ago out of a bin at Olden's. Now that's what I calls real price gouging!

-- Bill Mitchell (bmitch@home.com), June 15, 2000.

Several months ago I was going through an old pile of magazines at my mom's house and found the April/May 1964 issue of "Camera 35". "The Gadget Bag" column had a mini review of the Prontor Ultra-Slow Speed Cable Release. By all accounts, this device appears to be the same one sold by B&H for $638.95 today. In the 1964 magazine it has a selling price of $17.50. Maybe someone could calculate what the inflation/currency exchange adjusted price should be today.

-- Larry Huppert (Larry.Huppert@mail.com), June 16, 2000.

jason is right on the button- exposures in seconds are long enough to negate any small errors in the opening or closing of the shutter, spend your money on something else!

-- mark lindsey (lindseygraves@msn.com), June 16, 2000.

I agree, and disagree with the statement about human error being small when timing in seconds. If the time is long enough, that is true. If your trying to time 2 seconds by hand, being off by 1/2 second is about 1/2 a stop. What is almost worse is the inconsistency of exposure if you shoot multiple sheets and holdback sheets for development while you evaluate the results from the first sheet. It's just easier, more accurate and consistent to do time exposures starting around 10 sec in length.

-- Larry Huppert (Larry.Huppert@mail.com), June 16, 2000.

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