German mechatronics engineer Johannes Heberlein has launched a new photo accessory on Kickstarter, the Lime One compact hot shoe light meter. The meter has been designed to be very easy to use, and even updates its readings in real-time.

In 2018, Heberlein started using film cameras, and he immediately found his light meter options somewhat lacking. He started using a smartphone-based solution but became frustrated with needing to constantly take his phone out of his pocket, get an exposure value and then put his phone away. In late 2018, Heberlein started sketching out ideas for a compact, easy to use light meter. His first prototype was ready a few months later and final hardware revisions took place over the next year.

Lime One works with all cameras that have manual exposure control, including analog cameras that do not feature a built-in light meter. Heberlein hopes that Lime One, which has a funding goal just shy of $30,000 USD, will help photographers who have been frustrated by external meters and smartphone light meter applications. He designed Lime One to be compact enough that you can leave it attached to your camera indefinitely, even when packing your camera away in a bag.

Lime One promises fast operation and start-up, plus the ability to store previous settings. It has four modes: aperture priority, shutter priority, manual mode, and exposure value. The control wheel has a knurled edge for grip and when holding the Lime One's button while rotating the wheel, you can change secondary parameters.

The hot shoe light meter is constructed using anodized aluminum for both the body and wheel and attaches to a standard accessory shoe mount. The device is battery powered and uses a CR2032 battery.

The Lime One appears very simple to operate. For example, when using aperture priority, you set the desired aperture on the Lime One using the control wheel, frame your shot, and then the light meter shows you on its top display the required shutter speed. You can also use exposure compensation by holding down the button while rotating the control wheel. By double-tapping this same button, you access the menu where you can perform actions such as adjusting operational mode and ISO.

Hedeco Lime One on 6x6 folding medium format camera. Image credit: Hedeco, Kickstarter

For those who pledge €99 or more, which is roughly $115 USD, you will receive one Lime One in silver in April 2021. If you pledge €149 (about $175 USD), you have a choice of silver or black for Lime One, plus you receive an accessory pack. If you have access to a 3D printer, you can download the files to print your own accessories and instead purchase just the standard pack.

To learn more about the Lime One compact light meter, head to the Kickstarter page.

Disclaimer: Remember to do your research with any crowdfunding project. DPReview does its best to share only the projects that look legitimate and come from reliable creators, but as with any crowdfunded campaign, there’s always the risk of the product or service never coming to fruition.