Seculine Action Level Cross review
Review Date : Thu, 21 Jan 2010
Author : Mike Lowe
This hotshoe-fitted device is, essentially, a digital spirit level with a cross-pattern of LEDs that light up...
|Pros:||Easy to see, portrait adaptation, rear lights|
|Cons:||Some oversensitivity and inaccuracy, price|
It seems everything these days is digital; even the simple bubble spirit level has come to be challenged for its perch at the top by the Seculine Action Level Cross. This hotshoe-fitted device is, essentially, a digital spirit level with a cross-pattern of LEDs that light up green when level and drift through from yellow/orange to red when most off-level. There's even a helpful row of LEDs across the back when adjusting a single orientation should you not be able to look down upon the camera - useful when a large tripod is fully extended.
However, upon first use, we found the Cross was wholly inaccurate compared to the simple bubble spirit level, as it's likely to need calibrating. That's all well and good, but not all situations will reveal themselves to have level surfaces to calibrate the device prior to use, which is a significant oversight. Using the device itself is fairly self-explanatory, but you needn't ‘calibrate' a simple, inexpensive bubble level, which will always work due to the laws of physics.
The Cross does indeed add visibility in low light, and will instantly adapt from landscape upright format to a portrait sideways format or even a vertical up or down facing - a clever feature. When in these compromising views the Seculine Cross may become hard to see, so there's an additional Remote Slave Unit display (available separately for a further £35) that can be wire-connected. A great idea, but one that bumps up the already expensive £55 initial purchase yet a further notch.
Sometimes things aren't broken and don't need fixing, and, as simple and clever as this technology is, this is one such example.