Before the rush

Before the rush
by evan-pak

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Hot answers tagged

27

Buckle in for a long answer. There are three primary advantages that "studio" flash have over hotshoe flashes. The first, and most obvious is power; even the lower-powered "serious" units (we're not talking about AC-powered lightbulb-shaped slaves) tend to start at at least the equivalent of 2 "full-sized" speedlights (of the Nikon SB-910/Canon 600EX-RT/...


20

Studio strobes: + More light means lower ISO, larger aperture etc. + Can freeze motion + Can overpower the ambient light meaning you can leave the room lights on to see what you're doing + Greater choice of flash units / accessories / lighting modifiers + Can be used with battery pack for location shoots - Have to be triggered somehow - Need to use a ...


18

You, my friend, are in amazing luck, because there is a really awesome website dedicated to strobes (more specifically off-camera lighting). I highly, highly recommend checking out http://strobist.blogspot.com/ The Lighting 101 series is a great beginner guide to getting started with strobes. To better answer your question here, it would help to know your ...


15

My apologies for linking to Strobist all the time, but as it happens there is a recent post just about that. He lists PocketWizard Plus II Transceiver as the best and most reliable, followed by RadioPopper JrX, AlienBees CyberSyncs, and Elinchrom Skyports. You also might want to check out RadioPopper PX, which looks like it might be able to trigger slave ...


14

No, there is no way to convert guide numbers to watt-seconds. Watt-seconds is a measurement of how much energy is used by the flash, not how much light is put out. A significant portion of this energy is wasted as heat, infrared, ultraviolet, etc. A 4 watt-second flash that is 100% efficient will put out the same amount of light as a 400 watt-second flash ...


13

Studio strobes are actually much, much, EXTREMELY MUCH more powerful than any remotely sane continuous lighting setup (at lighting scenes for photography). This is because a strobe delivers its ridiculously high intensity light only for a ridiculously short time - usually shorter than your shutter speed. For example, the AlienBees B400 provides 7000 ...


12

Fresnel spots are one of the traditional studio-lighting tools, carried over from theatre and movie work; they allow focusing the light from wide to narrow, just like the zoom function on a flashgun. For example this one from Elinchrom, or these Broncolors. The reason you don't see them often is that, like a scrim, snoot, honeycomb, or other tools, they're ...


10

I'll give you my experience... I started out using halogen continuous lights because they were cheap, but they're very hot and draw a lot of power. Nevertheless, I could get some very powerful lighting though, mind you, I went the "Home Depot" route here. What I discovered, however, is that I had no real effective way of performing light modification (...


8

I think an updated answer is called for. :) When integrating studio strobes with speedlights, there are two things to consider. Whether you want more control than manual-only triggers give you for either the strobes and/or the speedlights, and how robust you want the triggers to be. Are there OEM/3rd party triggers to command the studio strobe? Some ...


8

Narrowing the aperture will reduce all light coming in to the sensor, including light coming from the flash itself and ambient light. Reducing the flash power changes the ratio of flash light to ambient light. True, it will reduce the overall amount of light, but the reduction is not as evenly distributed as when you reduce the aperture (which reduces ...


6

The amount of illumination increases as you add more strobes, but not linearly. The point of diminishing returns is, basically, right away. This is because flash power is proportional to the square of the guide number. Or to look at it the other way around, the guide number is related to the square root of the flash power. Why all these powers and roots? It'...


5

Can you give us an idea of your budget, and what you're looking at? You get what you pay for holds true for strobes. There are a few caveats to strobes, which makes this a difficult question to answer. Not all wattage ratings are the same. Just because a strobe is rated at 250W doesn't mean it actually is. Especially when buying from Ebay only companies, ...


5

Using wireless triggers is certainly one way to do this. Cheap triggers such as Cactus, Phottix, Pixl are all good choices, all the way up to PocketWizards. Or you can get some cheap hot shoe adapters with a cord. Disadvantages are that you won't have TTL / Automatic flash mode. You'll have to set the power manually. check out Strobist on information for ...


5

I can confirm that if you use a Yongnuo YN-622C, you will be able to trigger your canon speedlights. The setup that I have is 1 Profoto TTL Air remote, 2 Yongnuo YN-622C, 1 430EX II flash, 1 B1. One of the Yongnuo goes between the camera and the Profoto Air remote. The other on the speedlight.


4

In day to day use, you should not have any problems mixing manually controlled strobes, as long as the color of light from both is the same. I think you'd be fine.


4

Fresnel lens are rarely used in studio strobes because in studio we mostly need soft light, not the hard one. And if we need hard light, we can always use standard reflector. And if we need spot light, we can always use tube reflector. Fresnel are used on hot-shoe light because there are different focal lengths of different lens, the hot-shoe light is ...


4

What was your ISO setting? If your camera is set on Auto ISO, narrowing the aperture will cause the camera to compensate with ISO and resulting exposure will not change, whereas changing flash power/compensation will not affect the ISO.


4

The 580exII needs to be attached to your camera to be able to trigger things remotely as a master. If you want to trigger both, you need to have another 580exII, ST-E2 wireless transmitter or use the built in transmitter that comes with the 60D or 7D.


4

I'm sure there will be very comprehensive answers to this well-structured question, this one is just from the perspective of someone who doesn't own anything more powerful than a speedlight. Besides the ability to pop flashes brighter/farther/faster/longer (nothing I need for my modest purposes), what seems like a game-changer to me is the point where a ...


4

The advantages of studio strobes over speedlights for off-camera lighting is not as much like getting a dSLR over a P&S, as it is like getting full frame over crop. While the advantages are there and undeniable, speedlights may actually be sufficient to your usage, especially in these post-Strobist days as a lot of speedlight-specific gear is hitting ...


3

There is another common division, you list hot lights and strobes. But there are at least two major types of strobes: Studio strobes (typically powered by battery packs or mains) and speedlights (small battery powered strobes). There are many professional photographers who use and prefer speedlights (David Hobby, Joe McNally, Syl Arena). Check out their ...


3

I have some of the "eBay" triggers that I bought a year ago. I found them at mpex.com (Midwest Photo Exchange). They are the Cactus V2's and are $30 for a receiver and transmitter. I feel like it was a good deal, considering the price of a PocketWizard. They obviously are not as reliable as the pro equipment but for an amateur like myself, they work ...


3

It does depend on what coverage is needed. If you have been asked to get everyone as they walk on stage, my advice is shoot on camera and get the shot. Otherwise, When faced with that situation I have bounced, with a small reflector hand held just over the flash. Pocket wizards or the cheaper Photix mean you can do off camera lighting. I have shot a few ...


3

By "Watt power" we basically mean radiant flux, and by "stops" we mean luminous flux. These two have similar definitions, but they are different. In normal life, it is true that if you halve the "Watt power" and that light is reflected from or refracted through linear (normal, not non-linear optical) materials, then your camera will observe half the ...


3

I think ND-like filters are actually exactly the point. You can buy neutral-density gels like Rosco's 2-stop ND lighting filter very cheaply (like, $7 for a big square, with free shipping). They're meant to go over windows, but they'd be easy to adapt for these lights. That's not as easy as turning down a dial, but still a very low-cost and simple way to ...


3

You can use a strobe to stop motion. Even unwanted! Model moves, camera shakes - who cares with high speed strobes? You use the strobe to freeze the picture, not the shutter, basically... You can use a strobe to avoid excessive suffering of models from strong lighting. Don't underestimate this, this is a serious factor. To have the same wattage continuous ...


3

Well, obviously, the simplest (but most expensive) path would be to get Profoto Air Syncs and hook them up as receivers to your 600EX-RTs, but that's a lot of expense to have manual-only triggers for your 600EX-RTs. However, your best bet is to sandwich a Yongnuo YN-622C (TTL radio trigger with a full TTL passthrough hotshoe) between the camera and the ...


3

You can use higher shutter speeds than your sync speed, but it is not "true" HSS. PocketWizard calls this feature "Hypersync." In "true" HSS, with hotshoe flashes, the flash sets out a serious of pulses timed to go with the travel of the curtain slit across the sensor so the whole sensor is evenly illuminated by the flash. This is not what Hypersync does....



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