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I currently shoot a Nikon D500 for which I have a Godox V860II speedlight. I'm looking to get more into simple studio portrait photography, partially because that is about the only thing I can shoot in the current situation (fortunately I have roommates who I can bug to model for me), but also because it's something I've been interested in trying for a little while anyway.

So I purchased a decent softbox for my speedlight and an invertible backdrop, but for some reason I didn't realize until now that I don't have any way of controlling my speedlight when I take it off camera. Since I've already put in a pretty penny (at least by my standards) into setting up a very simple studio, I'm looking to solve this last shortcoming with under $100.

So I find myself between two options. One is to get a Godox wireless trigger (specifically considering the X2 at $60) and the other is to get a cheap Godox speedlight that can act as master to my V860II (currently considering the TT350N Mini Thinklite at $85).

The wireless trigger is attractive because it's smaller, cheaper, and designed specifically to trigger flashes. However, I don't see myself controlling more than one off-camera flash anytime soon, if ever, and I don't expect to ever have to use it in difficult conditions (long distance, barriers involved, etc.)

The cheap speedlight is attractive because - hey - for only a little bit more money, my wireless flash trigger happens to have an extra flash on it. However, it is a lower quality flash and as a complete novice, I'm unsure if I'll find much use for it on-camera for studio photography.

So I was hoping someone more experienced could shed light on the actual practical differences between the two choices

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Using the Godox TT350N as a means to control your other Godox speedlight is a perfectly viable option. If you later decide to buy a dedicated trigger, you can control both of them.

The only drawback is that the controls on the flashes themselves are not as straight forward as they are on the Godox X2 or Xpro. Plus you will probably never use the speedlight on the cam as such in studio.

While it is mainly a usability thing, I personally would opt for the dedicated remote trigger, as starting with remote flashes tends to be complicated at first. Why not saving you some hassle?

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    You have some very good points, I love the Xpro. But a TT350 is really nice to have in the field if you don't have a pop-up to lift the shadows a bit. And the remote flash can also b set in the camera menu. – Orbit Apr 3 at 8:56
  • @Orbit Good point. The little flash has a better chance of stying in the bag than his bigger cousin. On the other had - I guess if Konstantin licks blood with off cam flash, it will not be the last piece of flash equipment, he bought. I started with 2 simple yongnuo flashes, then sold them to switch to godox, and now have a speedlite, 2 AD200 and 1 AD600bm. There is so much fun in studio work. – Kai Mattern Apr 3 at 9:58
  • You will have a much easier time controlling your off camera flash with the XPro, like @KaiMattern said, save yourself some hassle. Get a second (third ...) speedlight when you actually need it. This also gives you the option to buy a studio strobe instead of a speedlight in the future. – Robin Apr 7 at 22:22
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It's a perfectly viable plan to use a TT350-N (or li-on V350-N) as your iTTL transmitter, but it's not just smaller and less powerful than a V860II-N, it also lacks CLS/AWL capability, it only swivels 270º not 360º, it has no sync port, no external battery port, no recycle beep, and it is not designed to do cross-brand TTL as a radio slave like the full-sized Godox TTL speedlights (TT685, V860II, V1).

And the wireless master UI is not as nice or easy to operate as the ones on the dedicated transmitters. You have no remote zoom or modelling light control. You are limited to only three group control, not five, and you do not have access to many of the custom functions on the dedicated transmitters (close mode, SHOOT/APP modes, etc.)

Unless you need on-camera and off-camera flash at the same time or really want a second speedlight as backup/alternative, consider the Xpro or Flashpoint R2 Pro II instead of the X2T. For just one feature: TCM (TTL-Convert-to-Manual). None of the speedlights can do it as a radio master. And this is the key to using TTL with off-camera flash, because it lets you lock in the power level set by TTL, to eliminate shot-to-shot flash exposure variance or for fine-tuning in M.

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