As a newbie in product photography, I was playing around with the shoots and made a really good shot (IMG 3117). I tried to replicate the same settings (ISO, speed, and aperture) and had to make a change to the speed to get the desired results (IMG 3404). However, when I copy the settings to another product, it comes out either too light (IMG 3416) or too dark (IMG 3421).

What adjustment should I make to ensure consistent results?

I'm using a Canon EOS 1200D with 2 soft-boxes.

Pictures in link below





Thank you so much

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    \$\begingroup\$ How are you controlling your flash output? \$\endgroup\$
    – Philip Kendall
    Commented Mar 28, 2023 at 18:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thank you for your quick response. I did not use flash on any of the images. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Mar 28, 2023 at 19:05
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    \$\begingroup\$ Ah okay, what's providing the light for your softboxes? \$\endgroup\$
    – Philip Kendall
    Commented Mar 28, 2023 at 19:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks, I'm using PhotoSEL LS21E52 Softbox - 2 x 85W 5000lm 5500K 90+ CRI Bulb \$\endgroup\$ Commented Mar 28, 2023 at 19:16

1 Answer 1


While 2 85W lightbulbs seem like a lot of light, it is likely that the biggest variable is the ambient light in your scene...ie. other lights and windows in your room. Also, continuous light (I assume) is fine for video, but you should consider flash for product photography.

Echoing @Micheal C below, by controlling your light, you can ensure that your shots 'look' the same from shot to shot, and that will also result in your shooting conditions (exposure, focal length, etc) are the same shot to shot.

Pro setups use large output flashes (250W or more) that essentially overpower any ambient, leading to consistent light, shot to shot. (Many pro shooters also shoot in nearly dark studios as well for much the same reason.) They also use multiple flash units (and modifiers) to fill and balance the shot, removing shadows or adding subtle shadows as needed.

Check out AlienBees or Prophoto flash units to see just two examples.

You can also achieve better results using multiple speedlight camera flashes such as the Canon Speedlite series. By using them off camera with the built in remote flash, and adjusting the power of each, you can achieve quite (mostly) repeatable results.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thank you! I appreciate your response and time! \$\endgroup\$ Commented Mar 28, 2023 at 19:43
  • \$\begingroup\$ So why does it work well for one product and not for another? \$\endgroup\$ Commented Mar 28, 2023 at 20:56
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    \$\begingroup\$ inconsistent settings: your camera is capturing at 1/100, 1/40, 1/60th and different ISO in each photo. You need same conditions, light, settings etc \$\endgroup\$
    – cmason
    Commented Mar 30, 2023 at 17:31
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    \$\begingroup\$ Just to emphasize and reiterate: It must start with consistent lighting. That means eliminating any variables in ambient lighting so that the lighting is repeatable in every shoot. Only then can using the same ISO, Av, Tv, WB, etc. give you the same result. \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Commented Apr 8, 2023 at 7:44
  • \$\begingroup\$ In addition to the above, your assumption that using the same settings for one shot over another is unfounded, even once you achieve consistent lighting. If your goal is e.g. for the "product" to take up 50% of the image, then different colors of products (black vs white vs something else) as well as different surface characteristicts (matte finish vs glossy vs reflective) and a number of other factors will still require different setting... \$\endgroup\$
    – twalberg
    Commented Apr 10, 2023 at 19:24

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