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Author Topic: SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)  (Read 5658 times)

Chris_prophotographic

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SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« on: October 10, 2012, 03:51:20 PM »
Just Hoping on Some Suggestions for booms, stands, soft-boxes (for speed lights) and other bits like sync cables and cheaper solutions to lighting effectors.


what are you using?
1D X, 7D, 70-200mm MK II, 24 L MK II, 35 L, 10-22, 40mm,  Samyang 8mm, 50 1.8 mk II, PW II's
PW III's , MultiMax's, TT5's 580 II's, SB-28's

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SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« on: October 10, 2012, 03:51:20 PM »

techsmith13

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Re: SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« Reply #1 on: October 10, 2012, 03:58:30 PM »
I've ordered from mpex.com. They have the Strobist kits. They work great for the price. Also have the Cactus V5 remotes they work good as well.
« Last Edit: October 10, 2012, 04:06:49 PM by techsmith13 »

neuroanatomist

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Re: SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« Reply #2 on: October 10, 2012, 04:04:35 PM »
For Speedlites, I have Manfrotto light stands (2 ea of 1051BAC and 1052BAC, for me the main difference is the 1051 has a 2' diameter footprint vs. the 1052's 3' diameter, the former is better in small rooms). I use something larger for a monolight.  LumoPro is a more budget-minded stand option with good quality.  I've got the Manfrotto 026 umbrella swivels for the stands.

I've also got a pair of Lastolite 24" Ezyboxes, which are quite durable and easy to set up (eBay has cheaper alteratives, but more delicate). 

For triggers, I use PocketWizards, but again, there are cheaper options (Photix Odins or even Cactus), or go wired (FlashZebra will have everything you need for that, at great prices).
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Jamesy

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Re: SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« Reply #3 on: October 10, 2012, 04:17:36 PM »
I use mostly Manfrotto stands BAC1051 and 1052's and the Nano 5001. I also have a 420B combi boom which is a nice starter boom provide you are only using speedlights or other lighter loads. I use Photoflex regular and heavy duty umbrella swivels.

You should consider getting a Westcott Apollo 28 softbox as they are fast to setup and very portable. Also, get one or two 60" bounce/shoot through umbrellas to light groups.

This is a great resource if you are getting into lighting:
http://strobist.blogspot.ca/2006/03/lighting-101.html

techsmith13

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Re: SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« Reply #4 on: October 10, 2012, 04:23:32 PM »
This is a great resource if you are getting into lighting:
http://strobist.blogspot.ca/2006/03/lighting-101.html

+1 This is a great resource! Careful though or you might find yourself in endless arguments over the importance of shutter sync speeds ;)

keithfullermusic

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Re: SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« Reply #5 on: October 10, 2012, 04:59:25 PM »
I've heard amazing things about this - http://www.cheetahstand.com/servlet/the-38/Cheetah-Qbox-24/Detail

If I end up getting a softbox, this is the one I'll be getting.

And, why would you not want to buy anything from this guy?!?!
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unfocused

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Re: SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« Reply #6 on: October 10, 2012, 05:00:43 PM »
I think photoflex offers very good value for the price. http://www.photoflex.com/

If you sign up for their newsletter they e-mail lighting lessons that are very good (of course, it is always promoting their equipment). 

I've also found that eBay can be a very good source for used softboxes etc. It seems like a lot of people buy these, don't use them much and then sell them. Just compare the prices to new to make sure you are getting a good deal.

One thing you can learn from my mistakes – buy the Manfrotto umbrella brackets http://www.adorama.com/BG2905.html. They are slightly more expensive than other brands, but very well made and there are few things more embarrassing and distracting than having a soft box or umbrella keep shifting while you are trying to shoot. Some of the cheaper brands and designs just don't hold up.

You mention sync cables. I know that professionals prefer radio triggers and if you can afford them they are great. But honestly, I've had very good luck with infrared triggers, even in bright sunlight. Yongnuo makes a knock-off of the Canon infrared trigger that is cheap and I've found very effective. If I were doing this for money, I'd invest in radio triggers. But I'm not.

If you want some fun things to play with, the Interfit Strobies Kit http://www.adorama.com/PASTR100.html gets you a lot of toys for not a lot of money. I wouldn't buy them until you got a couple of  umbrellas and a softbox, but if you want to experiment, they are an affordable way to do that. Just be sure to order the correct adapters for your speedlite.

Finally, let me just say this: you can do a lot worse than a single umbrella. Really, you can make beautiful flattering portraits with just one umbrella, adding other tools as you learn. A decent umbrella, a Manfrotto bracket and a solid lightstand will go a long way.
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Re: SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« Reply #6 on: October 10, 2012, 05:00:43 PM »

pwp

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Re: SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« Reply #7 on: October 10, 2012, 06:04:13 PM »
In recent years I have become a 100% user of Paul C Buff lighting products, http://www.paulcbuff.com best known for Alien Bees and more recently the extraordinary Einstein mono lights. I have eight of them. Because you're buying direct from the manufacturer, prices are startlingly low. In my busy business which is mostly on location, the Einsteins, stands, triggers and modifiers have passed the "tough-test".

This is after a very long time with supposedly superior Profoto lighting equipment which I had a lot of, mainly 600 Compact heads and a couple of 2400 w/s floorpacks for serious grunt. It's all sold now, the efficient, lightweight and breathtakingly inexpensive Einsteins do all the heavy lifting now. I think an Einstein costs less than a new 600EX-RT.

Modifiers, softboxes etc when used with speedlights is OK up to a point, but the necessarily low w/s output of a speedlight means that only short duration, small projects can be undertaken. When you get a flow going with a human subject, waiting for flash recycling after full power dumps, and running your batteries down after not too many pops is plain unprofessional and stunts the creative flow in a shoot.

-PW


AvTvM

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Re: SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« Reply #8 on: October 10, 2012, 06:06:24 PM »
http://www.lastolite.com/battery-flash-accessories-for-strobists.php
I use Manfrotto stands, Lastolite Swivels, brackets and Ezyboxes ... not cheap, but well worth the money if your budget supports it.

CharlieB

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Re: SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« Reply #9 on: October 10, 2012, 06:42:35 PM »
Just Hoping on Some Suggestions for booms, stands, soft-boxes (for speed lights) and other bits like sync cables and cheaper solutions to lighting effectors.


what are you using?

I've gotten Photflex and Chimera softboxes.... I wont ever get another Photoflex though.  They use a PVC interior coating that deteriorates.  My very old Chimera banks are still going strong.... Photoflex... has yellowed a bit, so I restrict them to monochrome use.

I'm using Matthews Beefy Baby stands.  They make some nice booms too.   If you can swing it financially, you want a big yoke, heavy stand for a boom.   Small stands like the BB are just fine for non boom use.   Can't have enough MatthClamps.

I started with PCBuff White Lightning Ultras, and have been picking them up used ever since.  Still going strong, with occasional tube replacements.  They do take a funky modeling light, not too bright, but you can sub in household bulbs if the pattern is not super critical (such as umbrella or box use).

I've used 36x48 boxes a lot, but am also using some 60" umbrellas, and some Matthews silks.  Shooting thru a silk or double silk is very flattering.   I can set up two 60x60 silks about six inches apart from each other, and put a monolight behind it about six feet.  You get a huge wall of light that is very soft.  Then you can single silk a smaller frame say... 48 square and use that with another light as a main light.

There's no end to stuff.  Get a Matthews catalog and you'll get some ideas.

Chris_prophotographic

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AvTvM

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Re: SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« Reply #11 on: October 11, 2012, 04:06:18 AM »
So are EBAY things really bad quality or not efficient light effectors

it really all depends .. only very occasional use or heavy use ... frequent mobile and outdoor use or never ever .. .etc.

functionally well-designed, interconnctivity with a full program of light shapers, good build quality, high quality of materials used, no color shifts after some time etc ... separate good gear from the cheap ebay stuff. 

But if you only set it up once in a room in your basement and never take it apart or mpove it to various locations ... the cheap stuff may suffice and get you good pictures ...  if you are up to the lighting task.

Chris_prophotographic

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Re: SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« Reply #12 on: October 11, 2012, 04:46:38 PM »
Thanks guys what the best cost efficient BOOM for a Octa box/ small soft box? all in one or separate items?
1D X, 7D, 70-200mm MK II, 24 L MK II, 35 L, 10-22, 40mm,  Samyang 8mm, 50 1.8 mk II, PW II's
PW III's , MultiMax's, TT5's 580 II's, SB-28's

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Re: SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« Reply #12 on: October 11, 2012, 04:46:38 PM »

AvTvM

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Re: SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« Reply #13 on: October 11, 2012, 06:03:29 PM »
Manfrotto 085 light boom

Chris_prophotographic

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Re: SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« Reply #14 on: October 11, 2012, 06:31:47 PM »
anything like this MORE complete for speed lights?
1D X, 7D, 70-200mm MK II, 24 L MK II, 35 L, 10-22, 40mm,  Samyang 8mm, 50 1.8 mk II, PW II's
PW III's , MultiMax's, TT5's 580 II's, SB-28's

canon rumors FORUM

Re: SOFT BOXES - BRACKETS - STANDS - MUST BUY! (say it 3 times)
« Reply #14 on: October 11, 2012, 06:31:47 PM »