September 18, 2014, 02:10:43 AM

Author Topic: First external flash? Lots of beginner's questions!  (Read 7346 times)

Oupstd

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Re: First external flash? Lots of beginner's questions!
« Reply #30 on: March 28, 2013, 01:36:03 PM »
Ok. If you want to get good results, but not spend an arm and a leg, here's what you need to get:

1. Yongnuo 568 (start with 1 and if you find you want to shape the light more, you can buy 1 or 2 more). Cost: $170

2. Yongnuo 622c radio triggers. These are inexpensive and give you full ETTL control from your Canon camera menu. Cheaper than Pocket Wizards and more than good enough for a beginner. Cost: $90 for a set if 2

3. Go to creativelive.com and purchase Speedlighting 101 with Mark Wallace. It's a 3-day web workshop that will teach you everything about off-camera flash. Cost: $150 and worth every penny.

4. Go to Flickr and take a look at the strobist group. You'll get an idea of the kinds of pics you'll be able to achieve with 1 speedlite, 2 speedlites and so on. Cost: Free

5. Purchase a cheap air cushioned light stand from Adorama or B&HVideo along with an umbrella holder. Cost: Around $45

6. Purchase convertible 45 inch umbrella (removable black top and shoot through white underneath. Cost: $30-$45

If you get all of that you should have a cheap-ish 1 light set up that will allow you to take portraits that have nice soft light. If you decide to get a softbox, I recommend the Cheetah QBox over the Lastolite Ezbox. It's cheaper, comes with accessories.

Bottom line, the Yongnuo 568 gives you all the features of Canon's previous flagship flash (558 ex ii), with only a small decrease in power it lacks the built-in radio triggering of Canon's 600ex-RT, but so what? If you buy the 600, you're limited to working with only Canon flashes, which are very expensive. The Yongnuo gives you high speed sync and ETTL at a very reasonable cost and the 622c radio triggers can be used with Canon or Yongnuo flashes, which helps to keep the cost down.

Keep
In mind, this is coming from a guy who owns a 558exii and a 600ex-RT. Hope this info helps you out. Off-camera flash is sort of a hassle, but its completely necessary if you want to be able to control the light in your pictures. Have fun!


+ 1 fully agree. If you have a little bit more cash buy the 580 2 instead of the YN568, for brand and potential better compatiblity in the future (it is however an assumption). If not stick to the 568...

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Re: First external flash? Lots of beginner's questions!
« Reply #30 on: March 28, 2013, 01:36:03 PM »

Skirball

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Re: First external flash? Lots of beginner's questions!
« Reply #31 on: March 28, 2013, 02:03:11 PM »
Quick pole: How many of the people advising against a 600EX-RT actually own one?

I ask because for years I have answered this first flash question and have always said get a secondhand 550EX, 95% of the functionality of the 580EX and 580EX II for comparative peanuts. But the game has changed, the 600 is the future. If you are finance limited then sure piss around with clones, I have. But the OP specifically stated they were happy to get a 600 if it was worth it, well I own one (actually three and an ST-E3-RT) and they are worth it.

Well yes, that's quick and dismissive.  I've never owned a Stradivarius either, but I'd feel qualified to tell someone looking at getting into the violin that they don't need one.  I never said that the 600RT is a bad flash, I'm just saying that it's overly expensive and pigeon holes you into Canon's RT technology.  I get it, you own three and the command unit.  I'm sure they're fantastic.  But you're also in close to $2000 for a three light setup.  You can do a lot with $2000 for a lighting setup.

The OP hasn't even tried flash yet.  A lot of people hate it and don't want to deal with the hassle.  Maybe he loves it; I'm just suggesting a more modest introduction to the art.  Mostly though, I'm trying to offer contrasting opinion, because it seems the standard advice around here is to suggest everyone needs top of the line everything.  Hell, I'm surprised nobody has jumped in to tell the OP that he needs to upgrade to the 5d3.

And yeah, sure, the OP said they were happy to get a 600RT, after people told him to get one.  If you look at his first post he also says:

"I can afford a 600EX-RT, but I'm guessing there are features I'm guaranteed never to use, and that I'm better off spending money on several other units?"

and

"I don't mind paying more for more features, but if a flash has features I'm never going to use, I'd rather spend my money elsewhere (or on several flash units)."

The guy is looking for advice, so that's what we're giving him.  I'm not saying I'm right, I'm not saying you're wrong.  I'm just providing my opinion on the matter.  Don't dismiss my opinions because I don't own the piece in question, we're not talking performance here like a camera, it's a set of features - features my setup has as well.

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Re: First external flash? Lots of beginner's questions!
« Reply #31 on: March 28, 2013, 02:03:11 PM »