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Author Topic: looking for my 1st flash  (Read 7058 times)

april

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looking for my 1st flash
« on: May 17, 2012, 10:00:50 AM »
good day!

I hope someone would share me his idea on this one. I'm looking for my my 1st flash, for what type
of shooting? HIGH SPEED SYNC as I'll be doing portraits in bright daylight. I haven't tried one (as i'm not a big fan of flash photography) so I don't have any idea how much power do I need.

thanks for your help!

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looking for my 1st flash
« on: May 17, 2012, 10:00:50 AM »

JerryKnight

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Re: looking for my 1st flash
« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2012, 12:34:49 PM »
Budget? That's really the big question, because everything about the shooting depends on the exact lighting situations. Sometimes a simple 430EX2 will be enough, sometimes you'd need more.

If your budget is unlimited, it's easy - just go get a 600EX-RT.

If you don't want to spend $600+ on one Speedlite, then you can either go with a 430EX2 or 580EX2, or you could look at 3rd party E-TTL-compatible speedlites.

I've become a fan of Yongnuo, and they make the YN-565EX that looks very similar in specs (and appearance) to the 580EX2, except it's only around $150. I believe that Sunpak, Vivitar, etc. also make E-TTL-compatible flashes for cheaper than what Canon Speedlites cost. In the long run, third party flashes probably aren't as well-made or reliable as Canon's, but in the short-term they'll probably do a comparable job, and it's a smaller investment to find out if E-TTL flashes will help your style of photography.

wickidwombat

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Re: looking for my 1st flash
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2012, 07:31:27 PM »
good day!

I hope someone would share me his idea on this one. I'm looking for my my 1st flash, for what type
of shooting? HIGH SPEED SYNC as I'll be doing portraits in bright daylight. I haven't tried one (as i'm not a big fan of flash photography) so I don't have any idea how much power do I need.

thanks for your help!


if you are planning on using the cannon hss then you are going to need more than one flash as hss drops the power outpout considerably then you have to factor in more power loss for your defuser you need 2 or 3 set up as a ganglight

I use one of these
http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/3-Head-Triple-Hot-Shoe-Mount-Adapter-3-in-1-Flash-Light-Bracket-Umbrella-Holder-/221002921751?pt=AU_Flashes&hash=item3374ccf717
on a stand with a 40" shoot through umbrella

Also as i have mentioned previously the phottix odins will allow flashes to fire at full power at anywhere up to 1/8000 sec even studio monolights!
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april

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Re: looking for my 1st flash
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2012, 08:54:28 PM »
Budget? That's really the big question, because everything about the shooting depends on the exact lighting situations. Sometimes a simple 430EX2 will be enough, sometimes you'd need more.

If your budget is unlimited, it's easy - just go get a 600EX-RT.

If you don't want to spend $600+ on one Speedlite, then you can either go with a 430EX2 or 580EX2, or you could look at 3rd party E-TTL-compatible speedlites.

I've become a fan of Yongnuo, and they make the YN-565EX that looks very similar in specs (and appearance) to the 580EX2, except it's only around $150. I believe that Sunpak, Vivitar, etc. also make E-TTL-compatible flashes for cheaper than what Canon Speedlites cost. In the long run, third party flashes probably aren't as well-made or reliable as Canon's, but in the short-term they'll probably do a comparable job, and it's a smaller investment to find out if E-TTL flashes will help your style of photography.


600RT is too expensive for me at this time as I just bought a 5d3 that's why i'm looking into 580 ex2 but these are rare at the moment here in Oz don't know if the stock was depleted or just being kept to boost sales of the 600RT. I saw the yongnou 565 but I don't know if I could fire that at high speeds. Considering the price of 600rt, I could already get a studio flashhead from that amount but still I don't know if I could use those flashheads on high speeds as well that's why I seek your expertise on these matter.

thanks

if you are planning on using the cannon hss then you are going to need more than one flash as hss drops the power outpout considerably then you have to factor in more power loss for your defuser you need 2 or 3 set up as a ganglight

I use one of these
http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/3-Head-Triple-Hot-Shoe-Mount-Adapter-3-in-1-Flash-Light-Bracket-Umbrella-Holder-/221002921751?pt=AU_Flashes&hash=item3374ccf717
on a stand with a 40" shoot through umbrella

Also as i have mentioned previously the phottix odins will allow flashes to fire at full power at anywhere up to 1/8000 sec even studio monolights!

pj1974

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Re: looking for my 1st flash
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2012, 11:44:05 PM »
I have a Nissin 866mkII flash, and am very happy with it.  Matched to my 7D, it produces great results.  ;)

It's got good power (slightly more than the Canon 580EXII). The user interface took a bit of getting used to, but now that I'm more familiar with it - find it very user friendly.

The LCD screen is better than the Canon LCD screens, imho - especially when working in low light! Plus it has a sub-flash, and construction quality is professional.  :)

The 7D flash menu can be used for various (including most advanced) functions, OR the 866mkII in-built menu can be used. Note - the Nissin 866 (mkI) works with a 7D, but not all the advanced functions, eg wireless, etc.

I bought the Nissin 866mkII at half the price of the Canon 580EXII! So from that angle, I highly recommend it too.  8)

Paul
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wickidwombat

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Re: looking for my 1st flash
« Reply #5 on: May 17, 2012, 11:48:49 PM »
here you go

if you can handle dealing with carrying around portable powwer supplies (I made my own with a 1000W pure sign wave inverter and 2 sealed lead acid golf buggy batteries in a lowepro 200AW nova bag)

these are seriously good value and awesome studio flash heads
http://www.proworld.com.au/elinchrom-d-lite-it-4-to-go-set-01-20805?gclid=CNbFiMX1iLACFUZNpgodgT9POg

this will fire those flash heads at any power setting you like at any shutter speed up to 1/8000 sec
http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Phottix-Odin-TTL-Flash-Trigger-2-Receiver-fr-Canon-F351-/400236365549?pt=AU_Cameras_Photographic_Accessories&hash=item5d2ff246ed

if your intention is to dominate the midday sun this has way more grunt than trying to do it with speedlights

i have tested this out and mix the flash up with speedlights too, only wierd glitch i have found is when mixing the elinchrom and speedlights the light seem out of sync at 1/250 second all other shutter speeds are fine
I've tested this with 5Dmk2 5Dmk3 and 1Dmk3

the yongnuo does not have canon HSS and the nissin 866i that paul recomended does
for me the nissin is too close in price to the 430exii so i would just go the 430exii instead

i am considerig buying a yongnuo 565 to test with my odins since they are only $150 and have all the same functions as a 580 except HSS its pretty good value if they work

« Last Edit: May 18, 2012, 02:53:31 AM by wickidwombat »
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briansquibb

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Re: looking for my 1st flash
« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2012, 03:38:42 AM »
If you live that part of the world where Odins are not available then Pocket Wizard mini/flexes can do the same.

I am currently driving 8 flashes off mine at the moment for some serious light

At the other end, for walkabout I put a 430EXII and mini on the hotshoe and get hss at full power


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Re: looking for my 1st flash
« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2012, 03:38:42 AM »

pwp

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Re: looking for my 1st flash
« Reply #7 on: May 18, 2012, 05:05:05 AM »
If you live that part of the world where Odins are not available then Pocket Wizard mini/flexes can do the same.
I am currently driving 8 flashes off mine at the moment for some serious light
At the other end, for walkabout I put a 430EXII and mini on the hotshoe and get hss at full power

Doesn't the Pocket Wizard Mini TT1 http://www.pocketwizard.com/products/transmitter_receiver/minitt1-canon/ have the huge advantage of massive power savings in HSS mode? This is huge if you want to do a continuous burst and need your HSS output to keep up for at least the first few frames of a 10FPS burst.

If you only ever need single frame then I guess the Odins might be OK. But why not travel first class? I'm looking at the PW setup and checking compatibility with 5D3. I know 1D4 compatibility is fine.

Wicked Wombat, thanks for the link to the triple hotshoe adapter. Cool!

Paul Wright

april

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Re: looking for my 1st flash
« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2012, 10:35:51 PM »
I have a Nissin 866mkII flash, and am very happy with it.  Matched to my 7D, it produces great results.  ;)

It's got good power (slightly more than the Canon 580EXII). The user interface took a bit of getting used to, but now that I'm more familiar with it - find it very user friendly.

The LCD screen is better than the Canon LCD screens, imho - especially when working in low light! Plus it has a sub-flash, and construction quality is professional.  :)

The 7D flash menu can be used for various (including most advanced) functions, OR the 866mkII in-built menu can be used. Note - the Nissin 866 (mkI) works with a 7D, but not all the advanced functions, eg wireless, etc.

I bought the Nissin 866mkII at half the price of the Canon 580EXII! So from that angle, I highly recommend it too.  8)

Paul

thanks for sharing your thought.. I'd be happier if these can be fired at HSS and lastly they're only available online from other countries.

april

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Re: looking for my 1st flash
« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2012, 11:09:37 PM »
here you go

if you can handle dealing with carrying around portable powwer supplies (I made my own with a 1000W pure sign wave inverter and 2 sealed lead acid golf buggy batteries in a lowepro 200AW nova bag)

these are seriously good value and awesome studio flash heads
http://www.proworld.com.au/elinchrom-d-lite-it-4-to-go-set-01-20805?gclid=CNbFiMX1iLACFUZNpgodgT9POg

this will fire those flash heads at any power setting you like at any shutter speed up to 1/8000 sec
http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Phottix-Odin-TTL-Flash-Trigger-2-Receiver-fr-Canon-F351-/400236365549?pt=AU_Cameras_Photographic_Accessories&hash=item5d2ff246ed

if your intention is to dominate the midday sun this has way more grunt than trying to do it with speedlights

i have tested this out and mix the flash up with speedlights too, only wierd glitch i have found is when mixing the elinchrom and speedlights the light seem out of sync at 1/250 second all other shutter speeds are fine
I've tested this with 5Dmk2 5Dmk3 and 1Dmk3

the yongnuo does not have canon HSS and the nissin 866i that paul recomended does
for me the nissin is too close in price to the 430exii so i would just go the 430exii instead

i am considerig buying a yongnuo 565 to test with my odins since they are only $150 and have all the same functions as a 580 except HSS its pretty good value if they work


thanks wickid!! you're a true gem on this forum by testing a lot of stuff and sharing the results to us.

I'm glad you mention those elinchrom, they look good(price & feature wise) but does HSS work with skyport speed trigger?

wickidwombat

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Re: looking for my 1st flash
« Reply #10 on: May 20, 2012, 07:42:31 PM »
unfortunatley you are limited to the xsync speed of the camera witht he skyports (they are fine for the studio though) however the odins are truely awesome with these lights

I quite often mix the elinchroms with speed lights for examplt if i want to use mutliple back ground lights i can just bang the speedlights to manual and they link up perfectly or stick a snoot on em to pick up some hairlights or some detail highlight, and the elinchroms work as the main lights quite often i just use an octobox as a key light and a strip light as a fill light.

I also buy elinchrom to bowens adaptors off ebay and buy bowens light modifiers as they are much cheaper than the genuine elinchrom ones i'll dig out a link for my favourite ebay store for light modifiers. all come from china but they are really great i've had 2 items shipped that got damaged and they replaced them. very helpfull people heres the link
http://stores.ebay.com.au/selens?_trksid=p4340.l2563

i have bought all my light modifiers from these guys
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pj1974

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Re: looking for my 1st flash
« Reply #11 on: May 20, 2012, 09:22:48 PM »

thanks for sharing your thought.. I'd be happier if these can be fired at HSS and lastly they're only available online from other countries.

With pleasure, April.

Just note - that the Nissin 866 (both mkI and mkII) CAN be fired at HSS.   :)

Wickidwombat above said that he would prefer the Canon 430EXii as the price of the Nissin 866mkII is similar (which is fair enough if you want to stay with Canon). Just realise the Nissin 866mkII has similar FEATURES of the higher end Canon though (but at half the price) and it even has some features above the Canon 580 EXII, eg sub-flash.

I do realise though that for some, online internet shopping is a risk. It didn't stop me on this occasion, and I'm happy.  While generally I do prefer to have Canon branded photography equipment, there are times I do buy other manufacturers.  For example, I have a great Sigma 10-20mm lens, and a Hahnel wireless remote timer / intervalometer and the Nissin external flash. I'm very happy with each of these... but most of the rest of actual photography gear is Canon.

Best wishes

Paul
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DB

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Re: looking for my 1st flash
« Reply #12 on: May 20, 2012, 10:34:15 PM »
Presumably you're going to be shooting wide open with fast primes @ 1/1000s or faster because as you say you'll be shooting outdoors (daylight) and primarily portraits, so really shallow DOF, but you said which camera you intend to use but not what glass you already have. The reason I say this is that if you have a zoom lens like a 70-200mm f2.8L II IS USM already, then you can achieve a similar look @f2.8 (from a distance) as you'd get from say a typical portrait lens at f2 or even f1.4 (up close).

If it was my 1st flash I'd be looking to try cheaper alternatives like the 430EXII or the YN-565EX to see what the real-world limitations are, and if those don't work out, then opt or the flagship canon models. Personally I use a couple of Yongnuo YN-565EX's mounted on stands shooting through white umbrellas and my 7D triggers them up to 1/300s and like the 580EXII's the power setting is adjustable from 1/128 up to 1/1 in one-third increments.

Many Pro's shooting e.g. fashion outdoors/indoors now use long lenses. Otherwise, if your lens collection is mainly short-zooms or primes and your budget is tight (having just spent a lot on a 5D3) then you might want to consider continuous lighting options (can be quite inexpensive).

But the real advantage of avoiding HSS and going with 3rd-party flashguns for the time-being is, that you can buy 3 or 4 YN-565's for the price of 1 x 580XII....then you have Key Light, Fill Light, Back-Light & Hair-Light options that multiple speedlights give you.

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Re: looking for my 1st flash
« Reply #12 on: May 20, 2012, 10:34:15 PM »

briansquibb

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Re: looking for my 1st flash
« Reply #13 on: May 21, 2012, 12:59:55 AM »

Many Pro's shooting e.g. fashion outdoors/indoors now use long lenses.

I used to think the 135 was the ideal length for ff, but am now shooting with a 200 if that is possible.

I would think 3 lights are sufficient for most standard portraits more than that it is for creativity/effects.

wickidwombat

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Re: looking for my 1st flash
« Reply #14 on: May 21, 2012, 02:05:51 AM »

Many Pro's shooting e.g. fashion outdoors/indoors now use long lenses.

I used to think the 135 was the ideal length for ff, but am now shooting with a 200 if that is possible.

I would think 3 lights are sufficient for most standard portraits more than that it is for creativity/effects.

or really big groups of people might use more than 3 but i think 3 would cover a pretty big group (not using HSS obviously)
bunch of speedlights on stands with shoot throughs evenly spaced covering the whole group ETTL and its nice and easy
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Re: looking for my 1st flash
« Reply #14 on: May 21, 2012, 02:05:51 AM »