Elinchrom announces the ELB 500 TTL: The world’s most powerful portable TTL flash system

Viggo

EOS R5
Dec 13, 2010
4,741
1,431
«Haha, so they say that their 500 Ws are almost as good as their 400 Ws?
Sounds excentric, bordering on bizarre, doesn't it?»

Considering how much more power I get of my Bron with HS compared to my previous B1 with HSS, I find nothing weird about that statement. HSS eats power where HS just doesn’t.
 

hne

Gear limits your creativity
Jan 8, 2016
314
34
Viggo said:
«Haha, so they say that their 500 Ws are almost as good as their 400 Ws?
Sounds excentric, bordering on bizarre, doesn't it?»

Considering how much more power I get of my Bron with HS compared to my previous B1 with HSS, I find nothing weird about that statement. HSS eats power where HS just doesn’t.

Here's a full-power test between ELB 500 TTL and ELB 400 at 1/8000s: https://aifo.se/blogg/elinchrom-elb-500-ttl-test-bts/

Seems to me you get at least an extra stop using HS on the ELB 400 compared to HSS on the ELB 500 TTL.
 

Viggo

EOS R5
Dec 13, 2010
4,741
1,431
hne said:
Viggo said:
«Haha, so they say that their 500 Ws are almost as good as their 400 Ws?
Sounds excentric, bordering on bizarre, doesn't it?»

Considering how much more power I get of my Bron with HS compared to my previous B1 with HSS, I find nothing weird about that statement. HSS eats power where HS just doesn’t.

Here's a full-power test between ELB 500 TTL and ELB 400 at 1/8000s: https://aifo.se/blogg/elinchrom-elb-500-ttl-test-bts/

Seems to me you get at least an extra stop using HS on the ELB 400 compared to HSS on the ELB 500 TTL.

Exactly :)
 

CanonFanBoy

Purple
CR Pro
Jan 28, 2015
5,579
3,978
Irving, Texas
-pekr- said:
CanonFanBoy said:
I'll just take one of these: https://www.adorama.com/fplfx600ptbc.html

More powerful, more compact, a lot less money, TTL, and HSS.

Depends upon your purpose. When on a tripod, all is good (unless in windy outddor conditions with a big softbox). But wishing you a luck, if you just assist e.g. during the wedding, need to move more danymically, hand-holding this 3kg brick upon your head. Been there, done that - I am simply no Rambo :)

I'm no Rambo either. :) But for my purpose, photographing exhausted wedding photographers, a tripod works just fine. ;) ;) ;)
 

-pekr-

EOS R5
CR Pro
Quackator said:
-pekr- said:
1) Elinchrom does not use HyperSync, that's a technology of a PocektWizard. Elinchrom has High-Sync (HS).

Surprise, surprise - that is just another name for the same thing.
Whether they call it High Sync, Super Sync, Hot Sync, Overdrive Sync
ow whatever else - it is always a copy of the original LPA Design
(Pocket Wizard) technology.

Great - we are all using cars - those do have engines and 4 wheels, but other than that, they are all identical in implementation.

Quackator said:
-pekr- said:
2) Their HS of ELB 400 is +/-250K, whereas Profoto B1 was measured at 800K
or even above the 1K of a color difference.

I have seen that. Let me put it this way: One has to work really hard to
bend measurements towards this result.

Those measurements were done using the Sekonic C700 color meter. Suddenly and miraculously, 700-1000+K color difference does not matter, as it does not fit your argument? If those numbers were for an Elinchrom, I can bet you would be already dancing on their grave :)

Quackator said:
-pekr- said:
4) HSS might vary in implementations. Maximal power output is not a measure
of the light output when using HSS. With ELB 500, Elinchrom states (and it has
to be proven), that they have almost the same light output as with the ELB 400
using HS mode.

Haha, so they say that their 500 Ws are almost as good as their 400 Ws?
Sounds excentric, bordering on bizarre, doesn't it?

Eccentric, bizarre - are you talking your replies? :) ELB 400 is voltage controlled unit, whereas ELB 500 is IGBT unit - completly different internals. So yes, ELB500 might be less powerful than ELB400, at certain situations. You attack Elinchrom's claims hardly, yet I wonder, if you know, how much of power output does Profoto marketing gives you for an acclaimed speeds of B1's 1/11000. Isn't it 2Ws. You can surely use it to ovepower sun ... eh, a light candle :)

Quackator said:
-pekr- said:
5) Have you ever used any such strobe, to care about its recycle time?

I have well in excess of 100,000 Ws flash equipment, and I have used
pretty much everything the industry built over the last 40 years.

Maybe you do, but then I don't undrestand your replies ....

Quackator said:
-pekr- said:
I never ever found that being a problem, unless you pray & spray.

Try group shots with large groups. There is always one who squints
or looks less flattering. Those groups have a very short attention span,
so you have to shoot a lot of frames before they disband and/or lose
their patience. Battery operated 1fps from a 1000 Ws head is no luxury, then.

Large groups? And apart from 30-40 ppl you care if one looks somewhere else? If you can't keep your group organised for 10-20 secs, get an assistant :) Also - you shoot groups in full power? If not, you can get more consecutive flashes for sure.

Quackator said:
-pekr- said:
In such a case I would recommend to switch to a continuous lightning.

You have no idea how much power in continuous lights you need to counter the sun, do you?

You have no idea what idea I have. Some shoots are indoors, right? And I envy ppl who have money to buy stuff like Rotolight, Zylight F8 or Arri :) ...

Quackator said:
-pekr- said:
6) They've got plastic head cover. Have you EVER used or seen their kit in live?

Can you shoot with the protection cover on? No.
That's why a proper setup uses glass domes.

You seem to have patent just on everything. Whatever "proper" means in your book, might differin experience to others.

Man, you seem to be a professional, so I just wonder, if you have to downplay this Elinchrom new stuff so hardly :)
 

-pekr-

EOS R5
CR Pro
CanonFanBoy said:
-pekr- said:
CanonFanBoy said:
I'll just take one of these: https://www.adorama.com/fplfx600ptbc.html

More powerful, more compact, a lot less money, TTL, and HSS.

Depends upon your purpose. When on a tripod, all is good (unless in windy outddor conditions with a big softbox). But wishing you a luck, if you just assist e.g. during the wedding, need to move more danymically, hand-holding this 3kg brick upon your head. Been there, done that - I am simply no Rambo :)

I'm no Rambo either. :) But for my purpose, photographing exhausted wedding photographers, a tripod works just fine. ;) ;) ;)

Photographing wedding photographers? Sounds like a new discipline and a business oportunity. Will have to think about it more :)

No, really - I like the studio gear. Modern aproach is to use stuff like FF, fast primes, and no flash. I can see many ppl working with zero flashes, some switching to Sonys, etc.

When we started to do weddings 3 years ago, we took 2 softboxes, 2x Elinchrom RX600, 2 tripods, Godox 850 battery kit on the scene. It was a nice and big garden, local arboretum, many shoots are done there. There is plenty of locations in there. We were not able to move quickly.

So, now the strategy is - ELB400, Deep Octa and a helper monopod. We are walking with bride & groom, and shoot on 8-12 locations there. No time to collapse tripods, softboxes. We have cca 1:30hour max to do the work.

RX600 weighted someting like 2.3kg. Those battery based monoblocks are easily around 3kgs. So, in such conditions, I do prefer the ELB design upon monoblock. But - if you ask me, what I like more, then I can easily admit - monoblocks - looks sexy, cableless, hassle-free.

I use already some stuff from Godox, Aputure, etc., I might add some other equipment to our arsenal. But I need all that equipment to be complementary to some exent. I like e.g. Rotolight, but they imo ask way too much for what they offer, although they can be triggered by Elinchrom's Skyport in their latest generation.

So much cool new stuff around, and so little time/money to play with all of this :)
 

privatebydesign

I post too Much on Here!!
CR Pro
Jan 29, 2011
10,274
5,395
Viggo said:
hne said:
Viggo said:
«Haha, so they say that their 500 Ws are almost as good as their 400 Ws?
Sounds excentric, bordering on bizarre, doesn't it?»

Considering how much more power I get of my Bron with HS compared to my previous B1 with HSS, I find nothing weird about that statement. HSS eats power where HS just doesn’t.

Here's a full-power test between ELB 500 TTL and ELB 400 at 1/8000s: https://aifo.se/blogg/elinchrom-elb-500-ttl-test-bts/

Seems to me you get at least an extra stop using HS on the ELB 400 compared to HSS on the ELB 500 TTL.

Exactly :)

HSS does not "eat power" it is just the difference in the way the two types of exposure work. In HSS the light pulses which means, by definition, at times during the exposure the light is off; in contrast in 'HS' mode the light is always on but in longer over sync speed exposures (1/250-1/1000) the duration of the flash becomes an issue in that the later part of the image doesn't get as much light as the first part.

The two systems fight against the sync issues in different ways and there is no right or wrong, just understand what you are trying to do and get a system that works better for that discipline.

For example, if you are relying on the flash exposure to freeze motion the shorter flash duration technology in HSS will give you better results, HS works by extending the flash duration so doesn't do as good a job. However if you are going for maximum 'separation' or 'over powering the sun' then HS will give you better results on a per power basis because the light is always on during the exposure.
 

LDS

EOS 5D Mark IV
Sep 14, 2012
1,715
248
Quackator said:
Can you shoot with the protection cover on? No.
That's why a proper setup uses glass domes.

You can with the Multifunctional Cap, although it also acts like a diffuser. With these lamps, Elinchrom choose a minimalist design which keeps them small and light - and for some people it's a plus. It's being around for a while, maybe not everybody has issues with it.

Larger lamps like ELB 1200 and Digital RX have domes, but they are also over 2 vs. 0.25 kg.
 

hne

Gear limits your creativity
Jan 8, 2016
314
34
privatebydesign said:
Viggo said:
hne said:
Viggo said:
«Haha, so they say that their 500 Ws are almost as good as their 400 Ws?
Sounds excentric, bordering on bizarre, doesn't it?»

Considering how much more power I get of my Bron with HS compared to my previous B1 with HSS, I find nothing weird about that statement. HSS eats power where HS just doesn’t.

Here's a full-power test between ELB 500 TTL and ELB 400 at 1/8000s: https://aifo.se/blogg/elinchrom-elb-500-ttl-test-bts/

Seems to me you get at least an extra stop using HS on the ELB 400 compared to HSS on the ELB 500 TTL.

Exactly :)

HSS does not "eat power" it is just the difference in the way the two types of exposure work. In HSS the light pulses which means, by definition, at times during the exposure the light is off; in contrast in 'HS' mode the light is always on but in longer over sync speed exposures (1/250-1/1000) the duration of the flash becomes an issue in that the later part of the image doesn't get as much light as the first part.

The two systems fight against the sync issues in different ways and there is no right or wrong, just understand what you are trying to do and get a system that works better for that discipline.

For example, if you are relying on the flash exposure to freeze motion the shorter flash duration technology in HSS will give you better results, HS works by extending the flash duration so doesn't do as good a job. However if you are going for maximum 'separation' or 'over powering the sun' then HS will give you better results on a per power basis because the light is always on during the exposure.

I'm normally trying to abstain from correcting people on the internetz, but since you are one of the most reliable sources of photographic experience I've encountered, I feel I have to make an exception...

HSS works by extending flash duration and HS works by chopping it.

When you turn on HSS you lose a stop, give or take. That's "eating power" in my book. This comes from the fact that HSS needs to shine light for an extra half of your sync speed to keep an even exposure during the time the shutter is partially open anywhere. Half sync speed because the two curtains travel their distance in slightly less than half the time of your sync speed and the time window the whole sensor is exposed when slower than X sync is roughly 1ms. You can't do this continuous output at the same brightness you get for a MAX POWER blast unless using about twice the energy. The exact factor varies with travel times of the shutter curtains.

HS (or SuperSync, HyperSync, ...) work by using a t.5 time longer than your exposure time. If you have a ELB400 with a Quadra HS head in the A port, you get between 1.8 and 3.6 ms t.5 time, where the total exposure time of your camera is about 1/400s+exposure time, so between 2.6ms and 5.6ms. So, there would be some falloff towards one side or the other. Some might argue that you have to get more than one stop of falloff, but the flash output is a curve, not a line and so on.
The shorter shutter speed you use with HS, the smaller the part of the flash output curve you use. But since it is now behaving as a continuous light, you lose a stop per stop of faster shutter, unless you use the wrong part of the output curve.

The upside with HS over HSS is you get to reach peak brightness. The downside is you get falloff.

HSS and HS give exactly the same possibilities of stopping fast motion, since they both make a flash behave like a continuous light source.
 

-pekr-

EOS R5
CR Pro
hne said:
privatebydesign said:
HSS does not "eat power" it is just the difference in the way the two types of exposure work. In HSS the light pulses which means, by definition, at times during the exposure the light is off; in contrast in 'HS' mode the light is always on but in longer over sync speed exposures (1/250-1/1000) the duration of the flash becomes an issue in that the later part of the image doesn't get as much light as the first part.

The two systems fight against the sync issues in different ways and there is no right or wrong, just understand what you are trying to do and get a system that works better for that discipline.

For example, if you are relying on the flash exposure to freeze motion the shorter flash duration technology in HSS will give you better results, HS works by extending the flash duration so doesn't do as good a job. However if you are going for maximum 'separation' or 'over powering the sun' then HS will give you better results on a per power basis because the light is always on during the exposure.

I'm normally trying to abstain from correcting people on the internetz, but since you are one of the most reliable sources of photographic experience I've encountered, I feel I have to make an exception...

HSS works by extending flash duration and HS works by chopping it.

When you turn on HSS you lose a stop, give or take. That's "eating power" in my book. This comes from the fact that HSS needs to shine light for an extra half of your sync speed to keep an even exposure during the time the shutter is partially open anywhere. Half sync speed because the two curtains travel their distance in slightly less than half the time of your sync speed and the time window the whole sensor is exposed when slower than X sync is roughly 1ms. You can't do this continuous output at the same brightness you get for a MAX POWER blast unless using about twice the energy. The exact factor varies with travel times of the shutter curtains.

HS (or SuperSync, HyperSync, ...) work by using a t.5 time longer than your exposure time. If you have a ELB400 with a Quadra HS head in the A port, you get between 1.8 and 3.6 ms t.5 time, where the total exposure time of your camera is about 1/400s+exposure time, so between 2.6ms and 5.6ms. So, there would be some falloff towards one side or the other. Some might argue that you have to get more than one stop of falloff, but the flash output is a curve, not a line and so on.
The shorter shutter speed you use with HS, the smaller the part of the flash output curve you use. But since it is now behaving as a continuous light, you lose a stop per stop of faster shutter, unless you use the wrong part of the output curve.

The upside with HS over HSS is you get to reach peak brightness. The downside is you get falloff.

HSS and HS give exactly the same possibilities of stopping fast motion, since they both make a flash behave like a continuous light source.

Nice explanation. If someone is interested, here's few animations. If you filter out marketing a bit, you get the idea:

http://elinchrom.com/learn/hss-hs.html

And here is quite nice comparison of Profoto B1 with ELB 400. Not to argue, which is better/worse, but to understand a bit better, how it works:

http://blog.michaelclarkphoto.com/?p=3886
 

hne

Gear limits your creativity
Jan 8, 2016
314
34
...and here are the flash curves and colour rendering indices of the ELB 500 TTL:
https://www.hansvaneijsden.com/elb-500-ttl-experience-new-elinchrom-flash/
 

Viggo

EOS R5
Dec 13, 2010
4,741
1,431
It’s as easy as demonstrated in the link on the previous page. Put a HS light and a HSS light on the same power and watch the HS shot be brighter, that means you get less light out of HSS than HS on the same power setting.

An example is with my B1 and a white BD I had to use full power and keep it really close when using HSS. My Bron lamp with the same type of BD I can use about power 5.0 instead of 10, also considering the Bron at 10.0 is 800Ws vs B1 at 500Ws.
 

Quackator

EOS RP
Jul 19, 2011
379
233
hne said:
Here's a full-power test between ELB 500 TTL and ELB 400 at 1/8000s: https://aifo.se/blogg/elinchrom-elb-500-ttl-test-bts/

Seems to me you get at least an extra stop using HS on the ELB 400 compared to HSS on the ELB 500 TTL.

Yeah, seems so, if you aren't aware of the gradual fall-off from bottom
brightest (and in this image subject closest) to top darkest.

A systematic procedure mistake.

Try that on a flat grey card and the world looks totally different.

This test is useless.
 

Viggo

EOS R5
Dec 13, 2010
4,741
1,431
Quackator said:
hne said:
Here's a full-power test between ELB 500 TTL and ELB 400 at 1/8000s: https://aifo.se/blogg/elinchrom-elb-500-ttl-test-bts/

Seems to me you get at least an extra stop using HS on the ELB 400 compared to HSS on the ELB 500 TTL.

Yeah, seems so, if you aren't aware of the gradual fall-off from bottom
brightest (and in this image subject closest) to top darkest.

A systematic procedure mistake.

Try that on a flat grey card and the world looks totally different.

This test is useless.

Well, there will always a bit of gradation with HS, but tell me how often do you light and even background with HS where it could be an issue? I’ve used mine quite a bit, and normally shoot people, often in portrait mode and outside where ambient is the even light and my lamp is the key light. This will never be an issue for me, and the difference in power output is worth it.

Besides, at least my B1 also had gradation. It got much worse when Profoto decided to add HSS to the lower settings without it working like it did on the higher power setting.

So either method is compromise. And what is best for you can only you decide. For me HS is the winner.
 

Talys

Canon R5
CR Pro
Feb 16, 2017
2,082
362
Vancouver, BC
Viggo said:
Quackator said:
hne said:
Here's a full-power test between ELB 500 TTL and ELB 400 at 1/8000s: https://aifo.se/blogg/elinchrom-elb-500-ttl-test-bts/

Seems to me you get at least an extra stop using HS on the ELB 400 compared to HSS on the ELB 500 TTL.

Yeah, seems so, if you aren't aware of the gradual fall-off from bottom
brightest (and in this image subject closest) to top darkest.

A systematic procedure mistake.

Try that on a flat grey card and the world looks totally different.

This test is useless.

Well, there will always a bit of gradation with HS, but tell me how often do you light and even background with HS where it could be an issue? I’ve used mine quite a bit, and normally shoot people, often in portrait mode and outside where ambient is the even light and my lamp is the key light. This will never be an issue for me, and the difference in power output is worth it.

Besides, at least my B1 also had gradation. It got much worse when Profoto decided to add HSS to the lower settings without it working like it did on the higher power setting.

So either method is compromise. And what is best for you can only you decide. For me HS is the winner.

With most portraits, the falloff is a plus, since you want the head area brightest, and unless you're showcasing the fashion, the rest of the person gradually darkening a bit is a plus.

I think that HS is a winner on paper, but I don't think that many people care in actual practice.

The downside is, if you get used to shooting it, and you swap in lighting with speedlights, you're back to HSS, and your expectations may be a little different.
 

Quackator

EOS RP
Jul 19, 2011
379
233
hne said:
HSS works by extending flash duration and HS works by chopping it.

Not quite. Both try to make the flash emit light for as long as the shutter blades travel.

The light time needed is always one third stop longer than the max x-sync speed.

The shutter blades always travel at the same speed, no matter if you shoot at
30 seconds or 1/8000 seconds exposure time. The difference is the gap between
the two. At X-sync, the gap is exactly as wide as the frame.

One stop shorter, and the gap is only half as wide, so half the flash light
does not reach the sensor but instead is wasted on the shutter blades.

This counts for both HSS and Hypersync (and it's copies).

Select another stop shorter, and the shutter gap is halfed again,
and again the light is burnt on the shutter blades but does not
reach the sensor. And so on. No matter if you use HSS or Hypersync,
both burn the majority of light onto the shutter blades. Period.

The Elinchrom marketing claim is badly misleading, to say the least.

hne said:
When you turn on HSS you lose a stop, give or take.

The same counts for Hypersync. Simply activating either of the two means
that the flash starts emitting light before the shutter blades start, and still
lights a small time after the shutter has closed again.

This extra preroll and postroll time cannot be used for the exposure, for
both techniques.

On top of that every stop shorter in shutter speed halves the gap between
shutter blades compared to a longer stop and thus kills another stop.

Both HSS and Hypersync are workarounds that will die when global shutters
become available for flash sync as well.

hne said:
HS (or SuperSync, HyperSync, ...)
(...)
The shorter shutter speed you use with HS, the smaller the part of the flash output curve you use.

No. You don't chop anything out. The flash fires free until the minimum discharge
voltage of the capacitor is reached and the plasma in the flash tube dies.

hne said:
HSS and HS give exactly the same possibilities of stopping fast motion, since they
both make a flash behave like a continuous light source.

That is correct.