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Thread: SB-400 or SB-600

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    SB-400 or SB-600

    Hi guys I'm looking at purchasing one of these flashes, preferably the SB-400 from reviews I have been reading.

    I would like to know what your input is, I'd be mainly shooting skate and just other random shots etc. say for family functions etc.

    The main reason why I want to purchase a SB-400 for this reason- It's smaller then a Sb-600 and does the same things except for you cannot turn it around and its easy to create a soft box, though I'd look like a bit of a retard carting that around haha

    thanks for any help/suggestions!
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    Being able to "turn it around" is a big bonus so I'd say the SB 600...in my mind the SB 400 is only a slight improvement on your on board flash, dont really see the point.

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    oh true, I've just being reading a heap of reviews with people saying it's better because it's so simple etc.

    thank you for your help I'll be looking around in the flash department soonish

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    Way Down Yonder in the Paw Paw Patch jim's Avatar
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    For once I tend to disagree with Colin... Of course it depends on how you want to use it, but don't dismiss the SB400. That little bit of extra power over the on-board flash comes in pretty handy, as does the ability to tilt it up and bounce it off the ceiling. You miss out on much of the flexibility of the SB600, but the smaller size is a real advantage too.

    Hell, get both!
    All constructive criticism accepted with gratitude.


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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    I am going to go with Colin but for differing reasons. Jordan has stated in other threads that he is saving for a semi-pro camera (D300 i think from memory). The SB400 isnt compatible with the Nikon CLS (from what I understand). A flash unit can last you a lifetime, during which you might change bodies several times, I reckon you should go the SB600 as it has CLS, to sort of 'future proof' your kit.
    "It is one thing to make a picture of what a person looks like, it is another thing to make a portrait of who they are" - Paul Caponigro

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    Member Bunyip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ricktas View Post
    ...I reckon you should go the SB600 as it has CLS, to sort of 'future proof' your kit.
    That seals it for me. With the Nikon CLS you could get awesome skating shots by putting the flash beneath, behind, above, or next to the skater. Go with the SB-600.

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    Amor fati! ving's Avatar
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    the 600 IS more flexible... go that way if you can afford it

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    definitely the sb600
    infact, get 2 600s
    Thanks,
    Nam

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    I have the 400 and lets just say I wish had the 600. Mind you I got mine for free so I cant complain, however wish I had the option at the time and could off paid the difference
    Newbie to the world of Digital Gear: Nikon D60 - 18-55mm - 55 - 200mm - SB400 - New Sigma 10-20mm
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    Way Down Yonder in the Paw Paw Patch jim's Avatar
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    From Nikon USA, on SB400:

    *
    Compact, lightweight Speedlight unit perfect for anyone looking for more power and coverage than a built-in flash.
    *
    Simple, intuitive operation. Put it on, turn it on and shoot!
    *
    18mm angle of coverage with Nikon DX-format digital SLR cameras.
    *
    Utilizes Nikon's i-TTL intelligent flash technology for great flash exposures.
    *
    Operates on two AA-size (1.5V) batteries.
    *
    Fast 2.5 second recycling time keeps you shooting quickly.
    *
    Bounce capabilities in 4 steps-up to 90 degrees helps reduce background shadows and soften the light.
    *
    Approximate guide number of 98.4 feet at ISO 200 (at 18mm zoom head setting).
    *
    Flash shooting distance range from 2 ft. up to 66 ft.
    *
    Compatible with all Nikon Creative Lighting System cameras.

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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    Ah. thanks Jim. the Australian site didnt mention that it was compatible, so I assumed it wasn't.

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    it means cameras with CLS can use the SB400 - the hotshoe connection allows for iTTL
    it cannot do Advanced Wireless Lighting

    http://www.nikonusa.com/pdf/manuals/...hts/SB-400.pdf

    the flash head can tilt upwards by 90*. the sb600 can go up past 90*, but also 90* right and 180* left.

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    thanks for your help guys, and rick you were correct I am going to be getting d300 in time haha

    but yeah I've chosen the SB-600 or even the SB-700 when it comes out (shouldn't be much longer)

    just gotta get saving more now, getting close to $60 for my first pay check from a job in a long time so I'm happy haha

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    I stand corrected a little in my comment, I should of done some reading first up ...I wasn't aware the SB 400 could tilt it's head, I thought it was fixed. So in light of this it may be a good choice if only used for basic functions, and not as cumbersome as the taller mounted SB 600, 800, 900's...but if wishing to do more creative work the SB 600 would be the way to go.


    Upon reading a little more about the SB400 I'm even contemplating buying one purely for birding purposes as it less likely to snag on trees and bushes and snap off like my last external flash....more compact might be a wise move if using a flash outdoors for birding or sporting.

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    Exactly Colin, the Sb-400 is quite capable of bouncing, iTTL'ing and is very small and compact, even shirt pocket material.

    Not as powerful and fully optioned as its bigger brothers but that's not what you need all the time.
    Darren
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    for what it is worth - I went through the same thought process as you only a couple of months ago and ended up with the SB600.

    I am very happy with it.

    my main reasons were wireless capable using the d90 as the commander (surprisingly handy), portrait(side) tilting is very useful and the extra power a bonus.

    It is certainly bulkier than the 400 but it is not overly so. the 600 won;t be something you might take "just for" where as you probably might with the 400.

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    sb400 has a tilt head but no swivel, which makes it virtually useless for bouncing apart from ceiling bounce which is okay in a pinch.

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    the 400 does not have on-board controls ie. you have to drive flash exposure etc through camera menus. The ability to do remote off camera lighting is also something i don't think i could live without now...

  19. #19
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    Yesterday I was faced with the decision to either buy a new SB-400 or SB-600 for my newly acquired D7K.
    This was because someone on an online forum I frequent had a used SB-600 for sale, asking the price of the SB-400.
    I could have put off the purchase decision and picked up something at a later date but I figured
    the SB-600 for $135AU was a good price (after looking at ebays completed sales $170-$230).
    I'm assuming its fully functional with the D7K

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    I have a SB 400 and a Yongnuo YN-468.

    I don't use flash that often but the SB 400 tiny and easily fits in a jacket pocket. My light weight kit is the SB 400 with my D7000 and a 35mm f/1.8. I find I can get good results with that combo.

    I use the YN-468 for off camera stuff with a couple of Yongnuo wireless triggers. I know I can use the commander mode on my camera but the triggers are just so simple to use.

    Back to the question. I recommend the SB 400 but if you are only going to fork out for one flash, get the SB 600. It's a lot more versatile.

    My next flash will be a Yongnuo YN-560. I don't use flash enough to warrant the extra $$ for the SB 600.

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