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Thread: Studio Lighting

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    Member rem286's Avatar
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    Studio Lighting

    I have a dilema with choosing a new set of studio lights.
    My wife is using a Nikon D300s with Nikkor 24-70 f2.8 lens for some full body portraits.
    Which of the following brands gives the best quality light:
    Alienbees
    Bowens
    Elinchrom
    Flashpro

    The Flashpro portable kits look good but can't find anything about them apart from the Dragon Image website.

    Any suggestions?

    Thanks,
    Rob

  2. #2
    Moderately Underexposed I @ M's Avatar
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    Rob, I hope that you get a few responses from users of the brands that you have mentioned.
    I know of a few members here that have the Alienbees and others that have Elinchrom kits/lights.
    The Flashpro branded kits vary a lot in price and specs but at the lower end of the price range look very much like "generic" Chinese flash heads. Don't let the country of manufacture or price point of those lights put you off as the quality of them has improved markedly lately.
    We have a pair of similar generic 400ws lights that are performing consistently and are quite happy with them.

    As for which light gives off the best quality light, the answer is going to be varied a great deal, at a low end level I would be looking at the type of and availability of modifiers to suit the particular heads that you end up buying in conjunction with the power level needed for the job you ( or your wife) are doing balanced against your budget.
    The Bowens "S" mount is very commonly used which has resulted in many "cheap" modifiers to be bought to suit lights with that mount.

    GregoryH posted a while ago after buying the Flashpro lights, maybe he will see this post and give you an opinion of them.
    Andrew
    Nikon, Fuji, Nikkor, Sigma, Tamron, Tokina and too many other bits and pieces to list.



  3. #3
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    rem286's Avatar
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    Thanks Andrew, we are really liking the look of the PCB Einsteins. They look like they might be the go and I can get a set of those for around the same price as the higher end chinese types.

    Anyone used the Einsteins?

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    I've only ever used the Alienbees a couple times. The light was great and consistent. Sorry I can't be more helpful.
    [- Instagram -]

    Nikon Slave... (D90 & D300S)
    -- CCs extremely welcome, further editing of my photos is not. Thanks!

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    Ausphotography Site Sponsor/Advertiser OzzieTraveller's Avatar
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    G'day Rem

    a little sideways ... I'm having a few days in Girraween NP with Jules & others ... GregH is with us and he has a fab set of Flashpro portable lights
    I'll tell him about this post and suggest he replies after easter, once he's back home & on line again

    Regards, Phil
    Of all the stuff in a busy photographers kitbag, the ability to see photographically is the most important
    google me at Travelling School of Photography
    images.: flickr.com/photos/ozzie_traveller/sets/

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    Phil,

    I would appreciate that very much. Thanks for that.

    Rob

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    Quote Originally Posted by Erin View Post
    I've only ever used the Alienbees a couple times. The light was great and consistent. Sorry I can't be more helpful.
    Thanks Erin

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    Hi Rob,

    As mentioned above I have a set of Flashpro 500SP. I've found them to be consistent in colour output, and being both mains and battery powered, very versatile. The accessories all work well, however the softbox is difficult to assemble so I normally leave it setup and carry it around full size. I have used them in the field several times and they have sufficient power to easily make the sun act as a the backlight / hair light.
    I am very happy with the purchase.

    The image below was taken at 4:30pm with the sun as the hair light. White balance set at 5600.


    _DSC2069.jpg by Gregory H, on Flickr
    Bodies: Nikon D4, D300, D80
    Lenses: Nikon AF-S 18-135 kit lens, Nikkor AF-S70-300 1:4.4-5.6 G VR, Nikkor AF Micro 60mm 2.8 D, Nikkor AF 50mm, 1.8 D, Nikkor AF-S 10-24mm f/3.5-4.5 G ED, Nikkor AF-S 24-120 f/4G ED VR, Nikkor AF-s 500mm f4G ED VR
    Accessories: SB600 Flash, Flashpro 500SP Studio Lights, Sekonic L758D light meter, Manfrotto 055XPROB Tripod, Velbon RUP-43 Monopod, Wemberley Head
    Monitor: Eizo S2231W with Huey monitor calibrator
    Lowepro Slingshot 100AW, Tamrac T31 case, Computrekker AW

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    If cost doesn't phase you then consider Profoto; top gear but not budget level.
    I have a few friends that use Elinchrom (a Swiss company) with great results; a cousin bought the D-lite 4 kit 6months ago and he loves it.
    The contents are from memory two 400 Watt per second lights, a couple of light stands, a radio trigger, two soft boxes (approximately 60cm x 60 cm, I didnt measure them) and the lights have a cooling fan plus user replacable globes which is something a lot of the cheaper kits dont have ( i.e. if your globes go the lights are useless).
    And Umbrellas vs Softboxes is like NRL vs AFL.

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    Member linden's Avatar
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    a friend of mine just bought an alienbees AB800. He is very happy with it, its very powerful.

    I'm looking forward to shooting with it next weekend.
    My Flickr

    Canon 50D | 135mm f/2.0 | Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 | 50mm f/1.8 | 580 EXII

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    I have the AB1600 and the PCB Giant Softbox. Still learning how to use them but really happy. I brought them as a local pro i am friends with recommended them.

    here is a couple of images

    Your ancestors called it magic, but you call it science. by oliverhiggins, on Flickr


    Flyboy by oliverhiggins, on Flickr


    Flyboy Setup by oliverhiggins, on Flickr
    A heap of Nikon stuff and some really bright lights!

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    I work with Elinchrom Flash heads, and the reason for this is the Style RX units I use are able to be powered from mains and by Elinchrom battery systems, and they have a very short flash duration. One important factor with choosing your flash heads is the availability and cost of replacement parts, and the availability of light modifiers - and the range that is offered from the manufacturer. There are some great 3rd party products like mola soft-lights like the fantastic mantti which can be used with any system, but there are things like the Elinchrom beauty dish deflectors that are unique - and give you some interesting options on how to light your subjects.

    Elinchrom flash heads are typically rather expensive to maintain,and not many places typically keep replacement parts in stock. having said that, Elinchrom Flash heads are extremely well constructed and are quick to set up. Bowens flash units are more common here in Adelaide therefore replacement parts and accessories are much easier to find.
    Last edited by Othrelos; 24-05-2011 at 3:56pm.

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