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Budget studio flash kit?


Lucian 4 561
8 Jul 2013 1:00PM
have you thought about just buying studio stands, adaptors, light modifiers and just using cheap third party speedlights instead of just studio heads. I have got a few yongnou speedlites that only cost 45 each and they are really good for portraits and they run on batterys so don't need electricity supply.

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Alda 2 46 27 United Kingdom
8 Jul 2013 2:40PM
I do have a few off-camera flashes, but I don't know if they're good enough or strong enough for fine art nude work. I think the studio lights may be better for this, but I may be wrong TongueGrin
Paul Morgan e2
13 15.7k 6 England
8 Jul 2013 3:02PM
If your serious about studio photography proper strobes are best, you get modelling lights with these.

Speedlites might be better for the odd bit of location stuff were power could be a problem and you don`t own power packs.
arhb e2
7 2.4k 68 United Kingdom
8 Jul 2013 6:08PM
Yes very true Smile
Paul Morgan e2
13 15.7k 6 England
8 Jul 2013 6:28PM
Smile Smile
miptog 9 3.5k 61 United Kingdom
8 Jul 2013 6:43PM

Quote:So it looks like it's between these three:

Metz: http://www.wexphotographic.com/buy-metz-bl-400-twin-head-softbox-kit/p1537993?cm...

Elinchrom: http://www.wexphotographic.com/buy-elinchrom-400-400-d-lite-4-rx-softbox/p153330...

Lastolite: http://www.wexphotographic.com/buy-lastolite-lumen8-twin-head-softbox-kit/p15184...



A few things to consider before you make your final choice:

Durability: If you anticipate that you will be using the lights heavily you need something that is durable.
Modifiers: These will likely "soak up" a lot of light, so the more power you have the better.

I think someone else mentioned it earlier in the thread; something like the Bowen Gemini 500 may be worth looking at.
Alda 2 46 27 United Kingdom
8 Jul 2013 6:47PM
Eeeek, that's wayyyy above my budget lol. I shall be shooting mostly portraits/boudoir with softboxes, so will need softer light anyway. For my fine art nudes I will use with grids/snoots, so the 400 should have enough power???

I'm more confused than ever now Tongue
cattyal e2
9 6.1k 6 England
8 Jul 2013 6:52PM
How big is your potential studio?
Alda 2 46 27 United Kingdom
8 Jul 2013 7:00PM
Possibly 1000 square foot (92 square m). Or another one that's a bit smaller (4m x 6m) - having a look at them this week.
cattyal e2
9 6.1k 6 England
8 Jul 2013 10:14PM
Sorry I've not returned with my thoughts yet - a stack of phone calls this evening plus getting ready for a show which needs to be done by tonight - the phone calls kinda knackered everything up! I will return eventually!
cathal 10 492 4 Ireland
9 Jul 2013 12:37PM
Have you considered these ? Elemental have a range of studio flash systems to offer you, and they advertise on ePz too!

From my own experience using studio flash systems, mainly doing the type of work you are interested in, is that power is not everything. Typically, you will require softer, lower light. I would regularly use just one light, (there's only one sun, right?) and modify spills, etc. A twin head system would be more than sufficient, and if you went for a third head, then a low power one would suffice as these tend to be used as hair lights, etc.

You say that this is for a commercial venture, in which case I'd be inclined to say the budget is at the lower end of what you want to spend. Accessories and reflectors need to be considered also. You've some good shots in your portfolio, so what did you use to light these?

Let us all know what you decide.
miptog 9 3.5k 61 United Kingdom
9 Jul 2013 4:09PM

Quote:Eeeek, that's wayyyy above my budget lol. I shall be shooting mostly portraits/boudoir with softboxes, so will need softer light anyway. For my fine art nudes I will use with grids/snoots, so the 400 should have enough power???

I'm more confused than ever now



Keep within your budget. The modifiers that come with the kits you mention should be fine for head and shoulder and 3/4 length shots. You will need a much larger modifier to get even lighting on a full body shot, so you may need to factor that into your budget as well.

You have to start somewhere, so work with what you can afford, and as the business grows, invest in new kit as required.


Quote:You say that this is for a commercial venture, in which case I'd be inclined to say the budget is at the lower end of what you want to spend. Accessories and reflectors need to be considered also. You've some good shots in your portfolio, so what did you use to light these?


I agree with Cathal comment above.
Alda 2 46 27 United Kingdom
9 Jul 2013 5:24PM
Thanks for that Cathal. Actually, this one looks better, and also has a nice big softbox (90 x 90cm), and two reflector dishes:

http://www.studio-flash.com/trinityt4twin.html

Would that do the trick? I can just get a snoot/grid.

GrinGrinGrin

Oh, and most of the nude/glamour shots in my pf were taken at studio tuition days, so I didn't have much to do with the lighting. The tutor, however, didn't really teach much and is a little bit reluctant to answer questions SadTongue.
arhb e2
7 2.4k 68 United Kingdom
9 Jul 2013 6:31PM
That is a shame Alda, as the lighting set ups are key, in my opinion to producing quality art nude work., or any studio lighting based work for that matter.
Paul Morgan e2
13 15.7k 6 England
9 Jul 2013 7:44PM
It might worth keeping a little aside for a light meter, there not essential but they certainly make life easier in the studio.

Cheap basic flash meters start at around 50 and a lot more for the all singing and dancing meters some can be 500 or more.

Sekonics or Polaris do some good basic meters for around 130.

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