Flash bracket?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by DeepSpring, Dec 8, 2006.

  1. DeepSpring

    DeepSpring TPF Noob!

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    I have read from the manufacturers how they help elminate shadows and so on, but I was curios to hear from real people what they actually do.

    Can anyone who has one chime in as to the improvements they have actually made for you. And also which do you have?

    I was also wondering I just got a battery grip so it has the vertical shutter buttons, but with a bracket on it seems to me that I would have to turn the camera the opposite way to keep the flash above the lens am i correct? Do you really need to keep the flash above the lens? Thank you. I just ordered a 430ex so I', just trying to figure everything out
     
  2. fmw

    fmw No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I've used flash brackets for years and I don't use them any more. I can get the flash gun further away from the camera with an outstretched arm and carrying the flash gun in side pocket of the vest is comfortable and easy. Just get an inexpensive extension cord and you're ready to go.
     
  3. mysteryscribe

    mysteryscribe TPF Noob!

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    I still use my L bracket but it isnt just an L it swings and a few other cuties. It prevents all red eye and it allows you to turn the camera on it's end for verticle shots and still bounce the flash off the ceiling if you feel the need.
     
  4. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    A bracket will move the flash further away from the lens (than just sitting on top of the camera)...and the further the better. It helps reduce the chance of red-eye. It helps to throw the shadows behind and lower than the subject.

    The real advantage of a flip or rotate bracket...is that you can turn the camera to portrait orientation and still keep the flash above the camera. Other wise, the flash is off to the side...which throws the shadow to the side...which can make for a lot of bad shadows.

    There are several different types. Two main types are flip and camera rotate. The flip brackets allow you to rotate the camera and bracket base...and then flip the bracket arm over, so that it's above the camera. With the rotate brackets, the flash and bracket stay in place...and only the camera rotates.

    With some brackets...you hold the bracket with one hand, and the camera with the other. An instructor of mine recommended the Stroboframe Press style brackets...because they sit they off set the camera, so that you can have both hands on the camera, one on the lens, one to fire.

    I believe that most brackets are made so that the camera is turned counter clock-wise...so that the vertical grip buttons will be in the right place.

    With any of these brackets...you need a cord to connect to the camera. For your 430, you will need the Canon TTL cord, which isn't very cheap. It allows you to keep all the fancy E-TTL metering though...which is good.

    If you are on an important shoot (wedding)...be sure to have more than one, or more than two of these cords...they are notorious for crapping out at bad times.
     
  5. DeepSpring

    DeepSpring TPF Noob!

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    So one of the "L" shaped brackets would throw the shadow off to the side? So I should look for one of the "C" style ones insted?

    thanks for your replies
     
  6. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Well....the simple, non-flipping 'L' brackets will throw the shadows partially to the side...but if the flash is higher...it should help to throw the shadows down as well.

    It really depends on your situation...if your subject is close to a wall...then shadows will be more of a problem...if they are out in the open...then off to the side might be better.

    You might want to consider other accessories. There is the Omnibounce...which is like a Tupperware container and helps to throw some light forward, while bouncing off the ceiling. The Gary Fong Lightsphere, turns the flash into a sort of light bulb shape...throwing light all around.

    This is a video for [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RNCmuExlHvM"]'A better bounce card'[/ame]

    There are plenty of other products as well.

    If you haven't got the hint...bouncing the flash is one of the best ways to use your flash. A lot of these products are made to help you bounce the light...or to put a little bit of light forward...while you bounce most of it off the ceiling or wall etc.
     
  7. DeepSpring

    DeepSpring TPF Noob!

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    When I had my old sigma flash I made a sort of homemade soft box you could call it. It looked more like the stofen diffuser. I made it to you point the flash up and the top and front of the flash was covered in old shirt while the walls were foamcore. it did a nice job of bouncing as well as shooting some forward. I'm going to try and make a better version of this. I'll post instructions when its done if anyone wants.

    My main thing was trying to figure out if I really wanted the bracket tho and right now I think I have more important items to spend $100 or so on after that and a cable.
     
  8. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I don't have the link...and I can't remember into which old thread I posted it...but I made a flash accessory a few months ago. I used the same foam that the 'better bounce card' guy used...it has a stiff plastic inner piece and the top folds down to form a big cup to direct the light forward. I found in on a web site somewhere (link is on my other computer).

    I use it as a fill light when using my one studio strobe as the main. The only problem was that the flash I put it on...couldn't be turned down far enough...and it puts out a lot of light. I had to shoot at F16 and smaller...just to keep the fill light low enough. Actually, just today I made a fabric cover for it...to knock it down a bit. I'll try to get a shot of my set up.
     
  9. JIP

    JIP No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    the main thing a flsah bracket is good for is stopping red-eye when you have you flash mounted directly to your camera the angle even with a large slr is so sharp this cannot be avoided. I personally for weddings use a combination of a stroboframe bracket and Gary fongs light sphere you can find it here http://http://store.garyfonginc.com/lightsphere.html.
    I really do not like to use my bracket all the time just because of the extra size and weight but it really cannot be avoided for some situations where direct flash is necesarry.
     
  10. DeepSpring

    DeepSpring TPF Noob!

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    has anyone tried making a lightsphere out of paper? Basically the better bounce card but all the way around
     

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