Flash Diffuser.

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Markw, Oct 26, 2009.

  1. Markw

    Markw No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I will be getting the Nikon SB-600 soon and I was looking at diffusers. I have been using a piece of paper towel or tissue over the pop-up flash for a while now, and with the SB-600, I didnt want to have to do this. Its a good flash, I think itd be good to have a good diffuser.

    So, the question is: What type of diffuser is best suited as the most versitile diffuser that can be used in alot of situations? I was thinking mainly for indoor portrait or exhibit work. I have seen many different ones, some that unfold into a thin hang on plate, some that are inflatable, some that look like a softbox (These, I like the look of), and some that just clip onto the front of the head of the flash. Can anyone help me out here?

    Thanks in advance.
    Mark
     
  2. PhotoXopher

    PhotoXopher TPF Noob!

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    Gary Fong LightSphere is what I'd get.
     
  3. Markw

    Markw No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Ive heard mixed reviews about that, that there are less expensive, similar models that do relatively the same good job. Do you have experience with it? If so, how do you like it?

    Also, could you tell me the difference between the crystal-looking version and the white plastic-looking version?

    Mark
     
  4. camz

    camz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I say the stofen is probably the most versatile of all from my experience. Expecially if you're going to use it indoors - great for both on and off camera work.
     
  5. camz

    camz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Just found a link through google for ratings on the various types here .

    Although I've tried various I've stuck with 3. Stofen, snoot, and a softbox. Everything else didn't really fit or vibe with my style but I think the
    stofen is the best general purpose.
     
  6. musicaleCA

    musicaleCA TPF Noob!

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    The Fong Dong bounces light everywhere, but, it bounces light everywhere. You don't get control.

    If you want flexibility in a myriad of situations, get the Presslite Vertex. That thing is on my primary flash (the one I always have with me) all the time; I rarely take it all off, just the panels for storage, and if I take off the rest I'm doing a shoot and need to use other light modifiers. You asked what was the most versatile, and I think that the Vertex is hands-down the most versatile diffuser around. I've used it to bounce flash and create one, two, or three directional sources, or even as a simple flag and using bare zoomed-in bounce flash.
     
  7. IgsEMT

    IgsEMT No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    For longest time, I've used stofen for sb600 and sb800 and they do the job but if the subject is close to the wall it leaves nasty shadows. Fong diffuser, I also heard mixed reviews plus its price of $40-50 or so isn't attractive.
    My solution - DIY foam paper. Some folks use it as a bounce card, I'm actually shooting through it, and it gives me similar (not exact) results as a softbox would. It might look silly but so as soup-can on the flash, the only difference is that 8 1/2x11 sheet cost $0.99 + velcro (another $3) versus 40 or 50 USDs whatever Fong's cost.
    If you want to see the effects with it, PM me and I'll send you results with both.
    Good Luck
     
  8. DScience

    DScience No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I'm sorry but you CAN control it. Here are just several shots I took using the GF diffuser on a sb-600 handheld off camera.

    The GF pwns. For around $50, i think it is a very good deal.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  9. camz

    camz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Dscience very nice shots. With the G. Fong I think you can control it as far as intensity however controlling the specific direction of spread, it is much more difficult to do so as it was designed to diffuse on a very wide spectrum.
     
  10. ssnxp

    ssnxp TPF Noob!

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  11. ANDS!

    ANDS! No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    All you control is the originating angle and direction of the initial outburst of light. MCA is correct in that after that you have no real way of controlling where the bounced light goes.

    Thats not supposition - its just science.

    EDIT: Wow I Just looked at the cost of some of those items. . .Jesus Christ they have got a racket going on. For that cost just toss a sock on the end of your flash and call it a day.
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2009
  12. inTempus

    inTempus TPF Noob!

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    You can't control the light from the Fong, it does in fact blast light everywhere which is a waste of light - especially when you need that light for something useful. Dscience is using the $50 Fong just like one would use a $11 Sto-Fen.

    We've talked about this in great detail recently in other threads. Instead of reposting everything, here's the links to those threads which include sample shots taken with the Fong and the Sto-Fen:

    http://www.thephotoforum.com/forum/...181324-flash-accessories-what-do-they-do.html

    http://www.thephotoforum.com/forum/...y/178845-gary-fong-diffuser-during-day-3.html

    The Fong is a $50 paperweight that sits in my closet and the Sto-Fen goes everywhere with me.
     

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