Flash lighting question

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by sean300, Sep 10, 2008.

  1. sean300

    sean300 TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    May 15, 2006
    Messages:
    14
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Kansas City, MO
    I am still an amateur in photography and could use a lot of help.

    I have two camera flashes, a 580EX II and a 580EX, and also a set of pocket wizards. As you may already know the 580EX II has a port for a wizard. I want to be able to use both flashes, with the 580EX being on the camera and the 580EX II off to the side somewhere. If I'm doing portraits, which flash should give more power? Where should I put it? Thanks

    -Sean
     
  2. claytonchatham

    claytonchatham TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2008
    Messages:
    15
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Brisbane, Australia
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    I don't know about the 580 series lenses, but with studio lighting the more powerful the flash the softer the light. The closer the flash to the subject the better the light. ie, if its a 50w strobe 3meters away from subject it will throw a harsher light than a 600w at 1meter away from subject. But the best thing to practice on is something plastic so you can zoom in and see how the light hits it and try different setups.
     
  3. Tiberius47

    Tiberius47 TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2007
    Messages:
    742
    Likes Received:
    46
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    The 580 and 580II both have the same guide number of 58.
     
  4. Big Mike

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

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2003
    Messages:
    33,822
    Likes Received:
    1,811
    Location:
    Edmonton
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    No. The softness of the light is a factor of the size of the source and the distance to the subject....not power.

    As mentioned, both the 580 & 580 II have the same power (Guide number of 58m).

    Keep in mind that with one of the flash units on the camera, you can use E-TTL flash metering. If you use a pocket wizard for triggering the remote flash, the remote unit can only fire with manual control, not E-TTL. However, the 580 units have built in remote control...so you could use one of them on camera, to control the remote unit and still keep E-TTL for both.

    If you are doing this indoors, especially in an average sized room, the built in control is probably your best bet and you wouldn't need the pocket wizards. The pocket wizards are best for when shooting outdoors or a long way from the flash, where the built in Infra Red system won't work well.
     
  5. Tiberius47

    Tiberius47 TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2007
    Messages:
    742
    Likes Received:
    46
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Actually, the built in wireless system uses visible light pulses, not infra-red.
     
  6. Big Mike

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

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2003
    Messages:
    33,822
    Likes Received:
    1,811
    Location:
    Edmonton
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    It can be either. The 550/580 use visible light from the main flash head but the ST-E2 uses infrared.

    I didn't know that until just now :)
     
  7. Village Idiot

    Village Idiot No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2008
    Messages:
    7,274
    Likes Received:
    406
    Location:
    Shepherdsturd, WV / Almost, MD
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Sell one 580, buy another PW and a manual flash. BAM!

    Heh...useless suggestion.

    You put the lights where you need them. I sugget getting at least a pc to hotshoe cable for the 580 and then you can use both lights off camera.

    If you haven't seen it already:
    www.strobist.com
    www.lighting-essentials.com
     

Share This Page