Flash recomendations

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by Overread, Feb 26, 2009.

  1. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Right I am after a flash - well at least out to find one to add to the "to get" list. However I am looking for something specific and canon don't appear to make one.

    The flash is to be used for macro work and will be held on a setup like this:
    Flash bracket

    with a small angling head between it and the holder (so as to angle the light downwards towards where the insect should be!).

    Now at the moment I have a 580M2 and its just way too heavy for this sort of work I find - it puts a lot of strain on holders and also adds a lot of weight to the front of the setup. So I am looking for a much smaller and lighter flash. So far I have had the Sunpak RD2000 recomended to me,
    Intro 2020
    however whilst this flash has enough power, ETTL compatability and is the right size it is lacking in falsh controls - having only a compensation control - meaning no manual flash control.
    Does anyone know of a similar sized flash which would have a more diverse controlling system (whilst also having ETTL compatability)?
     
  2. Montana

    Montana TPF Noob!

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    I take it the Canon MT-24EX doesn't look interesting? I have it and find it very versitile. I rarely have the "heads" mounted near the lens. They have tripod sockets on them to position them elsewhere.
     
  3. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    The MT-23EX is the best tool for the job and it is on my to get list (along with the MPE65mm) but the MT flash is around £650 or greater in the UK at the moment - whilst the Sunpak flash above is only around £100. Though hte sunpak is more limited - no only no manual controls but no slave/master function either so less function there (though combining it with a 580M2 might be possible - I have seen the sunpak being used with hte MT flash setup:
    somewhere round this site: No Cropping Zone
     
  4. Montana

    Montana TPF Noob!

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    Oh, then I cannot help. I am only familiar with Canon's flashes. I hope you do save up for the MT-24, its a great tool. I often use it as a Master and slave my 580 mkII w/ it. I hope someone here can provide you the info you need.

    Derrick
     
  5. gryphonslair99

    gryphonslair99 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Just a though here. For macro I use either one or two 580's on a bracket similar to this.
    Manfrotto by Bogen Imaging | 330B Macro Flash Bracket | 330B
    Gets the flash were I need it, ettl works, and if I don't want two light sources I can mount a small reflector to one side. Balances well and gets the flash out where I want it.

    With my particular bracket I don't even have a need for the MT23 as mine allows me to rotate the flash units 360 degrees.
     
  6. davebmck

    davebmck TPF Noob!

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    I don't know of any non-canon flashes that have full ETTL capability. Others claim to have compatibility, but Canon does not release their proprietary technology so the third party suppliers have to try to reverse engineer it.

    I have the MR14EX and it works fine for me, although I am not a very advanced macro shooter like yourself. Not as versatile as the MT24, but somewhat less expensive.
     
  7. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    gryphonslair99 - I have seen that setup, however I am willing to guess that you do more tripod macro than handheld = only the weight of two 580M2s on the bracket as well as my lens (a sigma 150mm so not the lightest) would be too great I think (at least for myself) to shoot with for a prolonged period of time.
    However you say your bracket allows for full 360 rotation - is that with fixed aspect between the two arms (ie they are always in the same position reletive to each other) or can you move them independantly of each other?

    davebmck - thanks for the compliment :)
    (psst I ain't no expert just an addict to macro and kit ;))
    but you make a true point that full ETTL is not totally possible, which is partly why I am interested in the smaller flashes with manual power settings - since I shoot a lot of my macro with similar settings and flash is the dominant light source working with manual (after a period of trial and error) would be fully possible
     
  8. Mike_E

    Mike_E No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Try this DIY ringlight. You could use an OEM flash and have it for other application as well.

    Eye On Birmingham: The Ring

    If Canon has a cable that allows off camera eTTL then you would be set! (although you could hack one of those too ;))
     
  9. gryphonslair99

    gryphonslair99 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I actually do a lot of hand held with it or monopod supported depending on what I am out shooting. I grew up on all metal 35mm's with winders or motordrives and lenses that were all metal as well, so I don't find the weight a challange I guess.

    My particular bracket is similar to the Bogen pictured in that it is the dual arm type. That however is where the simaliraty ends. I found mine in a photo store used.

    It has a center base plate to mount the camera with with 1/4" round ends. Attacthed to each end ore 1/4" rods with mount plates at the end. Each rod can be raised and lowered indipendantly to put the flash above, below or even with the lens. Moved wider or closer to the lens independatly. Moved forward and back from body to lens end independantly and the flash units can be rotated 360 degrees allowing me to put the flash heads far away from the lens at giving a nice angle to the light or place either or both heads right next to the lens like the MT-24.

    It is a very versitle bracket that I picked up for $35.00. (it was missing one cold shoe that I replaced for $5.00 from flash zebra.

    I have full Ettl with the flash cord and could do the same with the wireless transmitter. If I want only one light source I can put an aligator clip that has an old Nikon steel replacement foot scrrewed to it. Slips right in and allows me to use a small reflector pannel if I wish.

    It is really a unique bracket that was made apparently by some now defunct company in California. Because it is so adjustable, all by knobs, it is a bit touchy to set up until you get used to it. When everything is tightend up it is very solid. I will try and dig out a photo of it and post it with my 40D and twin 580's on it.
     

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