Have about $300 to spend, can't decide on a lighting setup

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by Restomage, Jul 7, 2009.

  1. Restomage

    Restomage No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I have about $300 to spend on a good lighting setup but I still haven't decided on what exactly I want to get. I'm mainly going to be using this equipment in the field such as the beach as well as in the "studio" (my extra room). I've been told that strobes are the way to go for studio work, but since I'll be using these outside a lot I don't want to go through the hassle of bringing a power supply or using cords so I'm thinking using SB-600's (my budget can't afford Sb-800s). I'm thinking of two umbrellas, two stands and two Sb-600's for my lighting set-up (I already have one SB-600). Let me know what you guys think, I'm just kind of brainstorming.

    BTW I don't mind buying used equipment and I probably will buy a lot of the gear used.
     
  2. SrBiscuit

    SrBiscuit TPF Noob!

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    i love my SB600 and would def buy another one if i wanted to expand my lighting right now. i think it;s a great option for portable light. :thumbup:

    what body do you have?
     
  3. Restomage

    Restomage No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I'm shooting with a D90.
     
  4. CxThree

    CxThree TPF Noob!

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    that should be fine.

    Look at the strobist.com site for more hardware choices. MPEX.Com has a strobist section and I hear their lumapro stands are cheaper and a little heavier duty than the manfrotto nano. They also may umbrella mounts and "super clamps".
     
  5. Big Mike

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

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  6. SrBiscuit

    SrBiscuit TPF Noob!

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    WOW mike!
    i bookmarked the page...that;s awesome!
     
  7. benhasajeep

    benhasajeep TPF Noob!

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    You can pick up a 2nd used flash if you decide to go with a wireless set up. Can get a nice strong flash like a SB28 (SB28DX), or SB80 (SB80DX). They can be had for $100 to $125 lately if you watch. Can also pick up a new off brand flash in that range. If you go wireless with Cactus V2's or V4's or similar, you will be in manual mode on the flashes anyway so having them absolutely compatable with the new ITTL is not necessary. This way you get a good strong flash that can be used as a main flash over the SB600 without paying $450 for a SB900.

    You can pick up a Cactus V4's set and a 2nd reciever for about $60-70. Then pick up a couple stands, umbrella's or boxes. Will need a couple sand bags if you shoot outside and there is a little wind. Can be done for $300. :thumbup:
     
  8. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Don't overlook used. I picked up a used SB-80DX for $50 and a SB-25 for $30 bucks Canadian (I pickup the SB-25 tomorrow).

    The SB-80DX is a true workhorse, I use it on a lightstand triggered by a PW and for every wedding it gets an additional 1000-1100 flashes of usage. Usually at 1/4 to 1/8th power, but it has not let me down in 3 weddings yet. It's already paid for itself as far as I am concerned.

    About the SB-600s just be aware that they do not have anintegrated sync port and you will need a hot shoe adapter with sync cord if you are doing the "strobist" thing... or use CLS, which is fine, but you will find out it's limitations pretty quickly as you learn.

    EDIT:
    LOL@ benhasajeep, I did not notice your post until after I entered mine. There are lots of good deals, but I still cannot find that new SB-800 in a box for 20 bucks yet... lol

    Oh, and about those sandbags... my mom made me 2 large ones and 2 smaller ones herself and I will get the sand tomorrow... we have enough material to make 2 more bigger ones, but I want to see how these do before deciding on the size of the final 2. DIY sandbags... $5 in material and whatever the sand costs me tomorrow... gotta be less than store bought ones, and they're more fun becuase they look unique to me. :D
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2009
  9. Restomage

    Restomage No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Does this mean I can't use the SB-600's with strobes unless I have a cord to connect them? I also don't know what CLS is, so you'll have to give me a brief explanation if you don't mind.


    So it sounds like if I use Sb-600s as my lights, I can't use them wireless but with the SB-800s I can? Is this correct?
     
  10. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    CLS is creative Lighting System. Nikon's way of using the camera flash to trigger a remote strobe like a SB-600. You can use this but the range is limited as is reliability.

    The SB-600 has no other connector on it except the bottom of the foot, called the male end of the hot show connection. This means that if you use something like a Cactus wireless trigger/receiver, there is NOTHING to connect it to and for it to work, you need an adapter... one of these:

    [​IMG]

    This connector above screws to your lightstand, the flash slides in, the wire connects to the receiver and works.

    Other flashes like SB-800, SB-80DX or SB-25s have these connectors built in and do not require this adapter, just a sync wire to connect from the receiver to the flash.

    No biggie.

    If using CLS, and your camera supports it, you do not need the adapter or sync cables, but there are those limitations I was speaking about.

    For more info on CLS, feel free to do a search here and/or read your camera manual.
     
  11. Restomage

    Restomage No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    So in other words, in order to trigger the flash off camera without using the CLS, I'll need to purchase one of those receivers?
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2009
  12. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    One trigger on your camera and a receiver on every flash, yes

    Seriously, go to the www.strobist.com website and look for the lighting 101 link... grab yourself a coffee and start reading. :)
     

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