Need help. What to keep. what to sell.

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by Darton, Jan 30, 2010.

  1. Darton

    Darton TPF Noob!

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    So a year or so ago I bought some used studio equipment from a local photographer who was having his studio auctioned off (he decided after 30+ years in the industry it was time to turn his business into a hobby again). Anyway I've got theses light sets and I figure it's time to really use them (crap or get off the pot. right?) So I come to you guys for advice on which set to keep and which set or items to sell. Now some would say keep all of them but I'd like to get some other equipmet. I want to sell a set and use the money to buy maybe a nice tripod or put toward a set of alien bees in the future.

    So here's what I've got.

    The first setup which I'm leaning toward keeping is:
    A Photogenic co. 600 W.S. power unit with full and 1/2 power switch, built in slave trigger.
    -(which won't work with my 30d or 40d
    -power cord
    -umbrella head ext cord
    -BG light ext cord
    -1- umbrella head w/ umbrella and stand
    -1- 11" pan light w/ diffuser and bar doors and stand
    -1 6" BG light with barndoors and stand
    -1- quick change light w/ 11x36Larson soft box and stand and bowl reflector?

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The second set which I'm leaning toward sellin is:
    Photegenic co. 400 W.S. power unit with plug in slave trigger, on a rolling umbrella head stand.
    -1- umbrella head w/ umbrella
    -1- 11" pan light w/ diffuser, barndoors w/ stand
    -1 - 6" BG light w/ barndoors and stand

    [​IMG]

    And then I have a
    1- Paul C Buff White Lightning 10,000 cps Studio Flash w/ stand and umbrella, sync cord (doesn't work w/ my cameras), 1/3, 2/3 and full power modes.
    [​IMG]


    So what should I keep and what should I keep and why? How much should I try to seel it for? Keep in mind that i need this to be a set to learn w/ untill I can get a new setup. I do want to sell some this to buy some other equipment and will eventually sell it all to replace it with a new simpler set.

    Any help is appreciated.

    Sorry about the crappy pictures
     
  2. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    I was browsing eBay last night,looking for used lighting equipment for a friend of mine who has a very limited budget,and I found that older Photogenic AA01 style power supplies are worth very,very little on the used market. Same with the Flashmaster power supplies and their associated heads. I'm actually familiar with the older Photogenic heads with the flood/spot control and 16 inch pan reflector--it's a useful type of light.

    I am wondering--is the slave unit on the Flashmaster, the 600 watt-second one at the top, actually broken or damaged? I mean, if the 30D or 40D's flash is set to manual mode, the slave ought to fire, unless the slave is damaged. And, can't you just buy a new slave and plug it into the Flashmaster and set the 30D flash to minimum power?

    I'm not sure how you feel about this equipment; I've actually used this system, years ago, and a flood/spot electronic flash head today requires a pretty advanced flash head, like a Speedotron Black Line 202 VF (Variable, Focusing) and a Black Line pack, so you're looking at a $900 or more investment just to get into ONE flash head that has an adjustable beam spread...I'm not sure what your goal is--more modern equipment? Smaller heads for umbrella use? Currently, you have two packs with like 9 head outlets, 7 Photogenic light heads, 7 stands, plus the White Lightning "coffee can" + lightstand.

    I'm not sure that selling it to get something to learn on is the right idea: why not learn how to use it? The lights in this sysetm are varied and different: why not buy a diffuser sock for the 16 incher and learn how to light with a parabolic reflector in the "classic" style? I dunno...replacing a 600 and 400 w-s 2-pack system with seven heads and seven stands is going to cost quite a bit of money, and newer equipment will not have "quite" the same operating characteristics as the older Photogenic lights with the flood/spot adjustment and those wonderful, big, diffused tubes with their shrouds...

    I just want to ask--did you or have you ever asked the old photographer to show you how to actually use these types of lights? It might seem overwhelming without a guide to help you, but the system you have has a lot of capabilities,and is VERY diverse. Every piece there has a reason for being, but many newcomers today would have little idea of how or why to select one piece over another. And given the prices of this stuff on eBay, the loss you will take on it will be huge,compared to what the money will buy in the way of new equipment. This stuff is worth very little monetarily, on today's market, but as a kit, it's worth much more than its sale price.
     
  3. Darton

    Darton TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for the input. If I sold some of theses I do plan on using the others and learning them. I bought them in seperate lots at the auction so I've never thought of "grouping" them as one setup. The slave triggers on both units do work. I guess my thought process was to keep one "set" and sell the other to buy some camera equipment like a battery grip or new tripod, and keep the other set to learn with. My plan into the future was to sell the remaining set an buy something like the DIGI Set Bee from Alien Bee ofcoarse i'd have to add a little money.

    The 600 watt unit has the instruction manual but other than that there's no other instructalbes. In reality I haven't really done the research yet to know exactly what I have here. And knowing very little about studio setups (other than what I learned in my photography class at school) I thought that a new modern simple setup would do just as much as a dated complex one maybe just not as many lights.
     
  4. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    Oh, okay, eBay acquisition. So, no actual, small-town photographer to show you how this stuff actually works. I would say keep the Flashmaster 600 and its associated lights, and sell the 400 watt-second setup.

    I hate to offend Alien Bees or their owners, but an old Photogenic flood/spot head and its standard small reflector and its "shroud" or "background lighting" reflector will blow an Alien Bee monolight out of the water as a background light. The old flood/spot light heads Photogenic made are still ideal tools for working with "classic" hard light setups, using parabolic reflectors, scrims, bare-tube, etc.

    The large, elongated flash tubes those lights have, with their frosted shrouds, make them ideal for use with deep parabolic reflectors, like the 16 inch "pan reflector". Alien Bees have short, small, tiny flashtubes,and absolutely zero adjustability; no flood, no spot, no in-between. It's a shame that you do not have somebody around who can show you how this old equipment was designed to work, and what it can do with the accessories it has in the system. The best stuff is with the Flashmaster pack and its lights.

    I would sell the old White Lightning, and let the AA01 style pack, the one with the dolly, go too. No offense intended to AB owners, but the AB system is designed mainly as an umbrella lighting system, or a softbox system, and for that almost *any* flash system will work. But the Flashmaster pack and its lights are an entirely different kind of system, and you are unlikely to find anybody under age 50 who even has a clue as to what is possible with those light heads--unless they are a commercial, fashion,or portrait shooter of some considerable skill,and not "new" to photography. I know it is hard to imagine that this old stuff is actually better than more-modern stuff, but each head in each kit has a specific purpose,and for example, the 16 inch pan reflector and its light head I would not trade for two AB's, because the older light is designed to do something much different than an AB can do.

    I hate to sound like a broken record, but this old stuff is somebody's professional kit, and it has much more versatility in it than the price of a battery grip or a new tripod. But without familiarity with how to deploy the lights, the value of this kit is not apparent.
     
  5. Darton

    Darton TPF Noob!

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    Ohh crap sorry I didn't mention the guy I got these from lives about an hour from me. He actually shot my wedding back when he had his studio. I can probably call around and find his new contact info. I'm not sure if he would come out and "teach" me about all this equipment but I guess the worst he could say is no. He's a pretty cool guy so he probably would. Thnks for the help.
     

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