need some advice on soft boxes

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by blythe, Jun 17, 2009.

  1. blythe

    blythe TPF Noob!

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    Hi,

    Does anyone know who makes good soft boxes? Or is it all pretty much the same thing for all of them? If possible can someone supply some links to good ones. thanks
     
  2. Big Mike

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

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    From what I can tell and have heard others say...yes, there are difference between brands. But it may often a subtle difference.

    Some softboxes have two diffusion panels, which reduces hot spots and gives a more even light. The shape and the internal surface can also affect this.

    There is also the quality of the construction. You don't want one that will break on you.

    What type/brand of lights do you have? You will need/want to get a softbox that will mount to your light.
     
  3. blythe

    blythe TPF Noob!

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    So far I dont have anything except umbrella stands ahahhaa. I will have to buy everything so basically I will have to start from scratch. What can you suggest? The ones with two diffusion panels seems a lot better.

    thanks for the help
     
  4. JamieR

    JamieR TPF Noob!

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    You need to buy your lights first before you go buying accessories. That's like going out and buying lenses with no camera first.
     
  5. blythe

    blythe TPF Noob!

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    can you guys give me any links on more information about the lights?
     
  6. blythe

    blythe TPF Noob!

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    I was looking at this softbox any comments on this one?

    Kühl Lite™ 120 & 30 Combo Kit

    thanks

    As is says, it's OK for product photography, or something along those lines...but I wouldn't recommend it for shooting people...because it is constant lighting (typical light bulbs). For shooting people, I would recommend flash/strobe style lights.
     
  7. Big Mike

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

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    This is a common question and there should be lots of info to be found via the search function.

    Take a few steps back....
    What do you want to shoot? People or things?
    Where will you be using your lights? (indoors, studio, outdoors, on-location)
    What is your budget?
     
  8. bdavis

    bdavis TPF Noob!

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    I would vote for the Westcott Apollo brand. They are collapsible like an umbrella and very portable. Plus, if you have a lightstand and a swivel umbrella bracket, they can be attached directly to that.
     
  9. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Before suggesting brands, how about asking *what* is going to be put into them? There is a HUGE power difference between a studio head and a Vivitar 285HV speedlight.

    Choose the right softbox based on needs and what goes inside the softbox, not blindly suggesting brands and what not. ;)
     
  10. bdavis

    bdavis TPF Noob!

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    Well to me it sounds like he is a beginner since he said he's just starting out and having to buy everything from scratch. The Westcott Apollo is a great brand and is good for starting out. Its portability makes it great for studio and location work. It can accommodate speedlights and even alien bees, I cant see him using much beyond that at this point.
     
  11. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I own both the 28 and 50 inch apollos... though I use them with my speedlights and studio lights, if all I was looking for were softboxes for my $300 studio lights, I would not suggest the Apollos. Every time you need to change a power setting you have to "tear" off the front diffuser that is velcroed to the box. On a "regular" softbox, the studio light is inserted from the rear where the power settings are more easily accessible and they can cost no more or less than the Apollos, which were not all that cheap to start off with. I can find cheaper standard softboxes here in Montreal... hence why I said that what goes in... is important.

    For speedlights, there is no better solution than the Apollos, becuase they are made for speedlights (very light, SINGLE layer of difussion, portable design). They are NOT the best solution for studio heads, though they do work. I use a Photogenic 1000 W/s studio head in both of mine, works great. Changing power levels is a PITA.
     
  12. blythe

    blythe TPF Noob!

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    thanks for the advice from everyone.

    I am going to be using these at home all the time. I don't need them to be portable at all. I need to use the softbox for shooting articles of clothing, exactly what this site is trying to do.

    Clothing Photography Kit

    I am just asking if there is a better kit than this if I am using it to shoot clothing.

    thanks
     

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