Struggling with SB800

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by bdavis, Jan 22, 2009.

  1. bdavis

    bdavis TPF Noob!

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    I just got my SB-800 today and it's my first ever speedlite and I'm having problems on figuring out how to use it. The instruction manual, in my opinion, is almost worthless...its so complicated. Anyone know of a good guide on the internet on how to use this flash?
     
  2. ANDS!

    ANDS! No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Oh man. That is a beast of a flash my friend. My question is, what did you get it for? In your day to day shooting, what limitation was occurring that you decided the SB800 was the cure for. Because the SB800 can be used for many things, but without understanding your thought process, makes it hard to say "Well you do this. . ." since it can do quite a bit.
     
  3. bdavis

    bdavis TPF Noob!

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    I got it so that I could have a versatile flash until for portraits, stills, and as a fill flash.
     
  4. ccssk8ter11

    ccssk8ter11 TPF Noob!

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    I pretty much did the exact same thing a couple months ago, I'm still trying to get the hang of it lol but after a while of using it and experimenting with the different modes and reading little bits of the manual it will get a little easier to figure out.
     
  5. ANDS!

    ANDS! No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The SB800 really is an ready out of the box to be used, it all depends on how you are using it. Are you just confused with the controls? Because in AUTO iTTL mode (which is the default mode, as the D90 should automatically sync with the SB800) it will do everything for you.

    Perhaps if you posted a picture of something you have shot with, so that we can say "Ok well see now here. . ."
     
  6. bdavis

    bdavis TPF Noob!

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    I'm just overwhelmed by all the different modes, the zoom settings on it, exposure compensation, etc.
     
  7. epp_b

    epp_b No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Flash photography is complicated. Experiment. Look for articles on flash photography in general.
     
  8. ANDS!

    ANDS! No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Theres really only two modes, Automatic and Manual. Unless you REALLY need complete control of the zoom position AND strength of the flash (and the camera does a DAMN FINE job of figuring this out), you can leave it in AUTO mode and simply adjust your exposure settings.

    Zoom Settings are just the focal length (or closest focal length) of the lens you are using. Again, leave this up to the camera/flash.

    Exposure compensation - unless you are in Manual mode, leave it to the flash. It's easier to adjust your shutter speed than it is fiddling around in Manual mode, increasing or decreasing your flash's output.

    So in summation. . .leave it in auto-mode and experiment with bouncing the light, covering the light, etc. THATS where you will make your real magic.
     
  9. bdavis

    bdavis TPF Noob!

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    Surprisingly that was helpful...lol

    If only the instruction manual said that. No need for the diagrams, funny symbols, and abbreviations it threw out, they should just have it be blunt like that.

    Thanks!
     

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