430ex or 580ex II?

therustytracks

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Adorama sells the 430ex for $250 is the 580ex II worth the extra $100? I know it has a faster recycle time, and it has weather sealing, but I'm not going to be using a flash in the rain. I'm tired of using my built in flash, i don't like the quality of the flash even with wb compensation. I don't want to buy the 430ex and find out it's only sub par. It looks like it has solid reviews, I just wanted some more opinions.
 

soylentgreen

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I have the 430 and it is perfectly fine for most users. The 580 does offer a bit more power and range, so if telephoto is your thing, than that would be a plus. It also has the wireless control for use with a slave unit. Since I was a bit strapped for cash at the time, I chose the 430. anything is better than the built-in.
 

solrac8126

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I currently own the 430, and i have used the 580, not as much as the 430 since the 430 is mine hehe

The 580 has more power.

580 ---> Guide Number
190 (at ISO 100, feet) / 58 (meters); flash head at 105mm zoom setting

430 ---> Guide Number
141 ft./43m (at ISO 100); flash head at 105mm zoom setting


Now, the 580 has a master feature to control the 430 or other canon slave flash, but, if you only have one unit , it won't do nothing for u, you can purchase the 430 and if you need a second one; after you've made more money, then you can go with 580 and use it as a master and the 430 as slave.
Then again, that canon wireless system is built in but it won't be as good as let's say the pocket wizard or the elincrhom system, since you need to be "looking" at the other flash in order to "fire it"
I got the 430 because it ill looks good on my cam, there are some places where you can only use one flash and i won't like to have some dirty and rusted flash like the vivitar 285 (i own the 285 old one not the new 285HV) wich is great but the looks is not that good.
I say that cuz people see your equipment and will judge you by that (i don't approve that but that's the world we live on)

When you get more money you can buy 2 PW for less than 400$ and get a second handed flash on ebay for around 60$ or a NEW brand of flash and use them as slaves.

Hope this helps!!!
 

Big Mike

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solrac8126 has laid it out. The 580 is more powerful but it's also a 'Master' in Canon's wireless scheme. The 430 is only a 'Slave'. So if you ever plan to use multiple, or off-camera flash...then having a master would be better than a slave...but you would need at least two units anyway...so it doens't really matter what you purchase first.

The 580 is compatible with external battery packs...the 430 is not. The 580 II, has a built-in auto sensor (for when it's not attached to the camera) but a photographer I know has tested this...and says that it doesn't work well at all.
One last thing, the 580 has a wheel on the back, for controlling the settings...and the 430 has a pair of crescent buttons that are a pain to push. Not a big deal but it should be mentioned.
 

nossie

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Personally I own the 580ex II and if you're going to use it as an On-Camera flash then it's a nice option. It's a really clever unit that delivers good quality light. If however you might be thinking of Off-Camera flash then I suggest a couple of second hand flashes from eBay and a wireless system. Starting cheap you can have two SB25/SB24 and a cheapo wireless system for under $200, if you don't like this then you'll pretty much get your money back on eBay if you pass them on.
 

nossie

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The 580 is compatible with external battery packs...the 430 is not. The 580 II, has a built-in auto sensor (for when it's not attached to the camera) but a photographer I know has tested this...and says that it doesn't work well at all.

I'd have to argue that this is what makes this flash amazing to use only downside to it might be that it puts a very noticeable red laser like crosshairs on the subject when measuring-stands out a mile on a white dress.
 
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therustytracks

therustytracks

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thanx for all the help..i think i've decided on the 430 for now
 

GoM

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Couldn't be happier with a Vivtar 285HV...don't know how that shapes up compared to either, but it's been a dream
 

Mystwalker

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580 II is next accessory for me for those indoor shots - do not plan to use it as master/slave so below does not apply to me.

I read that you can not turn off slave unit on the 580 II. You can do it on the 580.
 

solrac8126

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580 II is next accessory for me for those indoor shots - do not plan to use it as master/slave so below does not apply to me.

I read that you can not turn off slave unit on the 580 II. You can do it on the 580.

I think when buying equipment most of the time money is a big problem, so if you have the money for the 580 go for it...

Now, you might think twice if you see how a second or third light can improve your shots :mrgreen:, go with the 580 and in the case you are willing to do some off camera flash just go a purchase the 430 or any salve unit. try www.strobist.com for info.

I've never used the 580II as slave but i think you can turn slave off, but not physically, is controlled by the software.
 

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