Budget speedring / softbox?

tevo

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I received a $50 gift card to amazon from someone and I would like to put it to good use. I'm considering getting a softbox and a speedring; any recommendations on a cheap but effective one?

On a semi related note, what is the technical name for those small external power supplies for speedlights & can someone recommend an inexpensive one?
 

Mach0

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I received a $50 gift card to amazon from someone and I would like to put it to good use. I'm considering getting a softbox and a speedring; any recommendations on a cheap but effective one?

On a semi related note, what is the technical name for those small external power supplies for speedlights & can someone recommend an inexpensive one?

Softbox- they may have some in there. Check the ratings. Does your speedlight take an external battery pack?
 

Big Mike

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I'm considering getting a softbox and a speedring; any recommendations on a cheap but effective one?
What are you planning on attaching the softbox to? A typical softbox does require a speedring, but it usually has to match your application.

Considering your second question, I'd assume that you are wanting to use the softbox with a speedlight, is that right?

There are some decent option is that price range, like this, for example. NEEWER 24 inch 60X60cm Portable Professional Softbox Kit for Flash Speedlite Nikon: Amazon.ca: Electronics

On a semi related note, what is the technical name for those small external power supplies for speedlights & can someone recommend an inexpensive one?
External power supply, battery pack, power pack...not sure if there are any more technical names than that.

The popular ones are the Quantum Turbo but there are several options.

Typically, your flash has to have a port to connect an external battery pack...the high end units have them, the lower end models don't.
 
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KmH

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FlashZebra.com: 8 AA Cell Battery Packs for Canon, Nikon and Sony Flashes

Softboxes made for hot shoe flash units generally don't use speedrings. Instead they mount to an umbrella adapter. - Manfrotto 026 Swivel Lite-Tite Umbrella Adapter

Speedrings are used with studio strobes and are usually brand specific.

For example, if you have Elichrom lights, you need Elinchrom speedrings.

For a generic light like Adorama's Flashpoints, you need a speedring that is compatible with the softbox you have and Adoramam has all those speedrings.

Here is a popular hot shoe flash softbox - Westcott 2334 28-Inch Recessed Medium Apollo (Black)

 
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tevo

tevo

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Thanks for the advice! I was unclear on the use of the speedring - I had just seen the ring with some sort of L bracket for the speedlight on a bunch of different boxes so I assumed it was the norm. As for the flash power packs I have SB-600s so that wouldn't help me.

Keith, that softbox looks awesome as I wouldn't need any additional mounting brackets. Thanks a ton.
 

Big Mike

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Keith, that softbox looks awesome as I wouldn't need any additional mounting brackets. Thanks a ton.
Yes, those are great...but you will need a few more of those $50 gift cards. ;)
 

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I received a $50 gift card to amazon from someone and I would like to put it to good use. I'm considering getting a softbox and a speedring; any recommendations on a cheap but effective one?

On a semi related note, what is the technical name for those small external power supplies for speedlights & can someone recommend an inexpensive one?

I'm assuming by your wording that this is for a speedlight -- not a studio light. There are lots of soft box choices designed specifically for speedlights.

The Westcott Apollo mounts the light completely inside the soft box -- and this comes with a few constraints. You have to open the soft box to adjust the power or turn it on and off. If your flash can be remotely controlled via radio (not optical) then you're all set (well... other than powering it on and off.)

There are some soft box options where the flash is outside the box but the light shines inside. I have a Lastolite EzyBalance "Hotshoe" (they make a studio version and a speedlight version. The speedlight version comes with a hot-shoe bracket that mounts at the back.) Since the flash is outside the box, you can do everything without having to open it (not a big deal for me because my flash is radio controlled including power adjustments, but I realize that if you're using, say, a PocketWizard Plus II or III then you still have to access the flash itself to change power levels.) The "hotshoe" mounting bracket is highly adjustable... you can adjust the height so that the foot to light level holds the flash at the right height to shine into the soft box -- also it slides forward/backward along a track and swivels sideways (which may be important for optically fired slaves because the optical sensor needs to "see" the master flash.) It was $150 for the 24"x24" size.

What it does _not_ come with, is a way to tilt the angle of the box up/down - so the box wants to face straight ahead. They sell a "kit" version which includes a light stand, a hand-held mast (if you have an assistant holding the light) AND... a tilt-head with mounting spigot. Not a big deal since tilt-heads and mounting spigots are inexpensive but I thought I should point out that this is one part you'd probably want and it's not included in the non-kit version.

I thought the "kit" version was REALLY expensive (I kept re-reading what else comes with the "kit"). It was basically $400. The tilt-head is cheap (about $30-35). A light stand is cheap ($30-70 depending on quality and height). A hand-held mast is cheap ($25-35). So I was having a lot of trouble figuring out why the "kit" version was about $250 more... considering they seem to be adding in only about $100 in accessories. Either it was incorrectly priced on the internet or there was more included with the kit than what they described.
 

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