College Student Photography Equipment Advice

grothst1

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Hey all, first time posting here. I am currently in the market for some new equipment. I am at the point where I need the advice of others to get an idea of which direction I should go in terms of what I am going to buy! I work mainly with portraiture and events. I have an old speedlight (not sure what model) and it eats battery life like no other, so right now a speed light at a decent price is a priority in all of this. I am looking to spend about $2000 total. What do you all think is the best equipment to get bearing this amount in mind?

What I currently use:

Nikon D80
18-105 kit lens from a Nikon D7000
50mm 1.8

What I am thinking about getting

Nikon D7000 Body
MB-D11 Multi Power Battery Pack

What I need advice on:

Speedlight.

Hope y'all can help!

What do you all think
 

Gavjenks

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grothst1

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SB900 speedlights or maybe a ring light would work too (for events).
Ron,

My last flash is a SB-800. So a 900 would be a step up? I have looked into ring lights but never used one, what are the benefits to using one at an event over a speed light?
 

ronlane

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I couldn't tell you the difference in the speedlights to know if it would be a step up, but for portrait work, it couldn't hurt to have them both.

As I understand the ring light, it will help reduce the red-eye and provide better lighting than an on camera flash would. Again, this is my understanding and others could give you more information or correct me if I'm wrong.
 
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grothst1

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I couldn't tell you the difference in the speedlights to know if it would be a step up, but for portrait work, it couldn't hurt to have them both.

As I understand the ring light, it will help reduce the red-eye and provide better lighting than an on camera flash would. Again, this is my understanding and others could give you more information or correct me if I'm wrong.
Any suggestions of ring lights to look at?

I checked out the SB-900 seems like a very solid piece of equipment at a very fair price. Thanks for that suggestion.
 

bratkinson

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I'm a Canon shooter, so I don't know squat about Nikon equipment.

But as far as batteries in the flash...EVERY flash is battery hungry! I sometimes wonder if the battery companies bribed the flash manufacturers to design their flash units that way. I'd get perhaps 30-40 flashes out of my 550EX and a new set of Energizers was getting too slow to recharge the flash to be usefull. Then I 'discovered' Eneloops rechargeables....countless rave reviews here and elsewhere for Eneloops. Eneloops now powers everything that uses AA and AAA batteries...flash, flash lights, radios, etc. I just wish they'd make 9V Eneloops for my smoke detectors! So get a couple of sets of Eneloops. They out-last and out-recharge-the-flash longer and faster than anything else!
 

Gavjenks

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I just wish they'd make 9V Eneloops for my smoke detectors!
9 volt batteries are literally just 6 AAA sized batteries in a box.

They're smaller than eneloops, but you could still build a 9 volt out of eneloops and solder and then just sort of jam it in as far as it will go and then slap some white duct tape on there and call it a day! Just be sure not to cover up the particulate intake, or the thing won't work in a fire.

Disclaimer: Smoky the bear does not approve of this post.
 

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