Combining Multiple Flashes For More Light Output Works ????

plainman007

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Hi,

In theory if you put 2 flashes next to each other that should double your light output right ?

I used 4 flashes (triggered with 2.4 ghz triggers) together. All huddled together and pointing at the subject. Who was standing in the SHADE at 4.30pm sunlight. Still they hardly made any difference. Too dim. I had to blow them all to full power to get any useful output. Is this normal ? These were 4 x YN-460 IIs. Cam was at f7.1, 1/100th sec, ISO 100.

Have any of you combined a number of flashes to combat the sun. If so id like to hear if this theory works in real life ?

Thanks...
 

MLeeK

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If you are trying to overpower the sun-sounds about right!
It's really hard to tell what you were doing without seeing the image though.
 

analog.universe

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Subject to light distance is significant as well. So.... how close were they? If you're trying to get the most output, they should be at the closest distance possible that gets you the coverage you want.
 
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plainman007

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Hi,

Yes the distance was not more than 10 feet from the subject. And that was 4 flashes together. The area the subject was standing was shaded. But there was bounced sunlight ofcourse. But i dont think bounced light qualify as equal to direct sunlight right. Still the volume of light was very weak. At full power it was ok. But my question is have any of you clubbed 2 or more flashes together to get brighter more light volume.

Also when i mean combat the sun, i didnt mean literally overpower the sun. But just having enough light to work with at 4pm evening kind of light. But it seems 4 flashes (with 53 gn) together are too little.
 

480sparky

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......... I had to blow them all to full power to get any useful output. Is this normal ? These were 4 x YN-460 IIs..........

For such a low-power flash, yes.
 
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plainman007

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Oh ok. I was suspecting that. But the canon top of the line 580 ex is rated at GN 58 and this one is GN 53. Lets say its a low brightness etc. Still wont 2 (double the output) at least match up to one 580 ex ? But i was using 4 of these that too.
 

480sparky

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Depends on the flashes-to-subject distance. How far apart were they?
 
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plainman007

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They were all huddled together. Maybe half an inch away from each other ? All were at 1/4 power and 10 feet from the subject who was standing in the shade. The flashes were also in the shade. Very dim lighting ensued. Then i made them all full power and the light just made up for what i wanted.
 

480sparky

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Ten feet? That's a tall order even for high-$ OCFs.
 
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plainman007

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Your serious ? 4 flashes together cant deliver that power ? :(:(

But technically 4 flashes together provides 4 x light power optically ?
 

MLeeK

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Yes, but they aren't high output flashes, your exposure was very narrow at 7.1, 100 and 1/100 and you are trying to out shoot the sun.

4 candles are still pretty dim. While 4 suns are pretty bright... You're shooting with 4 candles.
 

480sparky

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Your serious ? 4 flashes together cant deliver that power ? :(:(

But technically 4 flashes together provides 4 x light power optically ?

Yes. But four times what?

If you have a low guide number to start with, four times that guide number will still be a low guide number.
 

Rephargotohp

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Assuming equal power, If You add one Flash the power will increase 1 stop, If you add two more flashes the power will increase 1 More stop.

You will have to shoot faily high power to match ambient...Even if you subject was in the shade if there was sunlight you were shooting through too, at 4:30 you could have had f/11 light in the backgroudn provided you were not shooting into the sun. (The sun will be 3 stops brighter at that time of day)

I was shooting last night AT 4:30 had f/8 background light on the beach. Was able to light model with a single 580EXII at 1/2 power with with a 2 Stop(Loss) diffuser in front and 5 foot from model ( you should move you flashes closer to) and had no problem.

Unless those things are NOT what they are rated at, I'm not sure why. Remember GN are not always the same, there are many ways to cheat a Guide Number and make it sound better
 

Rephargotohp

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Joe MacNally regularly shoots with 3 Flashes per stand, But he is also sponsored by Nikon and hey can have 12 Flashes at a shoot and not worry. But at a certain point, it becomes stupid to have nmore than 2 flashes economically and it's time to just buy a studio strobe and battery, It's the only way you will get f/16 light with a diffuser on to match outdoor amabient
 

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