Help me buy flash.

PixelRabbit

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Ok so this worked so well with deciding on my new lens I'm going to try it again with flash.

Budget is approx. $500 for at least one flash unit, if it is in the budget to do two units if there is a quality aftermarket option that I won't regret I'm up for that.

I'm open to any brand and want the biggest bang for my buck, I want the flash off camera so any accessories required to do that need to be factored in.

It will be used on a Canon 60D.

I'm brand new to the world of off camera lighting and as with the new lens purchase I'm on a serious learning curve here.

Thanks in advance all!
 

runnah

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Get which ever one has pc ports for remotes. Because once you start playing with flashes you are going to want pocket wizards.
 

jwbryson1

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Get which ever one has pc ports for remotes. Because once you start playing with flashes you are going to want pocket wizards.


Not necessarily if you get a unit that has an optical slave. You might consider these. They are fully manual (i.e., no e-TTL capabilities), but they have an optical slave so when one fires it automatically sets off the others that are set to "slave" mode.

Highly reliable and inexpensive. I own 4 of them.

Amazon.com: Yongnuo YN-560 II Speedlight Flash for Canon and Nikon. GN58.: Camera & Photo
 

cgipson1

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Ok Wabbit, before I make a recommendation... what you do want to do with it? Do you want TTL capability on the flash? Do you want TTL capability on the OCF? Subjects you think you will shoot? What do you envision doing? Portraits? Couples? Macro? WHAT????? ;)

$500.00 is minimal for a good setup... One top end OEM (Highly recommended) flash will cost nearly that!

Do you need portability? If not... go with monolights! Even they are portable with a battery back.
 

cgipson1

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First thought... OEM flash (can't afford the 580 $600.. which I would prefer... so 430 $250) Amazon.com: Canon Speedlite 430EX II Flash for Canon Digital SLR Cameras: Electronics

TTL capable radio flash triggers.. good reviews... $85 Amazon.com: Yongnuo YN-622C Wireless TTL Flash Trigger for Canon 600EX RT 580EXII 430EXII: Camera & Photo

OEM flash will have the BEST TTL Compatibility and build quality will be far better than the 3rd party stuff. If you want to go cheaper... I do recommend the Yongnuos... they are pretty good (Not OEM quality) but decent.
 
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cgipson1

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Or you could go with the Adorama Flashpoint monolights or similar... $99

Amazon.com: Flashpoint II 320M, 150 Watt Second AC / DC Monolight Strobe.: Camera & Photo

with a light stand $40 Amazon.com: Flashpoint Heavy Duty Pro 9' Air Cushioned Black Lightstand, 5/8" Top Stud with Reversable with 3/8 & 1/4x20 Threads.: Electronics

and a decent brolly $75 Amazon.com: Photek Softlighter II, 46 inch Umbrella with Diffuser.: Electronics$ .. all just over $200.

Of course you are in Canada... don't know what is available there... or shipping...
 
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PixelRabbit

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Get which ever one has pc ports for remotes. Because once you start playing with flashes you are going to want pocket wizards.
See that's the kind of info I need, never would have thought of that, thanks Runnah.
Get which ever one has pc ports for remotes. Because once you start playing with flashes you are going to want pocket wizards.


Not necessarily if you get a unit that has an optical slave. You might consider these. They are fully manual (i.e., no e-TTL capabilities), but they have an optical slave so when one fires it automatically sets off the others that are set to "slave" mode.

Highly reliable and inexpensive. I own 4 of them.

Amazon.com: Yongnuo YN-560 II Speedlight Flash for Canon and Nikon. GN58.: Camera & Photo
Thanks JW, I have that on the shortlist but wasn't sure if there was an argument against going that way.
Ok Wabbit, before I make a recommendation... what you do want to do with it? Do you want TTL capability on the flash? Do you want TTL capability on the OCF? Subjects you think you will shoot? What do you envision doing? Portraits? Couples? Macro? WHAT????? ;)

$500.00 is minimal for a good setup... One top end OEM (Highly recommended) flash will cost nearly that!

Do you need portability? If not... go with monolights! Even they are portable with a battery back.

Hey Charlie, ok basically since I don't know squat about the different effects of flash and what e-ttl does the best I can say is I want to get the light into different positions and at different output powers for macro, creative, and nature, and probably someday people. All round capable flash. I'm reading up on it now trying to get up to speed a bit, this came out of the blue so I haven't done much research yet and prior to now I've avoided learning about flash in depth because you don't miss what you don't know right? I think knowing what I COULD be doing and not being able to do it would have been painful :meh:.

Yes I need portability for sure since a lot of what I shoot is outdoors.

Does that help?
 

amolitor

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There are several TTL flashes out there built be respectable third parties that run under $100. You can get "auto" flashes for about the same price that tend to be more flexible when you're NOT doing TTL, by won't do TTL. You can also spend.. up to infinity dollars for, basically, more power, and (uh, usually) more reliability.

You can spend as much money as you like on light modifiers, or you can fabricate your own. How do you feel about sketchy taped-together cones of newspaper and so on? Homemade modifiers are never going to be as good as boughten ones, except in very special circumstances, but they're pretty much free.

$500 is a big budget for a guy like me -- I fabricate modifiers, and I tend to shoot things that are pretty small so I rarely have a problem with insufficient power. Honestly I probably STILL have spent $500 on strobes and related stuff over the last decade. That does include replacing broken stuff.

$500 is a minuscule budget for a lot of people. If you need quicker setup. If you need more power. If you need multiple strobes working together with TTL. And probably 100s of other excellent reasons.
 

cgipson1

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If you really want portable.. then I would go with the Canon 430 and Yongnuo flash triggers I listed above. The Canon is worth the money.. and you only need one flash to learn with, so get the best (best other than Nikon, that is! ;) )

that and a lightstand.. and a umbrella or brolly (43" minimum preferably, 60" is better) and you are good to go. For macro.. I would recommend one of the small fotodiox softboxes ( I use them often)

It is much easier to learn with good gear, and easier to get professional looking results with good gear!

I wouldn't worry about the PC cord remotes... there are adapters available if you ever need to go that route. They are not used that much anymore since wireless has gotten so reliable.
 

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cgipson1

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I agree with what Buckster says here http://www.thephotoforum.com/forum/canon-accessories/266649-430-ex-ii-vs-off-brand-flashes.html

I wish I would have gotten two Yongnuo 565ex flashes instead of getting the 430ex, especially for the price I paid for it. I also use the Yongnuo triggers Amazon.com: Yongnuo RF-603 C3 2.4GHz Wireless Flash Trigger/Wireless Shutter Release Transceiver Kit for Canon 1D/5D/7D/50D/40D/30D/20D/10D Series: Electronics with the 60D.

That is good info... I have not used the TTL Yongnuos (especially the Canon version) so hesitated to recommend them. I do have a couple of their 560's I used for background lighting... and they work well.
 
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PixelRabbit

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Thanks everyone, while the nit in me would love to fill my bag with just Canon and it's a very very strong nit, I'm leaning towards two Yongnuo 565ex's and the Yongnuo YN-622C trigger.

If it was a case of quality over quantity I would go with the Canon 430 or even stretch the budget for the 580 without question, but from everything I'm reading the quality and capability of the Yongnuo's is close enough to justify going that way to get two flashes. I can probably even wiggle some room in there for perhaps a modifier or softbox of some description but otherwise Andrew I'm with you, I like to tinker around with making my own stuff and have a couple reflectors I have made out of wood and material I have laying around here.

Anyone have a good reason to not go this route? ....

I'm starting to get excited by the possibilities this will open up, I can finally get into Strobist!
 

jwbryson1

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I'm starting to get excited by the possibilities this will open up, I can finally get into Strobist!

You will NEVER look back. Too much fun, dammit! :band:
 

IByte

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Ok so this worked so well with deciding on my new lens I'm going to try it again with flash.

Budget is approx. $500 for at least one flash unit, if it is in the budget to do two units if there is a quality aftermarket option that I won't regret I'm up for that.

I'm open to any brand and want the biggest bang for my buck, I want the flash off camera so any accessories required to do that need to be factored in.

It will be used on a Canon 60D.

I'm brand new to the world of off camera lighting and as with the new lens purchase I'm on a serious learning curve here.

Thanks in advance all!

SB-910 whoooohoooo...oh wait you're a Caron Bunny.
 
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PixelRabbit

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Ok, question, is there anything I can't do with the Yongnuos and that specific trigger that the Canon can?
 

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