Lighting Reviews

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George Schaub  |  Jan 24, 2018  |  0 comments

Shutterbug, a member of the Technical Image Press Association (TIPA), once again joined forces with 30 other member magazines from around the world to choose the winners of the annual TIPA Awards for the best photo/imaging products in 40 different categories. The award process began in early 2017 with an initial selection of a wide range of products conducted by TIPA’s Technical Committee, on which Shutterbug’s Editor-at-Large George Schaub serves. 

Steve Bedell  |  Aug 01, 2014  |  0 comments

We all know that dedicated flash units are amazing tools. They allow us to use not just one but several flashes with amazing control over the output and have the math figured out for us in the bargain. But unless we modify the light in some way we are left with a very small light source that can be very harsh, and while that may be fine in some cases, there are times when we need to modify the light to soften and shape it. With the Profoto RFi Speedlight Speedring, you now have the ability to do just that using the many modifiers available to you in the Profoto arsenal.

Dan Havlik  |  Apr 10, 2018  |  0 comments

Here’s a loosey-goosey studio lighting tutorial from Photo-Me-Ike where he tests out the new Orlit Rovelight 610 TTL system to see if it’s a viable alternative to the popular and relatively inexpensive Flashpoint (aka Godox) system.

Joe Farace  |  Sep 27, 2017  |  0 comments

“Photography is all about light, composition and, most importantly, emotion.”—Larry Wilder

Joe Farace  |  Nov 02, 2011  |  First Published: Sep 01, 2011  |  0 comments

If Dustin Hoffman’s character in The Graduate were graduating from photo school this year, the advice he would be getting instead of “plastics” would be “speedlights,” and why not? When compared to a monolight, the biggest advantage of using a shoe-mount flash is that they’re small and portable, which means you can take them anywhere. Today’s shoe-mount flashes—or speedlights as camera manufacturers like to call them—are sophisticated, seamlessly blending natural light and flash as well as having the ability to group several flashes together, trip them wirelessly, all the while calculating the correct exposure.

Joe Farace  |  Dec 03, 2013  |  First Published: Oct 01, 2013  |  0 comments

When I first saw the battery-powered Photoflex TritonFlash at a pro show I was impressed as much by its power output and flexibility as its tiny size. Available in a kit that includes one of the company’s light banks along with everything—except a light stand—the setup can get you started making portraits in the studio or on location with nary an electrical outlet in sight.

Steve Bedell  |  Jan 25, 2013  |  First Published: Dec 01, 2012  |  2 comments

Fresnel lenses are used to focus light. Many of the Hollywood glamour photographers of the 1930s and ’40s used them, most notably George Hurrell for his portraits of many of the screen legends of that era. Hurrell used 8x10 cameras, uncoated lenses, and bulky Mole-Richardson hot lights. You don’t have to go that route, but you can now replicate some of the lighting effects with this new offering from Photogenic.

Joe Farace  |  Jan 15, 2016  |  0 comments

Phottix’s 500 watt-second Indra500 TTL Studio Light merges speedlight and monolight technologies and is controlled by the company’s Odin TTL Flash Trigger that works with Canon and Nikon SLRs. (Indra is the Hindu warrior god of sky and rain.)

Steve Bedell  |  Mar 28, 2014  |  First Published: May 01, 2014  |  0 comments

One of the reasons you might consider a “third-party” shoe mount for your camera is simple—it’s usually less expensive, sometimes considerably so. Saving a few bucks is good, but perhaps some features are missing, or the construction isn’t as robust, or the resale value will be lower. But sometimes it just may be a smart choice, as I found when testing the Phottix Mitros flash for my Nikon.

Jack Neubart  |  Sep 27, 2013  |  First Published: Aug 01, 2013  |  0 comments

The Phottix Odin is a radio frequency-controlled system, or simply radio remote. The basic package includes two units: a transmitter and a receiver. Additional receivers are optional. You only need one transmitter to sit in the camera’s hot shoe and trigger compatible i-TTL strobes, but you need a receiver for each off-camera flash. And recently, Phottix introduced a new combo pack that includes one additional receiver—perfect for my two-speedlight setups. The unit tested here is for Nikon and I worked with my Nikon SB-900 speedlights.

Jack Neubart  |  Sep 11, 2012  |  First Published: Aug 01, 2012  |  0 comments

While I’ve found Nikon’s wireless TTL system to be a great asset, I also understand that it has inherent weaknesses when used around obstacles that block the signal, as well as outdoors beyond a few feet or under sunlight. Enter PocketWizard’s ControlTL (Control The Light) TTL-auto radios for Nikon (originally introduced for Canon). These radios are designed to respond in every respect as a dedicated extension of the Nikon CLS/i-TTL system. And they have the potential to do that, provided you keep on top of firmware updates (www.pocketwizard.com/support). I conducted my tests using my Nikon D300 together with the Nikon SB-900 speedlight (verified by PocketWizard as compatible) and briefly an SB-700 (not confirmed at time of testing).

Jon Sienkiewicz  |  Jul 13, 2017  |  0 comments

Need some professional-looking shots of small items for eBay or website use? Here’s another option with a brand name that’s been around for decades.

Jack Neubart  |  Apr 25, 2014  |  First Published: Mar 01, 2014  |  1 comments

For the studio photographer on location or shooting environmental portraits, connecting a studio strobe to a battery pack, battery-driven power pack, or pure sine wave inverter frees one of the constraints of plugging into an AC outlet and worrying about tripping circuit breakers or blowing a fuse, and it removes wires that could prove hazardous (combined with wireless syncing of the flash, I might add). And wedding and event photographers who rely on portable strobes that run entirely on external battery power are well familiar with the benefits—power that lasts and keeps pace with the event. There are countless choices, whether you’re just starting out or looking to upgrade or expand your lighting system.

Jack Neubart  |  Oct 01, 2009  |  0 comments

When you need the power and versatility of a studio strobe for location shooting and environmental portraiture but don’t want to schlep around a large, heavy studio system, you can turn to a portable lighting kit.

Steve Bedell  |  Oct 11, 2013  |  First Published: Sep 01, 2013  |  0 comments

“Look Ma, no cords!” That’s right; the Priolite does not have a power cord. It is run strictly off battery power. Each unit has its own interchangeable and removable battery, plus a built-in receiver to work with a Priolite transmitter. And, unlike most monolights, it has a usable modeling light even on battery power.

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