Lighting Equipment

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George Schaub Posted: Mar 22, 2005 Published: Apr 01, 2005 0 comments

Photos © 2004, George Schaub, All Rights Reserved

If you enjoy exploring the fascinating world of close-up photography you should consider a ring flash as an essential part of your creative kit. A ring flash mounts around your taking lens and eliminates problems associated with standard shoe-mount flash and even off-camera flash, mainly the inability to down-angle the...

Joe Farace Posted: Nov 15, 2012 Published: Oct 01, 2012 1 comments
One of the first lighting kits I ever owned was a set of Smith-Victor Adapta-Lights that had screw-base sockets for photoflood lamps. Son of a gun, the company still offers Adapta-Lights as an entry-level solution for beginning portrait photographers who want to work with hot lights. On the other hand, if you prefer making portraits using electronic flash, Smith-Victor’s three-light FL700K Strobe Light Kit may be just what you’re looking for.

The FL700K Strobe Light Kit that I tested is designed for amateur photographers and aspiring pros and contains two FLC300 (320 ws) FlashLite and one 110i (110 ws) FlashLite monolights. The FLC300 monolights offer continuously variable flash power settings, a test button, a ready light, and an optical slave for wireless triggering and have an umbrella stand adapter that’s compatible with 3/8” through 5/8” light stand posts. To expand the kit’s capabilities, Smith-Victor offers more than 100 accessories and light modifiers for the FLC300 monolights, including softboxes, reflectors, snoots, grids, and barn doors. The 110i monolight has a full- or half-power setting, optical slave, small built-in reflector, and umbrella mount. When used together, all three lights give you lots of flexibility for lighting studio or on-location portraits.

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Ron Eggers Posted: Oct 01, 2009 0 comments

On-camera flash units have been around for some 50 years and now they’ve become much more sophisticated with the development of D-SLRs.

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Steve Bedell Posted: Oct 01, 2005 0 comments

I'm not really fussy about my lights. By that, I mean I'm not enamored by a specific brand and I don't need them to measure light in hundredths of a stop. I also don't need them to cycle in half a second. If I were a fashion or commercial photographer, things might be different, but as a portrait guy, my needs are pretty simple.

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Joe Farace Posted: Apr 23, 2013 Published: Mar 01, 2013 1 comments
Speedotron’s power pack and head systems are the studio lighting world’s equivalent of the American muscle car. They’re powerful, made in the U.S.A., and ruggedly built to take hard use. Since its beginnings the company has offered two lines of lighting systems for photographers with different requirements. The premium-priced Black Line is intended for commercial shooters, while Brown Line products are aimed at portrait photographers, yet when used normally both have similar quality, reliability, and longevity.
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Joseph A. Dickerson Posted: Jul 01, 2003 0 comments

Spot Meter Roundup

For the record, I use TTL (Through The Lens) metering and automatic modes quite often. Many of my subjects, birds on the wing for instance, are just too flighty to allow for thoughtful metering. But, give me a rustic barn, an...

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Joseph A. Dickerson Posted: Oct 01, 2004 0 comments

Photos © 2004, Joseph A. Dickerson, All Rights Reserved

Anyone who knows me recognizes that I have a thing for light meters. I own, and regularly use, several and have collected a number of antiques that decorate the shelves of my office. This obsession started when I...

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Jack Neubart Posted: Nov 01, 2010 0 comments

Interfit Photographic has introduced Strobies, a system approach to shoe-mount flash accessories. Strobies are designed to take many popular shoe-mount flashes and turn them into versatile lighting tools for studio and location use.

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Joe Farace Posted: Oct 25, 2012 Published: Sep 01, 2012 8 comments
Studio lighting equipment is available in either continuous or electronic flash configurations. Continuous lighting is “on” continuously, much like a light bulb or the sun for that matter, enabling you to use your in camera light meter to measure and see how the light falls on your subject. Continuous lighting sources use photoflood, quartz, or HMI (Hydrargyrum Medium-Arc Iodide) bulbs, which can be hot, leading to the use of the term “hot lights.” An increasing number of continuous lighting tools use Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFL) or LEDs, producing what are, in effect, “cool” hot lights.
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Jay Abend Posted: Feb 01, 1999 12 comments

Many of you may have seen my review last April of the Sun Star Strobo Mini-1200 flash system. At the time Sun Star Strobo was an all but unheard of flash manufacturer, producing a full line of impressive looking studio flash equipment. The Mini Series...

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Steve Bedell Posted: Apr 02, 2013 Published: Mar 01, 2013 0 comments
I am a dyed-in-the-wool natural light shooter. Outdoor portraits are my specialty and 95 percent of my outdoor portraits are taken with nothing but daylight. Yet, unlike other photographers I know, I actually prefer shooting on sunny days, and my studio schedules all day, so there is no waiting for the “golden hour” to get soft, directional light.
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Chuck Gloman Posted: Nov 01, 2010 0 comments

Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) are a highly efficient way to provide additional illumination to your shot. Not only are they small and portable, but LEDs consume far less power than tungsten units, can last over 100,000 hours, and give off little or no heat. If you are looking for studio lights that are easily metered (because they can stay on all day), cool to the touch, color temperature...

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Dave Howard Posted: Jun 01, 1999 0 comments

It doesn't take long to tell whether most photo-related equipment was designed by a "design team," or by a photographer. The "team" product usually looks slick, but five minutes into an in-depth examination you've most...

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Jay Abend Posted: Jun 01, 1999 0 comments

In the quest for the perfect digital image I have learned an awful lot. Besides learning more than I ever hoped to know about ROM, RAM, Cache, and SCSI, I have learned way too much about continuous lighting. Continuous lighting, as the name suggests, is...

Joe Farace Posted: Apr 10, 2012 Published: Mar 01, 2012 0 comments
“Lighting is really common sense and personal observation. This is applied to a few rules of photography which cannot be broken and to others which I tend to bend a little.”—Paul Beeson

A monolight or monobloc to our European friends is a self-contained studio flash that is typically, but not always, powered by an AC power source and allows for different light modification devices, including reflectors, light banks, or umbrellas. The key phrase in that last sentence is self-contained. To my way of thinking the biggest advantage monolights possess is just that—if you’re shooting on location or for that matter anywhere and the power pack in a pack and head system stops working, so do you. If you have a couple of monolights and one of them fails, you can still shoot.

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