Understanding Flash

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by PegasusMedia, Nov 6, 2006.

  1. PegasusMedia macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2006
    Location:
    Jacksonville, FL
    #1
    OK, so I'm new and don't know anything. A few weeks ago I learned a great deal about lenses from you guys when I originally asked about telephoto to shoot my kid's theater. Great thread, great advice and I learned a ton.

    I ended the thread by saying I wwas going to get a Canon with a 50mm/f1.4.

    Well...change of plans...I wound up buying a NikonD70 with the 18-70 kit lens from another MacRumors member. I'll probably still buy a prime, although this lens get's pretty good reviews.

    Anyway...my question is this...What flash unit do I want?

    I'll be hanging out backstage shooting "day in the life" stuff of the dancers, the rehearsals...just trying to get some practice by shooting people around the theater.

    Again, I'm a total noob...these things have features that I don't even know what they mean but am anxious to learn. I don't expect "pro" pics right away, but I want to head in that direction, so I want to invest in the right equipment and learn how to use it.

    Nikon sells the SB-800 or the more affordable SB-600, which I bet is fine for me? What about the off brands? Good enough? I have learned not skimp on lenses...what about skimping on flash?

    Please give a "fancy flash units" 101 for me and the other noobs.
     
  2. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2005
    #2
    Funny, someone just asked me this so I'm just copying my response to them. :)

    I have the d70 and the sb-800. In some cases I wonder if I should have bought the sb-600 as well as a lighter more portable flash. Do not get me wrong, the sb-800 was not a bad choice at all, however, it does get a bit heavy while I wander around on vacation and such.

    Both will do virtually the same. They both work as wireless flashes, they both are very backwards compatible, but the sb-600 does not have a bounce card. Is this a problem? NO WAY because there are MANY alternatives to this that are far better than the bounce card.

    The sb-800 goes to 1-1/128 whereas the 600 goes to 1/64. That is on manual only and many you won't be using manual.

    The 600 doesn't have non-ttl a mode, commander mode, or colored filters. You have to decide if you intend to use this on camera only or if you intend to get very creative. I think you can get very creative, but the sb-800 is a great off-camera flash. The sb-600 will give you longer battery life and shorter recycle times due to it being a bit less power. You also cannot plug an external power pack into the 600, but again, think about whether or not you'd need it. I don't use one but I always have 10 batters in my bag at all times, my sb-800 takes 5 batteries.

    Someone told me that if you're looking for a flash for general use then the sb-600 is going to be perfect and take that money you would save and invest in something else.
     
  3. bob5820 macrumors 6502a

    bob5820

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2006
    Location:
    35°0′36″N 80°40′45″W (35.0
    #3
    Jessica thanks for the mini review of the differences between the SB600 and SB800. I was wondering myself, your post was so much nicer then slogging through all that marketing stuff. Either way I'd recomend sticking with a Nikon flash and avoiding the 3rd paty stuff. My understanding is that Nikon flashes integrate pretty closely with their cameras.
     

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