Anyone have any experience with hot-shoe softbox

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by VirtualRain, Sep 7, 2010.

  1. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #1
    Hi, I already have a strobe and umbrella and I'm looking to add a second one.

    Someone on CL is selling a 430EX and one of these hot-shoe soft box's with a light stand. I was originally planning to just get another stand/umbrella, but this got me thinking if I should consider a small softbox like this instead.

    It will be used for experimenting with portraits and product photography in my garage.

    What are the pros/cons to this vs. shooting through an umbrella?

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    Link
     
  2. Padaung macrumors 6502

    Padaung

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #2
    The main difference for me between shooting through an umbrella and a softbox is that if you are shooting something reflective then the surface will show the pattern of the umbrella (ie the wires that hold it together) - a softbox will show as a plain texture, which is often preferable.

    If you read through http://strobist.blogspot.com/ which is what this sort of kit is often used for you will find more opinions too.
     
  3. VirtualRain thread starter macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #3
    Thanks... good insights. I've read through the strobist lighting tutorials and many articles and didn't fine any good info.

    I gather from the softbox design and it's size, that I will have a bit more control over the lighting and feathering than I would from an umbrella, but the small area of this particular box (20"x20") may limit it's uses. :confused:
     
  4. Phrasikleia macrumors 601

    Phrasikleia

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    Location:
    Over there------->
    #4
    It depends on what you want to shoot. Such a small modifier will not increase the relative size of the light source to the subject very much if you're photographing a person. So it's virtually useless for portraits, unless you get right in the face of a person, at which point you're at an unflattering focal length. If, however, you're doing macro work or still life, then the relative increase in size can make quite a difference.
     
  5. Edge100 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    May 14, 2002
    Location:
    Where am I???
    #5
    This.

    These tiny softboxes have their uses, but using them for portraits is difficult.
     
  6. VirtualRain thread starter macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #6
    Thanks... that's what I was concerned about.
     
  7. jackerin macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #7
    But if it's used off-camera then you can use the longer focal length while keeping the flash-to-subject distance small. The 430EX isn't the best solution for that though unless you're willing to go with Canon's wireless system.
     
  8. Phrasikleia macrumors 601

    Phrasikleia

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    Location:
    Over there------->
    #8
    Well, I would recommend having it off camera regardless. But even with a long focal length, you're going to need a very tight crop--just the face filling the frame, probably.
     

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