Fill flash?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by 88888888, Feb 26, 2010.

  1. 88888888 macrumors 6502a

    May 28, 2008
    Ok, so, I find that sometimes when I take pictures under the sunlight, the subject is often dark. I found out that you can fix this problem by using fill flash.

    I currently own a nikon d60 and I'm looking towards a flash. Is the sb-600 enough as a fill flash? or do I need a stronger flash like the sb-900?
    I know sb-900 looks a little big, but I might be upgrading to like a nikon d90 or successor or d300 or something.

    Also the sb-600 says
    it covers 24 to 85mm.. What does that mean?

    and sb-900 says 17-200mm
  2. jackerin macrumors 6502a

    Jun 29, 2008
    Generally using flash as fill shouldn't be too demanding on the flash unit itself, you could probably do that with the built-in flash, but it's a little different shooting into the sun. Your camera will have a limit on the shutter speed when using flash; this is known as the flash sync, and on most entry-level DSLRs is about 1/200. This can be quite a low number when shooting against the sun.

    Using aperture to get the background under control will mean less noticable effect from the flash (aperture controls flash etc), so your flash will have to work harder; in that respect it's better to have a more powerful flash.

    But something you could also try is to have a reflector placed in front of the subject. It might not get as much light as you want, but I think it's worth a shot before you plop down a couple of hundred on a flash unit. Just find something large, white or otherwise reflective, white styrofoam is lightweight enough to take just about anywhere, or a large roll of white paper. There are also many commercial reflectors.
  3. compuwar macrumors 601


    Oct 5, 2006
    Northern/Central VA
    The SB600 should be powerful enough for most one to two subject situations. The coverage is basically the angle of illuminations syncronized to the angle of view- the flash will "zoom" with your lens. If you're shooting at extreme distances with 300mm or longer lenses, then you'll probably want a Better Beamer, but you have to be *very* careful shooting into the sun with one, as you can melt your flash.

  4. toxic macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    it means the flash coverage will cover lenses as wide as 24mm (16mm on DX), and it can narrow the coverage to cover 85mm or longer lenses (56mm or longer on DX). the long end isn't as important unless you want to pinpoint the flash at specific area, like a spotlight (but it's not quite a spotlight since the light spills more).

    so if you use ultrawides with flash, you will need to get an SB900 or similar, which covers as wide as 11mm on your camera.

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