Diffuse flash in daylight or not? That is the question.

Started Jan 13, 2012 | Discussions thread
Veteran MemberPosts: 3,211
Re: Diffuse flash in daylight or not? That is the question.
In reply to star shooter, Jan 13, 2012

It depends... Sometimes I use a diffuser and sometimes I don't. It depends on the subject, the ambient light and the feasibility of using a diffuser. If I don't have enough flash power then diffusing isn't even an option.

When using a portable strobe I almost always use the built-in or add-on wide-angle diffuser when I want more coverage. It usually doesn't eat-up enough light to be a problem. (It also doesn't diffuse much, if at all... LOL)

If I want more softening I use my Metz "potato masher" strobe and a small Lumiquest UltraSoft with the silver mylar insert installed. There is also a gold mylar insert but since they don't boost the output as much and I already use a 1/8CTO gel to warm the flash I never use it. Between the Metz output and the inserts I can shoot at low ASA settings most of the time.

Diffusion can make a difference outside, particularly when doing portraits in cloudy or shady conditions. Under full sun diffusion is less noticeable, although I have made some very nice images where the diffusion had a positive effect. But most of the time if I am doing fill-flash under bright sunlight the diffuser remains in my bag.

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