Chinese flash manufacturer Venus Optics has launched a double headed macro flash unit, claiming it has the highest guide number in the world for such a device. The Kuangren Macro Twin Flash KX-800 uses a pair of flash heads on extending flexible arms that produce a combined output with a guide number of 190 feet or 58 meters at ISO 100. The arms are each 19in/48cm long and enable the photographer to position the individual flash heads in front of the lens for extreme close-up work. A third arm houses an LED light to help with focusing.

The heads have asymmetric power control, each with eight separate output levels that allow an extreme ratio of 1/128th power to full power between them. The manufacturer says the color temperature is 5600k and flash duration varies between 1/200sec and 1/20,000sec.

Powered by four AA cells the Kuangran Macro Twin Flash KX-800 is claimed to be able to fire at full power up to 100 times per set of batteries, and up to 1500 times at lower settings. Recycle times are between 2 and 5 seconds, and the gun can be triggered via a hotshoe or PC cord.

The gun is said to be compatible with Canon, Nikon, Sony and Pentax SLR systems, but as it doesn’t appear to offer TTL metering of any kind it isn’t clear why it wouldn’t also work with any camera equipped with a standard hotshoe or PC socket.

The flash, which bares a striking resemblance to some of its intended insect subjects, is on sale for $279.