Buyer's Guide: 10 Home Studio Lighting Kits
|The D-Lite-it series strobe kits are available in multiple configurations, all of
which include built-in wireless control.
Shelling out just over $800 US buys you this all-inclusive set from Swiss company Elinchrom’s excellent D-Lite-it (Intelligent Triggering) collection. Although the kits in this range are labeled as entry-level, there’s nothing basic about them. In the kit you get two D-Lite-it 4 flash heads, two air-dampened metal stands and two Portalite 25" softboxes – all of which fits neatly into the two included carry-cases.
Where the kit really trumps its rivals is Elinchrom’s decision to also include a Skyport ECO Transmitter - a 40 bit encoded digital radio trigger with 4 selectable frequencies - which communicates with the built-in receivers in each of the heads. This means that you have complete wireless control over triggering of the flash heads, at sync speeds of up to 1/250 sec.
Digital controls afford precision and consistency when it comes to adjusting the power output, while the ability to ignore pre-flashes means that you can combine the heads with an existing Speedlight-based creative lighting system, if you use one. Elinchrom provides a D-Lite user manual to help you get acquainted with your new kit, in addition to a useful DVD-Guide that introduces the D-Lite and covers the basics of working with studio flash.
This kit is a solid choice for an enthusiast with the space to justify the investment in a more powerful set-up. For those with a more modestly-sized home studio, there is a less expensive 200Ws version that will serve you just as well when shooting at closer-quarters.
|This comprehensive lighting kit includes everything you need to start shooting
right away, with built-in wireless flash control being a particularly attractive
Yes, we’ve just looked at one Elinchrom kit, but we just couldn’t leave out the formidable BXRi range from this round-up. The BXRi 250 heads take the fundamental aspects of simple operation, accurate power control and versatility that the less expensive D-Lite-it heads offer, and add in a range of upgraded features and sophisticated technologies that take their functionality to a professional level.
At this price-point you can expect more robust build quality, faster recycling times and more high-end features than lower priced kits. To that end, Elinchrom has incorporated an impressive range of functions into their BXRi heads, including a built-in slave cell, automatic pre-flash detection with a selection of programmable modes, a visual flash confirmation option, control over the output in variable f-stop steps, an automatic temperature controlled ventilation system, a programmable ready-beep function and safety features like power auto-dumping and multivoltage auto-detection (90-270V, excluding the modeling lamp).
The BXRi units incorporate built-in EL-Skyport receivers, allowing for radio remote control over flash triggering and power settings. This kit pairs them with the newly upgraded EL-Skyport Speed transmitters.
This transmitter earns its name by offering two distinct synchronization modes: Standard and Speed. In Standard mode you can sync at shutter speeds up to 1/150 sec. over an indoor range of 60m (197ft) and an outdoor range of double that distance. When set to Speed mode, however, the sync speed increases to a maximum of 1/250 sec. with indoor and outdoor ranges of 40m (131ft) and 70m (230ft) respectively.
Other benefits of the EL-Skyport Speed include an LED status light indicating the sync mode and battery status and the ability to trigger your camera using a direct connection via a sync cable. Additionally, if you tend to work in environments where other photographers are also using radio-controlled flash, the EL-Skyport Speed features four groups and eight different frequencies to choose from, minimizing the risk of interference.
All told, the kit includes two BXRi 250 heads and their associated sync/power cables, two 25" (66cm) Portalite softboxes and a pair of metal, air-dampened light stands. The whole lots packs down into two separate bags: one for the heads and accessories and one for the stands. This kit is obviously not cheap, but for the features it is hard to beat.
Dec 2, 2014
Dec 2, 2014
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Dec 16, 2014
- Fujifilm X-T223.6%
- Nikon D50025.4%
- Nikon AF-S 105mm F1.4E8.2%
- Olympus M.Zuiko 12-100mm F47.5%
- Panasonic Lumix DMC-G857.2%
- Sigma 85mm F1.4 Art6.7%
- Sigma 50-100mm F1.8 Art5.1%
- Sony a63006.4%
- Sony Cyber-shot RX10 III3.7%
- Sony Cyber-shot RX100 V6.3%
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