New (and better?) Bare Bulb Alternative to Q Flash and Elinchrom Ranger. What do you think?

Started Apr 27, 2013 | Discussions thread
CraigBennett Contributing Member • Posts: 699
Re: New (and better?) Bare Bulb Alternative to Q Flash and Elinchrom Ranger. What do you think?

Nikonparrothead wrote:

CraigBennett wrote:


I have also been thinking about the Alien Bee B1600, the Vagabond Miniā„¢ Lithium and Pocketwizard AC9 to go with my FlexTT5/MiniTT1 stuff I already have.  Seems to be a very cost effective approach for a portable and fairly high powered flash solution.


Craig, I actually have a VML and a Bee 1600 and an AC9 (though I shoot Elinchrom, lots of my friends shoot with Bees ... I got a used Bee in a trade for an SB800 and the VML at first for my 600 RXs). I haven't done a whole lot with the AC9  in part because I've loaned my 1600 and the VML to one of the aforementioned friends. But another frend has had trouble with the AC9 and the Flex units -- though I think he's been able to bump the power one stop up or two stops down. Still, you'll need two Bees to put out the same power as one big Ranger pack.

Thanks for the input.  Are you satisfied with the VML?  I thought about using it to power one of my 1200WS Flashpoints, though I think the Alien Bee's are lighter and smaller....more suitable for portable use.  Can always use two AB's if I need 1200WS.

I have a company (non-photographic) that bought 3 Alien Bee's B1600, 30"by60" softbox and 3 heavey duty 13' stands and only used them once during a demo.  They are offering the setup to me for a really good price.  That kind of changed my thoughts to what I was planning.  Before I was thinking about the Einstein, though I've seen reports stating issues with the FlexTT5 and PowerMC2 on that one as well.

The Pocketwizards have worked very well for me with my SB-910's, Sekonic L-478DR meter and triggering my Flashpoint monolights now.  I wrote a blog entry on how to setup the the FlexTT5s, Sekonic meter and Nikon CLS's not too straight forward.

I like that FlexTT5s provide a good TTL communications link with my Nikon and SB-910s and wanted to expand to powertracking with the AB.  And I like the AC3 controller, use it all the time.

I get great results triggering my monolights, though any cheaper radio trigger can do that.  My old setup was the Photogenics 2500DR's with PW Multimax's, but I sold all that when I sold my studio.

I thought I could get by with my Speedlights, BUT, though they are great, they are too limited when you need some power and light modifying, not to mention a lot of money to get to that power.  So I purchased some low cost 1200 WS Flashpoints, which are good as well....but then that used AB deal presented itself.

I figure I can always sell the B1600s and easily recoup my cost if it does not work as advertised with the AC9s.


 CraigBennett's gear list:CraigBennett's gear list
Nikon D90 Nikon D800 Nikon D800E Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR II +6 more
Post (hide subjects) Posted by
Keyboard shortcuts:
FForum PPrevious NNext WNext unread UUpvote SSubscribe RReply QQuote BBookmark MMy threads
Color scheme? Blue / Yellow