Beginner buying his first setup, please comment

Started Nov 11, 2005 | Discussions
Vihta1 New Member • Posts: 19
Beginner buying his first setup, please comment

Hello all

After years of pondering I've decided to get my own lights. As a student I'm on a very limited budget so I'm planning to get the following set:

2x Walimex 420Ws flash heads
2x 80x120 Economy Line softboxes
150cm 5in1 reflector set

I found these from studio-express.de

What do you folks think? Are two 420Ws units enough for full body shots?

What would you recommend for triggering the flashes with my 350D? Hopefully something cheap...

Do I have to connect the flash heads to each others in a master-slave setup or do they work independently?

I've read tons of lighting guides, but I haven't managed to find any good guides which concentrate more on the equipment. Are there any?

All help is more than welcome!

-Kim

Peter Berressem Forum Pro • Posts: 10,647
Re: Beginner buying his first setup, please comment

Vihta1 wrote:

2x Walimex 420Ws flash heads
2x 80x120 Economy Line softboxes
150cm 5in1 reflector set

I found these from studio-express.de

What do you folks think? Are two 420Ws units enough for full body
shots?

A good choice for beginning and hobby. Assuming you're bound for apertures around f/5.6 to 8 @ ISO 100 the power level is right on.

What would you recommend for triggering the flashes with my 350D?
Hopefully something cheap...

The 'economy line' 4-chanel trigger CY-B

Do I have to connect the flash heads to each others in a
master-slave setup or do they work independently?

The first gets actuated by the trigger, the other by the built-in slave cell (photo cell)

I've read tons of lighting guides, but I haven't managed to find
any good guides which concentrate more on the equipment. Are there
any?

Doesn't seem so...forums like this are the source

-- hide signature --

Kind regards,
Peter B.
(English - not my native tongue)

OP Vihta1 New Member • Posts: 19
Re: Beginner buying his first setup, please comment

Thanks for your reply! That helped me a lot.

Michael Mattox Senior Member • Posts: 1,428
I just got mine today, so far I'm impressed
OP Vihta1 New Member • Posts: 19
Re: I just got mine today, so far I'm impressed

Michael Mattox wrote:

See :
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1025&message=15842322

Thanks for posting that!

If 260Ws at 1/4 power is enough to overexpose skin then I think that 420Ws is a bit too much for my needs. It's hard to say as I don't have much experience.

Michael, did you shoot full body shots? That's what I'd need the flashes for. Something like 1/200, f8 @ISO100 would be nice.

Kim

Michael Mattox Senior Member • Posts: 1,428
Re: I just got mine today, so far I'm impressed

Thanks for posting that!

If 260Ws at 1/4 power is enough to overexpose skin then I think
that 420Ws is a bit too much for my needs. It's hard to say as I
don't have much experience.

Michael, did you shoot full body shots? That's what I'd need the
flashes for. Something like 1/200, f8 @ISO100 would be nice.

I'm a total beginner at studio photography so I really don't know what I'm doing. I just finished uploading the results of my first photoshoot (not including my wife who was very generous to pose for me to help me figure out how to work them). You can see the results here:

http://mattoxphoto.free.fr/gallery.php

click People -> Emma

I didn't do any full body shots, actually one but I it wasn't that good so I didn't include it.. I am really blown away by how powerful 260Ws is. I just finished PP'ing my shots and I noticed in camera raw that a lot had overexposed spots on the skin. I was able to decrease the exposure just a tad bit so it was OK. But something for me to watch out for. The light meter is in the mail, I should receive it in less than a week so that will help a lot.

If I do some full body shots I will let you know. I'm using these (used them both for some of the shots) in a 3mx3m room with 2.3m ceiling so I'm sure that has a lot to do with it as well. The walls are an offwhite (used to be white years ago) so the light bounces around quite a bit, probably too much. I'm learning a lot as I go.

I don't know what to say about the 400Ws. Get more advice from pro's. I remember researching the Alien Bees and many people said their 320Ws models were used at low power and that the 160Ws was enough for most people. I was bidding on 150Ws but the 250Ws were going for just a little more.

Hope that helps. Quality seems to be good and when at 1/4 power they recycle immediately.

Michael Mattox
http://www.michaelmattox.com

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