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PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 2:42 am 
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Location: Kanduhar, Afghanistan
Trying to get ideas for and enrty level flash for my t2i. Still don't know a lot about flash usage, i know i'm generaly not happy with my built in results. I know that i want somthing with a tilt head and be able to use a defuser. I'm not affraid of off brand just so i can start learning and NOT offend the wife with another purchase so close to getting my 30-700 lens :)

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Mike "The Squirrel"
Canon 550D | Canon EF 35mm 1:2 | Canon 50 f/1.8 II | Sigma 18-125mm DC OS | Tamron SP 70-300mm Di VC USD | Canon 430EX II
Military Issued Canon 40D | Canon 55-250mm IS


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 3:03 am 
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If I wanted an affordable but usable flash gun I'd go for the Nissin Speedlite Di622. Not too expensive but pretty strong, the head can be turned for both "landscape" and "portrait" format.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 8:18 am 
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If $300 or less is not too offensive I'd recommend the Canon 430 EXIi.
You have the advantage of full compatibility with the Canon system and head tilts and rotates to your needs. Well built and reliable. The 580 EXII is an overkill for most users in my opinion. The built in flash is effective as a fill in flash, the situation when you have a backlit subject and you want to expose it well without blowing out the background. But if you have a long lens, the built in flash is too close to the lens and the lens will cast an ugly shadow on your picture. so you have to have another flash if you use a longer lens. I cannot use the 24-105 with it, I have to use the external flash.

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Radu
Canon PowerShot S100
Canon 50D , SIGMA 10-20 f3.5 ,Canon EF 24-105 L IS USM, Canon EF 100/2.8 macro Canon EF 50/1.4 ,Canon EF 85 f1.8,Canon EF-S17-85 4-5.6 Old Tamron 28-300 inherited from my Canon Rebel G film camera
Canon580EXII
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PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 8:32 am 
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One more thing. the 430 can be controlled from your camera menus and it has an AF assist beam that works even if you disable the flash and helps a lot with auto focus in very low light situations, covering all 9 AF points.

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Radu
Canon PowerShot S100
Canon 50D , SIGMA 10-20 f3.5 ,Canon EF 24-105 L IS USM, Canon EF 100/2.8 macro Canon EF 50/1.4 ,Canon EF 85 f1.8,Canon EF-S17-85 4-5.6 Old Tamron 28-300 inherited from my Canon Rebel G film camera
Canon580EXII
http://www.errre.net


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 9:58 am 
Before you buy a flash it might be worth getting hold of "The Speedliters handbook" by Sly Arena http://pixsylated.com/

Its specifically written for the Canon system and will make a lot of sense, I founjd it an interesting read.

I brought a 430 EXII and a e-ttl lead so I can get the flash off the top of the camera. I've also brought some cheapo non e-ttl wireless triggers for messing with too

E-TTL seems like a pretty damn good system that works etremely well so I'd suggest ensuring any flash you get uses it


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 7:20 pm 
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Location: Kanduhar, Afghanistan
Thanks guys, I'll look into those and yes ianganderton, your right I really need to read up more about flash usage.

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Mike "The Squirrel"
Canon 550D | Canon EF 35mm 1:2 | Canon 50 f/1.8 II | Sigma 18-125mm DC OS | Tamron SP 70-300mm Di VC USD | Canon 430EX II
Military Issued Canon 40D | Canon 55-250mm IS


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 10:31 pm 
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Location: SE Texas
I have the pre-II Canon 580EX and the comparable Nissin 866 Pro, and have had no negative issues with th Nissin, except that when used as a remote flash, with an ST-E2 on the camera, the Nissin is less likely to "see" the ST-E2's beam. Coupled with Jiko's recommendation, this makes the relatively less-expensive Nissin flashes seem like a good option.

I will heartily second langanderton's recommendation of Syl Arena's book! Read this book, and then one will understand Canon flashes much better. This author recommends starting with a 430EX II, if budget is a condsideration. Syl Arena does for Canonistas what Joe McNally's books have done for Nikonistas. (or is it Nikonians?)

Not meaning to stir conflict, of course! I/We use both Canons and Nikons!

:)

Remember to buy the book (another stuff) from an affiliate who will pay a percentage to Cameralabs! Follow the link from this website.

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Canon 7D2/7D/5D/40D/1D2N; Nikon F6/D700/FM3A/1Dx/Coolpix A; Canon 40mm 2.8 STM, 135L, 50L, 35L, 50mm 1.8 I, 100mm 2.8L Macro, 10-22mm EF-S, 400mm 5.6L; Nikkor 50mm 1.2 AI-S, 50mm 1.4G, 50mm 1.8D, 16mm 2.8D Fisheye, 180mm 2.8D, 100-300mm 5.6 AI-S, 18mm 2.8D, 45mm 2.8 AI-P, Micro 60/2.8G; Voigtlander 90mm f/3.5 SL II


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 10:36 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2010 11:55 pm
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Location: SE Texas
Perhaps I should mention the 320EX. While mine is very useful, as part of a team of fashes, I would not want it to be my only flash, regardless of budget. I find the 320eX's LED very useful in specialized circumstances at night, but as an actual flash unit, the 430EX II is far more capable.

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Canon 7D2/7D/5D/40D/1D2N; Nikon F6/D700/FM3A/1Dx/Coolpix A; Canon 40mm 2.8 STM, 135L, 50L, 35L, 50mm 1.8 I, 100mm 2.8L Macro, 10-22mm EF-S, 400mm 5.6L; Nikkor 50mm 1.2 AI-S, 50mm 1.4G, 50mm 1.8D, 16mm 2.8D Fisheye, 180mm 2.8D, 100-300mm 5.6 AI-S, 18mm 2.8D, 45mm 2.8 AI-P, Micro 60/2.8G; Voigtlander 90mm f/3.5 SL II


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 11:15 pm 
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RexGig wrote:
I have the pre-II Canon 580EX and the comparable Nissin 866 Pro, and have had no negative issues with th Nissin,

I just read sometimes that there are people who have problems with the exposure using the 866. The 622 is a bit weaker indeed but it gets better reviews and it costs just about 2/3 of what you have to pay for the 866.
Personally before getting the 580EX II I had the Nissin Di466. It's OK but its head doesn't rotate for indirect flash in the portrait format. If I had known how much that annoys me I'd payed the extra 30€ for the better 622. But looking at the money it's great what you get for it. The Nissin Di 622 costs about as much as the Canon 270EX but it's as strong (more in terms of "strength of the light" than in terms of build quality) and flexible as the Canon 430EX II.

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Canon EOS 500D + Canon EOS 5D Mark III + Canon EOS 33v
Canon EF 28-80mm 3.5-5.6 USM + EF 24-105mm 4L IS USM + EF 100-400mm 4.5-5.6L IS USM + EF 50mm 1.8 II + EF 100mm 2.8L Macro IS USM + Sigma 12-24mm 4.5-5.6 EX DG HSM + Canon Speedlite 580 EX II + Nissin Speedlite Di 466


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 07, 2011 8:15 pm 
I have used a few 'cheap' flashguns and was always a little disappointed with the results. I recently bought a Canon 430exII and the difference was noticeable. I still have SO much to learn about flash photography, but if you can afford a Canon flash I would get one.


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