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PostPosted: Wed Sep 01, 2010 7:45 pm 
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Location: California, USA
My office runs events all year round and we're trying to save a bit of overhead by moving the event photography inHouse with my department, Marketing Communications. More work for me is a good thing! So we're going to write a proposal for a flash unit.

The events are typically in an large room with high ceilings (15ft minimum), with guests around 20-200 on average. We do larger events with thousands of people in very large venues at least once a year. All typically are shot with typical office lighting.

We shoot with a Canon 20D.

My thoughts are Canon 580EX II Speedlite, flash diffuser(s), Pearstone Bounce Dome and a Gray Fong something something. Do I need a bracket?

I'm also pitching for a wide angle, something like a the Canon 28mm f/1.8. But fat chance. They'll make me use the kit lens until the end of time. Thoughts?

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 01, 2010 8:19 pm 
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Location: The Netherlands
I'd start out by reading the topic I created about the effectiveness of flash diffusers: http://cameralabs.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=19906 :)

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 01, 2010 9:31 pm 
Hi theplatypus,

Well, it depends on what the images are going to be used for and the value of their quality.

You could just as well go for one of the new METZ digital flashes which has power up the wazoo or one of the Q flashes, for example.

Or you could go the other way and save money by grabbing a SONY nEX5 that everyone can use and just ramp up the ISO and live with the noise.

Or you could get them to fund a Nikon D3S...

Or a beauty dish...and so on and so forth. Compared to professional photography services, buying killer-gear should be very cheap if looked at over a year...

Cheers :-)


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 02, 2010 4:00 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 26, 2008 5:32 pm
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Location: California, USA
These images will be published in both b/w, and color. Print and web. Magazines, 2-color newsletters, posters, brochures email blasts, web pages and all the good stuff.

The key here is that the equipment may change hands from the designer (me) to an event planner or other sales lackey depending on where the venue is. We'll have to use the current 20D with the 18-55 kit lens, and a 100mm we use for product shots.

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Daniel

danielmcglaughlin.com
Nikon D80 · Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 AF
Sigma Foveon sensor fan... future owner, promise!
flickr me!


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 13, 2010 8:37 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 26, 2008 5:32 pm
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Location: California, USA
My boss feels the 580 is far too expensive to pitch and I had to pitch the 430EX ii as a plan B. So we'll see which is selected by the higher ups. Now I just need to practice with it so I don't look like a total dope compared to our freelancers...

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danielmcglaughlin.com
Nikon D80 · Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 AF
Sigma Foveon sensor fan... future owner, promise!
flickr me!


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 13, 2010 9:09 pm 
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Location: The Netherlands
I would get a diffuser that doesn't need bouncing. 15ft ceilings is a long shot, especially with the 430EX. Something like a small softbox to mount on your flash, or a ringflash adapter. Dealextreme has quite a cheap one which works pretty good (tested one myself).

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 14, 2010 9:42 am 
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Joined: Mon May 17, 2010 3:39 pm
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I can recommend the LumiQuest soft box series
I have the mini soft box but there are bigger ones (bigger is better)
Here is the 580 behind it it’s the folded soft box and the Velcro strip.
To the left is a bracket, but in your case I don't think it's necessary and it needs a cable which I forgot to put in the shot.
The soft box comes with pads one side adhesive and the other Velcro for attaching the box on the flash gun, but I don't like to stick adhesive on my gear so I got the Velcro strip (sold separately- dang greedy capitalists) which is one side Velcro and the other rubber and works very well in attaching the box.
Image
IMG_3156.jpg by Radu Coman, on Flickr
This is the 580 with the Velcro strip on. It's very stable doesn't slip off and doesn't move.
Image
IMG_3157.jpg by Radu Coman, on Flickr
And here is the mini soft box attached to the Velcro strip.
Image
IMG_3158.jpg by Radu Coman, on Flickr
Pro :
Very light and slim when not attached, there is a place for it in any bag or pocket.
Does a good job in softening the light, but this one (the mini model) ,is better for macros than portraits, there are bigger ones that softens the light even more, are more efficient. What it counts is the size of the light source.
Doesn't interfere with ETTL metering or other functions, the soft box is way clear of the flash gun sensor.
Con:
Mounted on a side bracket the soft box may creep into the frame with a very wide lens. Not an issue when mounted on the camera hot shoe.
Not a magic wand. One still has to know what he's doing when using a flash gun. 

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Canon580EXII
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 14, 2010 7:39 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 26, 2008 5:32 pm
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Location: California, USA
Thanks for the heads up on those recommendations. I'll swing by our local photography super store to check them out.

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Daniel

danielmcglaughlin.com
Nikon D80 · Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 AF
Sigma Foveon sensor fan... future owner, promise!
flickr me!


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