Flash Photography - Discussions

Swame_spSwame_sp Posts: 58Member
edited January 2013 in Nikon DSLR cameras
So I bought my first flash gun, Nikon SB 800 few days ago (from a local craigslist ad), I got it for $220 and it has recycle time of 5.2 seconds on a full power, with brand new AA batteries. Very much looking forward to read more about this flash and put it to better use. BTW, I have d7000.

My questions are:

- How to know the power of flash to be used at an indoor low light situation?
- What kinda mode do you use for covering a small get-together. It's about 20feet by 20feet room and normal height ceiling.
- Any advice to get better with this flash?
- Any learning material for this?

Is it a smart decision to settle with this flash or I must have considered the latest SB 700? I understand SB 800 is a hassle with menu and settings but I'm willing to go through it as it I could save bit more, to use on other accessories. Flash zooms only upto 105mm (sorry if it's wrong) and I don't think I would need a flash to use with the muscle builder 70-200 f2.8 :)
Tagged:
«13

Comments

  • Parke1953Parke1953 Posts: 455Member
    Swame_sp try this. strobist.blogspot. Read lighting 101.
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 3,973Member
    The SB-800 is technically a higher end flash than the SB-700. The SB-800 has more power, and higher end features. The only practical difference between the two is that the user interface of the SB-700 is easier to understand. I have both, and in practice, they are very similar.
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • Golf007sdGolf007sd Posts: 2,840Moderator
    edited January 2013
    @Swame_sp For indoor photography and flash, I always...which I'm sure you know...bound it flash off the walls and ceiling. I also recommend you getting Gary Fong Collapsible Lightsphere Kit . His videos on Youtube can be very educational as well. Lastly, get some good rechargeable batteries if you are going to use your flash a lot. I recommend getting Sanyo Eneloop. With that said, get this by Apple. They are made by Sanyo and you get the charging station as well.

    Cheers....
    Post edited by Golf007sd on
    D4 & D7000 | Nikon Holy Trinity Set + 105 2.8 Mico + 200 F2 VR II | 300 2.8G VR II, 10.5 Fish-eye, 24 & 50 1.4G, 35 & 85 1.8G, 18-200 3.5-5.6 VR I SB-400 & 700 | TC 1.4E III, 1.7 & 2.0E III, 1.7 | Sigma 35 & 50 1.4 DG HSM | RRS Ballhead & Tripods Gear | Gitzo Monopod | Lowepro Gear | HDR via Promote Control System |
  • safyresafyre Posts: 113Member
    edited January 2013
    1.For indoors, just use TTL mode and bounce it off the ceiling. As others have said, a diffuser helps a lot, make sure to get one that actually increases the area of the flash.
    2. Stick with TTL and then just use the compensation button if too bright/dark
    3. Just keep practicing with it and it'll become more second nature. If you feel like you are using too much flash power/recycle time is too long, increase the ISO on camera so less powerful bursts are needed. Do NOT constantly rapidfire flash bursts at high power as this can burn out your flash tube, and it does happen often.
    4. Youtube, Strobist (for more off camera stuff), Google

    The SB-800 is powerful enough, even the SB-600 is powerful enough. The (overpriced) SB-700/900 series is actually WORSE in terms of real life usability because it takes a longer time to compensate flash exposure since you have to go through the menu and use a scroll wheel as opposed to simple + and - buttons on the flash. Not to mention the whole thermal shutdown issue. Not sure how sensitive the SB-700 is, but if its anything close to the SB-900, that is a very bad thing.
    Post edited by safyre on
  • haroldpharoldp Posts: 984Member
    I have SB900 and 800's and use the 800's except when using the 900 as a master for multi flash CLS shots, the SB900 control system is much easier to switch between modes.

    The bounce flash advice is good, make sure the walls are white, or use a white mounted modifier.

    Rechargeable NIMH batteries are much better for flash use than Alkaline AA's, they handle current draw better and will give more flashes per charge, and faster recycling than alkaline.

    Alkaline batteries are only better for shelf life in low draw devices like remote controls.

    Low self discharge NiMH batteries ( I use Sanyo eneloops) will hold 80 % of their charge for a year.

    Regards ... H
    D810, D3x, 14-24/2.8, 50/1.4D, 24-70/2.8, 24-120/4 VR, 70-200/2.8 VR1, 80-400 G, 200-400/4 VR1, 400/2.8 ED VR G, 105/2 DC, 17-55/2.8.
    Nikon N90s, F100, F, lots of Leica M digital and film stuff.

  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 3,973Member
    @safyr The SB-700 does not have thermal issues, you can take hundreds of images and it wont even slow down. Keep in mind that the SB-700 is the SB-600 replacement, not the SB-800 replacement.

    The SB-910 also rectifies the heat issue of the SB-900.
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • DavidDavid Posts: 18Member
    I have a quick question about the SB-700. I purchased a wireless receiver and transmitter so that I can utilize off camera flash with my camera body. With the camera off flash - the light was extremely cool and blue. With the flash on the camera hotshoe and using Aperture Priority - the flash was much warmer and more to my tastes. Does anyone know why the big difference in the resulting flash I am getting here?
  • Golf007sdGolf007sd Posts: 2,840Moderator
    @David What wireless receiver are you using? Does is support TTL?
    D4 & D7000 | Nikon Holy Trinity Set + 105 2.8 Mico + 200 F2 VR II | 300 2.8G VR II, 10.5 Fish-eye, 24 & 50 1.4G, 35 & 85 1.8G, 18-200 3.5-5.6 VR I SB-400 & 700 | TC 1.4E III, 1.7 & 2.0E III, 1.7 | Sigma 35 & 50 1.4 DG HSM | RRS Ballhead & Tripods Gear | Gitzo Monopod | Lowepro Gear | HDR via Promote Control System |
  • DavidDavid Posts: 18Member
    It is a Calumet Pro Series receiver... I am still at work at the moment (working hard, by the way) so I can verify that a bit later.
  • Benji2505Benji2505 Posts: 517Member
    I would think that it does not have to do with the wireless trigger. I would make a comparison with (any) fixed white balance and see what the results are. If there is still a difference I would check where the flashes bounce onto your subject from.
  • TriShooterTriShooter Posts: 219Member
    edited January 2013
    Swame_sp you got very nice flash. There is a lot of good advice comments in this thread.

    Most people think of a flash for coping with low light which is unfortunate because flash is an incredible creative tool. If you learn to use it you will enjoy your new flash and your camera equipment even more because flash is highly useful, and most often neglected tool.

    Safyre gave you some good pointers, as well as Golf007sd gave you excellent advice on Gary Fong making some lightweight portable flash attachments that actually work. I use multiple sets of everything he makes because his stuff is practical, inexpensive, small, light weight, and works surprising well. Gary has a ton of videos on YouTube about using his equipment. Start small and learn what you can do with one light on camera, or with a flash bracket. Then get a remote trigger and see what you can so with a flash off camera, then the umbrella, box, stands for them. Then get two, and three, and four depending on what you are shooting.

    I use a mixed set of SB600s, Yongnuo YN560s, and Yongnuo remote triggers, along with an assortment of umbrellas, and box lights.

    You can light up a room with Gary Fong's equipment with 4 flashes using as little as 1/8 power on each remote unit all bouncing off the ceiling and eliminate deep shadows without complaints from people who get migraine headaches from flash, believe me there are a lot of them. Golf007sd, and I also use the same rechargeable batteries.

    If you want to have some fun with flash I like the encouragement the guys at Lighten Up and Shoot give people to experiment, and their enthusiasm - http://lightenupandshoot.com/huh - they are fun, but more important they encourage people to shoot and experiment which is he best way to learn.
    Post edited by TriShooter on
  • TaoTeJaredTaoTeJared Posts: 1,306Member
    Swame_sp try this. strobist.blogspot. Read lighting 101.
    +1 I go there for ideas all the time. Very practical and many times will show you how to use things around the house to help you light stuff. Great site.
    D800, D300, D50(ir converted), FujiX100, Canon G11, Olympus TG2. Nikon lenses - 24mm 2.8, 35mm 1.8, (5 in all)50mm, 60mm, 85mm 1.8, 105vr, 105 f2.5, 180mm 2.8, 70-200vr1, 24-120vr f4. Tokina 12-24mm, 16-28mm, 28-70mm (angenieux design), 300mm f2.8. Sigma 15mm fisheye. Voigtlander R2 (olive) & R2a, Voigt 35mm 2.5, Zeiss 50mm f/2, Leica 90mm f/4. I know I missed something...
  • Swame_spSwame_sp Posts: 58Member
    Thanks a lot for all the helpful advises... I'm reading the lighting 101.

    @Golf, the charger from Apple, the image on the product doesn't have any manufacturer name on it, is it from Sanyo?
  • GhostRider117GhostRider117 Posts: 29Member
    Thanks a lot for all the helpful advises... I'm reading the lighting 101.

    @Golf, the charger from Apple, the image on the product doesn't have any manufacturer name on it, is it from Sanyo?
    Be aware that the Sanyo charger I got with my Eneloops is very very slow, so possibly not the best choice. Though it's better to charge NiMH batteries slowly, that charger is kinda pushing it too far...

  • Golf007sdGolf007sd Posts: 2,840Moderator
    @Swame_sp: Yes they are from Sanyo. There are many sites like this one that say it is. I have been using them for over 2 years and they act just like the other Sanyo's I have.
    D4 & D7000 | Nikon Holy Trinity Set + 105 2.8 Mico + 200 F2 VR II | 300 2.8G VR II, 10.5 Fish-eye, 24 & 50 1.4G, 35 & 85 1.8G, 18-200 3.5-5.6 VR I SB-400 & 700 | TC 1.4E III, 1.7 & 2.0E III, 1.7 | Sigma 35 & 50 1.4 DG HSM | RRS Ballhead & Tripods Gear | Gitzo Monopod | Lowepro Gear | HDR via Promote Control System |
  • Parke1953Parke1953 Posts: 455Member
    edited January 2013
    Sanyo's I think are the best you can get. I have been using them for years in my R/C radio's, cars and planes and now SB900's. I don't know where you are but B&H has them Sanyo Eneloop with charger. Cheap less than $20.

    I have not had a problem with the charger no different than charging your camera battery. Get a least 2 sets for one flash (8 batteries and 2 chargers) $40.
    Post edited by Parke1953 on
  • haroldpharoldp Posts: 984Member
    Costco will sell 10 Sanyo eneloops (8 AA 2 AAA ) plus charger for $ 19.

    They are 2000 mah and hold 80% of their charge for a year.

    I carry several sets, and charge them at home wen I am not waiting.

    because they hold their charge, you can leave sets fully charged, unlike conventional NiMH.

    Regards ... H
    D810, D3x, 14-24/2.8, 50/1.4D, 24-70/2.8, 24-120/4 VR, 70-200/2.8 VR1, 80-400 G, 200-400/4 VR1, 400/2.8 ED VR G, 105/2 DC, 17-55/2.8.
    Nikon N90s, F100, F, lots of Leica M digital and film stuff.

  • warprintswarprints Posts: 61Member
    edited January 2013
    Does your SB800 have the extra battery? If you, you should get 10 Sanyo Eneloop XXs (which are great - even more so if you DON'T use your flash a lot, because they hold their charge for a long time).
    Did you get the manual with the flash? If not, get one online from Nikon (free).
    Post edited by warprints on
  • Parke1953Parke1953 Posts: 455Member
    Costco will sell 10 Sanyo eneloops (8 AA 2 AAA ) plus charger for $ 19.

    They are 2000 mah and hold 80% of their charge for a year.

    I carry several sets, and charge them at home wen I am not waiting.

    because they hold their charge, you can leave sets fully charged, unlike conventional NiMH.

    Regards ... H
    Wow haroldp great deal. I'll go there tomorrow and see if I can find them. You can never have enough.

  • DenverShooterDenverShooter Posts: 340Member
    When I used to use rechargeable batteries I used to take a fine tip Sharpie and number them and also put the date I purchased them on them. The numbering was to make sure that I didn't mix discharged and charged batteries together in the flashes or charger and the dating was to help keep track of old vs new when I need to buy more of them and prevent mixing old batteries (which might have less capacity) and new batteries.

    Denver Shooter
  • Swame_spSwame_sp Posts: 58Member
    edited January 2013
    All very helpful comments, I have downloaded the manual and techniques for SB 800. Will go through to understand more. Yeah I will be ordering either BH or Amazon for eneloop 8 battery set with charger.

    SB800 doesn't have the extra battery compartment. I'll also order flash stand. How about getting different gels for white balance? Like the rosco swatchbook?
    Post edited by Swame_sp on
  • PB_PMPB_PM Posts: 3,973Member
    edited January 2013
    When purchased new the SB-800 had an add on to add an extra battery (replaces the battery door). Sadly people tend to lose it, so used copies often don't have it. Cannot say I've ever felt the need to use the extra battery with mine, it just sits in the case 99% of the time.
    Post edited by PB_PM on
    If I take a good photo it's not my camera's fault.
  • sidewayssideways Posts: 54Member
    If you do lots of flash and use AA rechargeables I recommend the maha wizard one charger. It charges from 1 to 4 cells at a time and shows the capacity of each cell. My routine is to use it to discharge all cells first then charge at the 1 hour rate. since it gives you the capacity of every cell, you can group them into sets easily and reduce the risk of killing cells which happens when one is discharged much sooner than the rest.
  • sidewayssideways Posts: 54Member
    "How about getting different gels for white balance? Like the rosco swatchbook? "

    Very very useful to have at least a couple of green and full / half / quarter CTO orange so that you can match the flash to ambient colour shooting indoor under fluo or tungsten lights. Then everything is lit consistently and you can adjust overall WB in post.
  • sidewayssideways Posts: 54Member
    edited January 2013
    Take a tip fron Neil vanNiekirk's blog about using a "black foamie thing" ! When using on camera bounce flash this is a clever way to put a baffle around the edge of the flash to prevent any light coming direct from the flash reaching your model. Ensures that all the light is bounced for softer, smoother result. ..

    And if you've not found it already Joe McNally's blog is essental reading just like David Hobby's.
    Post edited by sideways on
Sign In or Register to comment.