Which, ON CAMERA , Light Flash Diffusers do you use

sevencrossingsevencrossing Posts: 2,800Member
edited May 2014 in General Discussions
Gary Fong. Soft shadows and a pleasing light ratio across the face.
Garry fong absorbs vast amounts of power and no better results than a flash flipper and dircet flash ..IMHo hah
a ..mind you very posy for the wedding guests who never seen one before ....all good pr fun
So what do you use

Please ON CAMERA only. I think we all know, a big off camera, light box or brolly, is softer but they are not practical at a crowded wedding reception
Post edited by sevencrossing on


  • sevencrossingsevencrossing Posts: 2,800Member
    edited May 2014
    In doors , I use the white diffuser supplied with my SB900, at about 20 degrees off vertical; on an D800 shooting RAW (The top of the image tends to be a stop over exposed so I will often add a graduated filter in post)

    Out side, I do not use a diffuser I use an unmodified flash as a fill in

    I have tried a Garry Fong but it is too big and falls off

    Post edited by sevencrossing on
  • Golf007sdGolf007sd Posts: 2,840Moderator
    edited May 2014
    When I have to use flash, which is very, very minimal, the stock SB700 diffuser is used. I hardly ever have the flash hitting the subject directly. I almost always bounce the flash of a wall or ceiling.

    I too have the Garry Fong "set." However, I have not used it once; thanks to the D4 amazing ISO performance. So on my part, that was money well spent....don't you think? Not! O well, at least I have it should I ever need it.

    The type of picture I tend to take, the flash itself, does not come into play that often. I much rather use the available light that there is, in order to add a level of creative look to the subject at hand.
    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 |
  • Vipmediastar_JZVipmediastar_JZ Posts: 1,708Member
  • spraynprayspraynpray Posts: 6,407Moderator
    edited May 2014
    In doors , I use the white diffuser supplied with my SB900, at about 20 degrees off vertical; on an D800 shooting RAW (The top of the image tends to be a stop over exposed so I will often add a graduated filter in post)

    Out side, I do not use a diffuser I use an unmodified flash as a fill in

    I have tried a Garry Fong but it is too big and falls off

    Falls off? @-) @-) @-) Do you use the supplied rubber band around the flash seven? I use mine on the SB700 on which it is a little loose and yet it never falls off.
    Post edited by spraynpray on
    Always learning.
  • ThomasHortonThomasHorton Posts: 323Member
    Stock diffuser on the SB700. Can't really see the advantage over this with other diffusers that mount on the flash. They are all rather poor diffusers compared to the larger ones.

    Now if you want to look cool shooting..... :)
    Gear: Camera obscura with an optical device which transmits and refracts light.
  • safyresafyre Posts: 113Member
    Demb Flash Diffuser because you can actually control how much light is bounced off.

    Gary fong is overrated imo; its just like a bigger stofen omnibox; lots of power required with no control of it.
  • donaldejosedonaldejose Posts: 3,378Member
    I have tried them all. Not so happy with any of them. The ColorRight FlashRight seems to work as well as any of them and it is smaller.
  • Vipmediastar_JZVipmediastar_JZ Posts: 1,708Member
    I actually wanted to try the ExpoImaging Rogue Flash benders. Does anybody have experience with these?
  • PistnbrokePistnbroke Posts: 2,246Member
    edited May 2014
    YOU might see a difference with differerent flashes ..diffusers etc but the only thing the customer might notice is big side shadows cast by having the flash to the side ...sorry guys Flash flipper rules for weddings and some events..
    Post edited by Pistnbroke on
  • MikeGunterMikeGunter Posts: 543Member
    edited May 2014
    Hi all,

    I use Gary Fong or a fairly big softbox (LumaQuest or modified Chimera) on the camera's SB800 or SB900.

    The GF is easier to put on and use and works as well as the softbox.

    The lighting from the modifiers work indoors and out.

    @Vipmediastar_JZ - I should think the Flash benders should work somewhat at least. When I tried to chase the cost down, I see a $30 bill, I think I could pass on that. I might have that wrong, but that seems high. In my reporting days, we taped a white card on the flash and bent it towards the subject field. It was a white index card and Scotch® tape; that would likely do as well for a lot less, nearly $30 less. You can likely make the contraption yourself.

    (edit - I see that it is available at Amazon for $20-and up - I don't know how affordable that is.)

    @Pistnbroke - Different strokes... Keeping that shadow a shallower shade of gray is meaningful to me at least, if not to some of the folks who have a look at my pictures.

    My best,

    Post edited by MikeGunter on
  • tcole1983tcole1983 Posts: 981Member
    It isn very classy but I took some pics for a person not too long ago and a business card in the gap on my sb400 with the flash at an angle up worked well. Straight on was too harsh and the ceiling bouncing wasn't working well either.
    D5200, D5000, S31, 18-55 VR, 17-55 F2.8, 35 F1.8G, 105 F2.8 VR, 300 F4 AF-S (Previously owned 18-200 VRI, Tokina 12-24 F4 II)
  • donaldejosedonaldejose Posts: 3,378Member
    edited May 2014
    I have a number of those Rogue type flash benders in different sizes. Don't really like them. They create too much forward light and not enough ceiling bounce. Ok for macro when you want to bounce the light in from the side. Vipmediastar_JZ. Where do you live? If near Philadelphia PA you can borrow mine to try them. Try e-bay for cheap prices out of China, that is where I got mine.
    I still use the 1/3rd business card in the slot of the SB400 at times. It creates enough highlight for a spot in the eye.
    Recently I have tried Gary Fong's lightblade. It's ok and seems to stay attached to the flash well but I want something small so it doesn't get in the way.
    Post edited by donaldejose on
  • ptrmckyptrmcky Posts: 44Member
    I bought a mini softbox that fits over my flash. It was wild cheap on Amazon. I've only used it once or twice and was happy enough. I rarely use on camera flash, but when I do I usually just bounce it.

    I watched Gary Fong demonstrate how great the lightsphere was on Youtube. The results were miles better then anything else. Then I realised he was about 5 ft away from the subject while using other diffusers and bounce, but was about 4 times the distance away when using the lightsphere. Because of the dishonesty, I wouldn't buy it.
  • AdeAde Posts: 1,071Member
    I have a Lumiquest LTp. It's a touch too big to use on camera (especially with a small lens) but I've used it as such in a pinch. Many people use the smaller Lumiquest Softbox III instead, which is designed specifically for on camera use.


    You might have that backwards? With light diffusers, 4x the distance is usually a detriment, not a benefit. It's easy to make small diffusers look good at close distances. The further away the diffuser, the more it becomes a 'point' source, and the harsher it becomes in terms of shadows, etc. If the Fong diffuser is still better than other diffusers even at 4x the distance, that would actually be quite a testament.
  • donaldejosedonaldejose Posts: 3,378Member
    Ade: Maybe; but it could also depend upon the walls you have to bounce the light off of. If you back up so you are close to a back and side wall those walls could help contribute more to the exposure and therefore give you a more diffuse look compared to being far away from back or side walls so the light source itself would contribute much more to the exposure and therefore be more of a point source.
  • TaoTeJaredTaoTeJared Posts: 1,306Member
    I use the Garry Fong collapsible version (evidently there is a new version) but that thing never falls off. I have a love/hate relationship with it but for event and wedding shooting when you need to have the flash on camera there isn't much better all round solution. I have a LumiQuest 80‑20 but never particularly liked it as it always got knocked off and the light still seemed always harder than I wanted.

    Although it isn't exactly "on-Camera" I use the Orbis Ring flash all the time. I even put it on light stands for a fill flash.
    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...
  • studio460studio460 Posts: 205Member
    After buying nearly every stupid contraption on the market over the years (Westcott Micro Apollo, LumiQuest Big Bounce, Rogue FlashBender, et. al.), I happened to pick up a Graslon Insight (the smaller one) at Calumet the other day. I bought the rounded dome-like diffuser also. I would say this is probably the best this kind of thing there is. The nice thing about the Insight, is that my SB-800's AF-assist light still has adequate clearance. I'll post some samples later.
  • Rx4PhotoRx4Photo Posts: 1,200Member
    Regarding the Rogue Flash Bender - I do have what's considered the "large" Flash Bender, not the tall one that you get with the Pro Lighting Kit - I intended to purchase the Softbox kit but ordered the wrong thing a week before a wedding. Used it anyway and was happy with the results. I think any of these gizmos are good at certain things but not all things. @ donaldejose, this is probably not best if expecting to bounce light from the ceiling as its curved and sort of made to send more light forward.

    I have also used it as a flag while shooting a subject for a composite. It's good for aiming light onto your subject but keeping the flash from spilling over into your lens. Here's an example of the flash bender outside where I didn't need ceiling bounce. I think it provided excellent spread of light across the entire plane of girls.

    D800 | D7000 | Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8 | 24-70mm f/2.8 | 70-200mm f/2.8 | 35mm f/1.8G | 85mm f/1.4G | Sigma 35mm f/1.4 Art | Sigma 50mm f/1.4 Art | Sigma 50mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM | Zeiss 100mm Makro-Planar ZF.2 | Flash controllers: Phottix Odin TTL

  • studio460studio460 Posts: 205Member
    That looks really good, Rx! I liked my FlashBender at first (of course, I own all three!), but eventually decided it was just too heavy. I've since rigged a 5" x 7" PortaBrace white balance card to a piece of Velcro, and attached that to the back of an SB-800.

    Portabrace 5" x 7" white balance card.
  • WesleyWesley Posts: 67Member
    Small speedlight softbox + hand grip. Optional TTL cord.
    Light setup with left hand; camera with right hand.
    Or just put it on top of camera.

    Maybe something like this too:
    D700: 24-70 2.8, 85 1.8G
    D3100: 18-55
    A7II: 16-35 F4, 55 1.8, 70-200 F4
  • Vipmediastar_JZVipmediastar_JZ Posts: 1,708Member
    edited May 2014
    @studio460 what kind of flash bracket is that.

    @Rx4Photo nice results I like the photo is it the Mfr # ROGUEKIT-LGBOX or Mfr # ROGUERELG?
    Post edited by Vipmediastar_JZ on
  • Rx4PhotoRx4Photo Posts: 1,200Member
    edited May 2014
    Thanks. It's the ROGUERELG Large Positionable Reflector. Studio460 is right in that the weight of it does occasionally cause the flash to creep out of the position that you set it in. Annoying at times. It worked well for these outside group shots. For inside I took it off and reversed the flash head, attached a smaller white foam sheet for ceiling bounce - still produces catchlights in the eyes without over exposing the faces. I don't know if the LGBOX is worth the extra money.

    @Studio460, I like that rig, especially the use of the battery pack connector. Bet you could shoot all day with that.
    Post edited by Rx4Photo on
    D800 | D7000 | Nikkor 14-24mm f/2.8 | 24-70mm f/2.8 | 70-200mm f/2.8 | 35mm f/1.8G | 85mm f/1.4G | Sigma 35mm f/1.4 Art | Sigma 50mm f/1.4 Art | Sigma 50mm f/1.4 EX DG HSM | Zeiss 100mm Makro-Planar ZF.2 | Flash controllers: Phottix Odin TTL

  • TomBTomB Posts: 44Member
    Lumiquest 80/20
  • Vipmediastar_JZVipmediastar_JZ Posts: 1,708Member
    @donaldejose thanks for the offer. I'm in the windy city however.
  • MikeGunterMikeGunter Posts: 543Member
    Hi all,

    @Rx4Photo - Nice photo! Terrific results!

    My best,

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