Keep my 2 SB-700 or sell for Cheetah Light CL-180

GarethGareth Posts: 159Member
edited April 2013 in Nikon DSLR cameras
I have 2 SB-700 that get very little use, an SB-800 that gets a lot more as it is more powerful and can connect to a power pack, and a hensel porty lithium 1200.

I take children's portraits, events, school and sports photos (link in sig).

I just realised that if I sell the two SB-700 or 1 and the SB-800 (w/ pack) I will have almost enough for a CL-180 (https://www.cheetahstand.com/product-p/cl-combo.htm), well kind of.

The CL-180 is manual only, but a lot more poweful. They may also release a CL-360 at some point which should be twice as powerful.

Do you think this is a good idea?

Why/why not?

Comments

  • sevencrossingsevencrossing Posts: 2,800Member
    it does not seem to have full CLS which I have found vital for photographing children
    I use a D800 plus an SB 900 and for on camera flash
    and 2 or 3 SB 900s in soft boxes or umbrellas with PWs for off camera
    I use a cheap Nikon copy external power packs

    i love CLS and would hate to back to manual flash
  • GarethGareth Posts: 159Member
    edited April 2013
    I hardly use CLS as it is not radio, so that is not a real issue for me. Optical slave is usually enough unless I really need advanced stuff, in which case CLS often doen't cut it.
    Post edited by Gareth on
  • sevencrossingsevencrossing Posts: 2,800Member
    edited April 2013
    The Pocket Wizard FlexTT5 will give you radio and CLS
    but if you don't use/ need CLS I would looks at the Quantum Qflash TRIO or if you really need some power, a Profoto studio flash and battery pack
    Post edited by sevencrossing on
  • TaoTeJaredTaoTeJared Posts: 1,306Member
    I'm getting ready to pull the trigger on a couple of Yongnuo YN-568EX lights. Nikon CLS compatible, just as powerful as the SB-910/900. That will give me 2-sb900s, sb600, SU800 and 2 of those. 7- lights but more importantly, 2 lights per box/brolly/strip which will overpower most ambient lighting (not completely but more than enough) and be able to fire them at lower pwr for continuous. I think more options is better than just more power on just one flash. I like the CLS more for the ability to change each light from the SU800/SB900/910 units rather than having to walk over each time. Not too often do I have it on auto. I keep my SB600 mainly for the times I need to conect the others around corners etc. and a Photox Strato II for when I need radio control.

    Make sure to research the Cheetah lights - I looked into them and found a bit of a mixed bag - mainly due to long term use quality. Did look like a really good option though.
    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...
  • GarethGareth Posts: 159Member
    The Pocket Wizard FlexTT5 will give you radio and CLS
    but if you don't use/ need CLS I would looks at the Quantum Qflash TRIO or if you really need some power, a Profoto studio flash and battery pack
    Trio and profoto offer nothing I don't already have.

    TTJ - good points. The problem is I can't spend time adjusting numerous lights separately. ATM I'm like click, click shoot shoot, chimp, click shoot shoot chimp (where the clicks are adjustments).

  • MsmotoMsmoto Posts: 5,396Moderator
    @Gareth

    I would look very carefully at the specs of the Cheetah. Your two SB-700's put out more light than one Cheetah, it would appear from the specs. And combing the SB-800, some Pocket Wizards....then a silver umbrella or even a home made diffuser for your SB-700's, you can probably do the same thing for less money as it is shown in the video. If you want big power...go for 110v units. And a simple gas generator can provided power. My thoughts only....
    Msmoto, mod
  • GarethGareth Posts: 159Member
    People seem to have missed the fact that I have a hensel porty (with two heads) already.

    I don't like the light mods that go on speedlights. The bare bulb and range of mods as well as the extra power make the CL-180 attractive.

    Though joining the two SB-700 in some way is an option.

    I currently have about 50 AA batteries, and keeping a track on how charged they are is also an issue.
  • sevencrossingsevencrossing Posts: 2,800Member
    edited April 2013
    People seem to have missed the fact that I have a hensel porty (with two heads) already.
    .
    Guilty as charged . I have never heard of hensel porty I thought it was a non Nikon, power pack for your SB 800. I don't think it is sold in the UK


    Post edited by sevencrossing on
  • ElvisheferElvishefer Posts: 329Member
    I only have sb900/910s because sometimes I shoot outdoors off the beaten path or the occasional studio shoot... I think if I was in your shoes I'd get more studio lights of some kind. I have no experience with the cheetahs, but more power and less portability sounds like it'd be better for you.
    D700, 70-200mm f/2.8 VRII, 24-70mm f/2.8, 14-24mm f/2.8, 50mm f/1.4G, 200mm f/4 Micro, 105mm f/2.8 VRII Micro, 35mm f/1.8, 2xSB900, 1xSB910, R1C1, RRS Support...

    ... And no time to use them.
  • GarethGareth Posts: 159Member
    True. I would like another porty (or a broncolor move drool drool), but can't really justify the cost at the moment.

    sevencrossing; Hensel is German made and available in the UK from linhof studio and aj's. The lithium porty was pretty much the top of the line portable lithium pack until the broncolor move was released.

    Thanks for everyone's advice. Keep it coming. The reason I am asking on here is I figure you guys will try and convince me to stay with the Nikons, while I am leaning the other way, so we should get a good balance of opinion.
  • TaoTeJaredTaoTeJared Posts: 1,306Member
    TTJ - good points. The problem is I can't spend time adjusting numerous lights separately. ATM I'm like click, click shoot shoot, chimp, click shoot shoot chimp (where the clicks are adjustments).
    I'm confused - isn't' that what you would fully move too?
    With the SU800/D900/910 you just change everything on the camera unit(flash/su800) and that is it.
    The 700's are a bit limiting in weird ways with CLS (I can't remember all the ways, just know to remember "don't pick one up") but if you don't want to "click, click shoot" that is what CLS helps avoid.

    I was looking at Quantum Qflash (any and all models) and in the end, stacking 2,3,4 flashes in a box would overpower them and when I didn't need that much power, I could use them as ambient lighting.
    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...
  • GarethGareth Posts: 159Member
    The 700's are good flashes, the only thing they really lack is the ability to add a power pack.

    They are useful as little ambient and hair lights and I would miss them for this. They are also good if I need to get down to less than 1/128 as I can use ttl. The CL-180 being too powerful up close could be one of it's biggest issues.

    Having more than one flash especially 3 or 4 in a box is hardly making use of CLS. I would much rather have one light than four acting as one and have the hassle of 16 AA batteries with no reliable battery low reading, then have to try and muck together attachments because flashguns are not designed to take mods.

    More equipment = more things to lose. This is a major for me as I work alone and have already lost quite a few bits of kit.

  • sevencrossingsevencrossing Posts: 2,800Member
    edited April 2013
    True. I would like a xxxxxxxxxxxx, but can't really justify the cost at the moment.
    .
    How many times does this , or a similar, phrase appear on NRF :)

    or

    what I really need is a D4 but can only afford a D5000

    or

    can I get a f 2.8 super telephoto for under $1000

    or

    I would like a D800 but cant afford the computer to go with it

    may be once year we should run a lottery
    we all put in $100
    then, one of us has his wish fulfilled :)

    as ever, don't take me too seriously




    Post edited by sevencrossing on
  • GarethGareth Posts: 159Member
    lol, i'd like to put in $100, but I can't afford to at the moment. hahaha
  • IronheartIronheart Posts: 3,017Moderator
    We can start with @Vipmediastar's $100 gift certificate from his wife :-)
  • GarethGareth Posts: 159Member
    Make sure to research the Cheetah lights - I looked into them and found a bit of a mixed bag - mainly due to long term use quality. Did look like a really good option though.
    Do you remember where you saw this? I haven't seen any negative reviews.

  • TaoTeJaredTaoTeJared Posts: 1,306Member
    No I don't - I just did a google search for "cheetah (model number) reviews" and just started clicking and reading. What I read was that people broke the plastic casing with heavy use or the reflector holder broke when light stands fell over. You could say that about almost any flash. Many were comparing it to Quantum's flash, which is like comparing a BMW to a Hyundai in my mind - Both work well but there is a reason the BMW is more expensive. Most seemed happy with the flash output though.
    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...
  • GarethGareth Posts: 159Member
    have you been following

    http://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthread.php?t=1270039&page=69

    go through the last couple of pages.

    I am more convinced than ever.
  • TaoTeJaredTaoTeJared Posts: 1,306Member
    I'm not familiar with that site. I went through the last 5 pages and didn't see anything but people chimping about the idea of it. Is there a page/post that I missed? I would like to read more about them. Last time I did was before the new year.
    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...
  • GarethGareth Posts: 159Member
    LOL, it's a Canon site.

    What interests me is the 360 is now released with the hotshoe foot as a modular included add on.

    There is also that nifty two-to-one cable that gives the CL-180 a 1.2 second recycle and the 360 an amazing 2.3 second recycle.
  • TaoTeJaredTaoTeJared Posts: 1,306Member
    edited April 2013
    I did see that cable - interesting for sure. I rarely am trying to pop a flash off at full power constantly (or have just learned to slow down so not to overheat the sb-900) that I need that fast of recycle time beyond what my 900s give me. I will pop two in a box and halve the power which recycles quick enough for me.

    Although these are interesting, more due to the portability and power, and not to take anything away from them, I have reserved to myself to get a Einstein E640 or similar if/when the need arises for more power. For portability, the SBs work so far for me. I have 2 Yongnuo YN568EX in my Amazon "cart" for a month now and just waiting to get paid for a job to get those. At $190 a pop with the power of the SB900 they seem to be a heck of a deal. Best 3rd party sb900 like flashes I have seen yet. Big key is that they have the high-speed-sync, most others don't at all. My thought has been to get a Phottix Odin system with receivers for each of the YN568EXs and the rest of my flashes. YN568EX + receiver = $310 which is a great price for a radio wireless flash.

    Too many things I need, and mother nature keeps ripping brollies, and breaking light stands, putting diffusers into bushes to be ripped, and kids ripping a backdrop - heck of an expensive month so far. Hopefully I'll be able to pick up one of the YNs up to try next month.
    Post edited by Msmoto on
    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...
  • GarethGareth Posts: 159Member
    Yes, odins are still on the list for me too.
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