I Want to Buy Some Lights What Should I Get

Discussion in 'Q&A for better images' started by indytone, Jun 11, 2004.

  1. indytone

    indytone Member

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    I'd like to buy some decent portable beginner/intermediate lights for photography. I plan to use them indoors for the most part. I don't want to break the bank (under $200 hopefully), so what are some good packages or brands to check out? I know nothing about photo lights other than I'd like some. I'd use them mostly for photographing still lifes and people.
     
  2. mloufrost

    mloufrost Active Member

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    Anthony, I am not familiar with the G3 but I use both the film Rebel and the digital Rebel. I have recently spent time considering speedlites. In my case I wanted to get the flexibility to control the power of the speedlite and the Rebels don't give that flexibility from the camera. I also wanted to be able to fire a second off-camera flash via infrared. I went with the Sigma 500 Super which has flexibility, as to exposure, and also serves as the transmitter so that I can place a simpler Canon speedlite (420EX) off camera and fire it. I recently used this setup for some cave photography. It was quite satisfactoy. The Sigma was in your price range, I believe. The comparable Canon flash, the 550EX, is almost double in price.
     
  3. griffin

    griffin Active Member

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    If you mean lightweight, portable studio lights, tbat would be different from dedicated flash units. Most still life and portraiture can be done with your camera's brand flash units, using at least two for best results. You need to get your main flash off the camera by means of an extending arm and a extension flash cable. A lumiquest reflector or a softbox attachment will help. The second flash can be slaved and used on a spare tripod. In any case, a good flash meter will help in setting up the lighting ratio.

    If you mean studio lights, there are many brands out there, some quite reasonable. If your budget can't go for the least expensive new, then try the used market. Roberts Photo in Indianapolis is a good source of equipment. Even though theer are two lights and stands in kits, you'll still need to invest in a good flashmeter.
     
  4. indytone

    indytone Member

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    Sorry, I should have been more specific. I meant strictly studio lights.

    I'll go by Roberts today--I work less than three blocks from them. [​IMG]
     
  5. indytone

    indytone Member

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    I visited Robert's about an hour ago. Their used selection is pretty slim and most of the stuff is way out of my range. One of the lights looked like the one Shake wore in the Aqua Teen Hungar Force episode with the moth man.

    Anyway, he showed me some of the ones they carry. He suggested the Smith Victor lights since they are inexpensive and geared toward people like me who aren't trying to make a living off photography. I think I'm going to order the following package:

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    They can get it for $229.
     
  6. changobailado

    changobailado Member

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    Anthony,

    Take a look at the Alien Bees. A lot of the beginners in another forum I frequent use these with GREAT results. I'm planning to get three of these once I get some cash. It may be worth comparing. By the way, the link you provided for the Smith Victor did not work for me.

    You must be logged in to see this link.

    Cheers,

    Al
     
  7. griffin

    griffin Active Member

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    Actually, I've never been to Roberts, but judging by your online moniker, I figured you must be in Indianapolis. I buy from them by mail order once in a while, although my last order is taking a long time to fill. They send a representative to photojournalist seminars and offer deals, which is how I know about them.
     
  8. griffin

    griffin Active Member

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    I just took a look at the SmithVictor setup. It's non strobe so you can get by without a flashmeter, but you'll have warm subjects.
     

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