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SB28 v SB50DX


New Member
I'm a beginner. I have a Nikon N75. I take pictures of family, family on vacation, and outdoor shots. I can't decide which speedflash to get - a used SB-28 from ebay (around 170 bucks), or a new SB-50DX which would run around 120 bucks after the current rebates. I understand that the SB-50 is not as powerful, but do I really need it? Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks.


>It completely depends how far your subjects normally are away from the flash. The power for a flash is normally marketed as the so called guide number. This number helps you in figuring out the correct f/stop for a given distance or the other way around. The basic formula to use is: Guide#/distance to the subject = f/stop to use. This guide# number nowadays is given for ISO 100. > To give you an ex&le: You have a flash with a guide# of 60 and your subjects are 10 feet away. Put those numbers into the formula and you see that you'll have to use f/6 (or5.6). Now the problem is that this is supposed to be a group shot, that means the DOF at f/5.6 will be too shallow --> you'll need a stronger flash or a faster film. Let's take the SB 28 with its guide# of 120 (?): 120/10 ft = f/12 (or 11) that means you'll be able to close down the lens for a deeper DOF.

Ehm, to make a short story long: Yes, you better should go with the stronger flash if you are a fan of slower films. If you want to use ISO 400 films (what I don't really recommend for bigger blow ups) you can go with the SB50DX. The SB50DX has another advantage: In case you want to step up to a D100 the SB50DX supports all flash functions of this camera, the SB28 without DX doesn't.

Hope it wasn't too confusing.


New Member

You never have to mush flash, you start with little, and sooner or latter you need more, if you learn how to bounce the flash you will use the SB 28.