Lumopro LP120

31 01 2010

I’ve been shopping around for hot shoe flashes for some time. I have three right now – Canon 580EX II, Canon 430EX II and Canon 420EX. Canon flashes are expensive! A Canon 580EX II, for example, costs about $350 used in a photography forum or $445 + tax brand new from B&H.  Thankfully there’s cheaper alternatives out there if you don’t need every single feature offered in the 580EX II.  I didn’t need TTL.  I needed a cheap manual flash that can swivel, rotate, and has the most sync options (right now I only use the hot shoe with my Yongnuo RF-602 triggers).  It’s gotten good reviews and I can’t wait to get these soon!

Another similarly-priced flash I may try in the future is the Vivitar DF 383 Series 1.  I’ll update this post when I test this flash out.

You may ask why I need another flash?  Well, I have two light modifiers right now – a 60inch umbrella and a 28×28 inch soft box.  These light modifiers have a lot of space that the light needs to fill.  Not just fill but try to fill as evenly as possible but that’s another topic that can go on much longer than I’d like for this post.  I could get by with a only one flash and I’d probably use my strongest flash – 580EX II.  It’d probably have to be on full power especially if I am using it on the big 60 inch umbrella.

There are disadvantages of having the power setting at full power.

  1. Slower recycle time: full power demands more battery power which will obviously drain it faster.  As the battery gets weaker, the flash recycles slower (recycle time is the time it takes for the flash to be ready again).
  2. With slower recycle time, you might have missed some great shots.

One solution is to use another flash within the same modifier.  With two flashes, you can dial down the power and not have to be used at full power.  Another solution is to use an external battery pack.  Not all hot shoe flashes have this option, however.  The 580EX II has this option and I haven’t bought the battery pack for it, yet.  There’s a million ways to spend money with any hobby 🙂

This flash can also serve me in other ways (not just as as supporting flash power).  In studios, there are usually the main light, background light, fill light and kicker light.  I was usually missing a flash for one of these things.

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3 responses

1 02 2010
kevin

i just received the new powergenix nizn batteries from amazon – my recycle time on 1/1 power on the lp120 was about 7 seconds with eneloops, with the nizn batteries its only 3 seconds.

1 02 2010
jusayphotography

I heard about the nizn batteries and read some people have messed up their canon flash units with these batteries. I’ve had only eneloops for a while but, instead of the nizn batteries, i stuck to NiMH and bought Maha Powerex batteries. Hope you don’t run into problems with the nizn batteries.

2 02 2010
Clarissa

dang! sweet equipment. you’re a collectors =) and i agree with you: “There’s a million ways to spend money with any hobby.” it’s hard to make up your mind and what you want first… because when it comes to hobbies you adore, you just want everything!

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