View Full Version : i will be purchasing an alien bees lighting system, however
21st of April 2003 (Mon), 08:09
i have never used external flashes before, besides the 550 ex which resides a top my canon. i am curious how any external light work...hopw do they know when to fire. Also does anyone have any techniques for placement...total i will have 2 400 watt alien bees and then the 550 ex on top my camera.
21st of April 2003 (Mon), 08:56
You probably won't need the 550ex
You will need a flash meter.
21st of April 2003 (Mon), 10:44
so you think just the 2 alien bees will be enough!
21st of April 2003 (Mon), 10:45
Also what is a good light meter for fairly inexpensive.
21st of April 2003 (Mon), 11:21
I have always used Minolta meters.
IVF for under $200
III for around $100
21st of April 2003 (Mon), 11:28
Check out the Sekonic L-358. It's a great meter. It is weather resistant and has the capability to measure incident or reflected light. If you use Pocket Wizards to sync your strobes, you can use a wireless module in the meter to trip the strobes with out the need for a PC cord. If you don't go that route, you will receive a PC cord with each light you purchased. I've been using a couple of B800s since last fall and they are great lights for the money.
21st of April 2003 (Mon), 13:18
how do you have your lights set up.
21st of April 2003 (Mon), 13:48
I trigger mine with a PC cord or shoe-mount flash.
21st of April 2003 (Mon), 16:09
I use quantum radio slaves.
22nd of April 2003 (Tue), 06:02
Use a pc cord to trigger one and the other will go off by its slave unit unless you are in a huge non reflective room. Get books on portrait photography for light placement and just practice. If you have a digital SLR, you really can get by without a lightmeter if you know what results you want by observation. A small tv might be valuable to judge the picture since the screen on the camera is small. 2 lights will get you by for quite a while. Later, you may want to add a hair light. I use one umbrella and one light with a portable reflector and get portraits that are abolutely breathtaking with a D60 and a white lightning unit...Good luck Brian
If you are in a room with people taking flash pictures,they will set off your unit and you will have to use a control box made by alien bees with two cords coming out of it....in other words, both flashes will need cords.
22nd of April 2003 (Tue), 07:05
brunz what is a white lighting unit. also i would be curious to see how your lights are positioned upon your subject!
22nd of April 2003 (Tue), 07:06
also how do you use the dslr as a light meter. and how is it different than a 35 mm.
22nd of April 2003 (Tue), 11:49
I think a flash meter is more accurate.
It seems a bit hard to measure lighting ratios with a digital SLR.
All of the time that you would waste doing this...
People will get bored sitting there while you mess aroung shooting pictures trying to figure out your lights.
Add a hairlight, and you will surely need a flash meter.
You can either run cords direct to your camera, or something like radio slaves, the older models are rather cheap now.
I am not sure if your light manufature makes slave units, some do.
23rd of April 2003 (Wed), 06:36
alien bees are made by White Lightning of Nashville,Tennessee. They are also flash units and all of these have built in slaves. I can see light ratios on a small color TV. I don't need a light meter with the camera. Hair lights are easy to see on your TV. Try your setup with someone else like your wife or someone before taking clients. I can set up lights for a portrai in 5 minutes including a hairlight . Visually you can see the effects and tweak it. One thing must be said however, you need to know what a good portrait looks like to evaluate it and someone starting out may need to look at books to see wht he/she is trying to create. Light meters are a good starting point however but I get by without one.
photography By Evangelos
24th of April 2003 (Thu), 03:32
The alien bees are a good vlue! I went to the web-sight they are truly a big bang for the bucks spent. I like the travel lights and they are cheep with a battery!
I may just try the little alien's. What color should I get?
I think yellow thats an odd color.
24th of April 2003 (Thu), 06:12
Black is always safe. You won't go wrong with these units. I have used their other White Lightning units for over 10 years without a problem. You might want to get a couple of umbrellas and light stands at the same time if you can afford it. They are reasonable through them.Good luck....the customer service is the best in the business......Brian
photography By Evangelos
24th of April 2003 (Thu), 16:32
Thanks for the info. I am looking at a set I plan to buy next week.
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