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FORUMS General Gear Talk Flash and Studio Lighting
Thread started 07 Jun 2013 (Friday) 04:43
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Portable softbox for location shooting. Ezybox vs Phottix?

 
Osiriz
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Jun 07, 2013 04:43 |  #1

I have become a bit tired of dragging around my large softbox and PLM for all my location shooting, so now I'm thinking about getting something smaller to use with my my speedlite.

I'm trying to decide between the Lastolite Ezybox and the Easy Up Softbox from Phottix. Both are designed for speedlites and maximum portability. In my mind, the one from Phottix should be a little bit softer than the Ezybox, since the light is bounced into the box before it hits the front baffle.

Ezybox: http://www.bhphotovide​o.com ..._Shoe_EZYBOX_Softbo​x.html (external link)
Easy Up: http://www.phottixstor​e.com ...x-varos-xs-combo-kit.html (external link)

Which one would you choose?

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Whortleberry
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Jun 07, 2013 05:18 |  #2

I use both types (not the Phottix but similar). Both are good and both have drawbacks. The Lastolite tends to warp the frame if you leave it stowed for too long (but it can be twisted back with a bit of effort) - I just leave mine as the big triangle, not fully folded away. The Phottix/Apollo/iShoot/​Whatever desperately also needs some means of tilting it downwards as tilt is very restricted 'as is'. Elv's 16" Multi-boomexternal link from Phottix addresses the problem both neatly and effectively but is another bit of gear to carry - and you have to factor in the additional cost as well.

I've also had multiple problems recently with the ribs on the Apollo-style boxes and 'Octas' collapsing for no particular reason. I see that the Phottix Octa Mark 2 now has fibreglass ribs but don't know about the rectaungular ones. Obviously, someone has at least identified the problem - how far down the production line this has progressed is open to conjecture.

No quick solutions, I'm afraid.


Phil ǁ Kershaw Soho Reflex: 4¼" Ross Xpres, 6½" Aldis, Super XX/ABC Pyro in 24 DDS, HP3/Meritol Metol in RFH, Johnson 'Scales' brand flash powder. Kodak Duo Six-20/Verichrome Pan. Other odd bits over the decades, simply to get the job done - not merely to polish and brag about cos I'm too mean to buy the polish!
FlickR (external link) ◄► "The Other Yongnuo User Guide v4.12" by Clive Bolton (external link) ◄► UK Railway Photographs 1906-79 (external link)

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CxThree
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Jun 07, 2013 07:06 |  #3

Did you find a listing somewhere that spelled out the fiberglass shafts? I have had the same issue with the orb. I LOVE the light from the orb but I have destroyed 2 of them now. If the Phottix has fiberglass shafts, I want to try it. Is there anyway to verify that and to order it in the US?


Canon EOS 5D MKIII, 7D
Canon Lenses : 70-200 F2.8L II IS : 24-105 F4L IS : 16-35 F2.8L : 50mm F1.4 : 85mm F1.8 : 100mm F2.8 Macro : 10-22mm
4x 600EX-RT
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Osiriz
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Jun 07, 2013 08:00 as a reply to CxThree's post |  #4

Phill. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this matter!

I gotta say that the boom you linked to looks like total awesomeness! I'll be getting that one for sure! :)

I like the tilt function, but also the neat flash bracket that comes along with it. I'll be adding another 600EX soon, so that is just great!




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jim_escalante
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Jun 07, 2013 08:03 as a reply to CxThree's post |  #5

A small issue. I own the Apollo and the EzyBox. I like having the speed light outside of the softbox as opposed to being inside any modifier. Westcott is making Apollo and Octo like modifiers called Rapid Boxexternal link that support the light on the outside. The more I use my Apollo, the more annoyed I get having to dig inside to change batteries or make other adjustments.




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dmward
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Joined Jun 2009
Metro Chicago
Jun 07, 2013 08:43 |  #6

jim_escalante wrote in post #16008327external link
A small issue. I own the Apollo and the EzyBox. I like having the speed light outside of the softbox as opposed to being inside any modifier. Westcott is making Apollo and Octo like modifiers called Rapid Boxexternal link that support the light on the outside. The more I use my Apollo, the more annoyed I get having to dig inside to change batteries or make other adjustments.


600EX-RT, CL-180, or YN-622c triggers are the solution for Apollo type modifiers.
I too was frustrated by having to get inside. With remote power control its a snap.
If Battery power is a concern use a pack and have it outside.


David | Sharing my Insights, Knowledge & Experience (external link) | dmwfotos website (external link)

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hawk911
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Jun 07, 2013 08:45 |  #7

Bowens quick rings make any softbox portable. $35.00 each, and you can change to your proprietary speedring.


HAWK Photography Galleryexternal link FB Fan pageexternal link|_My gear: 5d3, 70D & 40D (all gripped), 580exII, 550ex, Canon 24-70 L & 85 f1.8, 50mm f1.4; Tamron 70-200 SP Di VC, Canon 18-55, Sigma 1.4xtc; Elinchrom Whore, Skyport triggers, Speedotron BD and Kacey Grid, Vagabond minis

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dmward
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Joined Jun 2009
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Jun 07, 2013 08:50 |  #8

Whortleberry wrote in post #16008092external link
I use both types (not the Phottix but similar). Both are good and both have drawbacks. The Lastolite tends to warp the frame if you leave it stowed for too long (but it can be twisted back with a bit of effort) - I just leave mine as the big triangle, not fully folded away. The Phottix/Apollo/iShoot/​Whatever desperately also needs some means of tilting it downwards as tilt is very restricted 'as is'. Elv's 16" Multi-boomexternal link from Phottix addresses the problem both neatly and effectively but is another bit of gear to carry - and you have to factor in the additional cost as well.

I've also had multiple problems recently with the ribs on the Apollo-style boxes and 'Octas' collapsing for no particular reason. I see that the Phottix Octa Mark 2 now has fibreglass ribs but don't know about the rectaungular ones. Obviously, someone has at least identified the problem - how far down the production line this has progressed is open to conjecture.

No quick solutions, I'm afraid.

Phil, I found if I got some piano wire about the diameter of the inside of the rib and taped it into the rib that solved the bending problem.

Fiberglass rods are much better solution. Unfortunately, I don't think Phottix will ship them to US anymore. I have two of the 60cm octas, now each with piano wire mode. They are nice modifiers.


David | Sharing my Insights, Knowledge & Experience (external link) | dmwfotos website (external link)

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Whortleberry
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Jun 07, 2013 08:52 |  #9

CxThree wrote in post #16008240external link
Did you find a listing somewhere that spelled out the fiberglass shafts? I have had the same issue with the orb. I LOVE the light from the orb but I have destroyed 2 of them now. If the Phottix has fiberglass shafts, I want to try it. Is there anyway to verify that and to order it in the US?

Found it HEREexternal link (second paragraph) - horse's mouth sort of location. No mention of any Mk 2 or what the ribs are made from on any of the rectangular/square boxes though, cos I looked specifically.

dmward wrote in post #16008433external link
600EX-RT, CL-180, or YN-622c triggers are the solution for Apollo type modifiers.
I too was frustrated by having to get inside. With remote power control its a snap.
If Battery power is a concern use a pack and have it outside.

David: A favour? Can you either have an extra half hour in bed or just type slower, please. You beat me to it - again. :lol:

hawk911 wrote in post #16008439external link
Bowens quick rings make any softbox portable. $35.00 each, and you can change to your proprietary speedring.

Yes, but the Bowens Quick-ring has a design flaw which distorts the face of the softbox into a trapezoid. Not overly important for portraits (apart from the fact that it's annoying and looks tatty) but anything where the catchlights are critical you can see the mis-shape.

dmward wrote in post #16008461external link
Phil, I found if I got some piano wire about the diameter of the inside of the rib and taped it into the rib that solved the bending problem.

Fiberglass rods are much better solution. Unfortunately, I don't think Phottix will ship them to US anymore. I have two of the 60cm octas, now each with piano wire mode. They are nice modifiers.

Piano wire is EXACTLY what I was going to get next time I went into town. Solder one end inside the pesky rib and leave the other one to float inside a wire ring.

No, I also read that Phottix don't sell direct to USA anymore (just like UK, all sorts of triggers but no softboxes). But I got the distinct impression that their on-line shop would supply irrespective of location. Could be wrong but I'm hopeful. Darn it - I'm always hopeful (but it rarely works!!).


Phil ǁ Kershaw Soho Reflex: 4¼" Ross Xpres, 6½" Aldis, Super XX/ABC Pyro in 24 DDS, HP3/Meritol Metol in RFH, Johnson 'Scales' brand flash powder. Kodak Duo Six-20/Verichrome Pan. Other odd bits over the decades, simply to get the job done - not merely to polish and brag about cos I'm too mean to buy the polish!
FlickR (external link) ◄► "The Other Yongnuo User Guide v4.12" by Clive Bolton (external link) ◄► UK Railway Photographs 1906-79 (external link)

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dmward
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Joined Jun 2009
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Jun 07, 2013 09:01 |  #10

Whortleberry wrote in post #16008463external link
Found it HEREexternal link (second paragraph) - horse's mouth sort of location. No mention of any Mk 2 or what the ribs are made from on any of the rectangular/square boxes though, cos I looked specifically.

David: A favour? Can you either have an extra half hour in bed or just type slower, please. You beat me to it - again. :lol:

Sorry Phil. I'll try to slow down. :-)

The pictures of the rectangular boxes look like they are double ribbed. I have a couple of 60x90cm and a 90x90cm I got from either Amazon or eBay they both have double ribs.

For some reason Phottix won't sell these in the US. I'd really like one or two of the fiberglass ribbed units.


David | Sharing my Insights, Knowledge & Experience (external link) | dmwfotos website (external link)

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Whortleberry
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Jun 07, 2013 09:31 |  #11

hawk911 wrote in post #16008439external link
Bowens quick rings make any softbox portable. $35.00 each, and you can change to your proprietary speedring.

Yes, but there's a design flaw in the Quick-ring which distorts the face of the softbox into a trapezoid. Perhaps unimportant in portraiture (apart from the poor appearance of equipment to clients) but anything where the catchlight shape and smoothness is important, such as catchlights in reflective products, it's less satisfactory.

dmward wrote in post #16008484external link
Sorry Phil. I'll try to slow down. :-)

The pictures of the rectangular boxes look like they are double ribbed. I have a couple of 60x90cm and a 90x90cm I got from either Amazon or eBay they both have double ribs.

For some reason Phottix won't sell these in the US. I'd really like one or two of the fiberglass ribbed units.

1) Thanks. Perhaps if I didn't write so much it'd speed up my input. :oops:
2) Double ribbed is how I saw them. Also known as "we'll take an ordinary 8 rib umbrella frame but just warp it slightly so that there are 4 pairs". Bit of a compromise situation, I reckon. Now if someone were to take a 16 fibreglass-rib frame and make that into a double-rib Octa we'd really be motoring.
3) The usual reasons for not importing stuff into the UK are

  • The market is too small to make it viable.
  • It is imported, but under another name - frequently 'own brand'.
The first obviously doesn't apply to the USA - there are probably more professional photographers in your STATE than in my COUNTRY!
The second may pertain (think Pixel TD381 vs B&H Bolt CBP-C1 or some of the old Bogen tripods just being rebranded Manfrottos [By some folks way of thinking, this would be Americans ripping off Italian design - but we both know it's just marketing]). Fancy a little light sleuthing?

Phil ǁ Kershaw Soho Reflex: 4¼" Ross Xpres, 6½" Aldis, Super XX/ABC Pyro in 24 DDS, HP3/Meritol Metol in RFH, Johnson 'Scales' brand flash powder. Kodak Duo Six-20/Verichrome Pan. Other odd bits over the decades, simply to get the job done - not merely to polish and brag about cos I'm too mean to buy the polish!
FlickR (external link) ◄► "The Other Yongnuo User Guide v4.12" by Clive Bolton (external link) ◄► UK Railway Photographs 1906-79 (external link)

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hawk911
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Jun 07, 2013 10:08 |  #12

Phil, I can appreciate your comment, but the OP said location work. For me, that implies portrait and not detail product work.


HAWK Photography Galleryexternal link FB Fan pageexternal link|_My gear: 5d3, 70D & 40D (all gripped), 580exII, 550ex, Canon 24-70 L & 85 f1.8, 50mm f1.4; Tamron 70-200 SP Di VC, Canon 18-55, Sigma 1.4xtc; Elinchrom Whore, Skyport triggers, Speedotron BD and Kacey Grid, Vagabond minis

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one1002
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Jun 07, 2013 11:27 |  #13

which one would be more effective in light output?considering the phottix (apollo clone) is bouncing the light inside (aimed towards the back), i'm assuming the light spread would be even..?




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Osiriz
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Jun 07, 2013 11:33 |  #14

one1002 wrote in post #16008915external link
which one would be more effective in light output?considering the phottix (apollo clone) is bouncing the light inside (aimed towards the back), i'm assuming the light spread would be even..?

That is what I am thinking. I'm afraid that the Ezybox will have a notable hotspot in the middle, since the flash is pointing at the baffle.




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gonzogolf
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Jun 07, 2013 11:37 |  #15

I had the 28 inch apollo and I migrated toward an ez box style because of the limitation on tilt and the need to open it up to make adjustments. I recently picked up a set of the YN622 triggers and found a neweer apollo knockoff for around $20 so I'm giving it another shot. I'm getting to have the light on a stick that I can use when I have an assistant so the tilt issue is minimized but a mini boom is on my shopping list.




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Portable softbox for location shooting. Ezybox vs Phottix?
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