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FORUMS General Gear Talk Flash and Studio Lighting 
Thread started 15 Feb 2011 (Tuesday) 00:37
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What to look for in an umbrella?

 
Kikkoman
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Feb 15, 2011 00:37 |  #1

when i'm buying a studio umbrella, what am I looking for?

I would like to buy one for simple work of just taking pictures of friends and getting a more even lighting from my 430EX II. I look around online but I just want to know what I should be looking for when I buy one.

And I would love an umbrella for a specific shot that I will show you all once I actually obtain that piece.




  
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XxDJCyberLoverxX
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Feb 15, 2011 01:59 |  #2

Size is one factor you should consider when buying an umbrella. The bigger the umbrella, the more light it can throw at the subject and is better suited for full body shots. However, there "might" be a limitation to the maximum size you can utilize with only a 430EX II though.

I'm sure others can chime in on this, as well as the benefits of shoot-through versus reflective umbrellas.


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loydall
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Feb 15, 2011 04:09 |  #3

I recently bought one of these: http://www.calumetphot​o.co.uk/item/AU3060/ (external link)

It's pretty big - I've not used it with my 430 yet but my 580exII fills it fine - in fact I was shocked at just how effective it is - the light you get through the umbrella (I use it shoot through most of the time) would be fine for a full length portrait.

What I did notice was this - I took a shot with the camera looking right through the umbrella and on a tiny aperture and fast shutter - you can see the spread of light from the flash. It's not that even - i.e. you can see that the flash is at a horizontal orientation. But - if you use the pull down glass difuser thing (whatever you call it) on the flash unit, the light spread is perfectly even over the whole umbrella.

Also - I only use my 580exii on 1/16th or 1/8th power at most and the light is massive - I'm sure a 430 would be fine.


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sandro9mm
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Feb 15, 2011 04:15 |  #4

I prefer to use reflective umbrella, shoot through spills light in the whole room, while reflective umbrella light is more concentrated.


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loydall
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Feb 15, 2011 04:37 |  #5

I need to experiment a bit more with reflective - I was impressed with the amount of light I got from shoot through but you're right - it does fill the whole room.


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David ­ Rossberg
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Feb 15, 2011 13:22 |  #6

If you're just starting out and are looking to add one umbrella that is as versatile as possible you should buy a shoot-through (i.e. a simple white one). The main thing you should look for is price, in my opinion. ;)

You can use it as a reflective, it'll work just as good except the fact about spilling light (as mentioned above). If this is a problem for you, it probably isn't, buy one with a detachable black cover.


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Kikkoman
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Feb 15, 2011 21:44 |  #7

what do you guys think about this umbrella from B&H, I'm planning splitting with a friend so its one umbrella for each of us.

I'm not sure what a decent price for umbrellas are and i'm not sure if those 30$ ones on ebay are so cheap because they are not as quality build as these or maybe I'm just crazy. http://www.bhphotovide​o.com …Flash_Umbrella_​Mount.html (external link)




  
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nes_matt
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Feb 15, 2011 21:50 |  #8

I have that kit. It's a good starter kit with 2 umbrellas and stands. I did add a bigger umbrella too (http://www.bhphotovide​o.com …Convertible_Umb​rella.html (external link)). Nice thing with these is they are "convertible" so you can try reflective and shoot-thru to see which YOU like.


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Kikkoman
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Feb 15, 2011 22:00 |  #9

How much do you think the tripod and the speedlight mount would cost in total? I feel like the cheaper everything is the less quality it is and that rule applies in photography most the time haha.




  
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sandro9mm
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Feb 16, 2011 14:57 |  #10

I got mine of ebay, from HK. I believe for not critical work, they are awesome for price! you can get 3 at 30$, more variety to experiment with...


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edge100
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Feb 16, 2011 15:22 |  #11

sandro9mm wrote in post #11846209 (external link)
I prefer to use reflective umbrella, shoot through spills light in the whole room, while reflective umbrella light is more concentrated.

On the flip side, shoot through umbrellas provide softer light because they can be moved closer to the subject.


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nes_matt
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Feb 16, 2011 20:27 |  #12

Kikkoman wrote in post #11851880 (external link)
How much do you think the tripod and the speedlight mount would cost in total? I feel like the cheaper everything is the less quality it is and that rule applies in photography most the time haha.

the kit you linked to includes 2 each:

  • Umbrella
  • Stand
  • coldshoe mount
  • umbrella adapter


at a couple of flashes and a wireless trigger (rf-602, cactus v5 etc.).

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RPCrowe
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Feb 17, 2011 00:11 |  #13

sandro9mm wrote in post #11846209 (external link)
I prefer to use reflective umbrella, shoot through spills light in the whole room, while reflective umbrella light is more concentrated.

I agree with your statement. However, there are shoot through umbrellas that have a black cover which prevents light from spilling back into the room. You can see one of these in use at the left side of the image...

IMAGE: http://rpcrowe.smugmug.com/Other/Photo-Equipment/Studio-for-Dog-Portraits/1010683186_NCpPD-L.jpg
IMAGE LINK: http://rpcrowe.smugmug​.com …QWH#1010683186_​NCpPD-A-LB  (external link)

I purchased this unit on eBay and they appear on and off on that auction site...

See my images at http://rpcrowe.smugmug​.com/ (external link)

  
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sandro9mm
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Feb 23, 2011 17:30 |  #14

RPCrowe wrote in post #11859344 (external link)
I agree with your statement. However, there are shoot through umbrellas that have a black cover which prevents light from spilling back into the room. You can see one of these in use at the left side of the image...

QUOTED IMAGE
IMAGE LINK: http://rpcrowe.smugmug​.com …QWH#1010683186_​NCpPD-A-LB  (external link)

I purchased this unit on eBay and they appear on and off on that auction site...

true.

those are nice. but cost considerably more I imagine? how much did u get those for? and can they accommodate speedlights instead of a studio light?


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What to look for in an umbrella?
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