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FORUMS General Gear Talk Flash and Studio Lighting 
Thread started 07 Jan 2010 (Thursday) 19:45
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Speedlite vs on camera flash (7d)

 
lundgrenj
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Jan 07, 2010 19:45 |  #1

So when I use the flash on my 7d (when its needed), its usually very over powered, I nearly always have to back it off. However, my question is why would I want to bolt on a speedlite with something MORE powerful? Is it simply because I can aim the speedlite, and adjust it, or is the quality of the light better anyway?

Trying to determine value, when I avoid using the built in flash so much.


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Fyerfytr
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Jan 07, 2010 19:47 |  #2

The have the ability to bounce the flash therefore the light isn't as harsh.




  
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lundgrenj
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Jan 07, 2010 19:49 |  #3

Fyerfytr wrote in post #9347649 (external link)
The have the ability to bounce the flash therefore the light isn't as harsh.

But I can adjust the built in flash and lower it.


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Fyerfytr
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Jan 07, 2010 19:53 |  #4

lundgrenj wrote in post #9347662 (external link)
But I can adjust the built in flash and lower it.

But can you bounce the flash off the ceiling like you can with a speedlight? That will take away the harshness of the light. You could however put a difusser over the pop up flash and it would help.

something like this: http://www.lumiquest.c​om/softscreen.htm (external link)




  
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lundgrenj
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Jan 07, 2010 20:25 |  #5

So it has to be more than that.. is it just so you can bounce the light?


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RWatkins
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Jan 07, 2010 20:32 |  #6

1. The 7D it can act as a wireless commander, thereby allowing you to control the flash off camera.
2. Modify the light with diffusers and umbrellas


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lundgrenj
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Jan 07, 2010 20:32 |  #7

Is the quality of the 'light' better on the speedlite?


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s2kennyc
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Jan 07, 2010 20:35 |  #8

You are correct, there is alot more benefit than just bouncing. As you already are aware, direct flash towards the subject is quite harsh no matter how much you back it down. You can use a speedlite off the camera and take advantage of your 7D's wireless trigger to set off the flash from any angle you want for proper exposure and artistic effects. The advantages are too many to list. I suggest you read the FAQ about flash photography to get a better sense.


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lundgrenj
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Jan 07, 2010 20:48 |  #9

s2kennyc, thanks, this is what I needed to know... I read the stuff on it, but experience explaines it much better.


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tim
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Jan 08, 2010 02:45 |  #10

This is why
http://www.planetneil.​com/tangents/ (external link)
http://www.strobist.bl​ogspot.com/ (external link)


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Read all my FAQs (wedding, printing, lighting, books, etc)

  
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Tiberius
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Jan 08, 2010 03:27 |  #11

You say that the built in flash is over powered. I'll bet you are shooting pictures of people and they are really close. Maybe you have even bumped up the ISO as well.

The fact is that built in flashes are really weak. They have a guide number of 13 or so at most (roughly, the higher the number, the more powerful the flash). An average flash unit, such as the Canon 430EX has a guide number of 43. You can see that it is much more powerful.

Also, you can turn the light producing head of the flash so that instead of just blasting the subject with light, you can have the flash reflect off the wall or a ceiling. This gives a softer light, and you can't do it with the built in flash.


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apersson850
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Jan 08, 2010 04:51 |  #12

Tiberius47 wrote in post #9350041 (external link)
The fact is that built in flashes are really weak. They have a guide number of 13 or so at most (roughly, the higher the number, the more powerful the flash). An average flash unit, such as the Canon 430EX has a guide number of 43. You can see that it is much more powerful.

They are, but not that much as you make it look. The internal flash on the 7D has a guide number of 12, but then it is able to illuminate the view the camera sees through a 15 mm lens.

The external Speedlite units 430 EX II and 580 EX II have the ability to zoom, i.e. vary their concentration of the light onto the subject. With longer focal lengths, you see only a small part of the center of the illuminated area, if you use the internal flash. These external flashes can then adjust their light cone, to avoid wasting power on illuminating parts that your camera will not see anyway. It's only at the longest zoom setting (equivalent to a 105 mm focal length on a full frame camera) which the 580 EX II reaches a guide number of 58. At a setting equivalent to what the internal flash illuminates, the guide number is 28. Still a substantial difference, but not quite as much as one could believe.


Anders

  
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linh811
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Jan 16, 2010 00:36 |  #13

the built in flash on the 7d, or any camera, is a turd. thats why i have a few more flashes :)


7D || 5D2 || three 580exII's | 430exII | 24L II | 50L | 100L macro | 70-200/2.8L IS | 24-105L | canon 50/1.4 | canon 17-55/2.8 | Sigma 35/1.4 |Sigma 50/1.4 | Tamron 24-70/2.8 VC |Pocket Wizard Plus II. slingpro 100 and 200, and a million other accessories I can't even remember.

  
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Speedlite vs on camera flash (7d)
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