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FORUMS General Gear Talk Flash and Studio Lighting 
Thread started 13 Sep 2012 (Thursday) 10:47
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HSS vs Watt Seconds

 
Wilt
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Sep 15, 2012 11:44 |  #31

Scatterbrained wrote in post #14994994 (external link)
By using a more powerful flash. Put the speedlights away Wilt. ;)

But I can accomplish that without the use of a ND filter. The only thing that the ND filter accomplishes is to permit me to use a larger aperture on the lens for shallower DOF. It has absolutely ZERO effect on the relative intensity of flash vs. ambient. As I said earlier, I am not sure why any recommendations for ND filter...the ND filter does NOT CHANGE the relative intensity of the flash vs. the ambient...it filters and reduces the light from both sources uniformly if the ND is on the lens!!!


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Sep 15, 2012 12:24 |  #32

Wilt wrote in post #14994998 (external link)
I am not sure why any recommendations for ND filter...the ND filter does NOT CHANGE the relative intensity of the flash vs. the ambient...

Yes but you generally don't want to shoot at F22 (or even F16). The ND give the same result at a more favourable aperture.

But the original poster wants to know if hypersync can beat an ND filter in terms of power and underexposing the ambient. I always though not, but some recent testing proved myself wrong, if they hypersync conditions are ideal. But in many cases the ND (or just stoping down) will win. (That won't increase shutter speed to freeze action though).


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Sep 15, 2012 12:27 |  #33

To the main point of this thread, the OP stated "I am looking to upgrade my gear so that I can over power the sun when shooting outdoor portraiture" and ND does nothing relative to helping to overpower the sun...it does not change Ambient:Flash relative ratio. Unless anyone knows of a source of a ND filter large enough that I can gel the sun outside! :D


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Sep 15, 2012 12:36 as a reply to  @ Wilt's post |  #34

No an ND doesn't change Ambient:Flash relative ratio, but your still going to need to use/buy one or more to get the images, unless you want to shoot at a less than ideal aperture (for bright sunny sky anyway).

It doesn't matter how much more power you have if F22 is your limit on the camera (without an ND).


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Sep 15, 2012 15:12 |  #35

Wilt wrote in post #14995123 (external link)
To the main point of this thread, the OP stated "I am looking to upgrade my gear so that I can over power the sun when shooting outdoor portraiture" and ND does nothing relative to helping to overpower the sun...it does not change Ambient:Flash relative ratio. Unless anyone knows of a source of a ND filter large enough that I can gel the sun outside! :D

Hey Wilt. Set you camera to say, f/8, 1/200th, iso 100. Lets say that's the correct ambient exposure. Now let's say you want to keep f/8, but underexpose the background by about 2 stops. Simple, add and ND filter. Now you need to boost the exposure on you horribly underexposed subject. That's were more flash comes in. You're coming at this from the "balancing ambient and flash" perspective, when the OP wants to knock down the background exposure and keep the subject correct. This can be achieved by simply adjusting flash output, but you have to be able to knock down the ambient first. While hypersync will work, (for me at least) it is a bit of a hamfisted hack that doesn't allow the fine tuning and consistency that simply using adequate light and an ND filter does.


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Wilt
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Sep 15, 2012 15:22 |  #36

Scatterbrained wrote in post #14995601 (external link)
Hey Wilt. Set you camera to say, f/8, 1/200th, iso 100. Lets say that's the correct ambient exposure. Now let's say you want to keep f/8, but underexpose the background by about 2 stops. Simple, add and ND filter. Now you need to boost the exposure on you horribly underexposed subject. That's were more flash comes in. You're coming at this from the "balancing ambient and flash" perspective, when the OP wants to knock down the background exposure and keep the subject correct. This can be achieved by simply adjusting flash output, but you have to be able to knock down the ambient first. While hypersync will work, (for me at least) it is a bit of a hamfisted hack that doesn't allow the fine tuning and consistency that simply using adequate light and an ND filter does.

OK, we're assuming 1/200 f/8 ISO100 (conditions likely be to cloudy sky underexposed by -1EV but we'll ignore that point)...

  • you add a -2EV ND filter, so the ambient is now -2EV underexposed by a combination of aperture+shutterspeed and ND filter over the lens.
  • let us also assume you are shooting a group with 50mm lens on FF camera, from 16' away you can capture the standing group within the frame area captured of 7.6' x 11.4'. Your 580EX at 50mm coverage angle has GN130. With no ND filter on the lens, 16' subject distance requires f/8 ordinarily...but your lens has -2EV ND filter on it, so you cannot light the group adequately with f/8 and ND filter on the lens since you have enough light only for f/4 as a lens aperture when using the -2EV ND filter!

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Sep 15, 2012 15:41 |  #37

Wilt wrote in post #14995628 (external link)
OK, we're assuming 1/200 f/8 ISO100 (conditions likely be to cloudy sky underexposed by -1EV but we'll ignore that point)...
  • you add a -2EV ND filter, so the ambient is now -2EV underexposed by a combination of aperture+shutterspeed and ND filter over the lens.
  • let us also assume you are shooting a group with 50mm lens on FF camera, from 16' away you can capture the standing group within the frame area captured of 7.6' x 11.4'. Your 580EX at 50mm coverage angle has GN130. With no ND filter on the lens, 16' subject distance requires f/8 ordinarily...but your lens has -2EV ND filter on it, so you cannot light the group adequately with f/8 and ND filter on the lens since you have enough light only for f/4 as a lens aperture when using the -2EV ND filter!

You keep assuming a 580ex. Why?


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Sep 15, 2012 15:43 as a reply to  @ Scatterbrained's post |  #38

ChadAndreo wrote in post #14985776 (external link)
I am looking to upgrade my gear so that I can over power the sun when shooting outdoor portraiture and as of right now I cannot decide between getting HSS triggers or upgrading to higher output monolights.
My question is, what are the advantages and disadvantages of going with either system?
Which would you choose?

I don't see anything here about a 580ExII. Do you?


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Sep 15, 2012 15:51 |  #39

Scatterbrained wrote in post #14995676 (external link)
I don't see anything here about a 580ExII. Do you?

He did talk about HSS. It could be that he was referring to something other than a Speedlite, but monolights don't do HSS.


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Sep 15, 2012 15:57 |  #40

Scatterbrained wrote in post #14995675 (external link)
You keep assuming a 580ex. Why?

Pointless question to ask, as even if the OP is assuming a monolight, the use of ND filter will NEVER alter the ratio of the power of the monolight to the ambient light. ND filter will NEVER alter the ratio of output of ANY ARTIFICIAL light source, relative to the ambient light intensity -- unless the ND filter is on the artificial source (and not on the lens), and then it only weakens (not strengthens) the contribution of the artificial light source!


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Sep 15, 2012 18:17 |  #41

Wilt wrote in post #14995123 (external link)
To the main point of this thread, the OP stated "I am looking to upgrade my gear so that I can over power the sun when shooting outdoor portraiture" and ND does nothing relative to helping to overpower the sun...it does not change Ambient:Flash relative ratio. Unless anyone knows of a source of a ND filter large enough that I can gel the sun outside! :D

Wilt,
Dean Collins and a lot of others have done essentially that by using a large translucent scrim. It creates a reasonably sized area where the sun it blocked from the model so the photographer can control his light on the model and then use the shutter to balance the sun on the background.

And, a 200mm lens at 20 feet has a DoF of about 3 feet at F16 and 4 feet at F22. So even stopped down one can get OOF backgrounds with a little planning. And models look better when shot with longer lenses. :-)


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Sep 15, 2012 18:30 |  #42

Wilt wrote in post #14995745 (external link)
Pointless question to ask, as even if the OP is assuming a monolight, the use of ND filter will NEVER alter the ratio of the power of the monolight to the ambient light. ND filter will NEVER alter the ratio of output of ANY ARTIFICIAL light source, relative to the ambient light intensity -- unless the ND filter is on the artificial source (and not on the lens), and then it only weakens (not strengthens) the contribution of the artificial light source!

How many straw men are you going to throw at your anti ND filter crusade?:confused: No one said it "alters the light ratio". What it does is allow you to shoot at light ratios that you otherwise wouldn't be able to within your sync speed limitations and aperture limitations. It's a functional alternative to using hypersync, which is itself a kludge of sorts. This whole discussion evolved from a desire to "overpower the sun", i.e., knock down the ambient, presumably during the day. No one is saying that it is what needs to be done all the time; at the right time of day you can knock down the ambient with a speedlight.


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Sep 15, 2012 18:39 |  #43

dmward wrote in post #14996166 (external link)
Wilt,
Dean Collins and a lot of others have done essentially that by using a large translucent scrim. It creates a reasonably sized area where the sun it blocked from the model so the photographer can control his light on the model and then use the shutter to balance the sun on the background.

And, a 200mm lens at 20 feet has a DoF of about 3 feet at F16 and 4 feet at F22. So even stopped down one can get OOF backgrounds with a little planning. And models look better when shot with longer lenses. :-)

I myself have used a scrim to make my own shade, thus allowing to totally control the lighting of the subject. Nevertheless, it does not permit a flash of insufficient power to overpower the sun.


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Sep 15, 2012 18:41 |  #44

Scatterbrained wrote in post #14996210 (external link)
How many straw men are you going to throw at your anti ND filter crusade?:confused: No one said it "alters the light ratio". What it does is allow you to shoot at light ratios that you otherwise wouldn't be able to within your sync speed limitations and aperture limitations. It's a functional alternative to using hypersync, which is itself a kludge of sorts. This whole discussion evolved from a desire to "overpower the sun", i.e., knock down the ambient, presumably during the day. No one is saying that it is what needs to be done all the time; at the right time of day you can knock down the ambient with a speedlight.

I am merely addressing the question posed by the person who started this thread, "so that I can over power the sun ". Since ND filters do not address that issue, I am pointing that point clear to the OP.

If someone asked about getting deeper DOF, would you also try to bring up the topic of using ND filters, when that would not provide deeper DOF ?! :confused:

Yes, ND filters definitely have value in the right circumstances, to accomplish different things. That I do not dispute.
I merely am raising issue that they are not relevant to the question raised by the OP.

Please feel free to start your own thread, on the benefits and merits of using ND filters! :D POTN discourages blatant thread drift.


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Sep 15, 2012 18:48 |  #45

Wilt wrote in post #14996253 (external link)
I am merely addressing the question posed by the person who started this thread, "so that I can over power the sun ". Since ND filters do not address that issue, I am pointing that point clear to the OP.

If someone asked about getting deeper DOF, would you also try to bring up the topic of using ND filters, when that would not provide deeper DOF ?! :confused:

The point was that stronger lights + ND filters are the preferred method over hypersync. You're intentionally ignoring the first part so you can attack the second. The downsides of hypersync were covered succinctly by GonzoGolf early on. Myself and Thomas Cambell suggested MOHR POWAH coupled with an ND filter. I'm not sure what you don't get here?:confused:


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