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Journal

External Flash?

For the past year I have been fighting with the ability to take indoor pictures.  I don’t like the flash on the camera so I never use it. First I adjust the aperture then move to the ISO, but once you are opened up all the way and the ISO is cranked to 1600 where do you go?

During pumpkin carving this year I was having a hard time taking pictures of everyone carving pumpkins because of the low light. Now our house isn’t a cave the curtains were all open, but it just wasn’t enough light. I remembered I had an old flash in an old camera bag downstairs that someone had given me about 10 years ago, but never used. It is the Quantaray QB-350A I thought I would give it a try. So I dusted it off pointed the flash at the ceiling and had a moment of “aaaaahhhhh” flash is not bad just the flash on my camera is!

So now the search for an external flash for the camera. Of course Canon Flash Speedlite is where I ended up first, but is that the best? What do you think?

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Soft box - testing light
A moment of silence!
A beautiful moment

Discussion

4 Responses to “External Flash?”

  1. Like you, I don’t normally use a flash. I don’t like the ‘flash burn’ and I enjoy the challenge of not using one. That said, there are times it’s needed and, along with technique, can serve you well.

    The ‘best’ is a tough one to answer. For me, it depends on my budget and types of shooting environment (and required flash options/capabilities). I think it’s up to the photographer to evaluate. Others without lots of experience using flash may turn to product reviews for guidance and advice.

    For Canon, the 430 & 580EX speedlite II are highly regarded, but Metz, Quantum, Sunpak & others make good units too. I own the 580 and rarely use it, but it’s in my kit in case I do need one =)

    Posted by Bowman | November 11, 2010, 6:04 am
  2. I agree I like the challenge of not use a flash too! Now I feel like am taking on a whole new path as I try to understand the flash! The three I have been looking at are the three speedlites – the 270EX which I ruled out pretty quick because it didn’t swivel. Then the 2 you’re talking about the 430 and the 580EX which both seem awesome!

    I figured it would be a little while before I got one, but last night I had the biggest surprise ever from my husband. He surprised me with the 580EX!!! I am so excited so you’re going to have to help me figure it out:) I can only turn it on it’s a power house!

    Posted by admin | November 12, 2010, 12:02 am
  3. So we’re three of a kind! I also have the 580 :-)
    Just read the manual and you’ll be fine. I also have some additions like the ‘omnibounce’ and the ‘beautydish’. Both are meant to spread the light. What I like is setting the flash on ‘the second curtain’. This is a setting that makes the flash go off at the end of the exposure. Then there is as much natural light as possible captured and the flash fills what’s needed to complete it. It also gives awesome effects in longer exposures with action photography. Try it with cars passing by at dusk having their headlights turned on. Without the flash they will be a blur and the headlights will make a large stripe. With the flash the car freezes at the end of the motion with the blur where it’s coming from, giving it a huge sense of speed. Ok it needs a fair amount of practice to get results but it’s worth the effort 😉

    Have fun! Marcel

    Posted by Marcel Otten | November 13, 2010, 12:21 pm
  4. As always I thank you for your insight!

    I got an omnibounce with it, but I have never heard of a beautydish – will check that out!

    Thanks for the tip on the second curtain. Last night was the first time I ever practiced with that mode… Can you believe I have had this camera for an entire year and never tried second curtain:)! It has been fun as I read the manual I realize how many functions I never tried with my camera bracketing, 2nd curtain etc.

    Will try the car that sounds like fun… I know the perfect spot at the end a bridge here in town! Thanks!

    Posted by admin | November 14, 2010, 5:22 pm

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