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04-28-2010, 05:21 PM   #16
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>> 1) What did you guys do--scare everyone out of the restaurant?

We intended, but didn't need to. It was late, and it was raining hard that night. It took me 1 hr to drive from Fremont to Oakland Hill (about 25 miles) where the restaurant was.

>> 2) Is that the boss at the head of the table, looking miserable because he has to pick up the tab?

No. He's not my current boss, or anyone's. I did work for him when I was just out of college, and 2 more times in different companies, for the total of 16 years.

>> 3) What's the story with the guy in the foreground who only had the back of his head included? Everyone hates his guts, huh?

No story, or to be exact, no interesting story. I had my back against the wall trying to take that photo. I did take photos of other angles, however.

I like the GX200's WA zoom lens. It starts at 24mm (35mm FOV equivalent).

04-28-2010, 05:44 PM - 2 Likes   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ira Quote
3) What's the story with the guy in the foreground who only had the back of his head included? Everyone hates his guts, huh?
They're jealous because he got to drink out of those cool glasses with the elliptical tops.

For the OP:

A modern top-of-the-line flash in some situations is perhaps going to facilitate good photos more quickly and easily than would a less full-featured or obsolete model, but for run-of-the-mill situations flashes got as good as they need to get about 30 years ago. In the final analysis, they all perform the same basic function, which is to provide a measured output of light. No matter what they cost, how many buttons, functions, modes, etc they have.....that's all any of them do. And so long as they do that accurately and reliably they meet the minimum requirements of a flash unit. They're sort of like a pair of eyeglasses, if I may be excused a weak analogy: Upgrading to more expensive frames isn't going to improve how well you can see through them. Once the prescription matches your eyes, the rest is superfluous.

A few examples from a $10 flash and a $15 lens, with setup shots first:














All
Pentax K20D
SMC Takumar 55/1.8


The flash is a simple AF200T that Pentax put out sometime back in the 1970s or 1980s and which I picked up from an auction for a whopping ten whole bucks. Could I take the same photos with a brand-new 540? Of course I could. But I don't have the money for 540 and I don't shoot any situations that would benefit from the extra capabilities it has. If I needed those capabilities, I would scrape up the cash to get one. So long as I can get a reliable and measured output of light for a lesser amount, I personally see no need for me to pay more.

Remember, the dough is buying improved functionality.....not improved light.
04-28-2010, 07:14 PM   #18
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^ What trigger is that? I'm using the Cactus V4 set with my two speedlights (which I also use on-camera for events) and have been happy for what I paid for them
I'm too cheap for them fancy PocketWizards

Once you discover the "joy of bouncing", get that flash off-camera and firing through an umbrella. You'll wonder what took you so long to learn lighting!
04-28-2010, 07:42 PM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by egordon99 Quote
^ What trigger is that? I'm using the Cactus V4 set with my two speedlights (which I also use on-camera for events) and have been happy for what I paid for them

I'm too cheap for them fancy PocketWizards
Flash Waves

QuoteQuote:
Once you discover the "joy of bouncing", get that flash off-camera and firing through an umbrella. You'll wonder what took you so long to learn lighting!
And the very notion of using the built-in flash or of firing a camera-mounted flash straight at your subject will cause waves of nausea to wash over you and you'll have to find a quiet place to sit and rest until you recover.

04-29-2010, 11:50 AM   #20
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I had the AF-360 FGZ for years and found it lacking most of the time, only recently bought the AF-540 FGZ and find it to be way more powerful in more situations and better results using bounce flash now, where this used to fail using the AF-360 FGZ most of the time, of course it depended on the situation too. Overall the increased cost of the AF-540 FGZ was well worth it to me.

Regards
04-30-2010, 06:54 AM   #21
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Just thought that I would stick a photo in of my daughter. This is the kind of situation where the light was low enough that I would have gotten a lot of shadows without the flash. Felt like it filled in really nicely here.

04-30-2010, 07:40 AM   #22
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Wow Mike, awesome shots.

I'm only chiming in here because I JUST bought a metz 48. Recieved it 2 days ago. I've been reading up on flash, mainly for fill flash outdoors and finally ordered one. I really like it so far! I wish I had some photos to share, but last night, the SD card I was using crapped out on me and told me I needed to reformat and if I did I'd lose all the pictures, long story short...I lost all the photos.
05-01-2010, 03:12 PM   #23
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Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by Mike Cash Quote
They're jealous because he got to drink out of those cool glasses with the elliptical tops.

For the OP:

A modern top-of-the-line flash in some situations is perhaps going to facilitate good photos more quickly and easily than would a less full-featured or obsolete model, but for run-of-the-mill situations flashes got as good as they need to get about 30 years ago. In the final analysis, they all perform the same basic function, which is to provide a measured output of light. No matter what they cost, how many buttons, functions, modes, etc they have.....that's all any of them do. And so long as they do that accurately and reliably they meet the minimum requirements of a flash unit. They're sort of like a pair of eyeglasses, if I may be excused a weak analogy: Upgrading to more expensive frames isn't going to improve how well you can see through them. Once the prescription matches your eyes, the rest is superfluous.

A few examples from a $10 flash and a $15 lens, with setup shots first:

All
Pentax K20D
SMC Takumar 55/1.8


The flash is a simple AF200T that Pentax put out sometime back in the 1970s or 1980s and which I picked up from an auction for a whopping ten whole bucks. Could I take the same photos with a brand-new 540? Of course I could. But I don't have the money for 540 and I don't shoot any situations that would benefit from the extra capabilities it has. If I needed those capabilities, I would scrape up the cash to get one. So long as I can get a reliable and measured output of light for a lesser amount, I personally see no need for me to pay more.

Remember, the dough is buying improved functionality.....not improved light.
Wow, those were REALLY amazing pictures, I finally got a chance to respond. That really helps. Thank you. I guess my question is solved.

05-01-2010, 04:00 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mike Cash Quote
They're jealous because he got to drink out of those cool glasses with the elliptical tops.

For the OP:

A modern top-of-the-line flash in some situations is perhaps going to facilitate good photos more quickly and easily than would a less full-featured or obsolete model, but for run-of-the-mill situations flashes got as good as they need to get about 30 years ago. In the final analysis, they all perform the same basic function, which is to provide a measured output of light. No matter what they cost, how many buttons, functions, modes, etc they have.....that's all any of them do. And so long as they do that accurately and reliably they meet the minimum requirements of a flash unit. They're sort of like a pair of eyeglasses, if I may be excused a weak analogy: Upgrading to more expensive frames isn't going to improve how well you can see through them. Once the prescription matches your eyes, the rest is superfluous.

A few examples from a $10 flash and a $15 lens, with setup shots first:














All
Pentax K20D
SMC Takumar 55/1.8


The flash is a simple AF200T that Pentax put out sometime back in the 1970s or 1980s and which I picked up from an auction for a whopping ten whole bucks. Could I take the same photos with a brand-new 540? Of course I could. But I don't have the money for 540 and I don't shoot any situations that would benefit from the extra capabilities it has. If I needed those capabilities, I would scrape up the cash to get one. So long as I can get a reliable and measured output of light for a lesser amount, I personally see no need for me to pay more.

Remember, the dough is buying improved functionality.....not improved light.

Holy cats! What a gorgeous set of photos - and the best explanation/persuasion for using flash that I've yet heard. Thank you
05-04-2010, 12:12 PM   #25
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I was having all sorts of issues trying to captures nieces when they started getting around under their own steam ... and now with my own son as well ... when it comes to indoor shots ... I have to use the flash no matter what ... just to get the shot without motion blur.

If shooting kids in poor lighting ... bounce flash is NEEDED ... really needed. I picked up a Sigma bounce/swivel flash ... and it would have to be the best accessory I have purchased in my kit.

I have been impressed with some of the shots I have been able to get with it.







Not happy with this conversion ... it came out soft and the colours weird ... the .PEF image is sharp as anything and spot on colour wise.
05-05-2010, 12:30 AM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mike Cash Quote
A modern top-of-the-line flash in some situations is perhaps going to facilitate good photos more quickly and easily than would a less full-featured or obsolete model, but for run-of-the-mill situations flashes got as good as they need to get about 30 years ago. In the final analysis, they all perform the same basic function, which is to provide a measured output of light. No matter what they cost, how many buttons, functions, modes, etc they have.....that's all any of them do. And so long as they do that accurately and reliably they meet the minimum requirements of a flash unit...

...Remember, the dough is buying improved functionality.....not improved light.
It was these sorts of comments that made me buy a budget flash. I bought a YN460-II (Yongnuo) on fleabay for +/-$50 after looking at the Mark I model but being put off by the quality control issues that plagued it. When the Mark II came out I waited a few weeks for reviews to surface and then bought one. It's a wholly manual flash, so you always have to set the output level manually, but I've found your guesstimates soon get more accurate with experience.

Aside from having full swivel and tilt functionality it's got an optical receiver for wireless triggering. I've triggered it every time without hassles (even outdoors in broad daylight) from my on-board flash. Sure, it's pretty simple, but it works, and as I can't (yet) justify the cost of a 360 or 540, but really wanted a flash with off-camera capabilities it fits the bill perfectly. I'm tempted to buy another...
05-05-2010, 09:54 AM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mike Cash Quote


Mike,

could you please tell me what do you use to hold the flash on top of the tripod?
I'm trying to find that flash holder that can hold an umbrella and wireless transmitter and can be mounted on tripod. Can that be mounted on a light stand? Do I need some kind of adapter to change from tripod mount to light stand?

Thanks,
05-05-2010, 10:32 AM   #28
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I'm not Mike, but basically you need a stand, with a flash multi clamp with an umbrella holder, something like this. The flash should attach to the top, or you can attach the radio trigger with the flash on top of that. I personally use Cactus triggers and the V4s seem to work really well and are quite cheap.
05-05-2010, 01:02 PM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rondec Quote
I'm not Mike, but basically you need a stand, with a flash multi clamp with an umbrella holder, something like this. The flash should attach to the top, or you can attach the radio trigger with the flash on top of that. I personally use Cactus triggers and the V4s seem to work really well and are quite cheap.
Thanks for the helpful reply, Rondec.
What makes me interested to what Mike's clamp is that it seems he can mount it on tripod or light stand. I'd like to know what particular brand / model of clamp that will allow me to do that.
I don't have light stand yet but I have tripod. If I can just buy one type that will fit my tripod for now and for light stand in the future, that will be great.
05-05-2010, 02:01 PM - 1 Like   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by HermanLee Quote
Thanks for the helpful reply, Rondec.
What makes me interested to what Mike's clamp is that it seems he can mount it on tripod or light stand. I'd like to know what particular brand / model of clamp that will allow me to do that.
I don't have light stand yet but I have tripod. If I can just buy one type that will fit my tripod for now and for light stand in the future, that will be great.
You just need a spigot-to-photo-screw adapter. and then can mount any clamp on either the tripod or on the light stand.

Ben
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