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Which flash would you suggest for my Nikon D800?

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Dear photographers,

I never considered about purchasing a serious flash for my camera as Nikon reflex cameras provide an in-built flash. Nothing to compare with professional ones but for my limited use was ok for me. Till now. As I think it's time to invest in a more serious flash beside also to learn how use it professionally, my question is: which flash would you recommend in terms of quality/price relationship. I own a Nikon D800.

Thanks!

Stefano

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You do not mention how you want/need to use this flash.

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You do not mention how you want/need to use this flash.

Interiors and portraits basically.

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Stripe, your images look good, as if you know what you're doing. You went out and bought a top-line camera, the Nikon D800. The only next move I can see it to give you this: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/search?ntt=Nikon&ci=643&N=4168864825

 

You have to do your own research and make up your own mind as to what you can and should buy. You do notice that nobody has taking your question seriously. Me? I own a few flash units, but I almost always shoot available light. 

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I really only use flash when shooting family stuff.

 

Have you thought about getting iPhone instead?

 

Another greenie. Almost spit my coffee on the monitor.

 

Jill

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I really only use flash when shooting family stuff.

 

Have you thought about getting iPhone instead?

 

Another greenie. Almost spit my coffee on the monitor.

 

Jill

 

S'alright: you don't need it any more (or Lightroom, PS, your DLSR - or a flash).  Take some photos of them all with your iPhone before they go to the charity shop though...

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I rarely use a flashgun these days as I do mostly landcscapes but I have a Nikon SB-900 which I bought to go with the D700 when it came out. It was the top of the range Nikon flash at the time. The logic was that a Nikon flash would integrate well with the camera which it does. You can use it without thinking and you can use it fully manual if you want to learn. I figured it best to get the most powerful flash in the Nikon range so that I wouldn't end up frustrated by it not being powerful enough should I need that. I think the latest is the SB-910 which retails here for around £340 which is cheap compared to the price of the D800. 

 

 

 

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I've used Nikon on camera flashes since the SB-24, before that was the good old Vivitars 283, 285 etc,  I also use a D800 along with 700's  and Fuji S5's and the SB-800 works like

a million on all of my F mount bodies.  I would suggest looking for a Nikon reconditioned SB-800 from Nikon or if you use eBay get it on eBay for less than $300 USD

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I have a the top of the range Nissin. Works great with d800 and cheaper than nikon flash guns. Works fine off camera with remote trigger or wireless. However if I buy another one would probably go for for Nikon sb910 if I can afford the extra money.

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Thanks for who gave a few useful suggestions. Honestly, I was talking seriously and I don't see what it can be wrong if I am asking about which flash I could buy. I don't know anything about flashes but I think a more professional flash than the one in-built on my D800 could give better results in terms of light.

For example, I took these pics with tripod and D800 in-built flash. I wonder if I had used a professional flash the result would have been much better.

 

http://www.stefanopolitimarkovina.com/blog-posts/photographic-service-for-a-university-residence/

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I don't think anyone meant any disrespect, Stefano. People get a bit carried away with humor on the forum and it doesn't always sound the way they mean it. Just entertaining themselves and others. I'll refrain from commenting on the photos because I know there are people who are much more knowledgable about the issues. I mostly do animals and am generally not happy with the results when I use flash.

 

Paulette

  • Upvote 1

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Hi stefano,

 

Having a dedidicated flash for your camera will have several advantages:

-more power, more flash bursts (usually hundreds on a set of batteries) and usually faster speed of recycling between flash bursts.

-no drain on your cameras own battery.

-Having the Flash further from the lens mount means less likely to get red eye.

-ability to tilt flash up/sideways so you can bounce the light off ceiling/walls results in a much more pleasing natural light.

-ability to use the flash off camera/wirelessly, so can be used as a studio flash.

 

I have a nikon SB600 and find it's a wonderful flash, not to big, easy to setup as i want it, and usually get 300 flashes out of it on a set of rechargable AA batteries. It also has fully manual control of it's power level so vary hand for studio work when i use it off camera along with a couple of other cheap old manual centon FG105 flashes mounted on wireless triggers, with the small transmitter on the camera's hotshoe.

There are many newer SB models available but this one had the best control interface and is a good balance between price,weight,size & performance.

 

Your on camera flash pics look nice, but the reflection of the flash on the background can be off putting and the shadows behind the head are what you normally get with flashes that are to close to the lens mount ( this can be completely eliminated by bouncing flash of ceiling.

 

Parm

Edited by Bhandol

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Thank you Parm for your suggestions and also for the observation made on my photos. Definitely, a not in-built flash would give best results on my indoor images. What do you think about the SB-700?

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Thanks for who gave a few useful suggestions. Honestly, I was talking seriously and I don't see what it can be wrong if I am asking about which flash I could buy. I don't know anything about flashes but I think a more professional flash than the one in-built on my D800 could give better results in terms of light.

For example, I took these pics with tripod and D800 in-built flash. I wonder if I had used a professional flash the result would have been much better.

 

http://www.stefanopolitimarkovina.com/blog-posts/photographic-service-for-a-university-residence/

 

The question you were really asking in the original post was, "How do you use flash professionally?" On a forum, you will get answers like, "This is what I use . . ." You need to Google "photography flash use," and read some tutorials. If you go to YouTube and search "photo flash" you will get a ton of videos showing you how to use flash. My personal advice on flash is: stay away from it until you know what and why you want to use it. I much prefer shooting available light, with or without a tripod.  If you use the on-camera flash routinely, you're heading down the wrong path. 

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No, my question was: "which flash would you recommend in terms of quality/price relationship"

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Have it your own way. 

 

Bon dia

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I don't think anyone meant any disrespect, Stefano. People get a bit carried away with humor on the forum and it doesn't always sound the way they mean it. Just entertaining themselves and others. I'll refrain from commenting on the photos because I know there are people who are much more knowledgeable about the issues. I mostly do animals and am generally not happy with the results when I use flash.

 

Paulette

 

+1

 

Apologies, Stefano, if you took offence - none intended.

 

My flippancy in replying to Gervais and Jill was merely intended to highlight the fact that I view any investment in high-end camera equipment these days as something that (for me at least) cannot be justified.  Not until the market settles and I can see if there is any future either here or in stock generally.

 

The results that you have using the built-in flash are excellent, given it's limitations.  I am sure that a pro-level flash will portray your subjects in an even better light ('scuse the pun!)  Sorry, but I have no experience to offer re: Nikon equipment.

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I have SB-27's, SB-28's, SB-800's and an SB-900...

 

The problem with getting recon units is you do not know if the flash tube has been replaced, if its been dropped or what life it has... With the exception of the 28's they are all good units. The 800 & 900's will sync at higher speeds than the older units and offer the possibility of basic off camera use.

 

I have also heard good things about the 3rd party Nissins (622 i think) as a good starter unit.

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What do you think about the SB-700?

 

The SB-700 is basically an upgrade of the SB-600 with a few nice improvements:

-has a Built in bounce card.

-comes supplied with a clip-on diffusion dome.

-comes supplied with clip-on Tungsten & Fluorescent filters

-you can rotate/twist the flash head  360 degrees (sb-600 rotates/twists 270 degrees 

-has a proper ON/Off switch (the sb-600 has a button you hold down to switch on/off

 

So if I didn't already have this sb-600 which I bought in 2007, then I would go for this new SB-700.

 

Here's some reviews by people who bought the SB-700 :http://www.wexphotographic.com/buy-nikon-sb-700-speedlight-flashgun/p1522476

 

Good luck with whichever you decide buy.

 

Parm

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Thanks Parm. The reviews are largely positive about this flash and I am considering of buying it.

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I would not even consider the battery operated camera top flash. For the D800 and portraits and interiors, the two fields specifically mentioned, I would use the system I have from Elinchrom - a Quadra Ranger RX Hybrid 2-head kit. It costs maybe half as much as the D800 body, or twice as much as the Nikon 900 gun with any kind of long life/external power pack.

 

However, at 400Ws and two heads - purely manual, you have to work out or test the exposure, but it has modelling lamps - it will handle holiday apartments, hotels, restaurants, bars, homes for sale; groups, families, portraits - and operate without needing AC power.  You can also get a bracket and mount a head next to your camera for events (with the pack on a strap over your shoulder).

 

I do have a set of wireless auto flash with the usual power output, GN 36 to 58 across different heads, but there is no way they match using something like the Quadra kit for paid assignment work. I've always worked like this, from Braun and Metz high power shoulder packs in the 1970s through Norman and Quantum.

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SB800 works a treat. I use one on my D3 seamlessley but on your D700 you have the advantage of using commander mode which allows off camera triggered flash with all the very clever tricks that it can do. I use it with 2 sb800's with a Fuji S5. Of course the SB900 will do but I don't see any advantage over the 800.

 

Andy

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