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Nikon Speedlight alternative

Discussion in 'General Equipment Chat & Advice' started by Stephen Rundle, May 12, 2020.

  1. Stephen Rundle

    Stephen Rundle In the Stop Bath

    Help needed please

    For my D4s and D810 I use an SB910, had three (when I had money, but sold 2 :( :( :( )

    See attached for the images I shoot

    I want two more guns but would like to see if,being on pension :( and PIP there is an alternative.

    I need HSS, the most important thing is variable flash duration, and a metal foot not plastic on the gun.

    Advice appreciated on Godox, Yongithingy, Ishoot, and others. I am HAPPY to buy Pre owned but is the SB900 as bad as I am told.

    In all honesty being Autistic, yes, Aspergers, happy to admit it, "reading" long reviews is out.

    many thanks

  2. beatnik69

    beatnik69 Well-Known Member

    I'm not sure what you have heard about the SB-900 that's so bad. I have heard of issues with overheating, but I thing this tends to be professionals using them a lot. Have you considered an SB-700 or 600. I have one of each and they are very good. You would probably have to get them used though.
  3. Stephen Rundle

    Stephen Rundle In the Stop Bath

    Thanks, appreciated

    I just wonder why the 7 and 600s are just as expensive as the 900 pre owned ?
  4. GeoffR

    GeoffR Well-Known Member

    I have the SB900 and, although I rarely use it, I have never had it overheat. It requires a lot of use to get the temperature to rise, and using an external power pack to reduce the recycling time will make it do so more quickly. I wouldn't worry unless you are planning to shoot hundreds of images in a short time. I also have the SB800 which might meet your requirements.
  5. Stephen Rundle

    Stephen Rundle In the Stop Bath

    Appreciated, thanks
  6. Stephen Rundle

    Stephen Rundle In the Stop Bath

    OK needed it now so bought a 900 almost mint from LCE all accessories just no box, yesterday free postage came today :) :) £99 IMG_20200513_102712904.jpg IMG_20200513_102719636.jpg IMG_20200513_102725168.jpg
  7. GeoffR

    GeoffR Well-Known Member

    That's relatively easy to explain. The SB900 in its case takes nearly as much space in my bag as does my 70-200 f2.8 the smaller SB600 and SB700 are easier to accommodate and nearly as powerful. For some people size matters more than performance and thus the smaller flashguns are more desirable.

    As an aside, I suspect the majority of people aren't using D4 bodies either and don't need the wide angle coverage of the SB900.
  8. Stephen Rundle

    Stephen Rundle In the Stop Bath

    I suppose so, but there are also other aspects to consider, RPT, HSS, recycle rates, sync ports, but good point
  9. GeoffR

    GeoffR Well-Known Member

    I am not sure that many people who aren't enthusiasts even care about most of those things. One only has to look a the Grays web site to realise that there are many people who buy top end Nikon, and I dare say Canon, cameras and hardly use them. My remaining D3 had well under 10,000 actuations when I bought it and it has a fairly low serial number. The same people who buy these cameras probably also buy the recommended flash to go with them without any thought about how it performs and then possibly never use it, then when they buy the next camera they do the same putting a nearly new SB600 or SB700 onto the used market. I also think some people buy a flash "just in case".
    Stephen Rundle likes this.
  10. Stephen Rundle

    Stephen Rundle In the Stop Bath

    Thanks as seen I did get the 900, it is much better than I expected and a bargain
  11. Stephen Rundle

    Stephen Rundle In the Stop Bath

    BUT as I asked I just wonder why the 700s and 600s are just as expensive as the 900 pre owned yet "lower" spec/older
  12. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    Geoff said in #7 that there is a ready market for them, implying this keeps the price up.
  13. Bazarchie

    Bazarchie Well-Known Member

    I do not use flash that often, but I am very pleased with my Godox flash and trigger.
    Stephen Rundle likes this.
  14. Stephen Rundle

    Stephen Rundle In the Stop Bath

    Geoff R said "I also think some people buy a flash "just in case"."

    Amazing, and yet flash is possibly THE most useful thing next to a tripod, I use it in daylight for fill, HSS, front lighting when shooting against the Sun or bright back daylight, I think the problem is that people now have not had the "background" in photography that there used to be years and years ago, I can not even remember when I used more than one focus point or shot in anything other than Manual mode
  15. Stephen Rundle

    Stephen Rundle In the Stop Bath

    Godox do have a good review most times on all gear
  16. GeoffR

    GeoffR Well-Known Member

    I tend to agree that few people have much background in photography but then again the vast majority of people who buy an interchangeable lens camera have little interest in photography the simply want good photographs. They think that an SLR is the way to achieve better without realising that what makes a photograph "good" is often nothing to do with the camera and all to do with the photographer.

    Buying a flash "just in case" is an example of that, many people have no idea that flash can be used in daylight. I remember using fill flash at a wedding about 25 years ago and even the professional photographer was asking why? it worked though. On another occasion I watched a wedding photographer meter the flash heads and set f16, the posing and set-up were excellent but the sharp backgrounds didn't help. Thus some people, without the knowledge of what flash can add, just buy a flashgun in case the need it, you have to admit that even that is better than using the built in flash from 20 metres away.

    Using a single focusing point is fine but I find that 3D is necessary for the local Red Kite population. The whole point of a camera like the D4 is that it is adaptable to almost any photographic application. The problem is in deciding which setting work for what you want, many people don't have the time or patience to do that even though their cameras have the capability. Those who are members of a photographic forum are, generally, the more enthusiastic and knowledgeable owners and we tend to benefit from the buying choices of those with little real interest but a desire to look the part. Which is the reason for buying the flash, even if they have no idea how to use it.
    Stephen Rundle likes this.
  17. AndyTake2

    AndyTake2 Well-Known Member

    One huge point is the control system. I loathe the button layout of the SB600, much preferring a dial and select system.
    I have a Nissin Di700A which is pretty good. It also has the Air-1 commander, and I have some other radio slaves which convert the Nikon speedlights I already have into radio controlled slaves.
    Stephen Rundle likes this.
  18. Stephen Rundle

    Stephen Rundle In the Stop Bath

    Great reply
  19. ChrisNewman

    ChrisNewman Well-Known Member

    After 3½ years of digital photography managing with the built-in flash of my D90, and then D800, my post-Christmas purchase for 2013-4 was a flashgun. I paid about half as much again for a (new) SB-910 as an SB-700 would have cost. My main reason was to be able to zoom out to 17mm, in case I wanted to use it with my (APS-C) Sigma 8-16mm, not just my 24-70mm. But the greater power also seemed desirable for maintaining depth of field and low ISO in some circumstances, particularly with bounce flash. It would have felt frustrating to have bought a flashgun and then found it didn’t do what I wanted, when another would have. I’m still happy with my choice, although the SB-910 is much more sophisticated than I’ve wanted so far. (If I press the wrong button and change a setting, I struggle to get it working as usual again. That's very different to my D800, where I study the manual periodically, to keep an eye out for functions I’m not yet using, but might find helpful. I don’t know whether the SB-700 offers fewer options.) But if the SB-910 hadn’t existed, I’d probably have been well satisfied with an SB-700 (but not its predecessor, the SB-600, which doesn’t tilt down for close-up work).

    Most of my photography is when I’m out walking, so I only put the bulky SB-910 in my bag if I expect to need it. I’m grateful to have a built-in flash if I find I want supplementary lighting. But now Nikon seems to be omitting these from its better cameras, in favour of better weathertightness. I have a Panasonic LX-100 compact for when I don’t want to take my camera bag. That lacks a built-in flash (I think it would have been difficult to include without a major design change, or making the body much bigger.) So with the camera they supply a flash unit the size of an ice cube, powered by the camera’s battery. If I ever move on from my D800 (probably to a Z7 or its successor), I hope Nikon offers a similar miniature flashgun.

  20. Stephen Rundle

    Stephen Rundle In the Stop Bath


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