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  1. Tom Young

    Having trouble with the Demp-it

    I see! From your earlier post I'd envisioned a dimly lit cavernous hall. I didn't realize you were working in an outdoor pavillion. As you know, you'll need to be pretty fast on your feet adjusting to the changing conditions. When the ambient light is bright, low ISO's, a fast shutter...
  2. Tom Young

    Having trouble with the Demp-it

    That's the kind of environment that can really push a small flash very hard during an event like a wedding. You'll want to keep a close eye out for any problems with overheating which at best can lead to underpowered flash exposures. Having a spare flash to swap in and out for use as your main...
  3. Tom Young

    CBL colour balance filter

    Some people do swear by incident WB devices like this, the Expodisk, Pringles lids etc. They do have some advantages as they're less prone to being influenced by reflected light from colored objects (t-shirts, etc.) near the source of a gray card. Used with care, reflected reading WB devices...
  4. Tom Young

    Lusting after 35 f/2 ... or should I?

    It's a very versatile focal length, especially on a DX body. Though you can duplcate the fov with your 17-55, the f/2 prime is a heck of a lot smaller and lighter which adds a lot to the overall versatality. It's both sharp and has great color and contrast and can rival a dedicated macro lens...
  5. Tom Young

    Showcase Nikon 10.5mm f/2.8G ED AF DX Fisheye

    A few more samples.... :smile:
  6. Tom Young

    Lighting Problems...

    Well, maybe not rocket science, but if there's one book covering the fundamentals of controlling light that I would recommend, that would be "Light, Science & Magic". The 3rd edition is just about the best lighting primer that I've ever come across. It's available in most book stores. Well...
  7. Tom Young

    Bending Bat

    Yes Randy, I think you're right. There most likely is some bat flex going on here. This really has peaked my curiosity though as to how much of the apparent bending that we see in photos of this kind is really bat flex, and how much might be being exaggerated by shutter distortion. So, in...
  8. Tom Young

    Bending Bat

    Don't tell the power slugger this, but I think what you're seeing here is mainly due to distortion caused by the focal plane shutter in your camera. The distortion is exacerbated in this shot due to the extent that the bat is covering a large part of the frame across the vertical dimension...
  9. Tom Young

    Moody Blue Flash

    Gelling the flash to tungsten and setting WB to fluorescent is an interesting approach. It certainly did get you that deep blue sky. I'm not too sure what Rachelle's skin tone happens to be, but she's looking a bit magenta. Setting the WB more towards tungsten in order to more closely match...
  10. Tom Young

    SU-4 mode on the SB-600

    Unlike the SB-800, the SB-600 does not offer an SU-4 emulator. But, the phyisical SU-4 slave unit remains a good option as auto TTL optical slaves go and can still be found on EBay and similar sites if you shop around. It might be worth tracking one down as an alternative to replacing the...
  11. Tom Young

    Minimal Strobism

    Less brain - More Beer - Bud Lite! These worked out very nicely. From the position you set the camera, the sun made for a very nice and natural appearing rim light. It's good to keep that extra strobe at hand for times when the suns position may not be so cooperative (especially when...
  12. Tom Young

    Question on Speedotron. Help.

    It sounds like the capicitors have just about had it. Especially after having been stored a long time without use. It may just be a matter of having them "re-formed" rather than replaced, but there's a lot of current involved and they do have a habit of going out with a real bang sometimes...
  13. Tom Young


    What, no bluetooth CLS? Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. It looks cute, but maybe not so cute as to cause my own hoped for flood of good used SB-800's to hit the market. Oh well, it's a flash. It flashes. So do my other flashes. I think I'll be sticking with them for a while longer. :smile:
  14. Tom Young

    CLS TTL vs M settings

    Both manual and TTL are worth spending time with, each has it's advantages. Manual will be the most consistent, particularly when the flash to subject distance remains relatively constant. TTL works well too and can be especially handy with subjects that won't stay still, though you do want to...
  15. Tom Young

    Silly question

    When set to the off (--) position in command mode, it's output is just enough power to communicate with the remote flash. But as Gordon mentioned, visible preflashes can sometimes cause problems by making subjects blink just prior to the exposure. One workaround would be to use the cameras...
  16. Tom Young

    Silly question

    That is of course quite true, but the burst is minimal. It's effect can be something to watch out for as it could place some small unexpected highlights in highly reflective objects, but it won't contribute to an exposure, except possibly at very close macro distances. Taking that same shot...
  17. Tom Young

    Opinions Please

    It depends a lot on the environment that you're working in. Indoors, especially when surrounded by light colored walls/ceiling, you can usually count on the signals being able to bounce around the room and trigger the flash heads in most any position relative to the camera. Outside in bright...
  18. Tom Young

    Opinions Please

    That sounds like a pretty good "starter" set overall. 8' stands are nice but they do lose some portability vs many of the 6' stands that are available. Keep in mind that the umbrellas will provide some additional height of their own. Maybe consider one 8' stand and one 6' stand, which could...
  19. Tom Young

    Dead sb-800

    So long as you haven't really overcooked it, if the unit overheats by firing too many rapid high power discharges in a short time period, it will shut itself down automatically (without warning) until it's had time to cool down. It's handy to have a spare or two on hand, swapping back and...
  20. Tom Young


    It does matter, but along with that goes the size and amount of space that you're working in, the size of subject, etc. The softness of the light will depend a lot on the size of the surface relative to the size of your subject. To achieve a similar effect with a smaller umbrella, it will...
  21. Tom Young

    How Can I Change My Technique to Reduce "Blinking Eyes"?

    There's always going to be some chance of a subject blinking in a photo, especially with groups. But a big culprit is the Preflash that is used to set the flash exposure level which occurs just before the shutter opens. The D70's setup menu has an option to set the cameras AE/AF lock button...
  22. Tom Young

    Fong Light Sphere -or- Demp Flip-It Reflector?

    I'd be lost without the Demb Flip-it. It's equally useful indoors with good (or poor) bounce conditions and outdoors too. Combined with the optional diffusion panel, it offers the best of both worlds (reflection and/or diffusion). And the whole package slips easily into a pocket. When...
  23. Tom Young

    First time using an umbrella

    Nice portrait! 40" is a great size for achieving a nice soft light on tighter head and shoulder shots like this one, especially when used fairly close in towards the subject. You're off to a great start!
  24. Tom Young

    Has anyone had issues with their SB-600?

    Usually, even if the flash were defective and not able to fire, it would show at least some sign of life when you turn the power on. It's hard to say for certain what's going on, but I'd start by checking the electrical contacts for the batteries. If one of the batteries isn't getting a solid...
  25. Tom Young

    Gels for Flash?

    If you're near a larger city, check the yellow pages for any nearby stage lighting supply houses, or failing that, larger camera shops. Most places that stock gels will have sample swatch books of every color in the product line available for free. The sample gels fit over a speedlight just...
  26. Tom Young

    Indoor flash experiment

    It looks like you were able to achieve a pretty nice balance overall. As for experimenting, you might condider trying a few additional tests by taking the camera out of P mode and placing it into Manual. That will allow you to zero out the metering compensation, afterwhich you can simply raise...
  27. Tom Young

    Speedlight/Auto FP HSS Love

    It may well have been a bit of a tossup with these samples as they were taken later in the day and the ambient light was fading fast. Especially in brighter light, shooting at anything longer than 1/800s could tend to yield some blur/ghosting on the skaters due to their speed and higher ambient...
  28. Tom Young

    Speedlight/Auto FP HSS Love

    For the first shot the lens was at about 16mm and the flash heads were zoomed to the 70mm position. After that it dawned on me that I could get better use out of the light by switching the flash heads to a vertical orientation. If I'd thought about that sooner, there would probably have been a...
  29. Tom Young

    Speedlight/Auto FP HSS Love

    Thanks Gordon! I'm still working on getting things dialed in some more, but I'm finding there's hope for off camera high speed sync. I just need to track down about 20 more Speedlights to get where I really want to be! :smile:
  30. Tom Young

    Strobist does CLS

    Wasn't it "More Beer, Less Brain, Bud Light"? Someting like that. :smile: But yeah, How are we going to keep David down on the farm after he's seen Chase Jarvis's setup?
  31. Tom Young

    Speedlight/Auto FP HSS Love

    A few sample skateboarding shots using the SU-800 and 4 SB's ganged together on a single lightstand in High Speed Sync mode.... All taken w/D200 and Nikkor 12-24mm DX at 1/1600s f/4.5 ISO 320. The Speedlights were placed relatively close (to the righthand side of camera positon), about 6 to...
  32. Tom Young

    Dead sb-800

    The tubes are rated for around 20,000 dumps, but it really depends on how the flash is being used. Lots of rapid full power firings will kill the flash sooner, using the flash mostly at 1/2 power or less will allow it to go a lot longer. From the sounds of it, you've gotten plenty of good...
  33. Tom Young

    SU-800 or SB-800?

    Yes, but again, while this preflash will still be visible while the shutter is open, it's of very low power relative to any flash output level available with the on-camera flash enabled. As you've guessed, it happens close enough to the time that the actual flash fires that it won't likely...
  34. Tom Young

    SU-800 or SB-800?

    The SB-800 communicates with the remote via coded pre-flashes. The SU-800 fires the same codes, but they're filtered to IR only. The SB-800's visible light preflashes usually aren't a problem as the delay time between pre-flashes and actual flash is quite minimal. Still, when shooting people...
  35. Tom Young

    Question about flash.

    Sounds like some "creative copy writing" Frank. :smile: It shouldn't actually need a power source as it's just a photocell with a switch that closes the hotshoe/pc cord connectors.
  36. Tom Young

    Question about flash.

    Have you tested this slave with the SB-600? Some generic optical slaves would have trouble when used with a Speedlight, especially when pre-flashes are involved. Something like a Nikon SU-4 slave would be a safe enough bet, but if you have gotten good results using this with an SB-600 it would...
  37. Tom Young

    Event photography

    As for having the camera in the portrait position, rotating camera brackets can be a big help, but... some of them can be a bit bulky. Personally, as brackets go, I've been happy using the RRS Wedding Pro bracket, which is a smaller lighter flip style bracket, especially in combo with Joe...
  38. Tom Young

    This is just ridiculous!

    Nikon recommends against mounting more than about 4 SB-R200's when the ring is attached directly to a lens but .... :smile:
  39. Tom Young

    Wedding lighting setup

    From the looks of it, the flash on the stand is set-up to provide ceiling bounce lighting and is probably the main light source. The direct (camera mounted) flash would likely be dialed down some relative to the remote flash to provide some front fill light, eliminating those racoon eye shadows...
  40. Tom Young

    D300/SB-50-DX slave

    It's a bit old tech, but yes, that's just about the only effective use you'll get out of the SB-50 with an iTTL body. It was a great little flash with many earlier bodies but when mounted to the hotshoe on a newer camera, it's pretty limited, due to it's not recognizing the newer TTL modes...
  41. Tom Young

    Quick question: dark flash shots

    Spot metering can have it's advantages when shooting flash, but it can get tricky too. The spot meter sees the world as neutral gray, so if you meter off of something that is significantly lighter, the camera will adjust the exposure to bring that area down to a neutral gray, vice versa for...
  42. Tom Young

    Quick question: dark flash shots

    Ordinarily, the Flip-it should be fine for this kind of shot, but as Frank mentioned, when used at angles that would normally be used for bounce light, much of the flash output will be wasted. If enough is wasted, there won't be enough flash power available to deliver a correct exposure. Try...
  43. Tom Young

    Using microphone boom stands...

    Rather than modify the mic stand, I'd just mount a swivel adapter onto a clamp and then attach the clamp to the stand. If you're just using a Speedlight by itself, a Justin clamp should be plenty. With heavier modifiers, umbrellas, softboxes, etc. a Superclamp would provide a stronger grip...
  44. Tom Young

    I have to ask this question

    Red eye is always a possibility, but in the barrage of flashes that accompany most paparazzi ambushes, the subjects pupils constrict pretty quickly if they aren't already constricted by sunlight and a smaller pupil will be less susceptible to red-eye.
  45. Tom Young

    Pringles lid

    The pringles lid/WB craze was based on the idea that just about no matter where you were, you could always get your hands on one if you were looking for a cheap, quick, reasonably accurate source for taking an incident WB reading. They were'nt Expodiscs, etc. but they weren't any worse than...
  46. Tom Young

    Street photography - do you dare ?

    Found on the net... Individually these kinds of incidents are so many tempests in a teapot. Collectively they represent a genuine threat as each time something like this is allowed to pass unchallenged, the acceptability of the next occurrence is only reinforced. The victim's willingness...
  47. Tom Young

    D200 weird artifact

    They most likely will. The type of banding visible in this example in indicative of the "long banding" that was seen in the first round of D200's that were shipped and is considered by Nikon to be out of specification. The problem was resoved with later models but not all of the original...
  48. Tom Young

    D200 + 50 1.4 @ what-else?

    High ISO can be tricky. The D200's metering is a bit conservative. When you do bump up the ISO, try to compensate for that with a little exposure boost. As long as you're not underexposing at all, the noise isn't really as bad as it's often considered to be. Of course, fast primes help...
  49. Tom Young

    Ready to order a Photek Softlighter II Input Please

    I have the 60" Softliter. It produces a very soft light and is fast and easy to setup/breakdown. The 46" would also be a good choice. The larger size could be more versatile for lighting larger areas, but it does require a bit more room to work with. When using Speedlight/s with the...
  50. Tom Young

    Flash sync speeds above 250

    At 1/250s or longer there would be some motion blur caused by ambient light levels and the sky would have been blown out. The question of relying on a single short flash burst vs the multiple pulsed bursts that FP sync relies on is valid, but needs to be weighed out depending on the type of...
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