Anyone using FourSquare softbox?

Joined
May 13, 2008
Messages
103
Location
Australia
Hi

My FourSquare softbox will arrive on Monday and I would like to hear about other users experience with it and see any examples of work using it.

I currently have 2 Sb-800's, a Sb-26 and a SC-29 TTL cord and plan to initially use them in SU-4 mode with a D2Xs. I plan on getting at least two more flash units probably Sb-800s and a SU-800 commander (if finances permit perhaps a radio transceiver setup). Any thoughts about which combination to use are welcome and I'm not so worried about TTL.

I plan on using this extensively while travelling but also for any commercial work that comes my way. My thoughts are that this may be very useful for indoor sports in Auto FP mode with 4 bare speedlights (not using the Sb-26)...any thoughts?

Cheers

Michael

Here is a link to the FourSquare softbox http://www.lightwaredirect.com/
 
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Joined
May 8, 2005
Messages
4,638
Location
Orlando, FL
Mine arrived yesterday, and other than putting it up, I haven't shot with it. I originally got it with the same idea as you - not to use with a softbox but to have extra firepower for outdoor use with high speed synch. It remains to be seen how well the Speedlights trigger when using the softbox.
 
Joined
May 8, 2005
Messages
4,638
Location
Orlando, FL
I got around to using the FourSquare yesterday. The softbox is pretty easy to assemble and had flaps at the back so you can get easy access to the flashes. Another benefit would be that if you leave them open, the IR signals stand a chance of actually getting to all four flashes. This is what it looks like from the back (flaps open):

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Having all four flashes made it quite easy to use high-speed synch to illuminate my latest model, Roxy, against a Florida blue sky. This was 1/4000 at f/4.0:

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Unfortunately, when I got to a real shoot later in the afternoon, the flashes would not trigger reliably, so I resorted to using a pair of Pocket Wizards (each firing two SB800's) and a shoot-through umbrella. Fortunately, the light levels were not as high and I could get away with a shutter speed less than 1/250:

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This setup gave nice results and of course was PW-reliable! Could I have got away with less than 4 flashes? Sure - but each SB800 was at 1/4 power and recycling very quickly. The light was so nice, even the photographer jumped in for one shot :smile:

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Joined
Dec 17, 2007
Messages
2,116
Location
Canada
Thanks for sharing. I had my eye on getting the foursquare for the softbox, but also for multiplying the Speedlights for outdoor use. I have to commit to getting more speedlights before I make the plunge and look forward to hearing how effective the softbox works out for users.
 
Joined
Jul 26, 2008
Messages
244
Location
Marina Del Rey
That for sharing..I have been debating to pick on one if these for a long time..My buddy is buying one and what to test it out first before I commit..

So would you say CLS might be a problem and better to use some sort of wireless transceivers?
 
Joined
May 8, 2005
Messages
4,638
Location
Orlando, FL
In my experience, CLS is just plain unreliable in daylight with direct sun. My informal tests suggest that using an umbrella gives more reliable results than a soft box because it can act to bounce the IR signal back to the receivers. However, even then it can be finicky. On Saturday, it would work when I stood upright, but not when I crouched down, even though I was taking care to aim the SB900 Commander at the FourSquare. Also, remember that the IR receivers on those 4 flashes are pointing in different directions, so sometimes not all would fire. Hence, I reverted to the PWs which always work.

In answer to your second question, it is certainly possible in regular flash mode (SS at or below 1/250). In HSS flash mode of course, power is much reduced and it will depend on how close you can get the flashes and whether of not you use any modifiers.
 
Joined
May 8, 2005
Messages
4,638
Location
Orlando, FL
My ultimate plan is to trigger with the new CLS-compatible PW's when they are eventually released for Nikon . . . Problem is that I will need 4 receivers with this puppy :eek:
 

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