Most powerful 3rd party flash

Joined
Jan 15, 2008
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4,553
The Metz 50 is about as powerful as Nikon SB-600, or perhaps 1/3 stops more powerful. It is important to compare flashes at the same zoom head position, because zooming the flash extends the range.

* at 35 mm position SB-600 has GN of 98 ft
* Metz doesn't give 35 mm but only 50 mm setting, and the GN is 118 ft (would be closer to 100 at 35 mm setting).

Try to find a lightly used Nikon SB-800. Those are about 1/3 stops more powerful than SB-900 at equal zoom head positions (apples to apples). Yes, not a typo. SB-800 has more raw light output than SB-900 but lacks some finer features and the extreme zoom setting (200 mm) that birders like.
 
Joined
Jan 25, 2011
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ohio
I'm not going to be really taking advantage of any of the zoom settings, I never shoot the flash straight forward i strictly bounce.
 
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Jan 15, 2010
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As you are talking about power equivalent to the SB900 have you considered Nissin di866? From what I understand it has similar power and can also use iTTL modes Review Here and is cheaper than the SB900. I had looked at this when I failed to find an SB800 - ended up with the SB600 and quite happy with it.

I have absolutely no idea if this is a quality product and worth the money against the Nikon but at least on spec. it does seem to fit the requirements.
 
Joined
Apr 3, 2006
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5,614
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Texas
This was the flash i was using before, i was told a SB-600 wouldn't be much more powerful than this.
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/515451-REG/Bower_SFD728N_SFD728N_TTL_Flash_for.html


That one claims Guide Number 92 at 50mm. SB-600 is GN 118 at 50mm, which is about 0.7 stop stronger. That can be a lot when you need it. :smile:
And a SB-600 works as a remote flash with a Nikon Commander.

You might look here:

http://shop.nikonusa.com/store/nikonusa/en_US/list/parentCategoryID.43896400/categoryID.43898300

The availability of these refurbished flashes come and go, but usually quickly, don't last long.

Refurbished SB-600 appears also available here
http://www.adorama.com/SearchSite/Default.aspx?searchinfo=nikon refurbished flash
 
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Jan 25, 2011
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ohio
I finally caved in and bought the SB-600 about $240 after tax at best buy, since it was 300 everywhere online i figured id go ahead and jump on it.
 
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Nov 13, 2009
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4,380
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Toronto
I just ordered two LumoPro LP160's. They are manual flashes only - equal in strength to the SB900 but retail for just $159 at Midwest Photo Exchange.

David Hobby swears by them so I'll give them a shot. I figured at $300 for two of them can I really go wrong?
 
Joined
Jan 25, 2011
Messages
70
Location
ohio
hmm let me know how they work for you, even though i bought the 600 im always up for a more powerful back up flash.
 
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Sep 15, 2008
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Location
Sacramento
For a 3rd party flash with real power at a reasonable cost, find a good used Sunpak 622 on CL or eBay for under $200. I've been using mine for 20+ years. Works great with my D2H, D200, and later bodies. Here are the GNs of the Nikon speedlights compared with the Sunpak 622 according to the respective Nikon manuals. The Sunpak has a zoom head attachment that is similar to the zoom head of the speedlights so it easily surpasses the Sb-800/SB-900 speedlights out past 135mm.

ISO 100 @ 35mm zoom position (ft.)
Sunpak 622 = 200
SB-800 = 125
SB-900 = 111.5
SB-600 = 98.4

ISO 100 @ 105mm zoom position (ft.)
Sunpak 622 = not listed in guide.
SB-800 = 184
SB-900 = 162.4

ISO 100 @ 135mm zoom position (ft.)
Sunpak 622 = 240
SB-800 = na
SB-900 = 169

ISO 100 @ 200mm zoom position (ft.)
Sunpak 622 = na
SB-800 = na
SB-900 = 183.7
 
Joined
Nov 13, 2009
Messages
4,380
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Toronto
Got my LumoPro LP160's and I am very happy with them. Love the simplicity of manual flash composition. The LP160's work as advertised! I would recommend them as long as you're okay with a manual set up.
 
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