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Discussion in 'General flash photography, lighting, and technique' started by Muskieman911, Jul 1, 2008.
Which to buy?
The one that you can afford. If the answer is both, then the SB900.
whats the difference
will the SB800 be cheaper now that there is a replacement?
im not sure that i've seen a big drop of sb800. its still around 300+. but the sb900 is retailing for 500?
Depends on what you need the flash to do and which body you'll be using. With your D300, the WB auto adjust feature is crippled, so all you'll gain with the 900 is the FX/DX zoom and maybe a future body will make better use of the 900's features.
$500 versus $300.
SB900 has better UI, more range, better ability to direct the light, automatically zooms to an appropriate coverage area for a DX image circle (that can easily translate to faster recycle times), slightly less power and slightly faster recycle times, and it won't overheat and burn out (that alone could save you the difference in cost if you are prone to overheating the flash as some are).
I guess my question is, does this mean all the previous flashes were not really designed for DX cameras at all? And if that's the case, why didn't they produce flashes in the past that were?
The answer is expedience and avoiding inadequate coverage area for film cameras. Nikon probably didn't want to expend R&D and marketing resources on a DX only flash, and since the old format coverage area was oversized anyway there was no harm (all the recycling times and guide numbers were applicable to both formats).
The street price on this thing will almost certainly drop once the initial demand is met.
There are a few other advantages not mentioned here, though. The key one for me is the ability to upgrade the flash's firmware. This should allow future tweaking should it be necessary.
Also, the ability to use it all the way out to 200mm is a big one for my needs. Couple that with the obviously improved operational layout, and it might make a nice Christmas present for me Especially if/when it drops to below $450...
Meanwhile, once (if?) my budget recovers from my ordered D700 and 14-24, I want to pick up at least one more SB800 for wireless use.
Maybe if it drops to $400 I'll pick one up. If the price drops on the SB-800 you'll be able to pick up two for the price of one SB-900.
There's a good review on the Strobist blog:
No one on this forum has used the SB-900, therefore nobody can share any personal experience with you. All of these recommendations are coming from reading various reviews.
I am confussed
if you don't have a flash already and you have not pre-ordered a SB-900, I would recommend buying the SB-800 right away.