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Strobist Gear

Discussion in 'General flash photography, lighting, and technique' started by tommyc, Jun 22, 2007.

  1. tommyc


    May 2, 2006
    Ever since making the mistake of looking in this forum and reading the Strobist site , I've been overcome with a strong desire to start learning more about flash and off camera lighting. I was looking at some the the start kits offered on the Midwest Photo site. Has anybody bought any of their kits? Good, bad ? Or should I buy the bits and pieces on my own. I'm really looking to keep this as cheap as I can since I've bought an 18-70, a 70-300VR and a D80 within the last two months.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 26, 2007
  2. tommyc


    May 2, 2006
    So does anyone have any suggestions for building up a kit on my own?
  3. yrrek

    yrrek Guest

  4. Ray C.

    Ray C.

    Nov 7, 2005
    tommy, what flash are you using and how much do you want to spend?

    I don't have a kit from MPEX, but have also heard they are good.
  5. I'm also looking to put together a stobist kit. That one part that holds the flash and the umbrella and connects to two to the lightstand, is that standard? Is one the same as another?
  6. I think they're all pretty much alike. The description at B&H Photo is "Umbrella Bracket with Swivel Mount and Flash Shoe", and they sell the Impact version for $13.95. Here's what it looks like...


    ... and here's the link.

  7. Before Strobist became a hit I bought this twin umbrella kit from B&H. At less than a hundred bucks I was worried about the quality, but actually it's pretty good and I'm well satisfied. It has the same mounting bracket as the photo above, the stand is not bad at all, and the umbrella is OK too, even if it's a tad on the small size.


    No strobes, of course, but if you can pick up a couple of used SB-24/25/26/28 series speedlights and a few cheap Chinese radio triggers, you'll be all set. Total cost around $350, depending on how much you have to pay for a pair of speedlights.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 27, 2007
  8. Thanks for the info Frank. I've been looking at the Unbrella/lightstand kits at B&H and notice that that particular piece of hardware isn't in most of them.
  9. Many photo stores offer package deals on stands.
    I got 2 combos: stand, bracket (as shown by Frank a few posts back), umbrella (white with removable black backing - can be used reflected or shoot-through). I use the 2 stands combined with (at times) a backlight strobe on a small tripod (total of 3 strobes - an SB-800 and 2 SB-600).
    I control the whole thing from my D2x with an SU-800 commander.
    A very neat, versatile and cost effective package that will handle many situations.
  10. I bought the starving student kit from MPEX and it is great. I also built an a la carte kit from the same source.

    The one piece I really like is the Bogen stand which is so compact compared to the Impact one for instance.
  11. I didn't need the whole kit, so I just bought what I needed. I'm quite happy with the purchase, everything seems good quality, works well, and had no problems buying from MPEX.
  12. tommyc


    May 2, 2006
    Thanks. Their kits looked like a fairly decent deal but I just don't know much about buying umbrellas, stands etc...
  13. Well, I didn't either. I just ordered the same items that came in the kit. The umbrella folds up nice and opens up as big as I would want it, the stand seemed like a really nice one. I also got the filters for the lens, and have been using them without any problems.
  14. jcovert

    jcovert Guest

    While I normally buy from B&H, I didn't have anyone to 'hold my hand' and tell me which of their products I really needed. At first I tried to look at the MPEX list and then go price it at B&H, but then certain items weren't the same, and of course there were sooo many more options at B&H.

    Also, MPEX claims the 43" Wescott Umbrella in White w/ Black Removable back is exclusive to them.

    Then, I did something I NEVER do...I called the store with some specific questions about how the gear works. MPEX put Moisha on the phone, and how lucky I was that this guy is ZERO pressure type of guy. I asked my few questions, he helped me work out how to use an old Vivtar flash in my setup (with MY specific gear...again, this level of help from a salesman is rare to me), and I placed an order for exactly what I wanted.

    On top of that, MPEX shows concern for the customers pocketbook by the products they offer, and although I didn't price it piece for piece, I doubt they were much if any more expensive than B&H (and I got consultation too). Maybe they pulled one over on me, or maybe they just are really a great camera store, I think it's the latter. But i just wanted to share what a good experience I had with them as a first time customer.
  15. tommyc


    May 2, 2006

    Thanks for the info. I think I'm going to order one of their kits. I tried picking out the various components on the B&H web site but they have so many options it made my head start spinning. Now I just have to figure out a way to get my daughter to sit still
  16. I didn't order any package from the Strobist site, but here is a similar set-up;

  17. Just a note, the sp,impact branded sviwel brackets are quite poor when it comes to quality. Iv worn our several of them, especially if you plan mounting softboxes on your sb800's.

    Manfrotto/Bogens is highquality and will not fail on you.

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