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Old Apr 17, 2008, 7:52 AM   #1
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I'm very new to studio lighting and am curious what I might need. I currently do photography at bodybuilding/fitness contests. Competitors often ask if I do studio shots (full body -- head to toe). So I'm considering setting up a studio-area in my house. I already have a dark backdrop. In terms of strobes and reflectors, do you guys have any suggestions. I read a lot about the Alien Bees. Which would you recommend and what size soft box and/or umbrellas does one need for full body work? Thanks.

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Old Apr 17, 2008, 8:39 AM   #2
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The Alien Bees are very popular, and I can FINALLY vouch for them. And, get as much power as your budget will allow. As has been pointed out many times, you can always lessen the output of a strobe, but once you've reached the strobes maximum output, that's it. Personally, I've got a pair of 800's, and I rarely use them at over 2/3 power, and we shoot full body shots all the time in our studio. As for soft boxes, I would again get as large as your budget will allow. AB has some nicely sized boxes;we've got the 47" octobox, which we truly LOVE (We've got 2, actually). Anyway, call and talk with the Alien Bees people, they're customer service is AWESOME, and they are well trained (At least in our experiences). And, if possible, get their remote flash trigers - they're a LIFE SAVER (And, equipment saver).

If you're looking to get by as inexpensively as possible, You COULD get away with one strobe and a large reflector, but you would be limiting yourself somewhat.

I'm sure (Or, I at least HOPE) others will chime in with their suggestions and insight.
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Old Apr 17, 2008, 6:46 PM   #3
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You'll also need an incident light meter. If you buy the alien bees with the transmitter, you can rig it to have the meter triggerthe flash with the transmitterattached to your camera.HughesInc pretty much covered the rest. I will repeat his recommendations about getting the biggest reflectors. Bill
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Old May 28, 2008, 8:20 PM   #4
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Quick one : I own a Nikon d200. It would not make sense for meto purchase a B800 if the Nikon SB600 is about the same price and can be triggered remotely ?

Sorry if this is maybe - another - stupid question from me, but maybe the b800 has advantages I did not understand.

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Old May 29, 2008, 6:38 AM   #5
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Well, 2 different situations. If you want a powerful TTL flash, then the SB600 is a very nice flash. And, as you mention it can be triggered remotely, as part of Nikon's Creative Lighting System (I think that's what they call it). The AB800 isn't something you'll carry around, REGARDLESS of what color you get! Make your decision on what you plan to do with your setup. For me, it was an easy choice, because I was basing my decision on building a home studio, so the AB800's were an easy choice.
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