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Old Feb 20, 2004, 11:07 AM   #1
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Default Studio Lighting...HELP!

I am trying to create a "mobile" business, shooting mostly children and babies. I am confused about which type of lighting I need, continuous or flash. I have very little experience with indoor lighting. I have a limited budget ($500.00) and would like any advice of what a good start up kit would be. I have looked on Ebay and have found many kits, Smith-Victor KT900, Britek 4 LIGHT STROBE/FLASH kit, etc. HELP!!! Thanks for any help you can give me...
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Old Feb 20, 2004, 12:29 PM   #2
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Either might work.
I'd be real worried about the smith-victors around small kids. They might also prove distracting and uncomfrotable to the targets.
(very bright, very hot.)

If the Britek kit you are looking at has built-in modeling lights it might not be a bad start.

EDIT:
IMHO: A kit with a couple of more powerfull strobes, would be beter than a kit with 4-5 lower power strobes.
like one of their Britek PS series kits.
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Old Feb 20, 2004, 4:25 PM   #3
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Thanks for answering my question so fast....would you mind if I picked your brain a little??? What do you think of these kits.....

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...category=30087

or

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...category=30087

Do I need a light meter with using either one of these??? I really appreciate any help you can give me, I am so lighting deficient!!!

Thanks again
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Old Feb 21, 2004, 9:01 AM   #4
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both of those kits looks like junk...if your budget is less than $500, then I recommend this kit;

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...=190512&is=REG

Ypu can use the left over to order the one of the softbox:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...=129716&is=REG

and yes, you must have a flash meter:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...=221078&is=REG

Cheers
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Old Feb 21, 2004, 2:48 PM   #5
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I tend to agree with tuanokc, the kit he picked totals about 420$us and has 2 * 160 watt strobes.

I'd prefer the slightly higher priced (479$us) 2 * 320watt monolights

And yes a flashmeter is a necessaty.
One of the less expensive shepards, or even SP flash meter will work, they are not as exact as the more expensive meters but most will get you within 1/2 stop.
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Old Apr 16, 2004, 3:32 PM   #6
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Have a suggestion for a $1,000 or less budget? portability is key as I'm always on location... mostly glamour, lingerie modeling shots.

Thanks in advance!

Dagger
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Old Apr 16, 2004, 5:02 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrDagger
Have a suggestion for a $1,000 or less budget? portability is key as I'm always on location... mostly glamour, lingerie modeling shots.

Thanks in advance!

Dagger
Guess I'll toss out the obvious ... Alien Bees Something like the DigiBee (http://alienbees.com/digibee.htm) setup is light and portable if you need battery power it will run with a Vagabond system. Upgrade at least one light to an 800 and you will still have enough left over for the flash meter and if desired a cheap backdrop stand/muslin or some light modifiers (halos or softbox).

Bad news is that if you want to do some air travel you may need a $200 carrying case and if the travel is remote you may want to keep a spare light on hand....
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Old Apr 16, 2004, 7:10 PM   #8
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Thanks Castledude... I was just on thier site before you left this!

I actually already have a sekonic (shoot can't remember the model#) meter. But it's got a sync connection, will do averages, and work with flash readings and well as regular lighting.... I'm also not concered about the backgrounds this round either. So if I read you right I get the kit with the two 400s, and maybe buy the 800 in additions...? Somewhere between the "pro kit" at $1,600 for everything and the middle one?

Dagger
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Old Apr 16, 2004, 8:20 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrDagger
Thanks Castledude... I was just on thier site before you left this!

So if I read you right I get the kit with the two 400s, and maybe buy the 800 in additions...? Somewhere between the "pro kit" at $1,600 for everything and the middle one?

Dagger
What I am saying is buy the Digikit but upgrade one or both lights to 800's ($55 per upgrade). A third light (400) would be for emergency use or for snooting/grid etc. Two lights will get you the basic glamour look the third allows more creativity.

If that gets too pricy look at replacing the third light with a JTL 160 for the backup/snoot light. These cost about $100 and the toys for these (Snoot, barndoors, gels and honeycomb) are really cheap. They are small and really handy.

Alien bee does have an upgrade path after you buy so you can do the upgrades (400-800) later (up to 2 years for about $75 ea) if you want.



-----------------------------------------------
Some info
----------------------------------------------
Being the cheapskate I am I have 2 JTL300's and 2 JTL 160s. When in my home studio I use the three light system (2 JTL 300s and 1 JTL 160) when on the road I take the two 160s and a good ol' Sunpak 383 with the on camera softbox. The road set is small enough it will fit into a carry on rollaround.

In the home studio I typically use a Halo on the main and a white umbrella on the lower light. The 160 I use with a honeycomb or snoot, I shoot ISO 100/f8 and none of the lights are at max power.
I can get to ISO100/f11 if needed.


On the road studio I use two silver/blacks umbrellas on the 160s and a minisoftbox on the Sunpak 383. One light is pretty much maxed out (ISO 100/f8).

Both of these are for standard glamour (flat) lighting.

---------------------------------------
In hindsight I'm happy with the 160s but wish I would have saved up for the Bees (instead of getting the 300s) because of the upgradability.
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Old Apr 16, 2004, 8:32 PM   #10
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Hehe, it's funny you say the 383 on the road. That's what I have but no softbox yet... really kinda fell into doing this stuff and mostly shoot on the road (no studio at home). So what you said certainly has appeal. I'll let you know what I end up doing...

In the meantime here's a link to some of the stuff I've accomplished thus far with not a single light other than my 383, natural and a few table lamps (beleive it or not) Let me know what you think. I'd also be interested in seeing some of your stuff with the "road setup"


http://www.pbase.com/mrdaggermodel

Thanks again for the advice, I think I'm gonna end up close to that setup.

Dagger
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