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Model
Tricia Oaks
Posts: 106
Thousand Oaks, California, US


i'm looking to buy a continuous lighting soft-box kit off of Amazon and saw this from ePhoto...

http://www.amazon.com/ePhoto-H9004S4-Ph … 54&sr=1-10

http://www.amazon.com/ePhoto-Digital-Ph … 654&sr=1-7

the prices seem very low if all the bulbs, rings, etc are included.  does anyone have experience/knowledge of these kits and/or ePhoto?   i want a 3 light kit with soft boxes.  i'm new at this stuff and have no idea how to make sure of what these sets are before i make my purchase today.
Oct 07 12 10:28 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Kaouthia
Posts: 3,152
Lancaster, England, United Kingdom


They look exactly the same as the kits from Smick (probably the same thing just rebranded).

Great for video, shite for stills (unless you're doing still life from a tripod, or you really like high ISO noise).
Oct 07 12 10:30 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Tricia Oaks
Posts: 106
Thousand Oaks, California, US


Kaouthia wrote:
They look exactly the same as the kits from Smick (probably the same thing just rebranded).

Great for video, shite for stills (unless you're doing still life from a tripod, or you really like high ISO noise).

yea, shooting video mostly but some stills, too.   i don't understand "noise", though.

saw this kit, too...

http://www.buy.com/prod/cowboystudio-22 … d=84588708

Oct 07 12 10:32 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Kaouthia
Posts: 3,152
Lancaster, England, United Kingdom


Tricia Oaks wrote:
i don't understand "noise", though.

For video, you're shooting at 1/50th (for 24 or 25fps) or 1/60th (for 30fps) shutter speeds.

For stills, especially with longer lenses, you're rarely shooting that slow (at least, I'm rarely shooting that slow), so you have to bump up your ISO to get the shutter speeds you need to stop camera shake.  Increasing the ISO increases the noise on the image.

Oct 07 12 10:37 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Tricia Oaks
Posts: 106
Thousand Oaks, California, US


Kaouthia wrote:

For video, you're shooting at 1/50th (for 24 or 25fps) or 1/60th (for 30fps) shutter speeds.

For stills, especially with longer lenses, you're rarely shooting that slow (at least, I'm rarely shooting that slow), so you have to bump up your ISO to get the shutter speeds you need to stop camera shake.  Increasing the ISO increases the noise on the image.

shooting with a Canon 60D with an 18-135 lense.

Oct 07 12 10:38 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Kaouthia
Posts: 3,152
Lancaster, England, United Kingdom


Tricia Oaks wrote:
shooting with a Canon 60D with an 18-135 lense.

Well, any focal length longer than about 40mm, you're going to be shooting at least 1/60th just to get rid of camera shake from handholding, and if you want to go with a fast shutter speed to freeze your subject, forget it.

Unless you REALLY REALLY REALLY need continuous lights, I'd go with a couple of Yongnuo YN560 speedlights, a couple of light stands and a radio trigger.  Much more versatile, and less expensive.

Oct 07 12 10:46 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Tricia Oaks
Posts: 106
Thousand Oaks, California, US


Kaouthia wrote:

Well, any focal length longer than about 40mm, you're going to be shooting at least 1/60th just to get rid of camera shake from handholding, and if you want to go with a fast shutter speed to freeze your subject, forget it.

Unless you REALLY REALLY REALLY need continuous lights, I'd go with a couple of Yongnuo YN560 speedlights, a couple of light stands and a radio trigger.  Much more versatile, and less expensive.

i wouldn't know how to use/set up two speedlights.  hell, i didn't even know what a speedlight was until i just googled it just now. 

i see this on Amazon...

http://www.amazon.com/Canon-Speedlite-2 … speedlight

http://www.amazon.com/Opteka-Universal- … speedlight

would this be a good set up for my purposes?  i'm shooting content for my website.  i just want my stuff to look high quality.

Oct 07 12 10:54 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Kaouthia
Posts: 3,152
Lancaster, England, United Kingdom


I haven't used any Canon speedlights, so wouldn't know either way.

But what's your website content?  That's a pretty vague topic. smile
Oct 07 12 10:56 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Tricia Oaks
Posts: 106
Thousand Oaks, California, US


Kaouthia wrote:
I haven't used any Canon speedlights, so wouldn't know either way.

But what's your website content?  That's a pretty vague topic. smile

www.triciaoaks.com

Oct 07 12 11:01 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Tricia Oaks
Posts: 106
Thousand Oaks, California, US


Tricia Oaks wrote:

www.triciaoaks.com

(short video clips with matching photosets - just want a clean look.  soft looking skin, etc)

Oct 07 12 11:12 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Jeffs Photography
Posts: 3,608
Dakota, Minnesota, US


Kaouthia wrote:
Unless you REALLY REALLY REALLY need continuous lights, I'd go with a couple of Yongnuo YN560 speedlights, a couple of light stands and a radio trigger.  Much more versatile, and less expensive.

Or she could find someone with two Nissin 622's (Canon ttl) that I...er, someone wans to sell.

Subtle hint.

Oct 07 12 11:21 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Tricia Oaks
Posts: 106
Thousand Oaks, California, US


Jeffs Photography wrote:

Or she could find someone with two Nissin 622's (Canon ttl) that I...er, someone wans to sell.

Subtle hint.

what are those and how much?

Oct 07 12 12:34 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Tricia Oaks
Posts: 106
Thousand Oaks, California, US


ahh, i see it's a speed light.

so, do i really want to use a speed light versus a soft box 3 light set up?   

i don't really know much about this yet but the speed light just seems like a pimped out flash.  only one source of light... unless you know how to bounce?  i dunno... sounds complicated to me.   obviously i want to go with whatever is the simplest for me to get the images/video i want.
Oct 07 12 12:37 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Jeffs Photography
Posts: 3,608
Dakota, Minnesota, US


Tricia Oaks wrote:
ahh, i see it's a speed light.

so, do i really want to use a speed light versus a soft box 3 light set up?   

i don't really know much about sthis yet but the speed light just seems like a pimped out flash.  only one source of light... unless you know how to bounce?  i dunno... sounds complicated to me.   obviously i want to go with whatever is the simplest for me to get the images/video i want.

Well, once you use a speedlight you'll understand how poor many other options are. The lights I mentioned will "talk" to each other when using ttl.

For still images...I would go with a flash.

Oct 07 12 01:00 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Photos by Lorrin
Posts: 6,903
Eugene, Oregon, US


If you shoot Canon - get Canon brand lights - to start.

That way if you have problems - you have only one parent to talk to.

You may pay more - but your problems will be less.

Your camera will know how to talk to the flash and you can almost forget it is there.

then you can graduate to two lights and they will still talk to each other.

Go to a good camera store and buy what they recommend (Calumet in San Francisco is the only store I know close to you) 

Blue cube in Ashland is another.

My advise would be to buy the top of the line Canon flash or one step down. 

That will give you the power and versatility.

Being at the end of the world makes it harder for you to get good information.

(continuous lights do not put out enough light for still use - without a lot of heat - some day soon with LED they will)
Oct 07 12 01:09 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Tricia Oaks
Posts: 106
Thousand Oaks, California, US


Lorin Edmonds wrote:
If you shoot Canon - get Canon brand lights - to start.

That way if you have problems - you have only one parent to talk to.

You may pay more - but your problems will be less.

Your camera will know how to talk to the flash and you can almost forget it is there.

then you can graduate to two lights and they will still talk to each other.

Go to a good camera store and buy what they recommend (Calumet in San Francisco is the only store I know close to you) 


Blue cube in Ashland is another.

My advise would be to buy the top of the line Canon flash or one step down. 

That will give you the power and versatility.

Being at the end of the world makes it harder for you to get good information.

(continuous lights do not put out enough light for still use - without a lot of heat - some day soon with LED they will)

my concentration is mostly on video with matching photoset as a bonus.     i happen to be in L.A. this week and just went to Calumet here.   stuff is too far out of my current price rage since i just bought a Manfrotto fluid head tripod from them 2 days ago and a 60D the day before.  so.... not much dough left for top end lights.

so, since i'm more focused on video should i stick with the soft box light set up?   here are the two i've narrowed it down to....

http://www.amazon.com/ePhoto-Photograph … hting+kits

http://www.amazon.com/ePhoto-Photograph … hting+kits

or should i go with just this one Canon speedlight & mini soft box.... (keep in mind, i have no skills to know how to work these little bastards)...

http://www.amazon.com/Canon-Speedlite-2 … speedlight

http://www.amazon.com/Opteka-Universal- … speedlight

my budget is right around $200.   so, from these lights... does anyone have experience using them with video and/or pics?   please let me know how good or bad you liked them.... and anyone with any other lighting tips for my novice ass, i'm all ears.

thanks!

Oct 07 12 01:43 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
AG_Boston
Posts: 341
Boston, Massachusetts, US


The ePhoto kits are great for starting out photography and video. I have this kit:
http://www.amazon.com/ePhoto-VL9026S3-C … hoto+3000W

With it, I've done these photos:
http://www.modelmayhem.com/portfolio/pi … 2#22463152
http://www.flickr.com/photos/36945136@N … 658853387/

The kit I have is very similar to the ones you're looking at, and I can only recommend it for photos where your subject isn't moving.

I also used a speedlite, and one of these boxes to capture these photos:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/36945136@N … 658853387/
http://www.modelmayhem.com/portfolio/pi … 9#26590379
For each of them, I fired the speedlite into the softbox, and had the light bounce back that way.

This softbox I've also used:
http://www.amazon.com/Opteka-Universal- … speedlight
It's small, and made of plastic. It doesn't diffuse light as well as bouncing into a large softbox. I shot these photos with a speedlite, and the Optek "softbox":
http://www.flickr.com/photos/36945136@N … 658853387/
http://www.modelmayhem.com/portfolio/pi … 5#23685115
Oct 07 12 07:07 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Tricia Oaks
Posts: 106
Thousand Oaks, California, US


well, getting alot of good info here.  i need to order something online now so it'll arrive in the next day or two.

then i see self-taken pics like this where the lighting is pretty good...

http://triciaoaks.com/wp-content/upload … hting.jpeg

all this is soooo confusing.

so, to get it straight.... for stills... i will need what kind of wattage?  the  is a speedlight better for stills? 

for video someone has mentioned those kits are fine but need at least 450W bulbs.  anyone have thoughts/experience with these particular kits and using higher wattage bulbs with them....?

http://www.amazon.com/ePhoto-Photograph … hting+kits

http://www.amazon.com/ePhoto-Photograph … hting+kits

but doesn't the total wattage output count for something (one set says 4500W total)?
Oct 07 12 11:14 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
AG_Boston
Posts: 341
Boston, Massachusetts, US


For stills, I've done fine with a 45Ws speedlite. This is pretty much a Canon speedlite.

For the video, you'll want to use the ePhoto light kits linked. The kit which comes with the boom may be less power since you can have a light directly above your subject. In any case, you can just put more powerful bulbs into its sockets. The light output power will become weaker as you get further from the bulbs. So having a softbox which you can move directly above your subject helps avoid losing light.

These kits are good for starting out. You will outgrown them as you learn more though.
Oct 08 12 07:30 am  Link  Quote 
Retoucher
MP_DigitalStudio1
Posts: 1,041
San Francisco, California, US


Oct 08 12 07:51 am  Link  Quote 
Photographer
M Pandolfo Photography
Posts: 12,113
Tampa, Florida, US


Tricia Oaks wrote:
i wouldn't know how to use/set up two speedlights.  hell, i didn't even know what a speedlight was until i just googled it just now.

Then we're even because I had no idea what a Cuckold Session was until I googled it lol.

Would she really want a strobe setup for video work?

Oct 08 12 08:07 am  Link  Quote 
Model
Tricia Oaks
Posts: 106
Thousand Oaks, California, US


does anyone know anything about these LED rings for shooting video?  like how good are they, etc?

http://www.amazon.com/NEEWER%C2%AE-Macr … 03_04_t_lh
Oct 08 12 12:58 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Jeffs Photography
Posts: 3,608
Dakota, Minnesota, US


Tricia Oaks wrote:
does anyone know anything about these LED rings for shooting video?  like how good are they, etc?

http://www.amazon.com/NEEWER%C2%AE-Macr … 03_04_t_lh

I am sure they work fine, but they are designed for macro (close up) photography. The light is for a small area, not a room. For your video work, why not stop at a Lowes or a Home Depot and look at some fluorescent work lights. They will be cheaper and will light far more effectively than anything you've listed here. Look for a model with a dimmer. Some are labeled for painting...they may offer a more pleasing glow.

ETA:
Actually, for $40 I just ordered this:

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/81%2BTFkujffL._AA1500_.jpg

http://www.amazon.com/Designers-Edge-L1 … _pr_sims_t

Oct 08 12 01:49 pm  Link  Quote 
Model
Tricia Oaks
Posts: 106
Thousand Oaks, California, US


Jeffs Photography wrote:
I am sure they work fine, but they are designed for macro (close up) photography. The light is for a small area, not a room. For your video work, why not stop at a Lowes or a Home Depot and look at some fluorescent work lights. They will be cheaper and will light far more effectively than anything you've listed here. Look for a llama with a dimmer. Some are labeled for painting...they may offer a more pleasing glow.

ETA:
Actually, for $40 I just ordered this:


http://www.amazon.com/Designers-Edge-L1 … _pr_sims_t

well, i did already buy the kit but for another $40 this seems worth it.   i just don't understand the light output in lumens and what that means compared to the 4500 total wattage output of the ePhoto kit.

i also see the $85 version of this light you just posted...

http://www.amazon.com/Designers-Edge-L1 … pd_cp_hi_1

how does this one compare to the first one.... and how does it compare to the ePhoto kit?

i do see that one says it's equal to 300W and the other says 500W.  but is that per bulb or the total output on what is being lit?  so, this would make it less effective than the 4500W ePhoto kit?

thanks.

Oct 09 12 08:45 pm  Link  Quote 
Photographer
Jeffs Photography
Posts: 3,608
Dakota, Minnesota, US


Tricia Oaks wrote:
how does this one compare to the first one.... and how does it compare to the ePhoto kit?

i do see that one says it's equal to 300W and the other says 500W.  but is that per bulb or the total output on what is being lit?  so, this would make it less effective than the 4500W ePhoto kit?

thanks.

It's hard to say if it will be less effective than the 4500watt kit. That's a lot of light. It all depends on the area you are trying to cover. Ultimately, I think you are just going to have to play around with lights and your environment to see what works best.

Oct 09 12 09:55 pm  Link  Quote 
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