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Flash Bracket with Better Beamer for Birding

sshamilzadeh

New York, US
10 posts

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sshamilzadeh Registered since 16th Oct 2012
Thu 03-Jan-13 05:30 AM

There are so many flash brackets out there that look good,but I need your help in selecting one.

I am a birder and use my D800 with a Nikon 300mm coupled with a 1.4 TC
and want to start using a better beamer with my SB910 and at the same time want to avoid "steel" eye. I also use a Gitzo 3551 monopod with this setup.

I am looking at the RRS Wedding Pro Series--with which many on this forum are familiar-- and the ProMedia Gear "Boomerang."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=Sjto_TwiMCEB

The ProMediaGear flash bracket looks like the faster of the two in changing orientation from horizontal to vertical.

Or would you suggest I consider another bracket?

Many thanks.

Sol

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Chris Platt

Newburg, US
481 posts

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#1. "RE: Flash Bracket with Better Beamer for Birding" | In response to Reply # 0

Chris Platt Silver Member Nikonian since 30th Sep 2012
Thu 03-Jan-13 05:01 PM

Generally for birding, it is preferred to use a flash bracket that attaches to the lens foot, not the camera. When you do that, you don't need to reorient your flash when you change from horizontal to vertical, because you are turning the lens/camera within the loosened ring of the lens foot, so the flash attached to the stationary foot stays properly oriented above the camera regardless of orientation. That also places the flash farther forward reducing the possibility of casting a shadow with the lens.

It isn't clear to me that the promedia can be configured that way. The RRS products can. I personally like the flexibility of the Wimberley telephoto flash brackets. They are very flexible and can be extended easily.

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barrywesthead

Kleinburg, CA
1265 posts

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#2. "RE: Flash Bracket with Better Beamer for Birding" | In response to Reply # 0

barrywesthead Silver Member Awareded for his continued support of the Nikonians community, freely sharing his expertise, particularly in the areas of digital post processing and printing. Nikonian since 07th Nov 2006
Fri 04-Jan-13 11:59 AM | edited Fri 04-Jan-13 12:00 PM by barrywesthead

I have no experience to offer but would like to expand the question: When beaming a flash over a long distance does the small separation distance from the lens offered by a flash bracket actually make any difference?

Barry
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Chris Platt

Newburg, US
481 posts

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#3. "RE: Flash Bracket with Better Beamer for Birding" | In response to Reply # 2

Chris Platt Silver Member Nikonian since 30th Sep 2012
Fri 04-Jan-13 01:24 PM | edited Fri 04-Jan-13 01:28 PM by Chris Platt

It depends on the distance. Obviously parallax between the lens line of sight and flash beam decreases with distance and you want a larger parallax to avoid red (steal) eye.

Although the Beamers allow you to extend the distance of the flash it's important to note that they narrow the angle of the flash so it is more consistent with the angle of view of a telephoto lens. The Beamer provides an angle of view equivalent to a 300mm lens. That means less light is wasted outside the lens angle of view, thereby conserving some flash power. Trying to add fill light in daylight conditions with higher shutter speeds takes a lot of flash power, so you want to concentrate the beam as much as possible. That doesn't necessarily mean that you are shooting at very long distances. I use a Beamer (or Beamers) at distances just over 30 feet. I also use an extender on my Wimberley flash bracket to get the flash up really high.

But your assumption is correct, at longer distances, even with a flash bracket, you can easily get a reflection back off of an animal's retina.

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mborn1

Taunton, US
212 posts

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#4. "RE: Flash Bracket with Better Beamer for Birding" | In response to Reply # 3

mborn1 Silver Member Nikonian since 20th Nov 2008
Sat 05-Jan-13 12:45 PM

>It depends on the distance. Obviously parallax between the
>lens line of sight and flash beam decreases with distance and
>you want a larger parallax to avoid red (steal) eye.
>
>Although the Beamers allow you to extend the distance of the
>flash it's important to note that they narrow the angle of the
>flash so it is more consistent with the angle of view of a
>telephoto lens. The Beamer provides an angle of view
>equivalent to a 300mm lens. That means less light is wasted
>outside the lens angle of view, thereby conserving some flash
>power. Trying to add fill light in daylight conditions with
>higher shutter speeds takes a lot of flash power, so you want
>to concentrate the beam as much as possible. That doesn't
>necessarily mean that you are shooting at very long distances.
> I use a Beamer (or Beamers) at distances just over 30 feet.
>I also use an extender on my Wimberley flash bracket to get
>the flash up really high.
>
>But your assumption is correct, at longer distances, even with
>a flash bracket, you can easily get a reflection back off of
>an animal's retina.
>
>
That is right just happened to me last night with a photo of a deer at a very long distance

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Attachment #1, (jpg file)

Myer
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