#1. "RE: Nikon SB-700 + Nikon SC-29 + Nikon D7000" In response to In response to 0
Your D7000 will do wireless remote, so I'd save both money and a lot of aggravation by skipping the SC-29. Just put the SB-700 in remote mode, pop up the built-in and use the built-in as a commander. No wires to trip over, nothing to forget and leave at home, and another thing removed from your camera bag, so it weighs less. (And that SC-29, one of which I own, by the way, is not so light.) And then of course you can put the remote anywhere within IR range, rather than only within the length of an SC-29.
Light stands: these can be pretty subtle. My first stand was an Impact. It was inexpensive, and rated fairly well at B&H. It works, but for example I found that it doesn't fold up very well. It takes up quite a bit more space. In fact, it's consuming more space in my closet now than FOUR Manfrotto 1052's! More importantly, it also consumes more space in the car if I have to shoot somewhere else. You can buy less expensive stands, but I don't think you'll find less expensive air cushioned ones. These won't slam down on your fingers when they're loosened. The Impact one I have is a perfectly workable air cushioned stand, and it's only $38. They don't come a lot less than that.
The clamps are also kind of subtle too. I have some ProMaster ones that I got locally, and they're meh. They aren't designed too well, so while they are sturdy enough, for example the knob that allows the flash cold shoe to rotate is blocked if you have an umbrella mounted. I have to remove or at least reposition the umbrella to change the position of the flash. Why change the position of the flash? To allow the IR sensor to point generally toward the commander, which is a good idea almost every time you move the umbrella. I also have some Photoflex clamps, and actually they cost me LESS. But (a) they have a big lever instead of a small thumbscrew for adjusting the umbrella or softbox, (b) all of the controls are physically independent, so no fiddling with one to adjust the others, and (c) I have noticed that they accommodate noticeably larger umbrella shafts, too. Not that any of my umbrellas fail to fit on either clamp, but one is clearly more adaptable than the other.
I've been through just enough of this equipment to appreciate the additional value of the Manfrotto stands and Photoflex clamps. In general I've found both of those brands to be good quality stuff and not things that I sooner or later want/need to replace.
BTW, the Manfrotto stands also come with a brass "nut" or adapter that screws onto the top of the stand. It is capable of threading into the bottom of the little plastic stand that comes with Nikon flash units, so in a pinch you can even use just the stand without a clamp, as long as you don't also need to use a light modifier such as a softbox or umbrella.
Finally, I have a couple of Promaster umbrellas, and again, they're OK. But they're a bit delicate (all umbrellas are to some degree but these are more so) - they're about to be replaced with either Westcott or Photoflex umbrellas. I don't particularly regret the Promaster items as I needed them RIGHT THEN (as in I two hours notice) and had no opportunity to get the stuff I'd have preferred, and moreover they did get the job done. But if you can spend a little more, this is an area I think that you'll save in the long run.
_____ Brian... a bicoastal Nikonian and Team Member
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