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Forums Lobby MASTER YOUR TOOLS - Hardware & Software Nikon Speedlights & Lighting topic #59467
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Subject: "Used SB800 or a new SB700?" Previous topic | Next topic
Ivan Lee Registered since 12th Sep 2012Thu 04-Oct-12 08:07 PM
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"Used SB800 or a new SB700?"


Rio de Janeiro, BR
          

Hello! This is my first question here.

I just bought a Nikon D7000, my first Nikon camera, and now I need at least one flash to get started. First I need a good flash to use on the camera, later I will buy other flashes to use remotely with a pocket wizard, but now I'm out of money...

So, for about the same price, which flash should I get? an used SB800 or a brand new SB700?

Thanks!

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Replies to this topic
Subject Author Message Date ID
Reply message RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?
HBB Moderator Hal is an expert in several areas, including CLS Awarded for his excellent article contributions to the Resources.
05th Oct 2012
1
Reply message RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?
NenBikonian
05th Oct 2012
2
Reply message RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?
Arkayem Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in flash photography
06th Oct 2012
3
Reply message RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?
hujiie Silver Member
06th Oct 2012
4
Reply message RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?
Arkayem Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in flash photography
06th Oct 2012
5
     Reply message RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?
hujiie Silver Member
06th Oct 2012
6
          Reply message RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?
Arkayem Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in flash photography
06th Oct 2012
7
          Reply message RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?
hujiie Silver Member
06th Oct 2012
9
               Reply message RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?
Ivan Lee
15th Oct 2012
11
                    Reply message RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?
MEMcD Moderator In depth knowledge in various areas
15th Oct 2012
12
          Reply message RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?
Arkayem Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in flash photography
06th Oct 2012
8
Reply message RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?
clayolmstead
15th Oct 2012
10

HBB Moderator Hal is an expert in several areas, including CLS Awarded for his excellent article contributions to the Resources. Charter MemberFri 05-Oct-12 01:06 AM
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#1. "RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?"
In response to Reply # 0


Phoenix, US
          

Ivan:

Welcome to Nikonians! I hope your time with us is rewarding.

When you get a minute, please fill out the "Equipment" portion of your profile. It helps us provide more accurate answers to your questions. Thanks in advance.

As you likely know, the SB800 is discontinued and no longer available as new. The advantage of the SB800 is its size and ability to manage up to three groups of remote CLS compatible speedlights.

The alternative to the SB800 is the SB900 or SB910, which can also manage up to three groups of remote units. These units are larger and more expensive than the SB800.

The SB700 is smaller than the SB900/910 and less expensive. It can handle up to two groups of remote units.

If you think you will want to use three groups of remotes, get an SB800, SB900, or SB910 as the on-camera master. If two groups will be fine, get an SB700 for use as a remote, and add additional SB700s as required.

Remember, the built-in speedlight in your D700 can also manage up to two groups of remotes. You might start with a single SB700 and see how you like it as a remote to your D7000. You could then add additional SB700s as remotes. Also remember, you can configure several remote speedlights in a single group. Three or so seems to be a practical limit for most applications. All remote speedlights within a single group will fire in the same mode and power level.

Hope this helps a bit.

Regards,

HBB in Phoenix, Arizona
Nikonian Team Member

Photography is a journey with no conceivable destination.

  

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NenBikonian Registered since 30th Sep 2011Fri 05-Oct-12 09:37 PM
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#2. "RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?"
In response to Reply # 0


Roswell, US
          

Ivan,

I agree with everything Hal said and I'll add a few more comments.

After owning SB800s for several years (not nearly as many as Hal, mind you...that guy has a ranch in Phoenix upon which his speedlight herds roam) and having played wiht the SB700, I will say that I prefer the SB700 from an UI perspective and for it's 360 degree rotating flash head. From a power and functionality perspective, I prefer the SB800. All together, I prefer the SB800 and were I in the market for another flash, I'd most likely get a high-quality used SB800 before buying a new SB700 (I might also consider a reasonably priced, used SB900).

To be completely honest, though, I tend to buy just slightly more capability than I know I'm going to need. From a power perspective, I know I've used all of the SB800's capabilities, but I have only scratched the surface of many of its other technical capabilities and based on my usage, would probably be served just fine by an SB700.

I usually only have two off-camera flashes and both the onboard in my D300 and/or the SB700 could command those either in a single group of two flashes or in two, independent groups(I usually use the onboard in my D300 or my SU800 to control my two, off-camera SB800s).

Good Luck,
Ben



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Arkayem Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in flash photography Charter MemberSat 06-Oct-12 02:08 AM
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#3. "RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?"
In response to Reply # 0


Richmond Hill, GA (Savannah), US
          

One more thing that favors the SB800 is that it is about twice as powerful as the SB700. That will give you greater range and better bounce.

Russ
Retired Professional Photographer
Nikonian Moderator
Russell MacDonald Photography
Nikon CLS Practical Guide

  

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hujiie Silver Member Nikonian since 10th Apr 2009Sat 06-Oct-12 02:35 PM
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#4. "RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?"
In response to Reply # 0


US
          

I understand that value of SB800 over SB700 and would go for SB800 over SB700 (or even SB900) if they are new.

Could anyone explain life span of speed light as being used comparing with new?





www.hitoshiujiie.com/photography.html

  

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Arkayem Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in flash photography Charter MemberSat 06-Oct-12 03:27 PM
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#5. "RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?"
In response to Reply # 4


Richmond Hill, GA (Savannah), US
          

>I understand that value of SB800 over SB700 and would go for
>SB800 over SB700 (or even SB900) if they are new.
>
>Could anyone explain life span of speed light as being used
>comparing with new?

I can tell you that I have four SB800's and two SB600's that I purchased more than five years ago. I used them professionally for shooting weddings up until earlier this year when I retired. Each one has been flashed 10's of thousands of times. They all still work perfectly.

They are seriously tough. I had several instances where little kids tripped over my light stands that were holding SB800's. Twice they fell and the SB800 flew apart in pieces. Both times, I found all the pieces, put them back together, and they still worked.

I also fired them as fast as they would go for all-day weddings and never had one shut down or overheat to where it was damaged.

The only one I ever hurt was one that I burned up by using a Quantum High Voltage battery pack. Nikon repaired it for about $175. I quit using the high voltage pack after that and stuck to the standard four internal batteries. I don't think there is any way to hurt them when using the four internal batteries.

Russ
Retired Professional Photographer
Nikonian Moderator
Russell MacDonald Photography
Nikon CLS Practical Guide

  

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hujiie Silver Member Nikonian since 10th Apr 2009Sat 06-Oct-12 05:35 PM
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#6. "RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?"
In response to Reply # 5
Sat 06-Oct-12 05:43 PM by hujiie

US
          

Russ:

I understand SB800 is very tough but the issue here is to compare units of new SB700 and used SB800, which had discontinued and could be the one used heavily like yours.

Also I am wondering what the the real reason was why Nikon replace it with SB900?

No doubts, I believe SB800 is great speedlight over even SB900 that I have 4 of.

Hypothetically, if you lost all speed lights and you need to shoot the wedding again, which speed lights would you have among SB600, SB700, SB910, used SB900, and used SB800.( i would not like to put Quantum in here).

www.hitoshiujiie.com/photography.html

  

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Arkayem Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in flash photography Charter MemberSat 06-Oct-12 06:17 PM
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#7. "RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?"
In response to Reply # 6


Richmond Hill, GA (Savannah), US
          

>Hypothetically, if you lost all speed lights and you need to
>shoot the wedding again, which speed lights would you have
>among SB600, SB700, SB910, used SB900, and used SB800.( i
>would not like to put Quantum in here).

I would buy all used SB800's.

The SB900 has some advantages:
1. The SB900 has an easier user interface, but once you learn the SB800, it's not much harder to use.
2. the SB900 has different light beam shaping modes. I've never needed those.
3. The SB900 will zoom out farther. This might be something I would like, but I have never needed it.
4. The SB900 knows when it is attached to a DX camera and narrows its beam accordingly. The SB800 does not do this, but that doesn't matter to me, because I use mostly full-frame D3 and D800 cameras.
5. All the new speedlights will shut down if you push them hard. Some people call this a positive. I call it a negative when comparing to the SB800. The SB800 doesn't shut down and doesn't overheat no matter how hard you push it (provided you use the standard four internal batteries).

All-in-all, the SB800 is a better flash in my opinion than the SB700, SB900, or SB910.

Russ
Retired Professional Photographer
Nikonian Moderator
Russell MacDonald Photography
Nikon CLS Practical Guide

  

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hujiie Silver Member Nikonian since 10th Apr 2009Sat 06-Oct-12 07:14 PM
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#9. "RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?"
In response to Reply # 7


US
          

Russ:

Good to know, thank you.


>5. All the new speedlights will shut down if you push them
>hard. Some people call this a positive. I call it a negative
>when comparing to the SB800. The SB800 doesn't shut down and
>doesn't overheat no matter how hard you push it (provided you
>use the standard four internal batteries).

I agree that this is the biggest problem. Even if I use SB9 and SB900 with low discharging batteries, I have experienced often shut-downs in wedding, event etc. Most recent one was taking Fitness shots in heated indoor pool, where I needed to blast the flash to freeze the moments . This is why I carry extra SB900's all the time.


www.hitoshiujiie.com/photography.html

  

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Ivan Lee Registered since 12th Sep 2012Mon 15-Oct-12 04:45 PM
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#11. "RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?"
In response to Reply # 9


Rio de Janeiro, BR
          

Thanks everyone for all the replies!

well, I bought the SB900 because the difference in price was small, so I decided to buy the SB900, even knowing about the overheating problem, because I'm not a flash firing freak, I always use flash as a fill, so I think it's not going to be a problem...

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MEMcD Moderator In depth knowledge in various areas Nikonian since 24th Dec 2007Mon 15-Oct-12 08:11 PM
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#12. "RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?"
In response to Reply # 11


US
          

Hi Ivan,

Congratulations on your new SB-900.
I have reached thermal shutdown only once when I was shooting in a dark room using the dome diffuser and bouncing the light off of a high ceiling.
Good Luck and Enjoy your Nikons!

Best Regards,
Marty

  

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Arkayem Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in flash photography Charter MemberSat 06-Oct-12 07:12 PM
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#8. "RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?"
In response to Reply # 6


Richmond Hill, GA (Savannah), US
          

>Also I am wondering what the the real reason was why Nikon
>replace it with SB900?

I think that they had two main goals on the new speedlights. First, they wanted to simplify the user interface and second, they wanted to reduce the cycle time. If the had just stopped with the first goal, it would have been fantastic. The user interface on the new speedlights is much much better than the SB800. However, when they met the second goal, they introduced serious problems.

The SB800 recycle time with four fresh NiMH batteries is about 4.0 seconds. The SB900, still using four batteries, recycles in 2.3 sec.

They met their goal, but by cutting the recycle time by 80%, they more than quadroupled the heat dissipation requirement of the unit. It turns out that the thermal conduction to the atmosphere to dissipate the heat was too slow and the result is that it overheats quickly.

For wedding work, I would much rather a speedlight that recycles in 4 seconds and goes all day without overheating than one that recycles in 2.3 seconds for 15 shots and then overheats, forcing you to wait 5 minutes while it cools down.

I have never found a 4 second recycle time to be limiting my photography.

Russ
Retired Professional Photographer
Nikonian Moderator
Russell MacDonald Photography
Nikon CLS Practical Guide

  

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clayolmstead Registered since 21st Jul 2010Mon 15-Oct-12 02:01 PM
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#10. "RE: Used SB800 or a new SB700?"
In response to Reply # 0


Austin, US
          

I borrowed a friend's SB800 before buying. The user interface drove me straight to an SB700. On the SB700, the commonly used functions are available without having to dive down into the menu system. The SB700 has plenty of power for the things I want to do, so that's not a concern.

Another factor to consider is that if you're going to eventually buy more than one flash, it will be easier to set them up and adjust the relative power if they're all the same in power, user interface and so on. Since the SB700 is still being produced, it's going to be easier to pick up multiple flashes in good condition, rather than dealing with eBay somewhere down the road.

Clay
Austin, TX USA

  

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Forums Lobby MASTER YOUR TOOLS - Hardware & Software Nikon Speedlights & Lighting topic #59467 Previous topic | Next topic