EDIT: The answers in this thread might be very useful for a lot of newbies. If you think it is worthwhile, could you plz make it sticky??
I have never done flash photography before and want to buy one. I have tried to read a little bit about flash lights and I have come to the conclusion that I will go for SB800. A lot of the times, I end up taking pictures for my friends' parties which are indoors and in the evenings/nights. I sometimes get portrait requests too and had two chances to try my hand in small concerts. So I was thinking that when I'm going to spend ~$320 for SB800, why not buy one cheap slave too? Well do you think buying one of the Sunpak/Bower/Opteka flashes would be a good idea? Well I have a couple of things on my mind about it:
1) My primary use would be as a slave set up somewhere behind/sideways of the subjects. 2) I might use such "generic" flash on my point and shoot camera too which is not a Nikon. 3) I am a student and my budget is very limited. The only motivation is that if I'm spending ~$320, I might consider shelling out $400 and get a better system of lighting.
Please share your valuable advice on this issue. If you think it is a good idea then which one should I go for? I have read good reviews for the Sunpak 383 on Amazon and it fits perfectly in my budget. I guess I could max out to about $425 with shipping.
Could you also give some nice reference for first time reading on the subject? Well I tried to look for something but honestly I still don't understand what the TTL/ETTL/iTTL modes are and how do we relate the power of the flash to the aperture/iso/shutter, what do the flash specifications mean, etc. I'm hoping to get some info in the SB800 manual though.