need a really powerful flash...cheap

Discussion in 'Lighting' started by amuderick, Sep 3, 2010.

  1. amuderick

    amuderick Member

    Messages:
    283
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2007
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    My Rollei E 36 RE flash guns are starting to fail me. Instead of scavenging ebay for more of the same, I was thinking of finding a different model flash. I plan on using it with my Sputnik 3D camera. So, I need a LOT of power (guide number) and don't really care about recharge time...if I take a shot a minute, it is a lot. Also, I want something really cheap. ;-)

    Suggestions?
     
  2. fotch

    fotch Member

    Messages:
    4,824
    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2005
    Location:
    SE WI- USA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Where are you located and what is the budget? Cheap may mean different things to different people. Location is important because some locations have lots to choose from, other places very little, both of these variables effect prices. Do you know what the light output of your existing flash is?
     
  3. lxdude

    lxdude Member

    Messages:
    6,942
    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2009
    Location:
    Redlands, So
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Sunpak 555's are cheap and powerful. And tough. It's what I use for throwing a lot out there.
     
  4. amuderick

    amuderick Member

    Messages:
    283
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2007
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    I am in Philadelphia. The sunpak looks decent. My rollei is a gn 150 as well. It let's me shoot at f/16 and 10ft. It also looks cheap...probably since it doesn't support ettl.

    Additional model # suggestions appreciated
     
  5. Q.G.

    Q.G. Inactive

    Messages:
    5,682
    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    Location:
    Netherlands
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    That sort of power, and no TTL-control, a Metz 45 CT-1.
    Used, they sometimes go for peanuts.
     
  6. tkamiya

    tkamiya Member

    Messages:
    4,252
    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2009
    Location:
    Central Flor
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I also have Metz. My favorite is Metz 45CT-3. Guide number 145 I think. 65 dollars-ish at KEH. I like it so much I just bought a second one.
     
  7. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

    Messages:
    8,538
    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2005
    Location:
    U.K.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    A Metz 60 CT1 has a guide number of 60 metres, so powerful will nearly remove wallpaper, and cheap second-hand.
     
  8. Christopher Walrath

    Christopher Walrath Member

    Messages:
    7,114
    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2005
    Location:
    In a darkroo
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Check out Calumet (APUG partner) at their location on Market St. Lots of used/consigns in house.
     
  9. holmburgers

    holmburgers Member

    Messages:
    4,423
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2009
    Location:
    Rochester NY
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I think what you've described are FLASH-BULBS.

    Get a Honeywell Tilt-A-Mite or similar. It can use AG1 and M bulbs and maybe others (not sure, just got mine). Guide numbers in the hundreds, cheap if bought in lots on eBay or found in antique malls and they have nearly unlimited coverage when used w/o a reflector.

    My 2 cents
     
  10. craigclu

    craigclu Subscriber

    Messages:
    869
    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2002
    Location:
    NW Wisconsin
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Any of the flashes mentioned will do a nice job... Another one to consider is the Agfa 643CS. GN of 212, built-in diffusers, wink light fill flash (second flash tube). They slip through eBay from time to time at rather low prices. I've accumulated a number of these and some Quantum battery equipment to ease the battery consumption (these are 12V and run on 8 AA cells). They have a unique drum head/swivel design that allows bounce/wink from any angle.
     
  11. brian d

    brian d Member

    Messages:
    396
    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2008
    Location:
    Indiana
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    and if you really want to light it up...
     

    Attached Files:

    • 122.JPG
      122.JPG
      File size:
      910.1 KB
      Views:
      73
  12. Jeff Kubach

    Jeff Kubach Member

    Messages:
    6,930
    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2007
    Location:
    Richmond VA.
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I also have a Metz 45 which I like, but I haven't used in the last few years.

    Jeff
     
  13. lxdude

    lxdude Member

    Messages:
    6,942
    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2009
    Location:
    Redlands, So
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    DANG. That's it. Just...DANG. :eek::D
     
  14. mopar_guy

    mopar_guy Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,176
    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2009
    Location:
    Washington,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    If that's not enough light, add a couple of Graflite side lighting units.:wink:
     
  15. bblhed

    bblhed Member

    Messages:
    601
    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2010
    Location:
    North Americ
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I was going to say check ebay for a Honneywell Tilt-a-mite and some #5 or #25 bulbs to go with it, that combination can turn night into day for about 40 feet. I have shot a #5 in the dark and it looks like high noon on 200 film at f/16 this is from one side of my Kodak Stereo, don't mind the dust from the scanner.

    [​IMG]
    Backyard flashbulb by bblhed, on Flickr
     
  16. djacobox372

    djacobox372 Member

    Messages:
    127
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2008
    Shooter:
    35mm
    I use a vivitar 283 flash on my sputnik, works well and seems to sync just fine at 1/125.
     
  17. nickrapak

    nickrapak Member

    Messages:
    751
    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2008
    Location:
    Horsham, PA
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Add me in as a vote for flashbulbs. I have a box of M5s in front of me, and they have a GN of 200 at ASA 100 and 1/100 sec shutter speed. Of course, I am assuming that you have an older camera with "M" sync. If not, you will have to use 1/30 sec, but then you will get a GN of 260.
     
  18. premo

    premo Member

    Messages:
    100
    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2010
    Location:
    easter NY, 2
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    I also vote for 5's or 25's. We used to call these "lightning in a bottle".
     
  19. 2F/2F

    2F/2F Member

    Messages:
    8,003
    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    I'd get a variable-power Sunpak or Metz Potato masher. They are the most versatile, and the most bang for the buck. The Sunpak 622 in particular is extremely versatile. There are six or seven different heads for it, including an IR head, a zoom head, and a bare bulb head. They have a GN of 200 or so, but are more expensive than the 555.

    Sunpak 383 or Vivitar 283 or 285 (all speedlights, not potato mashers) are not bad either, though they have less power. The Viv 283 is not adjustable, which I consider to be a deal killer (though I do have one that I got for cheap).

    I decided on the Sunpak 555, which is a potato masher that takes filters and plenty of other accessories, like external batteries, A/C adapters, rechargeable battery packs, etc. It has a GN of 160, and cost me about the same number of U.S. dollars. The filter kit added $30. The only time the flash has failed me was when it got dumped on by a water drop helicopter when shooting a fire. It came back 30 minutes later. It is my #1 flash for weddings, was my number one flash when shooting news events, and I would have no reservations about suggesting one, especially for such mild use. They are very capable and very powerful for what they cost.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 10, 2010
  20. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    17,942
    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2002
    Location:
    Honolulu, Ha
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    Second hand Norman 200B packs and LH-2 heads are pretty reasonably priced, unless you need to upgrade the battery and get the new charger.