Quote Originally Posted by Dan Fromm View Post
Anupam, unless you need to cut light output there's no need for diffusers. When the flash is close to the subject it is effectively a large, not a point, source.
Yes, that's true. I'll try without the diffusers as well.

You may think you don't need more gear, but to get full flexibility you'll want a manual flash with power level control. The Vivitar 283 with VP-1 is ideal for this.
I know there is another variable power flash in my future but I want to start out with the SB-18 since I already have it and I'll be spending on the SB-27 anyway. BTW, any thoughts on the choice of the SB-27?

Any old slave trigger will do.[...] I've been using cube-shaped slaves that look like the Kaiser slave that B&H sells. Mine are now 30+ years old, haven't had a problem yet.
So, the slave will be triggered even if it is behind the actual flashes? i.e. it does not need to receive direct light from the main flash setup? Is there any advantage to a hot shoe trigger as oppsed to one that uses PC connections like this Wein peanut slave. I am looking at the Morris and the Kaiser hotshoe options - would the Morris be just as good - I can't tell if it has a 1/4-20 socket.

I take John's point about Y connections. In that case what do you suggest for triggering the two main flashes? I could use the SC-17+SC-18 combo but any more elegant solutions? Maybe just triggering the SB-28 with with a PC cord and putting the SB-27 on a wireless slave as well? I am sorry this is about very particular gear concerns but I am not very familiar with this off camera manual flash thing yet and need a little help choosing the hardware.

Its better to use tiny fixed-output flashes close to the subject than to use somewhat more powerful auto-TTL flashes. Flash output can be adjusted with ND gels.
I realize this, but the Nikon flashes give me the added option of going TTL for non macro shots - I sometimes do bounce flash etc for humans! I'll probably try out coloring gels on the flashes later, but right now I need the whole setup assembled and tested.