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Speedlights vs Strobes

Lesson 3 from: Location Lighting 101

Lindsay Adler

Speedlights vs Strobes

Lesson 3 from: Location Lighting 101

Lindsay Adler

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Lesson Info

3. Speedlights vs Strobes


Class Trailer

Day 1


Class Introduction


Principles of Light


Speedlights vs Strobes


Compressing the Scene


Location Lenses and Lenshoods


Metering Modes and Back Button Focus


Natural Light Reflectors


Lesson Info

Speedlights vs Strobes

speed lights versus drugs I told you already why like natural light inexpensive easy to work with keeps the mood all that stuff all right what's the difference between a speed light anna strom when would you want speed lights okay speed lights our little flashes go on camera off camera here's the benefits very lightweight and portable this this picture of a hearing sure my assistance would have liked me more if I shot speed lights because we had to go down into a cave like sixty feet and they had to carrie like a hundred pounds of gear each and they had to hold on a rope to carry it back up at eleven o'clock at night um would have been one to zero if I would have considered speed let's not particular instant probably they would have liked to me a little bit better they're like yeah the animal that in their heads like definitely eso portability it makes it much less and if your if your one man show right which I was forever um if you're going out on location you gotta set up your speed ...

or your your strobes you've got have a whole backpack with gear and like it's heavier and it's bulkier if you just one person especially for weddings when you've got a built set up running gun quickly street lights are going to be better for events and for portability there are a variety of modifiers now available it wasn't like that so we're ready for me to sound old way back when who when I shot I shot weddings for a long time but I think the last wedding that I actually shot was probably seven or eight years ago now there were not that many modifier seriously that really weren't now you can have any modifiers you want for your speed lights you have have snoops like I have in the studio I've got huge octa boxes I have got a little beauty dish type things that there's a lot more available now so I don't feel as restricted so that's that's a pro it's a benefit of it next one that we will definitely talk about in detail is that speed lights have the ability to do t t l depending on what system you have it's e t t l e t we're just going to tl for simplicity's sake on dh what that means is your flash helps you make flash output decisions it decides how much like to give you and like you talk to it you work with it the reason this is important is if I'm in a wedding right and I'm shooting and everyone's dancing around and I'm chasing them um the distance that they are it's sex my exposure find balancing off of ceiling I'd have to be doing math all day how far they quickly changing man that's what you would have to do if you're shooting with strobes is every distance every movement everything you're bouncing off to that has to be considered into the equation really it's not practical for events to shoot strobes speed lights or what's practical for events because of that tt l thing okay internet people out there that I know are saying this already um there are some brand new strobes that have teeth yale it's super exciting awesome we're not going to talk about that because I will refer to it we're not going to teach that because almost everybody strobes that you're you're shooting are not detail speed lights can but everybody strobes our manual so I know people are gonna say because it exists I know it exists I have one or two okay I brought um okay um next one speed lights has something called high speed sync we're going to talk about that but that allows you basically tio you know it gives you an ability to overpower the sun in dark and down your ambient popping light you don't have high speed sync with strobes internet people yes their fancy workarounds for it but it's it's not normal and it's complicated okay I have to save our people ok um downside the speed light less power output right I'm trying to light a huge group of people in a big church and I want to light the whole thing we need a bunch of speed lights but I might only need one or two strong strobes so just they don't have as much power output as say like taking a five hundred watt second strobe out on location or for example hensel has the hensel so forty twelve hundred twelve hundred watt seconds out on location you're getting nowhere close to that with a speed light so you have a lot more output with the strobe than you do with the speed light um a downside to speed lights are really small right you have to do a lot remember how I said the bigger the light sources in relationship to subject the soft of the light well you're starting off with something this small c you got to do a lot to get bigger and broader and closer where is it a little bit easier with a stroke and a lot of stroke modifiers already bigger where is for speed lights you get a little speed like with your giant soft box on it you know it's it's a little bit more work um you need to buy multiple speed lights for greater output which means you start spending money to get you over to this capability when maybe you just need one of these instead okay other down signs batteries sure like if you shoot speed lights you know the battery life sucks like if you're shooting an event you're changing constantly so I will talk about cem cem external battery solutions as well but just the fact that double a's die quickly and you're killing the environment hey that's a downside as well on ben price the price of speed lights can actually be pretty bad especially for the newest fanciest ones of our brands um like I think the canon six hundred you know with that it's it's five forty nine and then you get the trigger you're going up to the price of a stroke so you've got to make sure that price wasn't your choice because maybe if you were looking you needed output then they would actually cheaper to do strobes but if you needed portability then you're still better off going with the speed lights that's why you're you gotta balance these things okay so let's pop over to the strokes benefit of strobes a huge one is just a lot of output lighting overpower the sun literally you know having that much wattage that much strength uh what one of the reasons I really like it I'm really comfortable in the studio and so I'm just taking my studio outside like I'm familiar with the modifiers I'm familiar with the output of my light like I just uncomfortable in that realm so if you already shoot studio you don't have to learn something else you just need to learn a little more like just a little more add on to how you already work with your strobes instead of a whole different system that exists in speed lights so it's one of the reasons I like few strobes I use strobes more often on location then speed lights but that's because I have my assistance to help carry gear so so I'm like a little bit evil because I have built in assistance okay um strobes you're goingto often want to use studio strobes if you need fast recycle times photographing um like athletes or you want that stroh bescot vick look where you're freezing somebody and you shot like some of the power packs that exists out there that you can take on location you can get off ten frames per second and ten flashes per second and freeze all of that you're not going to get anywhere close to that recycle time with a speed light especially if you need to be near full power you guys put your speed light up to full power even brand new batteries ooh and then it's ready again like even with fresh batteries if you invest in the right system you can get insane recycle times that raised me to something very important we have bonus videos that are included with the purchase of this course so you guys get it but what I did is I created a presentation that went through all of the biggest brands of speed lights and strobes that are intended for portable use intended for location so I talked about hansel I talked about pro photo I talked about bron color talked about ellen crumb I talked about quantum I talked about foot six I talked about was it more like a bunch okay ah ah whole bunch of them and so now that you're going to start to get an idea of what you're actually looking at you'll be able to compare and say okay you know what output recycle time is important to me I've got assistance I don't care about portability I'm going with hensel twelve hundred that one's pretty heavy but it's got a tonic kick or you might say you know what I really like the capabilities and I'm comfortable with my no my elegant allan crow modifiers I've got the ranger to plug it in it's much more portable but I get more output than I do with my speed lady I'm going to go with that so you'll be able to compare that andi and that I break down like what is recycle time mean more importantly thie exact like power output all that stuff so we're not going to touch on those things but if you do get the class it's included so you don't have to stress out about it right now yeah and all the things that again just to reiterate kind of what we talked about at the very beginning of the course in case you joined us late all of these concepts that you're teaching applying to all of them and so when we're talking about light it's it's applicable across the board s o the specifics are available in that bonus video if you purchase the course but all the stuff they were talking about pretty much applicable to anything yeah exactly exactly and it was really fascinating to me to see all the different systems out there and there are a few that I was surprised like I didn't even no existed that were pretty awesome for the price like things like that so it's like learning it's a good thing um very strobes and other thing I like is the variability of power output right it can turn it down really far turn up really high don't have quite as much variability with speed lights down signs strobes and everything that's associate with them or heavier right you need heavier duty stands the modifiers you're heavier and bigger and so it's just become significantly less portable I say this kind of they are generally more expensive but if you can find a system that you can shoot in the studio and on location then you're actually saving yourself money so that might be a consideration than you have there and strobes do not do high speed sync and they do not do tt l except for those people that find their work arounds like they exist but it's more complicated than we will get into in a one o one class all right so these are the things that you kind of want to look at and so for me I go I love using studio I definitely I like to get the model jumping and moving I need my faster recycle times yeah they're heavier but I have help and so there we go right so that's that's why I kind of lean to that direction

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

Keynote 1
Keynote 2
Keynote 3
Gear Guide

Ratings and Reviews

a Creativelive Student

This class was amazing. Lindsay Adler is a great presenter...I learned so much.....I love that she spoke about natural light..strobes and speedlites. Wonderful information. I purchased this and I am glad I did. Great job Lindsay. Jean


Lindsey Adler is one of the best and most engaging photography instructors in the USA. I highly recommend this lighting course. It felt more like a 101 and a 102 course than just a basic course. She teaches in a way that makes learning alot of fun and the amount of time & effort that she puts into her video and class presentations are second to none. Her classes are well worth their weight in gold and you will walk away with a wealth of knowledge!


Lindsay is amazing , I love the way she explains everything!! This course is filled with GREAT information and helps you better understand natural lighting,strobe and flash. Thank You Lindsay, please keep your classes coming!

Student Work