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Sort of frustrating first studio test with Godox 600 ttl and modifiers. Help please

Discussion in 'Lighting Forum' started by shaolin95, Sep 26, 2016.

  1. shaolin95

    shaolin95 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    942
    Jul 3, 2013
    Hello!
    So I finally tested my Xplor 600 TTL in my work in progress studio downstairs but wow I was ALL over the place. :/
    First, I was keep ISO 100 and shooting at different apertures with 1.4 to 5.6 depending on the look I was going for.
    So, right when I was moving say from 2.8 to F4 is that I noticed that I had to keep correcting exposure because at F4 suddenly it will be a VERY bright subject face. I tried Center or Spot metering but didnt seem to help.
    This was with the 85mm GM 1.4
    Also trying to make the background white instead of gray I ended up placing a Yongnuo flash on the floor pointing towards the center of the background at full power since I also have the remote for Yongnuo.
    This helped as long as I was keeping the F stop wide enough otherwise it will show gray again.

    After using TTL outside, where it seems to work so easily, indoors it really threw me off. I realized how much I need to learn of studio lights for sure.
    I am doing a multi review/comparison of 4 softboxes as well so trying to figure out the best way to do this in a fair way.
    Westcott XXL
    Westcott Joel Grimes 24" beauty dish
    vs
    Fotodiox EZ-Pro 48" octabox
    Fotodiox new Ez-Pro 32" Beauty Dish

    Any comment about my issues plus suggestions on how to fairly compare them will be great as well!
    Here is one from yesterday:
    29308353793_57eb4f4f24_h.
     
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  2. robbie36

    robbie36 TalkEmount Veteran

    487
    Nov 21, 2014
    I do have a few thoughts on the subject but they are more 'ramblings' (ie dont take my word for it). I should point out the ad600 is my first TTL/HSS monolight so I have been learning the TTL very much as I go along.

    First I have noticed that the ad600 is prone to the occasional 'overexposure' or 'underexposure' in TTL (typically by around a stop). An explanation I received for this is as follows (I ma not wildly technical but here goes). The flash stores the power for its next shot in its capacitor. When you change settings the first shot you take afterwards is called a 'flash dump' where the flash dumps the power from the last settings. So you might increase your aperture one stop but the first shot taken afterwards could be overexposed and if you then change your settings based on that you will end up chasing your tail. Really after you change your settings you should click the test button.

    You will never get the consistency out of TTL as you will with manual - simply zooming in the subject will change the power output in TTL. And this is very noticeable in a studio where most things are fixed and there is a very good chance you have killed all the ambient light.

    So although I do like using TTL on the ad600 on location, I think it is best to stick to manual in the studio. Manual changes are a breeze if you have a Godox system because a long press of the Group button lets you change all your flashes at once.

    Believe me I went through the lets include a Yongnuo speedlight into the system. Here is what happens. The ad600 is 3 stops more powerful than the Yongnuo. You want the Yongnuo to make the backdrop 2 stops brighter than the subject. So essentially the Yongnuo is on full power and the ad600 is at 1/32nd. Now you take a shot and you have to wait 5 seconds for the Yongnuo to recycle (while you could be shooting the ad600 at 5 frames a second.) And then after 25 shots, the Yongnuo over heats!! So, in short, you are at the mercy of your weakest link and the yongnuo has crippled the ad600. So dont be surprised if you come to the conclusion that it doesnt make a lot of sense having an ad600 and mixing it with speedlights. Godox QS 300 studio flashes are only about US$150 each and one less stop than the ad600.
     
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  3. shaolin95

    shaolin95 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    942
    Jul 3, 2013
    I surely appreciate your comments! Indeed manual seems to be the way I am heading in studio. Perhaps time to get a lightmeter????
    What is that QS300 exactly? I am not finding any like that for $150 so far. Any links please?
    Thanks!!!
     
  4. robbie36

    robbie36 TalkEmount Veteran

    487
    Nov 21, 2014
    Godox QS Monolights

    These are relatively cheap and cheerful mains powered Godox studio lights (they are one rung below the top of the line QT series which are igbt). They do use the usb input receiver system and power can be adjusted by the trigger. One drawback is that they only go down to 1/32nd. Another is that they have the slightly funky single digit power system - something like from 5.0 to 8.0. They are Bowens mount like the XPLOR600. No TTL or HSS. The ad360 are a nice fit but they are US$350 each for manual at Adorama.

    Other people will tell you different but dont get a light meter. I have one and have used about 3 times. Really it is just as easy to use manual as ttl in a studio. With TTL you take a couple of shots, chimp, maybe adjust the EV setting slightly and fire away. I know that for me the ad600 at 1/4 power as the key light is typically f8, iso100 (for a large softbox). So I take a couple of shots, chimp, make a slight adjustment and off I go.
     
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  5. shaolin95

    shaolin95 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    942
    Jul 3, 2013
    Sad that is showing not available as that price seems really good!
    BTW, so I understand, will that be triggered wirelessly from my Godox transmitter as my Xplor 600?
    Hope they come back in stock
     
  6. robbie36

    robbie36 TalkEmount Veteran

    487
    Nov 21, 2014
    Sorry I should have looked more closely at the link.

    You do occasionally see them on Ebay for around that price. I think that these flash are cheap because the line is due a refresh like the QT range whereby they put the receiver inside the flash and add TTL.

    These flash can definitely be triggered by the X1T trigger although you need one of these for each flash...
    Godox XTR-16 2.4G Wireless Flash Strobe Receiver for X1C X1N XT-16 Transmitter

    I am not sure whether you can use the X1T to change power remotely. If not you would need one of these to change the power (but you could keep it in your pocket.)
    Godox XT-16 XT16 2.4G Wireless Remote Control Single Transmitter Flash Trigger
     
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  7. MAubrey

    MAubrey TalkEmount Top Veteran

    The difference between a light meter and what Robbie's describing is a matter of maybe 30 seconds time. If you're shooting film (which I do in studio), a lightmeter is essential, but not really necessary with digital unless you're in a super big hurry.
     
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  8. adwb

    adwb TalkEmount Regular

    127
    Sep 30, 2015
    Bristol UK
    Alistair
    Hi, my first thought is why TTL in a studio? TTL is meant to be a fill flash to lift shadows or lighten a subject against ambient light . In a studio unless you are using natural daylight throught windows or continuous lighting for your ambient, your light comes from the flash only. I think from what you have said you understand what I am saying but if not please say do.

    Your grey back ground was caused by the light drop off commonly known as the inverse square law.
    Again I will not explain it , look it up and what happened will become clear. Using a extra light is exactly the right thing to do normally at least one stop hotter than the light for the subject.

    Re softboxes and beauty dishes buy the biggest ones your budget can stand, you can make them smaller by flagging them but you can't make them bigger, and buy the BD with a white inside not silver , this gives you a softer light = better kinder beauty light for the less than perfect skin.

    Re flash meter no you don't need one but if you shoot manual , which you should btw, it makes life a lot easier, Learn to trust it and you get perfect exposures every time, also with lights a different power you get a instant feel for what's going to happen , and if you shoot for a living the last thing you want is to mess about trying to get things right with the client looking on.

    Finally your supplied portrait is very good, well posed, well composed, catch lights in the right place , I prefer a bit if shadow for 3d lokok but that's a personal thing.
     
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  9. shaolin95

    shaolin95 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    942
    Jul 3, 2013
    I bought the TTL monoligth thinking of outdoors shoots exactly for what you mentioned because after using my Godox TTL speedlight I like how easy it was to get good results, although the more I think about TTL and outdoors the more questions that come to mind about how to do it. lol
    Yep read about the square law as I have been researching a lot about it so at least the light(s) on the back seem to be in the right direction. I agree about the Beauty Dish as well, both are white inside. Not sure which one I am keeping yet until I do the more formal photoshoot on Monday now that I got my C-Stand as well.
    I just received my L-358 meter too since it seems worth it at least to me not only to look more pro with a client looking at me, as you mentioned, but to save some time as I move things around for different looks instead of having to test and check over and over. Personal preference I suppose.
    Thanks for the comments on the portrait. Yes it was more of a "flat" light as it was more straight than I normally set it up precisely because of the 3d look you mentioned although I try to mix it up a little to as I go, trying to find my "look". Doesnt help that it was a self portrait so its kind of annoying for me to do those :D
    I appreciate your input a lot! I am really enjoying learning about this whole new world of lights and modifiers. Plus is cheaper than the addiction of buying lenses!
    Regards!
     
  10. adwb

    adwb TalkEmount Regular

    127
    Sep 30, 2015
    Bristol UK
    Alistair