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Archive 2012 · Diffuser SB-900 Question
  
 
Idle0095
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p.1 #1 · Diffuser SB-900 Question


Im going to ask this. Dont hate me or yell at me. Im new to photography. Bare with me please.

When is it good to use the diffuser that comes with the SB-900? Should I use the one that goes on it or the flip down one?

Basically just trying to pick some photography brains on why and when to use a diffuser? Maybe what degrees to aim the sb900 head at as well.

Im taking some classes in the fall for photography but im wondering now and cant find much on google.

Thanks

Oh I shoot my family and friends mostly. Some landscape as well.



Aug 13, 2012 at 08:22 PM
buckeyeguy1
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p.1 #2 · Diffuser SB-900 Question


I personally have never used the one that comes with it. I have used the flip down diffuser in the past but not very often. If memory serves me correctly, when you flip down the built in diffuser (I think they call it wide angle diffuser or something like that) it will automatically adjust your zoom on the flash to the widest setting.

If you have the basics of how aperture, shutter speed and ISO work together, I would reccomend checking out On-Camera Flash by Neil van Niekerk. BrianO on the lighting forum suggested it for me when I bought my first flash and it is a fantastic read! I think I paid $20 for it on iBooks. Printed versions are around the same price. I have been using the black foamie thing that he suggests using and it works quite well.



Aug 13, 2012 at 08:36 PM
Idle0095
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p.1 #3 · Diffuser SB-900 Question


The snap on one locks it in the 14mm setting. in regards to "If memory serves me correctly, when you flip down the built in diffuser (I think they call it wide angle diffuser or something like that) it will automatically adjust your zoom on the flash to the widest setting".


Aug 13, 2012 at 08:44 PM
boshek
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p.1 #4 · Diffuser SB-900 Question


buckeyeguy1 wrote:
I personally have never used the one that comes with it. I have used the flip down diffuser in the past but not very often. If memory serves me correctly, when you flip down the built in diffuser (I think they call it wide angle diffuser or something like that) it will automatically adjust your zoom on the flash to the widest setting.

If you have the basics of how aperture, shutter speed and ISO work together, I would reccomend checking out On-Camera Flash by Neil van Niekerk. BrianO on the lighting forum suggested it for me when I bought my
...Show more


Neils two books are great! also the bft is good when you have something to bounce off of. I use the Nikon diffuser all the time when I have no choice but to use straight on camera flash. There are so many flash modifiers out there, stay away from the tupperware by Gary Fong. Use the Nikon one, I also bought a small Lastolite softbox that goes on the flash. Its about $75. You want your light source bigger, thats why bouncing your flash is such a good idea when it is possible. good luck



Aug 14, 2012 at 08:43 AM
pr4photos
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p.1 #5 · Diffuser SB-900 Question


Stofen style works well for me.


Aug 14, 2012 at 09:08 AM
Bruce Sawle
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p.1 #6 · Diffuser SB-900 Question


Use the diffuser 90% of the time when indoors and have low ceilings or walls to bounce the flash off of. It cuts the light down at least 1stop and softens it a bit. If I want a harder more directional light I will take it off and bounce the light.


Aug 14, 2012 at 02:15 PM
Idle0095
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p.1 #7 · Diffuser SB-900 Question


So even though the diffuser locks the flash at 14mm still use it at all times in doors?


Aug 15, 2012 at 11:36 AM
 

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farski
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p.1 #8 · Diffuser SB-900 Question


Idle0095 wrote:
So even though the diffuser locks the flash at 14mm still use it at all times in doors?


Bruce only said he uses it all the time when he's bouncing off the walls/ceiling. I tend to do that as well. There isn't going to be anything you'll want to do "at all times", it's always going to depend on the situation. One of the great things about digital is the instant feedback, so as a learning exercise, you could find different situations to shoot in, and then take several shots: with the snap-on diffuser, with the pull-out diffuser, with the pullout and the bounce card, naked at 14mm, naked at 200mm, etc. That will help you understand how each behaves, and then you can apply that to situations in the future as you see fit, rather than try to just come up with a list of scenarios where you use X, Y, or Z.



Aug 15, 2012 at 12:40 PM
boshek
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p.1 #9 · Diffuser SB-900 Question


I dont use the diffuser when bouncing. the object you bounce off of becomes the light source(bigger is better and softer) plus you do lose power when bouncing so using the diffuser as well might be too much loss of flash power. but like others have said there is no one way to go about achieving a goal.


Aug 15, 2012 at 10:51 PM
brewercm
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p.1 #10 · Diffuser SB-900 Question


Doesn't it also have the built in bounce card on the SB 900? I had one but can't remember but my SB 700s do and I use it a lot.


Aug 16, 2012 at 01:18 AM
boshek
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p.1 #11 · Diffuser SB-900 Question


it does


Aug 16, 2012 at 03:53 AM
Jammy Straub
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p.1 #12 · Diffuser SB-900 Question


Learn to use your flash without the diffuser first. Add accessories once you have the basic tool mastered. The snap on diffuser (stofen style) turns your flash into a bare bulb style light source , it works well in some situations. For many others you have more control with a more directional light source.



Read everything you can on Strobist.com just so you can learn some lighting theory.



Aug 16, 2012 at 03:56 AM
Alan321
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p.1 #13 · Diffuser SB-900 Question


Diffusers can make a nicer image with not so harsh shadows. The flip down one still throws most light towards the front whereas the add-on one will throw some light to the sides, rear and upwards to bounce off the surroundings. Sometimes that is what is needed for even better (softer) illumination of the subject but if there is nothing to bounce off then you just lose light, and if the walls are not white then you'll get a colour cast.

Different add-on diffusers can increase the effective size of the flash unit and produce even softer shadows, and you still get to choose between models that throw light forward or all over the place.

If you are running out of light then a diffuser may not be a good idea even if it does produce softer light. Direct flash is more intense in terms of brightness as well as producing harsh shadows, and can give you more shooting distance.

- Alan



Aug 19, 2012 at 01:45 PM
dlabrecque
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p.1 #14 · Diffuser SB-900 Question


In most household lighting situations the Stofen diffuser that comes with your flash works just fine. In most portraits, it definitely helps with softening the light hitting your subject. Yes, it pegs the flash to it's widest angle, but that's not necessarily a bad thing, your flash just adds more power. And yes, I point it up to the ceiling constantly. The light will spill everywhere but that allows some of the flash to bounce to areas behind the subject as well. Really, the only time I take it off is when I need more light or I'm using it for something other than my main light source.


Aug 19, 2012 at 08:10 PM





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