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Archive 2013 · 430ex II or 580ex? My first flash
  
 
taylorman22
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · 430ex II or 580ex? My first flash


I'm looking at buying my first flash and I'll be using it for shots of my own family.....candid, birthday parties, possibly some portraits....etc. I don't know a tone about flashes but am wanting to learn. Which flash would be better to start with. My budget is around $200 or so, so I should be able to buy a 430ex, 430ex II, or 580ex.

From what I can tell, the 430's are smaller than the 580's and don't have as much power. The II's can be controlled by the camera menus and the original 430 and 580 can't. That's about all I know.

Is there any reason why I should go with the 430ex II over the 580? I've always read that you should buy the most powerful flash you can afford. I'm just not sure if the improved features on the 430ex II are worth giving up the extra power of the 580ex.



Jan 17, 2013 at 04:20 PM
cgardner
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · 430ex II or 580ex? My first flash


If you eventually use two flashes you'll need a 580ex as Master. If you start with the 430ex and them move it off camera it will function the same as if you were to have two 580ex flashes, but since the 430ex has .8 stops less power your overall operating range will be less.

Also since in a two flash situation the off camera key flash is often set brighter than the Master fill on camera you'll often find the 430ex operating closer to it's max. power most of the time than a 580ex slave would. That means you'll be waiting longer for it to recharge before taking the next shot. With the 500 / 400 series the slave doesn't not communicate with the master. You know when the slave is ready via the red AF assist light on front. When in slave mode it blinks. When you shoot it goes out until recharged about 80% of capacity.

So while a pair of 580EX cost more they are a better investment and it's better to start with the 580ex and avoid the limiting factors later starting with the 430ex would create.

While the 600EX RT is more expensive it is also the best long term investment if you plan to use Canon flash. The radio control eliminates the signaling range shortcomings of the 580ex and the need to keep the optical sensor of the slave where it can see the light of the Master. It also has slave > master "ready" communication and other useful features.




Jan 17, 2013 at 05:47 PM
BrianO
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · 430ex II or 580ex? My first flash


taylorman22 wrote:
...From what I can tell, the 430's are smaller than the 580's and don't have as much power. The II's can be controlled by the camera menus and the original 430 and 580 can't. That's about all I know.


What camera do you have?

taylorman22 wrote:
...Is there any reason why I should go with the 430ex II over the 580? I've always read that you should buy the most powerful flash you can afford. I'm just not sure if the improved features on the 430ex II are worth giving up the extra power of the 580ex.


The extra power of the 580 over the 430 isn't a big deal in most cases, but is a factor. The bigger advantage is that it can act as a Master to control Slave Speedlites, which could be important if you're planning on getting into multi-light setups in the near future.

I prefer the original 580EX to the 580EX II because it has a seperate Master/Slave/Off wireless switch, compared to needing to go to the menu on the 580EX II.

If you'll only be using one flash, or if your camera's pop-up flash is Master capable, then the 430EX II might be preferable for its ability to be controlled with the camera menu (if your camera supports that), and you could get a 580 later as funds become available.

In any event, to learn more about flash I recommend Syl Arena's The Speedliter's Handbook and Neil van Niekerk's On-camera Flash Techniques as essential references on the what and how of flash.




Jan 18, 2013 at 05:43 AM
ravisrajan
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · 430ex II or 580ex? My first flash


BrianO wrote:
to learn more about flash I recommend Syl Arena's The Speedliter's Handbook and Neil van Niekerk's On-camera Flash Techniques as essential references on the what and how of flash.



+1



Jan 19, 2013 at 12:35 AM
diverhank
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · 430ex II or 580ex? My first flash


I don't have the 580EX but I have a 580EXII in addition to a 430EXII. There is a lot more than just the power difference between the two. The most important thing I find is that the 580 is a lot more accurate in ETTL shots...I had the 430EXII first and I was frustrated by the inconsistent exposures I was getting when shooting ETTL-II...sometimes too bright but most of the time too dark, especially when the flash is bounced - which I do 99% of the time. When I got the 580EXII...wow, the exposure is spot on most of the time. You might think this is due to lack of power on the 430 but I'm talking about taking pictures of things 5 ft away...Everything else is better on the 580...I think of these two as pro flash vs consumer flash...night and day difference (hence the huge price difference). I have the same experience using a 50D and a 5D3.

In short, for roughly the same price, I'd get a 580EX...it's older but it should work better than the 430EXII. If you can afford it, get a 580EXII - used ones can be had for around $330...that's how much I paid for mine.



Jan 19, 2013 at 08:41 AM





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