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Archive 2013 · Flash for macro
  
 
Luis Cunha
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p.1 #1 · Flash for macro


Hello,
Im on the market to buy flash light for my MP-E 65mm. Have been reading a lot, over 1-2 months about flashes; Canon, Metz, regular flashes, macro flashes, ring flashes and Im totally lost. Now its the time for a decision.
Canon macro flashes arent perfect (none is perfect I know) and are a bit outdated without radio transmission or wireless like Nikon units.
Canon regular flashes are to became outdated too in the presence of the new 600EX-RT with radio technology (is this a good unit for macro too?).
Metz flashes are good units and value for the money but InfraRed only too.
Metz, Sigma, Canon, ring flashes look all like a dull solution.
Regular flashes are a more versatile solution, I guess for macro and other type of work.

Any help is very very welcome.
Thanks a lot.



Mar 07, 2013 at 11:47 PM
LordV
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p.1 #2 · Flash for macro


I think with the MPE-65 you have 2 choices- either get the MT-24 Ex twin flash or use bracket mounted ETTL capable normal flashgun. Any flash will require more work on the diffusion system.

Brian V.



Mar 08, 2013 at 06:48 AM
Constable
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p.1 #3 · Flash for macro


The Lord is correct. Other possibilities that I am still evaluating are the MR-14ex and Metz MS-1 ring flashes.

Both of these are easier to use in the field than the MT-24. The Metz is a bit of a pain to set up ... I finally got it driven wirelessly by the 600ex-rt. Let me know if you need to know how to set this up.

Ed



Mar 09, 2013 at 09:05 PM
Luis Cunha
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p.1 #4 · Flash for macro


I thought seriously about the Metz 15 MS-1 because its not a common ring flash but a unit with two small flashes with some degree of control (not the usual and dull dentist light ,-) and its portable both for studio and outdoors.
Connected with a cable or with a Canon or Metz flash with the master function like your 600EX-RT.
Im 100% sure because I never tested it but the brand new Canon 90 EX (part of the Canon-M camera kit) while very small and affordable has the master function which is very very nice to control a Metz unit like the 15 MS-1 on the lens or even off camera.

My question about the 15 MS-1, please:
1.
can you approach enough the subjects/objects youre photographing, at maximum magnification (do you use the MP-E 65mm?) with the Metz 15 MS-1 mounted on the lens? Or you loose some space between your subject and the lens?

2.
what about results? How is the light? Do you like it? Comparable results with any other macro flash unit?

3.
Could you be so kind and share some samples using the Metz?

Thank you very much.



Mar 09, 2013 at 09:16 PM
Luis Cunha
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p.1 #5 · Flash for macro


Meanwhile (today), a friend is selling a MT-24 EX used + a pair of Stofen diffusers and a 72mm adapter for 550,00 euros.
New here, store price, is 870,00(minimum)-1200,00 euros. Yes high tax country.
Worth the opportunity?
Is this really the best solution for macro with MP-E 65mm?
Its a shame its not a wireless unit neither with radio technology. Will Canon update it as the others continuing the 600EX-RT new design and radio technology (and wireless like Nikon solution?).

But its almost half the price...

Opinions please ,-)
Thank you so much.



Mar 10, 2013 at 01:43 AM
 

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GC5
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p.1 #6 · Flash for macro



The ring flashes become very difficult, if not impossible, to use past 3x. I have pretty decent look using bracket or off camera, diffused regular flashes. I've been experimenting with a 320ex because it is fairly versatile and light. I trigger with the 90ex or on board (depending on what body I am using).



Mar 11, 2013 at 01:37 AM
Luis Cunha
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p.1 #7 · Flash for macro


GC5 wrote:
The ring flashes become very difficult, if not impossible, to use past 3x. I have pretty decent look using bracket or off camera, diffused regular flashes. I've been experimenting with a 320ex because it is fairly versatile and light. I trigger with the 90ex or on board (depending on what body I am using).


Hi GC5,
thank you for your experience.
This is a confirmation: the very affordable 90 EX works as a master flash using the IR method to control wirelessly (in your case) a 320EX unit? Am I correct?

The 90 EX does not fire light when is used as a master; right?
So youre using a one light point solution? Placed above with any sort of bracket or off camera totally? Any reflector to help?

Do youve images of that rig?
No problems with x5 magnifications?

Thanks a lot.




Mar 11, 2013 at 01:52 AM
GC5
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p.1 #8 · Flash for macro


Yes, the 90ex can trigger 3 groups of flashes. It's not as versatile as a st-e2, but works great on my EOS M and 5d2. I've posted below a pic of the setup on my 5d2 (taken with the M) and a couple of samples. The dollar shots are both at 5x, but one is at 3.2 (almost no DOF) and the second is at f13 (where diffraction is kicking in). For any real DOF, you need to take multiple shots and stack, which I am not very good at. For comparison, I also added a shot fo nickel at 5x and 2x.







At 3.2:





At 13:





5x at f13:





2x at f 11:





These are just quick examples I threw together to show the lighting. It's not perfect, but works fine for still subjects. This wouldn't work well for insects. I also usually use the rail on a full tripod so I can get complete angle control. That little manfrotto tabletop can't really handle it, but I wasn't going to break everything out...

I've done this with two lights using onboard commander and my 320, 430 or 580. I've used a bracket when handholding, but I find totally off camera almost as easy, even if holding the flash in my hand and balancing off it. Of course, there are far better shooters than me on here with more sophisticated solutions. This works for me because all of the gear (but for the rail) is multipurpose.

Hope this is helpful.



Mar 11, 2013 at 04:04 AM
Luis Cunha
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p.1 #9 · Flash for macro


Very very helpful, indeed. A real confirmation of my thoughts.
We use the same lens, the same mini tripod (and a big one too) and the same camera (sold last week for mark III upgrade).
Im more towards this combo: Canon 90 EX for master function and Metz 52 AF-1.
One could use a much smaller Metz flash but this one looks like a very good unit for portrait, etc.
The degree of control in manual mode (for macro) is very extensive (22 partial lighting levels). And the auto modes too.
The specs are very good, the release date is 2012, the price (here 189 euros+tax) is very nice too comparing to Canon similar that would be the 480 or 580 EX II or the new and very expensive 600 EX-RT (because of the radio trigger).

The Metz specs are here. The interface controls look simple which is important. The USB permits updates; nice too.
http://www.metz.de/en/flash-units/product-ranges/system-flash-units/mecablitz-52-af-1-digital/data-sheet.html

This Metz unit is of course more flexible than a macro flash (like the Metz 15 MS-1 or the Canon units). Works for macro as you do and as a good quality regular flash without the premium price of Canon. No radio trigger but... no problem.

For an even more affordable but less flexible solution one can use a TTL cable between the flash and the camera instead of the 90 EX, but I understand that you use it with your Canon-M while maybe outdoors or traveling.

One last question/opinion:
I sometimes use a Fotoflex 32" cube, the LiteIGLOO. The fabric is thin. Placing the off camera flash by the side of the cube will work (the diffusion is great .-)? Because of the IR limitations; units seeing each other (the slave flash must be in the 'field of view' of the master flash).
Any experience with a setup where the slave unit is a bit hidden?

Thanks very much, again.
Many thanks too for the images. Great examples .-)



Mar 11, 2013 at 12:49 PM





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