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How bad is light spill from a deep reflective umbrella?
  
 
MayaTlab
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p.2 #1 · p.2 #1 · How bad is light spill from a deep reflective umbrella?


That won't help in making your 130cm deep silver umbrella effectively a 130cm modifier, if that's what you want. And if you use it with a bare flash tube, since it will reflect light over a less focused area, you'll have more flagging to do.
Nearly everything you can do with a deep silver umbrella, you can do with a properly designed, pseudo parabolic, shallower, silver umbrella. But what you can do with the latter, you can't do with the former.



Dec 05, 2016 at 03:46 PM
pixlepeeper
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p.2 #2 · p.2 #2 · How bad is light spill from a deep reflective umbrella?


Do the stepped shoadows show up even with the front diffuser on?


Dec 06, 2016 at 10:43 PM
MayaTlab
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p.2 #3 · p.2 #3 · How bad is light spill from a deep reflective umbrella?


Good question, to which I can't respond since I haven't used front diffusers with silver umbrellas yet . In addition diffusers vary in strength which may have an influence on how much the original light pattern is visible. My guess is that with very weak diffusion materials they may still appear a little, less so with stronger diffusion materials. Unfortunately most companies don't give any specification regarding diffusion strength.

Front diffusers will invariably modify to a great extent the light spread though. Any notion of focusability is likely to become irrelevant and the beam is likely to be significantly wider.

I may be able to answer it later this month if you want a follow up.



Dec 06, 2016 at 11:22 PM
pixlepeeper
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p.2 #4 · p.2 #4 · How bad is light spill from a deep reflective umbrella?


Now another newbie question. A real parabolic umbrella can produce a focused beam. Doesn't a beauty dish do the same thing for a much lower price?


Dec 08, 2016 at 09:18 PM
rico
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p.2 #5 · p.2 #5 · How bad is light spill from a deep reflective umbrella?


BD isn't parabolic, and most users prefer the white finish where focus is not the focus. Most systems offer parabolic metal dishes. Profoto NarrowBeam is a little too parabolic: the bulb can be imaged onto a wall.


Dec 09, 2016 at 12:46 AM
 

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Gregg Heckler
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p.2 #6 · p.2 #6 · How bad is light spill from a deep reflective umbrella?


Your question really should be about the differences in the light quality of a deep umbrella versus a soft box for a given subject. If both are not gridded or flagged, they will both spread plenty of light. And, they both will produce different results even if they have the same degree of light spread. However, the umbrella will almost always be a harder light source at the same distance so, you should decide first if that is the look you want and go from there.


Dec 09, 2016 at 01:26 AM
Deezie
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p.2 #7 · p.2 #7 · How bad is light spill from a deep reflective umbrella?


I will say this again. Unless you're looking for a high contrast, snappy look, the vast majority of commercial photographers feather the light onto the subject instead of pointing a light directly on the subject. There are times that a requested look requires direct lighting, but in most cases, indirect lighting is far more flattering on the subject. Using a fill light directly on the subject is usually okay.


Dec 11, 2016 at 03:41 AM
whitie60
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p.2 #8 · p.2 #8 · How bad is light spill from a deep reflective umbrella?


Big thanks To MayaTlab for the information you have provided in this thread in relation to Silver Umbrellas and Parabollics

I have to thank you for this information which I stumbled upon in this thread whilst I was looking for information regarding problems related to the use of silver umbrellas. I was getting mighty frustrated with the results that I had been getting with my silver umbrellas. In particular what was annoying for me was that the umbrellas only seemed to partially light up despite how far away I was positioning the flash. I just could not eliminate the spoked wheel effect pattern I was getting in the subjects eyes which I really disliked. I really do not like this effect at all. The other thing that I was getting was indistinct shadows where I was expecting much more clearly defined shadows under nose for example. I really could not get this as clearly as I had anticipated. This was not the same result as I had seen others get with umbrellas in tutorials and I was at my wits end and could not understand why. Your information has clearly explained why I have been getting this effect. To date and after numerous researches I have not seen this explained anywhere else as a phenomena or problem related to the use of silver umbrellas. This information is just top quality research and has made me re-think my strategies towards umbrella use. From now on I will be using only a white umbrella. I have previously used a number of the cheap silver umbrellas and all seem to be plagued with the same response. The problem is when buying an silver umbrella you do not know which will give this effect and which ones will not because you have no clear information about the reflective material being used in the umbrella. As a result I have now abandoned trying to purchase a silver umbrella because I do not wish to risk getting this spoked wheel effect nor indistinct shadow patterns. It is a pity because silver is a very powerful reflective surface however I have obtained better results by simply firing onto a silver reflector panel.
Again many thanks for this detailed research you have done here. I think that you should publish it more widely.



Jun 05, 2017 at 09:08 AM
MayaTlab
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p.2 #9 · p.2 #9 · How bad is light spill from a deep reflective umbrella?


whitie60 wrote:
I just could not eliminate the spoked wheel effect pattern I was getting in the subjects eyes which I really disliked.


I think that Paul Buff's PLMs in soft silver could be a good compromise for you, if you don't need them in smaller sizes (the 51inch is out of production unfortunately). It doesn't exhibit a strong bicycle wheel pattern while still being fairly directional and efficient. Multiple shadows are significantly reduced compared to other silver umbrellas of that kind.

Below is one picture comparing three different umbrellas when viewed from the point of view of a subject that is on axis :



Illumination is quite a bit hotter in the centre with all three and it's partly because of the B2's recessed flash tube.

And below is a comparison of several modifiers' beam angle :



The Cactus is a shallow umbrella, can be illuminated end-to-end from a subject's POV, and yet sends light at an angle that is similar to a 20 grid. Just sayin' (if people still believe that deep silver umbrellas "focus" light more than shallower ones, or "spill" any less).

whitie60 wrote:
I think that you should publish it more widely.


I'd rather not. I don't own heads with external flash tubes (the ideal would be Profoto's Acute or Pro heads) which are better to make a few points regarding deep silver umbrellas. More importantly I'm not an engineer and I don't have that good a grasp on a number of things. I've probably written a bunch of idiocies already (although nowhere near as many as Profoto's BS churning marketing team).

Paul Buff used to participate to these forums and he wrote a few interesting bits of information here regarding indirect silver reflectors.

Although, when I see articles such as the following pile of garbage so well referenced on Google it's quite tempting as I can't do worse than that : https://fstoppers.com/originals/why-i-dont-use-umbrellas-photography-light-modifiers-126002

Deezie wrote:
I will say this again. Unless you're looking for a high contrast, snappy look, the vast majority of commercial photographers feather the light onto the subject instead of pointing a light directly on the subject. There are times that a requested look requires direct lighting, but in most cases, indirect lighting is far more flattering on the subject. Using a fill light directly on the subject is usually okay.


No one will disagree with you that feathering is good practice in numerous situations, Deezie.

But if you want to test for illumination evenness (which affects shadows rendition), you better do it straight on as it won't get better when viewed off axis.

If you want to maximise effective modifier size from a subject's POV, you'll have to use it head-on.

Also, since some silver indirect reflectors have a very narrow beam angle (the Cactus above is equivalent to a 20 grid), you don't have much feathering potential to begin with anyway.



Jun 05, 2017 at 07:10 PM
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