Friday, June 25, 2010

Bass licks and Guitar Riffs

Let's face it. When it comes to photography equipment you get what you pay for. Buy a cheap lens and you get soft images and poor build quality. Buy a cheap plastic camera(Holga) and get light leaks(albeit the results can be awesome in some cases and this is why most people buy them).

I use to always by cheap because it's what I could afford. And because of that I have a bunch of lenses that are either broken or just sit and collect dust.

But in the case of radio slaves for my speedlights I went cheap. Less than $20 cheap. To give you an idea of what that means, Pocket Wizards, the industry standard in radio triggers, are $400+ for one transmitter and one receiver. Not cheap. I'll get them eventually since they are coming out with a Nikon specific set which will be great. But for now, I got a set of Opteka triggers, a brand I've never heard of.

As expected they were inconsistent. I had to fiddle with them to get them to work and they would work for a while. Then they would quit and I'd have to tinker a little more. Did this until it stopped working all together.

But when they do work they work great.

I went out with a couple buddies of mine to test them along with a new 40 in. softbox. I couldn't be happier with the results. The softbox did exactly what it was suppose to do and the radio triggers fired my flashes without having a clear line of sight from camera to flash.

On the shoot I only used one flash because I only had one receiver. I'm generally a two flash kind of photog. So I paid $14 for another receiver that I got in the mail yesterday. I popped the new one on my smaller flash and left the same receiver/flash combo I used the other night together.

Ran some tests and the new receiver/small flash worked perfectly but the set from the other night still wasn't working. I did the obvious thing and swapped receivers and flashes. And behold, they fired every time after that.

So problem solve...for now.

Anyway, here are the shots of my friends. All were shot on a Nikon 300 with a 17-55 f/2.8, ISO 200. Sync speed and aperture varied. Processed with Photoshop CS5 Raw. This is the second round of editing these photos. I'll probably go one more round to get better color consistency, especially in the sky.

Hope you guys enjoy the shots. I will try to start updating more often. Assignments for work aren't always the best blog fodder and I don't get a lot of time to go shoot stories on my own anymore. But I will try my best.