Battery powered flash units for multi-flash

Discussion in '35mm Cameras' started by Brian Stirling, Dec 7, 2003.

  1. I have an F100 and a D100 body and 6 Nikkor lenses and just one flash
    unit (SB-80DX) at this time. I plan to expand my kit to include a
    basic studio strobe setup using White Lighting or similar and I intend
    to control them with several PocketWizard Multimax and Plus units.
    But, before I get the studio strobe equipment I would like to
    experiment with multiple hand held flash units that I can take
    backpacking into the field and would dearly love to be able to control
    them with the same PocketWizard setup. Specifically, I'd like to be
    able to use the SB-80DX connected to the Multimax mounted on my camera
    and then have a couple other flash units, setup several hundred feet
    away, illuminating an object of interest, and all controlled by one or
    more additional PocketWizard units. Lastly, I would like the other
    flash units to be reasonably priced and capable of controlling the
    power output to at least 1/32 of full power (80-160GN) and of course
    be compatible with the PocketWizard. So, here's the questions:
    1. What brand and model number of portable flash would you recommend
    for this? (As I have a SB-80DX I do not need a unit that's dedicated
    to the Nikon system.)

    2. What cable is needed to connect between the PocketWizard and the
    flash? (This is a real trouble area as it is not easy to figure out
    which cables do what and very few camera store folks are conversant in
    this topic.)

    3. What price range is this unit in? (I'm looking at the $100US
    ballpark here.)

    4. What things need I consider when using a Nikon F100 or a D100? (I
    would expect to shoot manually.)


    Brian Stirling
    Brian Stirling, Dec 7, 2003
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  2. Brian-

    I didn't get all the way through your post, but may I recommend the
    Nikon wireless TTL transitter? SU-4? Something like that... Canon
    has the ST-E2 which works great for local slaves. You mentioned
    several hundred feet and the IR will simply not trigger at that
    distance. The PW's would be your best bet in this case or a hard

    This brings up another point that I'd like to pass along. I tried
    something very similar to this when I was in college, and found that
    the farther away I went, the larger the object I needed, and thus the
    larger the strobe. With a wide angle lens, at say 500 feet, you need
    an object the size of a large house to show up nicely in the photo....
    To light that house, you need about 2000 watts and a 30 degree long
    throw reflector to light it right. OR, you can paint with light. I'm
    assuming you are going to be doing this under dark ambient
    conditions.... Consider buying a Night Blaster © (1,000,000 candle
    power) flashlight and painting with it.

    Renouned photographer David Black is still trying to teach me how to
    do this, and you can see his work at:

    The tutorial isn't that great because of the small images, but the
    very last image is an idea of what he does. It's a killer technique,
    and the flashlights are only about $50.

    Thomas E. Witte
    Thomas E. Witte, Dec 9, 2003
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  3. Thomas E. Witte, Dec 9, 2003
  4. On 8 Dec 2003 22:02:12 -0800, (Thomas E. Witte)


    I already have two PocketWizard MulitMAX transceivers so I have no
    plans of getting the SU-4.

    As to the range and flash power issue -- yes, the further away you are
    the more flash power you would need IF the flash was near the camera,
    but if the flash is kept closer to the subject that isn't the same


    Brian Stirling
    Brian Stirling, Dec 9, 2003
  5. Right right. But what I meant was, if you are using an SB26, it's not
    going to light up that much area in general. So if you have a 30 foot
    diameter coverage area, at 500 feet away, it's going to look pretty
    tiny in a wide angle lens.

    Thomas E. Witte, Dec 10, 2003
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