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daniele fontanin
Guys, I would like to have some info about AB.
Here in Italy it is not simple to find or order AB because of the shipment from US...as you maybe know it is not sure for us in Italy to recive elements from US. We have a 20% tax over the price that we payed for the object...and it is possible that the object will be lost in the custom offices...or maybe they do no ship the object, after payment of the tax, also for 5-6 months.............
So I would like to be sure about what kind of AB is good for me.

What I would like to understand is this: if I will buy a 1600 is it better or not? I mean: 1600 is most powerfull, but I would like to understand if it is too much strong for automotive/portraits.

Can you please tell me what you think about it?

Thank you in advance.
Dan
SwissWhiskey
There is a Alienbees Europe website, but everything costs 1.5x more than the US price. That is the reason why I didn't got for them. Also for that (Euro) price you expect more. If I'd lived in the US I would own a couple because they are cheap, but in Europe its just not worth it. I went for the Elinchrom D-lite 4it. They are 400W though. I would look into some Elinchrom BXRi 500, they have the skyport integrated so you dont need pocketwizards for example.

AB800 are 320W
AB1600 are 640W
D-Lite 4 are 400W
BXRi 500 are 500W

In the end you will probably pay a bit more for the Elinchrome but its worth it in my opinion.
joker69
I can agree what SwissWhiskey said. I also own elinchrom products. I think the quality is good and you get what your pay for!

Seethegrim
I've heard many good things about the AB's, so I can't say its a bad product at all.

However as the guys have mentioned, Elinchrom stuff is top notch & take it from me, it lasts. I've had my lights for the past 4 years & traveled with them extensively. I took them for their first 'service' last month to get them checked. They still got a ton of life left in them. They are easily the best investment I made when it came to photography.
DonJuanMair
Dan my friend, i have 3 B800s and 1 B1600 i rarely use the B1600. Its was too powerful for wide apertures. I have to use a softbox, iso 50 two diffusers in order to shoot at around f5.6 i think I love the B800s. I want a B400 now just for shooting at wider apertures.

Get the B800 and then go from there. I used the B800 that whole shoot i was on at the Ghost Town. Its perfect for what you want. I sometimes use the B1600 in broad daylight shooting towards the sun when i want to underexpose the background.
maccan
guys, im also in the plan of buying some studio lights.
but, what i dont really get, is how a ab1600 can be too powerful?

isnt it just to level down the power and there you go?
or is a AB1600 ( for example) too powerful at minimum power?

(seagram, this is what i was planning to ask you on fb, but then i found this thread! )

i have been shooting vivitar 285 hv's and im sick of having to little light, if i put it in a softbox, theres hardly any effect from the viv. at. all.


thanks! and sorry for messin up your thread daniele. but i thought you might be interested in the answers aswell smile.gif

/maccan

Seethegrim
Thats a good question Maccan, I'm not actually sure if the AB1600 can be toned down. Never worked with them.

Im always trying to keep my light power levels no more than 600W because of my portable power pack. Anything more & it won't handle it.
daniele fontanin
Maccan I'm you your situation: i'm using vivitar at the moment but I'm not happy. Little light, short time flashing: after 1 shoot 1 vivitar will die every time...and after 6-7 shoots another one will die...it's a funeral :-(
So your question is perfect also because my english is not so good...ayour post is perfect!
;-)


Take a look here:
http://alienbees.com/specs.html
You can change the power of every AB, but I'm not sure if the AB1600 at the minimum power is too much...

I remember that in summer 2010 I was with Anthony for a photoset and he used AB800...they are SUPERB LIGHTS and I know that Anthony know what I0m searching for: as you can read
"Get the B800 and then go from there. I used the B800 that whole shoot i was on at the Ghost Town. Its perfect for what you want."
I'm sure that AB800 are the best solution and if Anthony agreed with this I think that I will buy AB800.
I only would like to understand if AB800 are good in daylight. I can see in many pics that with the sunshine some of you are able to use external lights. Is possibile to use the AB800 with the sun to illuminate, for example, the dark side of cars?


The last and worst situation: no european dealers...It's a DRAMA.
:-((((((
SwissWhiskey
http://paulcbuff.eu.com/cms/

Look at the prices...

340 Euro for a AB800
247.76 Euro fora D-lite 4 (In CH)

DonJuanMair
outside in broad daylight yeah they are great (B1600) i rarely shoot outside, its always inside somewhere dim so i use nice light, low light, the b800 very low
v2lab
i have alien bee's as do the majority of my friends - they are the best bang for the buck (especially with student discounts and everything else)

i have b800's and when shooting people i rarely shoot even near half power (and light very evenly) > they are powerful enough for everything I personally do // however i am mostly only lighting cars and people; not entire rooms or planes (lol)

they are well worth the money and alien bee's customer service is great



DonJuanMair
just dont buy the light stands theyre a piece of shit
daniele fontanin
QUOTE(DonJuanMair @ Mar 22 2011, 10:50 PM) *
just dont buy the light stands theyre a piece of shit


:-)))))

I hope to find out a way to buy AB!
In http://paulcbuff.eu.com/cms/ I can't find vagabond...is it possible?
:-((((((
DonJuanMair
get the vagabond mini dan! but its on back order
daniele fontanin
Is vagabond mini ok Anthony? I was searching for a vagabond like yours but here in Italy it is impossible to find AB...
DonJuanMair
yeah i want to change my vagabonds to the mini now. I will do soon!
CH@Dbee
I just got my vegabond mini in the mail the other day........MUCH smaller and lighter than the VBII
DonJuanMair
oh nice, i definitely want to get one
Blue Devil
i just pulled the trigger on the AB1600... i currently only have the AB400.... so I will let you guys know how it compares... smile.gif
Daz
Let us know what you think.

I've wanted to get some proper studio heads for ages but never got round to it. The 1600's should be perfect for even direct sunlight shouldn't they?
DonJuanMair
QUOTE(Blue Devil @ May 16 2012, 10:30 AM) *
i just pulled the trigger on the AB1600... i currently only have the AB400.... so I will let you guys know how it compares... smile.gif


want to sell me your B400?

QUOTE(Daz @ May 17 2012, 05:47 AM) *
Let us know what you think.

I've wanted to get some proper studio heads for ages but never got round to it. The 1600's should be perfect for even direct sunlight shouldn't they?


yeah this shot was taken on a hot day in Vegas sun right in his face, i had the B1600 at full power with a beauty dish pointing at his face, directly where the sun was coming from and a B800 to his right a bit but much closer on full power with a silver reflector

Daz
QUOTE(DonJuanMair @ May 17 2012, 06:19 PM) *
yeah this shot was taken on a hot day in Vegas sun right in his face, i had the B1600 at full power with a beauty dish pointing at his face, directly where the sun was coming from and a B800 to his right a bit but much closer on full power with a silver reflector

Damn you and your awesome portrait shots lol.

I'm still using a small assortment of speedlights and the power is far from great lol. One day I'll save up for some studio heads. At the moment I don't think I'd get enough use out of them anyway lol.
DonJuanMair
lol but Daz are you shooting a lot of people at the mo?
Blue Devil
QUOTE(DonJuanMair @ May 17 2012, 01:19 PM) *
want to sell me your B400?

can't... smile.gif I gotta get me more lights.. I think I will be happy with this 2 light setup for a while...

wanna sell me your Vagabond ?
Daz
QUOTE(DonJuanMair @ May 18 2012, 07:37 PM) *
lol but Daz are you shooting a lot of people at the mo?

No lol. Peope scare me haha. I'm trying to arrange a couple of portrait shoots like what you do, ie with a setting that suits them with natural lookng lighting. Downside I have is I'm crap at portrait photography so need to work on it.

The shots I'm trying plan are of a guitarist sitting on a log with the sun setting, a motocross track owner, and a pole dancer smile.gif. Fingers crossed I can get them going and we can all laugh at how bad they are lol.
DonJuanMair
QUOTE(Blue Devil @ May 18 2012, 11:47 AM) *
can't... smile.gif I gotta get me more lights.. I think I will be happy with this 2 light setup for a while...

wanna sell me your Vagabond ?


want to buy both of them?

QUOTE(Daz @ May 18 2012, 01:29 PM) *
No lol. Peope scare me haha. I'm trying to arrange a couple of portrait shoots like what you do, ie with a setting that suits them with natural lookng lighting. Downside I have is I'm crap at portrait photography so need to work on it.

The shots I'm trying plan are of a guitarist sitting on a log with the sun setting, a motocross track owner, and a pole dancer smile.gif. Fingers crossed I can get them going and we can all laugh at how bad they are lol.


nice, good people to shoot to be honest, interesting subjects. If you need any advice let me know!
Daz
QUOTE(DonJuanMair @ May 18 2012, 09:40 PM) *
nice, good people to shoot to be honest, interesting subjects. If you need any advice let me know!

Thanks Anthony. I'm sure I'll be asking for plenty of advice lol.
Blue Devil
QUOTE(DonJuanMair @ May 18 2012, 04:40 PM) *
want to buy both of them?



one or 2.. depends on how good the deal. wink.gif
DonJuanMair
shoot me an offer dude
Blue Devil
So, i got to play with my B1600 on direct FLORIDA sunlight....

it's a fucking beast... smile.gif

Here.. i will leave this here in the meantime...



I was shooting at 1/200 sec at f 9.0 ISO 100 ... with the light stand about 8 feet away from my subject... with a big soft box on it... and I was shooting at 1/2 of the power from the left... to balance the daylight coming from the right....

in contrast to my B400 at full power with no diffusion was barely able to act as fill earlier when i tried on my assistant at a much shorter distance.

Would I buy another B1600? the price difference is a about 90 dollars.... i don't know where the 800 falls as far as performance.... i will probably just end up getting another 1600 down the line so I can have the same lighting ratio if I am doing some fancy double lighting scheme where I need two mains....


that's my .02 cents as far as the B1600 vs the B400
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