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Need help with strobes.
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mawyatt



Joined: 22 Aug 2013
Posts: 1678
Location: Clearwater

PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 11:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

tevans9129 wrote:
mawyatt wrote:


Yes it does! However at 1/128 it should be black compared to the 1/16 image!!

Try an exposure with both the strobes OFF and see what you get, then at 1/128, 1/64, 1/32, 1/16, 1/8, and 1/4.


OK, starting with strobe off and then progressing up from there.










The only change was to reduce the size and convert from RAW to JPEG, what are your thoughts?


This is quite surprising, you can certainly see that the exposure is dropping, although doesn't look like a full stop for each step after 1/16.

Maybe your versions of the Studio 300 are different than mine, or maybe the Xpro is somehow invoking a "hidden" feature within these strobes that is not accessible from the strobe panel nor the remote R2. The Adorama site shows the strobe range as 1/16~1/1.

Makes you wonder if this is a marking ploy to purchase the Xpro remote??
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mawyatt



Joined: 22 Aug 2013
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 11:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ted,

I just pulled out my Sekonic L-308DC light meter and ran some quick tests on my strobes. The result was as I had stated with no variation when the R2 is set below 1/16. All readings from 1/16 to 1/128 were the same value +- 0.1 stop.

Can you run a test of your strobe with a light meter?

Best,

Mike
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tevans9129



Joined: 30 Nov 2017
Posts: 129
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 1:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mawyatt wrote:
Ted,

I just pulled out my Sekonic L-308DC light meter and ran some quick tests on my strobes. The result was as I had stated with no variation when the R2 is set below 1/16. All readings from 1/16 to 1/128 were the same value +- 0.1 stop.

Can you run a test of your strobe with a light meter?

Best,

Mike


Just checked with a 478DR-U and the readings are 1.3s0 at 1/16 and 1.6s3 at 1/128. So there is a difference in time.
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mawyatt



Joined: 22 Aug 2013
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 2:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting, so your Studio 300 strobe is changing but not at the proper value as you reduce exposure with the Xpro below 1/16, and my Studio 300 strobe(s) (only tried 2, but they behaved identical) doesn't change with the R2 remote after 1/16 output.

Either we have different strobe designs, or the Xpro is enabling this hidden feature with decreased output below 1/16.

BTW since I had my light meter out, I couldn't find it when I did the voltage testing way back last year, and it somehow reappeared Rolling Eyes I ran some quick tests to see how these strobes followed the exposure settings with the meter.

The L-308DC is an integrating meter so it measures the area of the exposure flash waveform, which I had suspected changed with settings (why I mentioned the oscilloscope to view the waveform). The overall effect is to make the Studio 300 Strobe follow amazingly well from 1:1 to 1/16 settings.

The results were 1/1, 1/2.00, 1/3.91, 1/8.12, 1/15.19!! Not bad for a $100 300WS strobe with built in RF trigger!!

Best,

Mike
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tevans9129



Joined: 30 Nov 2017
Posts: 129
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 3:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mawyatt wrote:
Interesting, so your Studio 300 strobe is changing but not at the proper value as you reduce exposure with the Xpro below 1/16, and my Studio 300 strobe(s) (only tried 2, but they behaved identical) doesn't change with the R2 remote after 1/16 output.

Either we have different strobe designs, or the Xpro is enabling this hidden feature with decreased output below 1/16.

BTW since I had my light meter out, I couldn't find it when I did the voltage testing way back last year, and it somehow reappeared Rolling Eyes I ran some quick tests to see how these strobes followed the exposure settings with the meter.

The L-308DC is an integrating meter so it measures the area of the exposure flash waveform, which I had suspected changed with settings (why I mentioned the oscilloscope to view the waveform). The overall effect is to make the Studio 300 Strobe follow amazingly well from 1:1 to 1/16 settings.

The results were 1/1, 1/2.00, 1/3.91, 1/8.12, 1/15.19!! Not bad for a $100 300WS strobe with built in RF trigger!!

Best,

Mike


Seems pretty darn good for a $100 strobe to me. All of the specs are interesting but to someone like myself, I am totally satisfied if I can select a setting, take a shot and think, OK, that looks ok to me. If it is .780 rather than 1.000 stop, so be it, if it gets the results that I am looking for. I can see where this attitude would be fatal for a professional or one that must duplicate settings for business purposes but fortunately, neither of those applies to me. I had enough of scopes, spectrum meters, level meters, waveguides and etc. in my working days. What knowledge I had of them and their intent was forgotten when I walked out the door.

I do appreciate you taking the time to offer your expertise and suggestions.
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rjlittlefield
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Joined: 01 Aug 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 3:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tevans9129 wrote:
Just checked with a 478DR-U and the readings are 1.3s0 at 1/16 and 1.6s3 at 1/128.

I don't recognize the notation, "1.3s0" and "1.6s3".

I'm assuming this is a Sekonic L-478DR-U, so I downloaded the manual and skimmed through that. Still couldn't figure it out.

What do those numbers mean?

--Rik
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mawyatt



Joined: 22 Aug 2013
Posts: 1678
Location: Clearwater

PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 4:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tevans9129 wrote:
mawyatt wrote:
Interesting, so your Studio 300 strobe is changing but not at the proper value as you reduce exposure with the Xpro below 1/16, and my Studio 300 strobe(s) (only tried 2, but they behaved identical) doesn't change with the R2 remote after 1/16 output.

Either we have different strobe designs, or the Xpro is enabling this hidden feature with decreased output below 1/16.

BTW since I had my light meter out, I couldn't find it when I did the voltage testing way back last year, and it somehow reappeared Rolling Eyes I ran some quick tests to see how these strobes followed the exposure settings with the meter.

The L-308DC is an integrating meter so it measures the area of the exposure flash waveform, which I had suspected changed with settings (why I mentioned the oscilloscope to view the waveform). The overall effect is to make the Studio 300 Strobe follow amazingly well from 1:1 to 1/16 settings.

The results were 1/1, 1/2.00, 1/3.91, 1/8.12, 1/15.19!! Not bad for a $100 300WS strobe with built in RF trigger!!

Best,

Mike


Seems pretty darn good for a $100 strobe to me. All of the specs are interesting but to someone like myself, I am totally satisfied if I can select a setting, take a shot and think, OK, that looks ok to me. If it is .780 rather than 1.000 stop, so be it, if it gets the results that I am looking for. I can see where this attitude would be fatal for a professional or one that must duplicate settings for business purposes but fortunately, neither of those applies to me. I had enough of scopes, spectrum meters, level meters, waveguides and etc. in my working days. What knowledge I had of them and their intent was forgotten when I walked out the door.

I do appreciate you taking the time to offer your expertise and suggestions.


You bet, it's a great value IMO!! If you take one apart you will be amazed and what's inside from an electronics standpoint, and the quality!! I paid $120 when they first came out, now they are $100!

I'm still working designing chips, this is very unforgiving business. A single simple mistake upon billions of possible very complex things can cost multiple millions of $ and you can't fix it without millions more, and must wait ~6 months after the design is finished and signed off before you can even begin to evaluate the chip in the lab! So I tend to dive into things more than most Rolling Eyes

Maybe someone else on here can evaluate these Adorama Studio 300 Strobes and report what they find?? Hint Laughing Or send me a Xpro to evaluate Laughing

Since I had the Light Meter out I ran the XPLOR 600 & RAPID 600 thru the same tests. Here's what I got:

XPLOR 600: 1/1, 1/1.973, 1/3.982, 1/7.819, 1/16.21, 1/30.15, 1/62.06, 1/126.67 & 1/256.23

RAPDI 600: 1/1, 1/1.993, 1/3.879, 1/8.01, 1/14.7, 1/29.65, 1/64.16 & 1/130.15.

Best,

Mike
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tevans9129



Joined: 30 Nov 2017
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 4:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rjlittlefield wrote:
tevans9129 wrote:
Just checked with a 478DR-U and the readings are 1.3s0 at 1/16 and 1.6s3 at 1/128.

I don't recognize the notation, "1.3s0" and "1.6s3".

I'm assuming this is a Sekonic L-478DR-U, so I downloaded the manual and skimmed through that. Still couldn't figure it out.

What do those numbers mean?

--Rik


I have no idea Rik, I thought they were only there to confuse me so I ignore them. My thought was that it is a more precise measurement than f/4 say f/4 plus 2 tenths but that is only a guess. Sorry I cannot answer your question.
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tevans9129



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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 4:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mawyatt wrote:


You bet, it's a great value IMO!! If you take one apart you will be amazed and what's inside from an electronics standpoint, and the quality!! I paid $120 when they first came out, now they are $100!

I'm still working designing chips, this is very unforgiving business. A single simple mistake upon billions of possible very complex things can cost multiple millions of $ and you can't fix it without millions more, and must wait ~6 months after the design is finished and signed off before you can even begin to evaluate the chip in the lab! So I tend to dive into things more than most Rolling Eyes

Maybe someone else on here can evaluate these Adorama Studio 300 Strobes and report what they find?? Hint Laughing Or send me a Xpro to evaluate Laughing

Since I had the Light Meter out I ran the XPLOR 600 & RAPID 600 thru the same tests. Here's what I got:

XPLOR 600: 1/1, 1/1.973, 1/3.982, 1/7.819, 1/16.21, 1/30.15, 1/62.06, 1/126.67 & 1/256.23

RAPDI 600: 1/1, 1/1.993, 1/3.879, 1/8.01, 1/14.7, 1/29.65, 1/64.16 & 1/130.15.

Best,

Mike


I see they are back to $120 now at Adorama and Amazon. So it seems the 300's are in the same ballpark as the 600 where accuracy is concerned, correct?

Your job would be much too stressful for me but there are many that enjoy that type of work and I am thankful for them.
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Deanimator



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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 4:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Chris S. wrote:
In my experience, adding RF triggers can make flash timing slightly less precise and repeatable, and dropping to 1/160 second has often been necessary to avoid dark bands. So your experience does not seem surprising.

I can personally attest to this from recent experience.

The combination of Amazon Basics manual flashes and Neewer radio triggers forced me to back off to under 1/200 shutter speeds.
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mawyatt



Joined: 22 Aug 2013
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 5:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tevans9129 wrote:
mawyatt wrote:


You bet, it's a great value IMO!! If you take one apart you will be amazed and what's inside from an electronics standpoint, and the quality!! I paid $120 when they first came out, now they are $100!

I'm still working designing chips, this is very unforgiving business. A single simple mistake upon billions of possible very complex things can cost multiple millions of $ and you can't fix it without millions more, and must wait ~6 months after the design is finished and signed off before you can even begin to evaluate the chip in the lab! So I tend to dive into things more than most Rolling Eyes

Maybe someone else on here can evaluate these Adorama Studio 300 Strobes and report what they find?? Hint Laughing Or send me a Xpro to evaluate Laughing

Since I had the Light Meter out I ran the XPLOR 600 & RAPID 600 thru the same tests. Here's what I got:

XPLOR 600: 1/1, 1/1.973, 1/3.982, 1/7.819, 1/16.21, 1/30.15, 1/62.06, 1/126.67 & 1/256.23

RAPDI 600: 1/1, 1/1.993, 1/3.879, 1/8.01, 1/14.7, 1/29.65, 1/64.16 & 1/130.15.

Best,

Mike


I see they are back to $120 now at Adorama and Amazon. So it seems the 300's are in the same ballpark as the 600 where accuracy is concerned, correct?

Your job would be much too stressful for me but there are many that enjoy that type of work and I am thankful for them.


I like the challenge with the chip designs, many of the things we do have never be done before, so makes things interesting Rolling Eyes

Yes the 300s are really good, I did a quick eval with 0.1 increments from the panel control and the light meter followed along at 0.1 increments too......very impressive indeed Laughing

Best,

Mike
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mawyatt



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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 5:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Deanimator wrote:
Chris S. wrote:
In my experience, adding RF triggers can make flash timing slightly less precise and repeatable, and dropping to 1/160 second has often been necessary to avoid dark bands. So your experience does not seem surprising.

I can personally attest to this from recent experience.

The combination of Amazon Basics manual flashes and Neewer radio triggers forced me to back off to under 1/200 shutter speeds.


The Neewer radio triggers have caused me lots of concerns, they were very unreliable as were the Yongunos. That's why I switched to the Adorama/Godox system.

I had to resort to using 4 RF triggers and also S1 optical trigger mode to get some consistent results and a reasonable chance of no dropped exposures. The idea was with 4 receivers all receiving the same signal and having optical triggering enable on all the strobes, then one of the 4 strobes would likely correctly decode the RF signal and trigger the other 4 strobe optically. If more than one or all the receivers decoded the signal that worked as well. So I had to resort to 4X redundancy.

One reason for the problems was the Neewer system worked at 433MHz, and uses a much simpler encoding and modulation at lower rates. Even the Yonguno system had problems and it worked at 2.4GHz. The Godox/Adorama system uses a more sophisticated protocol and modulation than either, one reason it's more robust.
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rjlittlefield
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 6:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tevans9129 wrote:
rjlittlefield wrote:
tevans9129 wrote:
Just checked with a 478DR-U and the readings are 1.3s0 at 1/16 and 1.6s3 at 1/128.

I don't recognize the notation, "1.3s0" and "1.6s3".

I'm assuming this is a Sekonic L-478DR-U, so I downloaded the manual and skimmed through that. Still couldn't figure it out.

What do those numbers mean?

--Rik


I have no idea Rik, I thought they were only there to confuse me so I ignore them. My thought was that it is a more precise measurement than f/4 say f/4 plus 2 tenths but that is only a guess. Sorry I cannot answer your question.

It's very odd that the manual doesn't spell that out. Maybe I got the wrong manual? Can you check the manual that came with your meter to see if you can match up what you see on the display?

Clearly the "s" can't mean seconds, because this is flash we're talking about. For flash I'd really expect a power indication to be provided in something like f# at specified ISO. So I'm completely baffled about what sort of reading you're getting.

The mathematician in me has the crazy thought that the s# might refer to step number, as in powers of 2. Under that conjecture, 1.6s3 might mean 2.7 or 3.3 steps down from 1.3s0. We'd expect 1/16 and 1/128 to be 3.0 steps apart, so anything around 3 is tantalizing. On the other hand that notation would seem arcane enough that it would have to be spelled out in the manual. So I'm also wondering if the meter is even measuring the flash, or something else -- not that I would understand the notation then either!

Perhaps we could figure it out if we had 478DR-U numbers for all the flash powers: 1, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, and so on, all the way down to 1/128.

--Rik
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Deanimator



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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 6:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mawyatt wrote:
Deanimator wrote:
Chris S. wrote:
In my experience, adding RF triggers can make flash timing slightly less precise and repeatable, and dropping to 1/160 second has often been necessary to avoid dark bands. So your experience does not seem surprising.

I can personally attest to this from recent experience.

The combination of Amazon Basics manual flashes and Neewer radio triggers forced me to back off to under 1/200 shutter speeds.


The Neewer radio triggers have caused me lots of concerns, they were very unreliable as were the Yongunos. That's why I switched to the Adorama/Godox system.

I had to resort to using 4 RF triggers and also S1 optical trigger mode to get some consistent results and a reasonable chance of no dropped exposures. The idea was with 4 receivers all receiving the same signal and having optical triggering enable on all the strobes, then one of the 4 strobes would likely correctly decode the RF signal and trigger the other 4 strobe optically. If more than one or all the receivers decoded the signal that worked as well. So I had to resort to 4X redundancy.

One reason for the problems was the Neewer system worked at 433MHz, and uses a much simpler encoding and modulation at lower rates. Even the Yonguno system had problems and it worked at 2.4GHz. The Godox/Adorama system uses a more sophisticated protocol and modulation than either, one reason it's more robust.


Once I backed off to 1/125-1/160 I stopped having problems, at least for the most part.

In any case, I'm thinking of getting a couple of the small Godox/Flashpoint strobes previously mentioned on the forum.
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mawyatt



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PostPosted: Fri Jan 05, 2018 7:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Deanimator wrote:
mawyatt wrote:
Deanimator wrote:
Chris S. wrote:
In my experience, adding RF triggers can make flash timing slightly less precise and repeatable, and dropping to 1/160 second has often been necessary to avoid dark bands. So your experience does not seem surprising.

I can personally attest to this from recent experience.

The combination of Amazon Basics manual flashes and Neewer radio triggers forced me to back off to under 1/200 shutter speeds.


The Neewer radio triggers have caused me lots of concerns, they were very unreliable as were the Yongunos. That's why I switched to the Adorama/Godox system.

I had to resort to using 4 RF triggers and also S1 optical trigger mode to get some consistent results and a reasonable chance of no dropped exposures. The idea was with 4 receivers all receiving the same signal and having optical triggering enable on all the strobes, then one of the 4 strobes would likely correctly decode the RF signal and trigger the other 4 strobe optically. If more than one or all the receivers decoded the signal that worked as well. So I had to resort to 4X redundancy.

One reason for the problems was the Neewer system worked at 433MHz, and uses a much simpler encoding and modulation at lower rates. Even the Yonguno system had problems and it worked at 2.4GHz. The Godox/Adorama system uses a more sophisticated protocol and modulation than either, one reason it's more robust.


Once I backed off to 1/125-1/160 I stopped having problems, at least for the most part.

In any case, I'm thinking of getting a couple of the small Godox/Flashpoint strobes previously mentioned on the forum.


Your shutter period shouldn't matter much IF you are ONLY exposing your subject with the flash and not any ambient. Many of the speedlights I've evaluated, especially the older ones, have relatively long optical outputs near full power (5~6ms), but drop off to much quicker outputs a lower powers.

So if your shutter speed is 1/200 or 1/100 or even 1/10, with a lower power speedlight power setting the image exposure should be the same, since this is the only light exposing the subject.

You can take advantage of this with camera rear curtain synch for the flash, by allowing the shutter to remain open for some time before the flash fires. The idea is to let the camera 1st shutter curtain vibration settle before firing the flash at the end of the shutter period.
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