What flash to buy for my D80

Discussion in 'Photography' started by Guest, Mar 29, 2007.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Like the title says, what flash should I buy?

    Either remote or on camera. At this point, most likely an on camera (hotseat?)
  2. kinetic

    kinetic Webmaster

    What will you be using the flash for? The Nikon SB-800 currently is the best nikon makes for the DSLR's. But the improvements it has over the SB-600 are pretty slight, in terms of features, but packs more power.

    I use a Sb-600 myself, even for harsh lighting as a filler flash for portraits. Ideally I would get a SB-800, but the 600 is still working great for me. You can run it remotely in commander mode, in fact you can control up to 4 at least of these flashes remotely with the d80, all at different levels too.

    Or it works great on the hot-shoe.

    If you're doing macro, you'll need a different kind of flash, since macro lenses are so long, they may shadow the object you're shooting, especially if you're doing 1:1 and right up in front of the object. I'd recommend this one: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=Search&A=details&Q=&sku=410484&is=USA&addedTroughType=search

    It will work perfectly with your d80. YOu don't need the more expensive kit that it also suggests, because the d80 has the commander mode and i-TTL =)

    Let me know if that helps!
  3. GreshamH

    GreshamH Guest

    I was looking at that, but the couple conversation scared me into thinking my D80 couldn't handle somehting mounted like that :( Just paranoid now I guess :)
  4. kinetic

    kinetic Webmaster

    you mean the macro coupling thing? Don't worry about it, the D80 can handle PLENTY of weight.

    With the ringflashes on, it doesn't even near the weight of a couple lenses that I've regularily used.

    You can put a ton of weight onto the D80. The d80 is designed to put a macro and the ring flashes at least =)

    I've used a 3 lb lens on my camera regularily before, my other friend uses a Teleconverter and a 7.6lb. 500mm F/4 nikon lens on his D80 as well. No problems =)

    no worries gresh, get the nikon macro r1 flash =) and then maybe let me borrow it ;)
  5. GreshamH

    GreshamH Guest

    Sounds like a deal :D
  6. Thales

    Thales Past President

    Hows the SB-600 for a D70? :D

    It looks like I need to get a flash I can use remotely for some octopus images for a magazine article. :D
  7. kinetic

    kinetic Webmaster

    sb600 is awesome. I used my sb600 on the d70 as well. It's awesome!! works just as well on the 70 as the d80.

    They're not too expensive, though I hear they're actually dwindling in number right now on shelves right now, so you might have to wait a week or so for the current shops to restock on the big name stores like BH / Ado. But you'll probably find them in your favorite camera shop still =)
  8. GreshamH

    GreshamH Guest

    So you want to use the SB-600 remotely?

    How does this work Art? Does it use an onboard IR emittor in the D70/D80 to controll the SB-600? Do you need another device, or remote cord to do this?
  9. Thales

    Thales Past President

    I looked it up gresh -

    You onboard flash triggers the remote.


    It looks like you can even block the onboard so it doesn't reflect off the tank glass but will trigger the remote.

    From the best buy website, it look like almost all in the area have them in stock.

    Yay - more money!

    ART - do you know if you can wire it to the camera?
  10. Thales

    Thales Past President


    I also just mounted my video dive light on my D70 and it looks pretty good!
  11. kinetic

    kinetic Webmaster

    no extra equipment needed to fire the SB's remotely from a d70/d80.

    and yes, you should usually never need the onboard flash even when firing remotely. If you need a different angle for a filler flash for example, just get another SB 600 / 800 ;)
  12. kinetic

    kinetic Webmaster

    btw, yes you can get a chord for the flashes if you choose to. these chords are cheap! though realy not needed unless you're in EXTREME conditions.
  13. Thales

    Thales Past President

    I thought I read that the onboard flash is what triggered the remote flash. is I wrong? :D
  14. kinetic

    kinetic Webmaster

    [quote author=Thales link=topic=1888.msg18101#msg18101 date=1175235965]
    I thought I read that the onboard flash is what triggered the remote flash. is I wrong? :D

    nono I think you got it right, I meant to just say I have my onboard disabled even in command mode ;)
  15. Thales

    Thales Past President

    I just want to get the cord so the onboard reflecting on the glass aint an issue. :D

    I like this forum!
  16. kinetic

    kinetic Webmaster

    Here is another potential solution:
    You can trick the on-board flash into being a zero part of the actual exposure by setting the camera to FP mode and using a shutter speed higher than the flash sync speed. (1/250 or higher for a d80... though I think a d70 has a much faster sync speed)

    I've never tried it, but in theory it should work =/ when I get bored here at work again I'll try it out for ya on my d80.
  17. GreshamH

    GreshamH Guest

    [quote author=Thales link=topic=1888.msg18105#msg18105 date=1175265123]
    I like this forum!


    Me too :D Thanks Art!

    I don't know why I poo poo'd it in the start as I am a shutter bug :)
  18. Mr. Ugly

    Mr. Ugly Past President

  19. Ibn

    Ibn Supporting Member

    If you have a D70, get at least a SB-800. If you have a D80 or higher, then you'll be fine w/SB-600s.

    The reason I suggest at least one SB-800 for the D70 is due to the fact that it has limited commander mode abilities. The commander mode on the D70 will trigger flashes via commander, but doesn't allow you to adjust the flash power remotely. On the D80 and D200 you can control the power of each group remotely. In the case of the D70, you can use the SB-800 as a master to trigger flashes remotely (SB-600 can't function as a master).

    For the D80 and D200, the commander mode has the ability to adjust the flash power via the menu. You can also dial down the onboard to have less effect on the exposure from front lighting it via the onboard. There's also an accessory where you can attach so that it blocks out the flash from the onboard used to trigger remote flashes.

    For all Nikon, there's also the option of the SU-800 commander unit. This can be purchased as part of the kit that Art has linked or independently ($250). The unit is very similar to Canon's ST-E2 unit where it will sit on the hotshoe and allow you to trigger multiple flash units. For the price, it's almost equivalent to a SB-800 unit, so you might be wondering why you would go with such an option? The reason being flexibility, frontal exposure, and range. A SB-800 on the hotshoe can trigger other flashes as a master, but it's limited to 2 groups, whereas this unit can trigger an additional group. With either the SB-800 or the onboard flash, you will get exposure from the onboard or the flash on the hotshoe (you can dial down the flash power on the D80/D200 to --, but it will still fire; it won't affect exposure on the other hand). The last one being range. If you're working in an expansive space, the SU-800's range is farther than the SB-800s and is more consistent and reliable.

    Lastly, there are pocket wizards for remotely triggering strobes/flashes, etc. The price for one of these will run you about $185 and you need one transmitter and as many receivers as you have flashes/strobes. As you can see it can get expensive, but on top of these costs, there's also other things to take into consideration. You will lose Nikon's iTTL functionality and will have to figure it out (a light meter will do wonders here). What this system has over all the others is overall flexibility and range. You can shoot around walls/obstacles and from quite a distance (pro shooters will use these to trigger strobes set above courts/stadiums).

    Last comment on the Nikon macro lighting kit since it's mentioned. You really don't need it to shoot macro; they're nice but isn't necessary. The best part about the kit is the SU-800 commander unit. The flash units, SB-200, comes in a pair, but you can string up to 8 of these together on the front of the lens and have a ringlight that you can shoot with. Weightwise, this isn't really an issue since they're relatively lightweight, although it might not balance correctly with a lighter body since most of the weight will be distributed to the front of the lens vs. body.

    Here are some shots with the SB-800 to show you that it isn't necessary to have such a flash when shooting macro. These are taken w/the SB-800 on the hotshoe.

    As for reflection off the glass of an aquarium, there are ways around it even with the flash on the hotshoe.


  20. iani

    iani Guest

    Just be very careful of dropping the flash in the water. I have a sb-600 for my D70, I was taking shot with the flash over the tank and dropped my flash in the tank. Lukily nikon warranted my flash but it took like 2 months to fix. I am now placing my flash in a ziplock bag. If it drops in the water now it floats, lol.

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