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Between $3,000 and $10,000
Old 12-31-2007, 08:25 AM   #1 (permalink)
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There is simply too much stuff to choose from so Im looking for some guidance. I am setting up shop here in Japan and looking for a lighting system that I can put on a rail system. I would prefer to be able to control as much as possible from a centralized location. My price range is the title with 2,000 as least (I want to buy this equipment once so quality is a factor) and a ceiling of 12,000.

I have all my camera equipment and lens to suffice, just looking from something that will remain stationary (but if absolutely needed is mobile)

Thanks in advance.
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Re: Between $3,000 and $10,000
Old 12-31-2007, 02:56 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Let me be my usual blunt self.

Ain't enough info, bro...

You've told us you want lights to put on a rail system. Hot lights, cool lights, strobes or what? What are you planning to shoot; portraits, groups, fashion, cars, catalog, glamour, still lifes, or?

Are there any restraints on how big the "portable system" can be? Any limitations on power availability? Have you checked out the type of power, AC plugs, fuses, breakers, etc. you're going to have to deal with.

At this point, I'd say get a B&H lighting equipment catalog or similar and make a list of features and accessories you "absolutely gotta have" and then you can see what's available and narrow the selection down.

Just my opinion... not trying to be a smart ass...
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Re: Between $3,000 and $10,000
Old 12-31-2007, 11:09 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Dear Blunt Self,
You were trying to be a smart ass lol..... I have found that smart asses usually are the most honest if one has the ability to see through their utter rudeness and at times comments from smart asses can be very constructive.

I am already apprehensive as it is about making this jump. I have about 7 months to confirm my retirement or continue my service. I am really really tired of waking up at 0400, doing physical fitness, and going to a thankless job for 14 additional hours.

I currently make a little over 5,000 for 30 days of this regiment and about half of that in one night of photography.

Currently there is no photography being offered here and the population has to import photography service, so the need is there and I have wickered my way into the good graces of the community.

I am still extremely nervous about the entire leap of faith, because as difficult as it is to believe, the Armed Services takes care of its warriors and I have never had a need for anything.

I guess I will do what I initially should have done in the first place which was to directly ask an established professional portrait photographer about their trials and errors with setting up a studio instead of opening myself up.

Thanks for your input, it really has redirected my efforts.
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Re: Between $3,000 and $10,000
Old 01-01-2008, 07:06 PM   #4 (permalink)
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[quote=Absolutely Digital;260787]I guess I will do what I initially should have done in the first place which was to directly ask an established professional portrait photographer about their trials and errors with setting up a studio instead of opening myself up.
quote]

I posted my reply after noticing that your message had about a hundred reads and no responses.

I don't claim to be an expert on all the lighting stuff out there, but I do have some favorite inexpensive gear I use and frequently recommend to shooters with similar means and goals. It doesn't seem to be what you are looking for...

However, if you had said you wanted opinions on portrait lighting strobe gear, I suspect you would gotten a few more responses. And maybe asking the question on some of the equipment-oriented and professional studio sites would have been more appropriate.

The thing is generally people specialize in a few areas and pick equipment based on the needs of those specialities. The stuff you'll need for portraits isn't likely to be the same stuff someone specializing in shooting cars or building interiors will need. And some guys still like continuous lights (those cinematic types) while others wouldn't consider anything but flash. Different strokes for different folks...

Ultimately, it's your bucks, so it's your decision, but I'd be very leary of recommendations that make claims like "Use ACME brand lights and you'll get great pictures...". The results you'll get will depend on that lump of gray matter between your ears, not the brand of the lights.

I wish you a lots of luck in your endeavor.

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