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Monolights...narrowing my selections.
Old 05-15-2005, 12:27 AM   #1 (permalink)
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I'm planning on adding a few more lights to my setup, and I've got it down to three different brands. Currently, I'm using Alien Bees, which is a choice, in addition to Hensel and Elinchrom. I like the Alien Bees because they are inexpensive and function well. The Hensel's are nice because they have the feature where the modelling light is off until the capacitors are ready again--a nice feature for when I lose my hearing.

So, does anybody use Elinchrom or Hensels who could explain the benefit of the higher priced monolights over the Alien Bees? Also, does Elinchrom have the modelling light ready feature or just the audible beep? I have read the accolades of Hensel in the forums, which is influencing my decision, but are they worth the additional cost?


This image was done with my expensive plasma fusion monolight and various atmospheric and environmental light modifiers--most people usually call it the sun though.
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Re: Monolights...narrowing my selections.
Old 05-15-2005, 12:31 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I don't have an answer for you, but I did want to point out that Alien Bees have that feature as well. You just have to turn it on. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]
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How about Elinchroms?
Old 05-15-2005, 12:44 AM   #3 (permalink)
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That feature on the Alien Bees is why the Hensel's are looking so good--they both have the feature. Do you know if the Elinchroms have it?

I know a lot of people prefer the beep, but the modelling light is what I am accustomed to and it makes more sense to me. Especially since I've spent a lot of my time shooting firearms and flying aircraft, its likely that in the not so distant future I won't be able to hear the beep.
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Re: Monolights...narrowing my selections.
Old 05-15-2005, 12:56 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I have not tried the other ones.. but I see no reason to change from AlienBees.

Unless they offered more power!
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Don\'t really need more power...
Old 05-15-2005, 01:06 AM   #5 (permalink)
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[ QUOTE ]
...I see no reason to change from AlienBees. Unless they offered more power!

[/ QUOTE ] I prefer a very shallow depth of field, so I actually use the B800's I have on their lowest power setting which gives me an aperture of f/2.0 - 5.6 most of the time. So I doubt that I'll need more power.
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Re: Monolights...narrowing my selections.
Old 05-15-2005, 01:54 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I don't have any specific information on the brand you're talking about, but I won't let that stop me from offering advise! [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/tongue.gif[/img] My experience comes from pack/head systems. I started with Novatrons, and now am moving to Balcar. I can't really explain it, but the Balcar's just look better. From what I hear from other professionals this is true of many european brands including, profoto, broncolor, bowens, Hensel and Elinchrom. With all things, you get what you pay for, but at a deminishing rate of return. Meaning the awesomest light is probalby well beyond your means, the 3rd awesomest is likely expensive but in your budget, but you could buy a boat load of strobes and accessories that work and look slightly better than built in flash.
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lets be totally honest
Old 05-15-2005, 06:47 AM   #7 (permalink)
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You are hearing so much about the Hensels because the owner of this forum is sponsored by them. Nothing wrong with that at all, but thats why you are hearing so much about them recently.

Hensel is a top shelf high quality product. One of this forums best shooters, Robert Sanders, is one of their dealers and has done amazing work with the Hensels. Robert could also take amazing pictures with a min-Mag flashlight and everyone would probably rush out and buy mini-Mag lights.

If you tuned in to this forum 12 short months ago, all you would have heard about would have been DynaLite, because they were the former sponsor of this forum. So while sponsorships may change, the basics remain the same.

The quality of the images is directly proportional to the quality and skill of the photographer, not the specific equipment.

Hensels and DynaLites don't make or insure good/great images..YOU have to do that.

For the record, I started out 2 years ago with 2 Alien Bees, loved them and still have them as back-ups and use them occassionally for remote lights.Alien Bees takes care of their customers, the product is a powerful little strobe, and the units are extremely well priced for what they do. My friend Christian Behr uses them often and you can't find much to pick apart out of his work, can you?

I have a Broncolor Mobil light with Ringflash and use that for the portability and the ringflash.

My primary lighting system is DynaLite with 2 Dynalite power packs, 8 heads, a beauty dish and a Mola Beauty dish and a DynaLite monolight which I bring everywhere in case I have a powerpack failure. I'm sold on the DynaLites for a number of reasons, primarily light weight, the customer service and reputation of the company, and my personal loyalty to a company that has very actively supported this forum and its members, even though they are no longer a sponsor.

Knowing Robert Sanders is an extremly high quality individual, if he is involved with Hensel, then they are an excellent company.

All I suggest is that you read between the lines on some of the things that you read here and mnake a lighting package decision that works for you. But all of the lights do basically all of the same things, you are paying for a few different features on each of them, but the image quality is not something you get with the strobes.

Continue.....and I am not sponsored by ANYONE but I am very willing to accept free gifts and cash.

Florida model Michelle M shot simply a few years ago with 2 Alien Bees and 1 large Chimmera softbox, and still one of the hottest models I ever worked with.....




And 1 with my Broncolor ringflash:




and a more recent one with my Dynalite package (4 heads, 2 softboxes, grid spot):

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Re: Monolights...narrowing my selections.
Old 05-15-2005, 08:24 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I have 4 White Lightning Ultras, 2 of which are 7 years old and 2 are 2 years old, and they work great. Lots of power and great consistent 5500 daylight. (I have the UV tubes)

And their customer service is excellent.

 
 
Eric....when i view that image
Old 05-15-2005, 08:33 AM   #9 (permalink)
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many thoughts come to my mind.

That has got to be one of the best images you have ever shot.

sorry, back to the monolights.
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Back to our regularly scheduled program....
Old 05-15-2005, 10:03 AM   #10 (permalink)
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lol, thanks. Hey, its THOSE kind of compliments on our glamour shots we like.
Thanks Glenn! You have some pretty hot shots yourself there.
 
 
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