Originally Posted by peterw119
Thanks Guys for the input, won't be buying those.
I don't think I can buy Alien B's in the UK, if I could they would be something I would look at.
I'm down to a few brands called Bowens, Ellincrome or Interfit The accessories all seem very expensive though.
Interfits are comparable to AlienBees and in the same price range. Bowens are a little more expensive and come in more powerful configurations. Elinchrom makes very, very good lights and are typically priced accordingly. But they just introduced an inexpensive set of monolights called D-Lites. They are available in 200W/S and 400W/S. They are packaged as a kit: 2 lights, 2 stands, 2 softboxes, and a carrying case. for ~$850/$1000. I don't know how much they will run in the UK, but in the US that price isn't much more than a kit from any of the other manufacturers mentioned in this thread, and they are more consistent, more controllable units that put out at least as much light, if not more.
As far as accessories, any of the kits should be enough to get you started. For things like umbrellas, softboxes, and the like you don't need to stick with manufacturer's accessories. But for additional reflectors, snoots, grid holders, and the like you do.
Any of the brands you mentioned should serve you well. Find out how easy it is to get repair service and replacement parts like modeling lamps and flash tubes.