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High-speed sync flash
Old 02-19-2007, 06:06 AM   #1 (permalink)
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For glamour photography, how useful is the ability to high-speed sync?

I was thinking of using fill-flash for my outdoor glamour shoots, without having to change my exposure to slow speed, small aperture.

I have a Nikon SB-800 flash, which is capable of high-speed sync flash, but a Nikon D70, which isn't (the D70 has a max flash-sync speed of 1/500). In order to get the capability, I'd have to step up to the Nikon D200. Just wondering if it's worth it.

PS For a good explanation of flash sync speed check out this artlcle.
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Re: High-speed sync flash
Old 02-19-2007, 06:29 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I'm kinda wondering why 1/500 isn't fast enough for you? What speed are you wanting? 1/1000? 1/2000?

If the sunlight is bright enough for you to use that high a speed, I'd say you can fill with a reflector and forget about the flash altogether!

Buying a reflector is a heck of a lot less money than a D200, too.
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Re: High-speed sync flash
Old 02-19-2007, 11:25 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I cannot possibly imagine what you would need a flash/shutter sync speed higher than 1/500 for glamour - unless you are trying to stop a bullet in flight and from experience I can tell you that more than sync speed comes into play for that. Heck 1/500 can stop helicopter rotor blades in full spin, catch stinger missiles coming out of their tubes and freeze a NASCAR on the inside turn with the right amount of leading.

Whoops, I just thought of a place you might could use sync speed higher than 1/500 for glamour. White Sands New Mexico with model dressed in black lingerie. Fill flash to illuminate model, 1/1000 shutter to control ambient light/exposure from white sands.
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Re: High-speed sync flash
Old 02-20-2007, 04:13 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Checking the EXIF info of one of my images from a beach shoot, the exposure was 1/2000 sec @ f/4. The sun was lighting her from the side, leaving harsh shadows along one side of her body. I didn't have an assistant to fill the dark side with a reflector. I would have liked to use fill-flash, but the sync speed is only 1/500 sec. In order to use fill-flash, I would have had to change my exposure to 1/500 sec @ f/8, which means I would have to sacrifice my background blur.

That's one real-life example from my own shooting experience when I wish I could have used fill-flash at a shutter speed faster than the max sync speed.

Back to my original question... does anyone here utilize high-speed sync during their glamour shoots?
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Re: High-speed sync flash
Old 02-20-2007, 06:21 AM   #5 (permalink)
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A polariser or ND filter would have lost you the 2 stops needed to shoot at 1/500...
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