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Thread: How to use the 580Ex flash?

  1. #1
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    Default How to use the 580Ex flash?

    After my last session shooting swing at the Yellow Cross and missing out on the good shots because my oncamera flash just wasnt up to the job, I thought long and hard about it, and went into Harvey Norman and got the 580EX on 18 mths interest free And they also knocked $100 off their price so I got for $749 which is on a par for local places.

    So.

    How the HELL do I use this thing? Read the manual and its horrifyingly complex?

    And we have a dance with live band this Wed so would like some pointers in time to get some useful shots.

    Thing to know about the Yellow Cross is it is the worst lit place ever - the inside is very dark wood, and during day lit by light thru skylights. So at night of course its really dark, and when we dance they turn the lighting down even further (and what lighting there is is quite yellow)

    Will be wanting to shoot fast (1/500th fast enuf?) shutter speeds to get the movement - probably have the 50mm 1.8 on.

    I now officially have more gear than my bag has space for LOL
    Blue Rose - Canon 7D & 50mm F1.8 & 17-55mm F2.8 IS USM & 70-200mm F4 IS L & 10-22 UWA and 100mm F2.8L IS USM Macro, 580EX II, Manfrotto Tripod legs Tamrac/Lowepro backpacks FLICKR
    LensAddiction - Photography Blog

  2. #2
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    You want to shoot from the floor I presume?

    Ceiling height about 2o-25ft??

    First thing first.

    Camera on Manual exposure, using your fastest lens (50 1.8), shutter speed @1/250 (sync speed for your camera). Adjust your ISO to provide you with an underexposed (say by 1 to 1 1/2 stops) ambient light with your aperture at say F2. Hopefully, depending upon conditions, you will be at say ISO1600, F2 @ 1/250th or there about's.

    Flash on camera, set it to standard ETTL, bounced off the ceiling, pointing slightly forward with bounce card extended. I would also recommend that you make yourself a "better bounce card"

    The 580EX is a great flash (is it version 1 or 2?)

    Irrespective, buy some decent batteries. I strongly recommend Sanyo Eneloop's and a proper conditioner/charger. DO NOT use the fast 15 minute chargers.

  3. #3
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    Different forum but good information/discussion regarding high ceilings/bouncing flash

    http://photography-on-the.net/forum/...d.php?t=451770

  4. #4
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    Another point that you may want to utilize, with flash, it is the aperture & ISO that control your exposure (generally), so, take the above settings as a starting point & adjust to suit.

    Not sure about the 580EX Mk2, but the Mk1 is very quick to provide a bit of flash exposure compensation as well.

    Experiment a little, it's all quite easy, not daunting at all

  5. #5
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    That's a bargain Rose, at that price I might go and get another one for the one I chopped in

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    Thanks Mark - I will probably shoot from the balcony like I did last time - gives a better view

    http://bluerosenz.zenfolio.com/hepca...64aa#h2bd864aa

    so the difficulty with this is that I am at the same level as the suspended lights but if I bend over far enough LOL I dont get them in the shot most of the time

    So I am shooting down to the floor
    Blue Rose - Canon 7D & 50mm F1.8 & 17-55mm F2.8 IS USM & 70-200mm F4 IS L & 10-22 UWA and 100mm F2.8L IS USM Macro, 580EX II, Manfrotto Tripod legs Tamrac/Lowepro backpacks FLICKR
    LensAddiction - Photography Blog

  7. #7
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    Jack is magic with 580 flash. He managed to turn his into a 70-200 zoom
    Canon > 5DIII | 17-40 L | 35 L | 24-105 L | 70-200 f/2.8 IS II L | 100 L | 400 f/2.8 IS II L | 600 EX-RT | 1.4x TC III | 2x TC III

  8. #8
    weka2000 Guest

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    Quote Originally Posted by Adam View Post
    Jack is magic with 580 flash. He managed to turn his into a 70-200 zoom
    LOL and his 30D into a 5Dmk2

    Oh bluerose

    http://www.lowel.com/edu/foundations_of_lighting.html

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adam View Post
    Jack is magic with 580 flash. He managed to turn his into a 70-200 zoom
    Quote Originally Posted by weka2000 View Post
    LOL and his 30D into a 5Dmk2

    Oh bluerose

    http://www.lowel.com/edu/foundations_of_lighting.html
    Oi! Cut it out!

    It was a 40D actually


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    ooooh EXCELLENT LINK!!! thanks weka

    So I what I really need, is a GIANT piece of white stuff on a big frame behind and above me to reflect light down on to the floor *sigh*
    Blue Rose - Canon 7D & 50mm F1.8 & 17-55mm F2.8 IS USM & 70-200mm F4 IS L & 10-22 UWA and 100mm F2.8L IS USM Macro, 580EX II, Manfrotto Tripod legs Tamrac/Lowepro backpacks FLICKR
    LensAddiction - Photography Blog

  11. #11
    weka2000 Guest

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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueRose View Post
    ooooh EXCELLENT LINK!!! thanks weka

    So I what I really need, is a GIANT piece of white stuff on a big frame behind and above me to reflect light down on to the floor *sigh*
    Glad to help

    Depends on what you are doing

  12. #12
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    its a Mk II

    Will 1/250th be fast enuf?

    And better bounce card - whats my best option from these two - I want better light but I dont want to blast everyone with it all evening, and also want to avoid the whole 'crowd vampire red eye effect" I got last time

    http://www.photowarehouse.co.nz/lumiquest-midi-bouncer/

    http://www.photowarehouse.co.nz/lumi...103-ultrasoft/
    Blue Rose - Canon 7D & 50mm F1.8 & 17-55mm F2.8 IS USM & 70-200mm F4 IS L & 10-22 UWA and 100mm F2.8L IS USM Macro, 580EX II, Manfrotto Tripod legs Tamrac/Lowepro backpacks FLICKR
    LensAddiction - Photography Blog

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueRose View Post
    Thanks Mark - I will probably shoot from the balcony like I did last time - gives a better view

    http://bluerosenz.zenfolio.com/hepca...64aa#h2bd864aa

    so the difficulty with this is that I am at the same level as the suspended lights but if I bend over far enough LOL I dont get them in the shot most of the time

    So I am shooting down to the floor
    Any reason why? It is not a natural look. Viewing the images you linked to, I would be tempted to shoot from the floor. Get down low, use some funky angles, get in close & wide, step back, zoom in, try all sorts & have fun.



    If you use your 17-85, you will be plenty wide enough & I personally think you get a more realistic profile and image. Shoot it wide open, 1/200th & as higher iso that will give you a 1 1/2 to 2 stop underexposed ambient. Let the flash take care of the rest.

    Quote Originally Posted by BlueRose View Post
    its a Mk II

    Will 1/250th be fast enuf?

    And better bounce card - whats my best option from these two - I want better light but I dont want to blast everyone with it all evening, and also want to avoid the whole 'crowd vampire red eye effect" I got last time

    http://www.photowarehouse.co.nz/lumiquest-midi-bouncer/

    http://www.photowarehouse.co.nz/lumi...103-ultrasoft/
    Plenty fast enough, remember, your ambient is down 1 1/2 to 2 down and the flash will provide the proper exposure. The flash duration is so short that it will stop the action.

    The images you linked to above are all shot at 1/60th.

    Forget buying any of those things, just a waste of money & more importantly, light!

    I'll find you a link to a hand made better bounce card. The big advantage of this type is you can swivel the head of the flash so you can utilize the camera in portrait mode as well.

    EDIT: Found one, terrible video and 18 minutes long but gives you a good idea. They work really well. However, as mentioned previously, go & experiment, play with settings & then go through your images on your PC & look at the settings used.

    http://www.dphotojournal.com/diy-mak...r-bounce-card/
    Last edited by Mark Vuleta; 07-04-2010 at 08:59 PM.

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