Skip to main content

photo & video

Flash Photography Crash Course

Lesson 4 of 13

Two Flash Setups

Pye Jirsa, SLR Lounge

Flash Photography Crash Course

Pye Jirsa, SLR Lounge

buy this class


Sale Ends Soon!

starting under


Unlock this classplus 2000+ more >

Lesson Info

4. Two Flash Setups
Rather than waste your time researching, I’ll give you two great options for your lighting gear. From there I’ll give you an idea of the gear you’ll need based on what you want to do.

Lesson Info

Two Flash Setups

now let's talk gear specifics and namely I'm gonna give you two flash setups. Two different brands will talk about the different models and I'll give you a price guide and kind of understanding what to expect in terms of your budget, depending on what type of photography you do. I'm doing this because there are so many different flash options available to you, so many different brands, so many different models. What should you get? I don't want you guys to have to waste the time researching. So one of these options is going to be a high end option. The other option is going to be a budget option. Both of them can do everything that you want them to do. So let's talk first about my setup. I shoot with Pro photo gear. It's great for professionals. It's kind of industry standard. They're super reliable, really easy to use. I love them overall, but I'm gonna be honest, these are going to be rough on your wallet. Okay. The three flashes that I'm using most in their lineup is the A 10 and th...

e model numbers vary. You know, they're going to change over time. The A 10 is their newest variation of this small round head flash. I'm going to talk about the difference between the different sizes in just a moment, but the small guy is bucks. This guy is $1800. This is the B 10 and the B 10 plus is $2200. So yeah, they're a bit pricey. Now, what we're really talking about in the different sizes is just gonna be power and the important piece of that or understanding which one of these you'll want is gonna come down to your style. I'm gonna help you with this throughout this entire course. So don't go and start putting things in your cart quite yet. Okay, but let me show you what the budget set up would be on kind of the same spectrum. So on the budget side we have companies like Botox slash flashpoint. Honestly, these are all made out of china and by one company, I'm not sure which one exactly is the primary manufacturer but they take them and they brand them under different names. So Botox is one of the brands. I believe it's the primary brand and then you have flash point which are literally the exact same flashes but under the flashpoint name. So in this lineup we have very similar options. It's worth noting that at many times you have similar options because they're essentially taking some of the ideas. Not a good thing, but anyway, they're inexpensive and they're usable. So people use it. So you have basically they're kind of take on this exact same round head flash. This is the V one or under go docs. I believe it's branded as the V one. Under flash point. They branded under the X. R. Two. Okay, same exact flash though. Same power, same size everything. Then here you have a 200 watt. This is referred to as the 80 200. If you're undergo docks, if you're under a flash point this is the evolve 200 and they have different versions of them. Okay so this is about the same power, a little bit less power than the B 10. So this is 200 this is 250 watt seconds. Both of these around 75 watt seconds. Again we'll tell you what that means as we go forward then we have larger stuff like this guy. This is the Flash 750.600 it's the Explorer 600. GOX has kind of similar things on their side. They have a 400 or 600 all that. So this is a 500 watt second flash this is 600. This just means again, a little bit more power. Right? So across the board we have very similar options in both these brands. Both them are good. I know a lot of professionals that use flash point and Botox stuff. They use it and it works for them. Reliably, I personally use Pro Photo, this is the brand that I've had, the best reliability with overall quality, ease of use everything, it's kind of what I prefer. But when you look at those differences in prices for many people that simply comes down to budget, especially when you're earlier in your career, Pro Photo, something you can expire into, but this is something you could probably jump into right away because on the flashpoint side this guy is 260 bucks or roughly. Okay so these are rough price points. Those prices can shift around but around 200 bucks versus 1000 bucks. On the 8200 side you have 300 between 3 50 to 400 bucks versus $1800. Okay. On this side you're looking at like 6 to 700 bucks versus $2200. So across the board you're kind of looking at this like 1/3 the price point on this side. So let's compare now depending on what it is that you do what I would recommend and again I still want you to get to the end of this course before you do anything. But if it comes down to simply portraiture, meaning what you specifically do is maybe headshots, senior portraits, maternity portraits, studio work, location work, but you're primarily doing portraiture. You're not doing events and everything else. What I recommend is one single high power flash say either a 500 watt second to be 10 or 600 watt second. The flashpoint and make it kind of the only Flash you really need, it's always gonna be enough light for you. You can do everything that you wanted to be. So on the pro photo side, your budget's going to be around 2200 for that Flash on the Botox flashpoint side, it's gonna be around 6 50 one thing that I do like to mention on the go Gos. Flashpoint side is the brand I would recommend going with is actually a flash point for the time. You guys can do research on this and see if this changes. But Flash point is a dramas brand of this. So basically it's branded under a drama a drama Flashpoint. The benefit of that they're all made in the same place, they're all the same product. The benefit is that a drama handles the customer service. So if you're working with a drama and getting customer service to them, it's a bit easier. It's quite a bit easier than say working with you know international chinese type warranty services and it's very likely that you probably will need to do some warranty and servicing in the course of owning flashes. So it just becomes a little bit easier on that side. Now research it, see if Botox maybe at some point they're going to have a US based arm or ability to be able to warranty and service in the U. S. Or or whatever country you're in. But that should be what dictates the brand that you go with based on where you live, whatever country it might be, which of these brands has a local service facility, that's the one I would choose. Okay if you're doing weddings and events, the setup that I would recommend is four of the smaller flashes, we're usually gonna use three of these lights but I have 1/4 just as a spare as well as one of the larger lights. So again this kind of depends on style. Um so you can be safe and just go with the the larger one. This is about the size, this is about the size of like a 7200, this is a little bit longer. Um this guy is quite large so while this will fit in most camera bags this probably needs its own place or at least a big piece of your camera bag. But I would recommend the four of these lights and then having either a B. 10 or be 10 plus or just a one semi high power light so that you can use it for group portraits. Oftentimes you know, we're in situations where we have to do a group portrait outside and not ideal lighting conditions and having a high power light is very helpful. That said you can get away with just using three or 4 of these guys and there's ways around that. Okay, so same thing on this side, overall budget for those five flashes on the go dockside flashpoint side, you're looking around, you know, 600 bucks at 2000 bucks depending on the exact price point on the Pro photo side, you're looking at 6000 to $6500. So quite a bit more on this side. The other things that I would plan to kind of budget into this is just your accessories. So you're obviously going to need a remote, you're also gonna probably want some modifiers and some basic accessories. On the pro photo side, you're gonna wanna budget an additional $1400 on the Botox flashpoint side, you'll budget around additional bucks if you are going with Botox and flash point, I would highly recommend that you pair this with magma and accessories, You'll again learn more about this when you dive deeper into lighting. But magma is the ideal lighting accessory company for this lineup. If you're going to pro photo side, you're probably going to end up with mostly pro photo modifiers. That kind of only makes sense on that side. Okay, so overall when we're talking portraiture, right, you can be set up with pretty much everything that you need in portraiture For around 1000 bucks on this side, whereas on this side it's going to be around $3,000 On the weddings and events side on this side, it's going to be around $7,000 and on this side it's going to be around $3,000 to get your full set up. These are just things to kind of expect when you're choosing which route to go with. Once again, I want you guys to avoid buying right now. So what not to do, Don't get gas. What that means is gear acquisition syndrome. Okay, so don't get gas. Don't go out and start buying things. I want you all to develop your style first. I want you to try things you can borrow from friends. You can go and rent all of this different lighting gear and it's fairly inexpensive, but I want you to figure out exactly what your style looks like before you go and invest in something. See if you primarily use flash for natural effect, you're going to see in this course as you see what's going on shooting that we can use just a small flash for that. So why buy a 502nd huge flash that's heavy and big when you can simply get away with this? Because all you want it for is for natural effect. Right? So understanding your style is important. So you don't end up buying gear that's bulky big and that just ends up staying kind of collecting dust on your shelf as opposed to getting out and being used. But keep all this in mind. These are the two different brands and different routes that I would go. We're going to talk more about the differences between models. So you'll understand that as we go into the course deeper as well. Let's go to the next video

Class Description


  • Use flash to create dramatic portraits.
  • Use flash to create natural portraits.
  • Balance flash with ambient light.
  • Use and understand off-camera flash.
  • Understand off-camera flash gear and setups.


Let’s be honest, flash photography is intimidating. Many photographers never learn the power of flash because at first glance it looks complicated and overwhelming. This course is the exact opposite. In around 90 minutes, you will walk away not only understanding flash gear, but also having a simple framework to immediately begin using flash in your own work.

I’m going to show you how easy flash can be. From creating dramatic portraits straight out of camera, to using flash for a more natural and soft look. You will walk away from this course with everything you need to get started using flash. Should you choose to dive deeper down the rabbit hole of lighting, this course will also prepare you for the Lighting Series, a four workshop intensive that covers the ins and outs of location lighting for portraiture.


  • Beginners that understand their camera
  • Beginners that want to start learning flash
  • Beginners that want to learn how to use flash for portrait


LPye Jirsa is a photographer, educator, author, podcaster and lifelong learner. He has made a career out of creating frameworks that simplify complex subjects. Frameworks that have helped millions of people learn languages, creativity, photography, lighting, business, communication and even relationships.

Ratings and Reviews

Student Work

Related Classes


Gary Hook

Pye is a talented instructor with a wealth of knowledge. He has an excellent technique of brining out the learning points and does an excellent job at the end of the sessions through summary. He provides some handy tools to assist the beginner to get out and shooting pictures with simple, easy to remember steps, e.g. CAMP. While I am a huge fan of building a foundation of theoretical knowledge, the majority of the first 8 sessions was more on an informercial for Profoto to the point of being painful. A few examples if I may. Pye tells us he is not familiar with the Godox menu system but then sings the praises of Profoto because it is so easy to use? Mmmm, maybe if you actually understood the Godox system you would find it easier to use? When it comes to modifiers, you stress that the Profoto is so much better because of its portability even though it takes more time to set-up than the competition; however when it comes to Menu systems the GoDox is not as good because it takes more time. So one is okay even though it takes more time but one is NOT good because it takes more time? No paradox here right I appreciated his chart to demonstrate the differences between Groups and Channels; however, when using the same identifier for both, e.g. letters, it can be confusing. From my perspective identifying Groups as Teachers using a # and Channels as students using letters (A,B,C,D) would reduce the risk of confusion. Instruction 101: if you are going to demonstrate something, learn it before you take up screen time! Profoto has the most counter-intuitive number system for power. How does 9 out of 10 make one think of 50% power? Session 8 – 2 minutes of actual information crammed into 15:40! With respect to terminology, Pye asks do we really need Master/Slave? I’d ask do we really need “Air” versus “Radio”? good tips on Trouble Shooting Overall the last four sessions made the whole session worth it. The simplified and structured approach of CAMP was brought out nicely with the dramatic and natural on-location shoots. Well done

Kriss Ward

This has been one of my favorite courses so far on Creative Live. A great starting point for OCF. I really enjoy Pye's teaching methods as I have seen them on other platforms so I was excited to find this here. Not only does he explain things in digestible bites, but also his demos are helpful too! Will definitely be watching the more in depth series that follows!

Angie Martin

This is a wonderful class! I was able to apply these concepts right away for a senior portrait shoot. i was like, "Wow! Pye was right!" I have learned not to tweak 100 different things at once and get confused. His CAMP system makes SO much sense...clarifies everything. Thank you, Pye, for this. You're a wonderful teacher! Marry me! I'll wait.