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Wired, Infrared or Radio?

Lesson 5 from: Lighting 201

SLR Lounge, Pye Jirsa

Wired, Infrared or Radio?

Lesson 5 from: Lighting 201

SLR Lounge, Pye Jirsa

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Lesson Info

5. Wired, Infrared or Radio?


Class Trailer

Chapter 1 Introduction


Welcome to Lighting 201!


OCF = Anytime/Anyplace


Chapter 2 Introduction


Wired, Infrared or Radio?


“Pocket, Medium, Full Strobe?”


Our 3 Favorite Flashes “Pocket Strobes”


4 More Flashes “Pocket Strobes” Worth Looking At


Our 2 Favorite Medium Strobes


Understanding Radios Part I: Channels & Groups


Our 2 Favorite Radio Triggers


5 Simple Steps to Trouble Shooting Radios/OCFs


Fantastic ND Filters at Any Price Range


Our Favorite “Sticks”


Our Favorite Ultra-Portable OCF Light Modifiers


12 Mounting and Must-Have Lighting Accessories


Gear Setup - Setting Up a Light Stand or “Stick”


Gear Setup - Setting Up a Monopod Light or “Boom Stick”


Gear Setup - Setting Up a “Medium Boom Stick”


Gear Setup - Setting Up a Manual Flash “Big Boom Stick”


Gear Setup - Setting Up a Full Feature Flash “Big Boom Stick”


Chapter 3 Introduction


8 Steps to Perfecting Each Scene & Image When Using OCF


Over Powering the Sun - Part I


Over Powering the Sun - Part II


Slow Down! Watch the Details


More Power Without The Power


Adding to Existing Light - Part I


Bare Bulbing with Large Groups


Back Lighting to Create Interest


Getting Crazy with the “Whip Pan”


Chapter 4 Introduction


The Flash Modifier You Already Own


The Oh-So Powerful Umbrella


Large Group Shots with an Umbrella


Exposure Balancing via Lightroom


Portable Softboxes - Westcott Apollo


More Light Control, Just Grid It!


Dusk + Modified Pocket Strobes


More Power? Medium Strobes FTW!


Perfect It In-Camera. Then Photoshop


Adding to Existing Light - Part II


Adding or Enhancing Light Direction


Our Ideal Group Lighting Technique


Incorporating Flares with Flash


Cutting Light, Grids and GOBOs


Chapter 5 Introduction


Fog + Flash + Grid = Dramatic Change


BYOL! The 3-Light Setup That Only Requires One Light!


What About the Fill Light?


Backlight + GOBO + Fog = Magic


Drawing Attention via Light Shaping


Visualizing Lights & Color Shifts


Mixing Ambient + Gobo w/ Flash


Better Light Can Change Everything!


Chapter 6 Introduction


Subtle Refinement = Massive Difference


Great Light Changes Everything! Part II


Manually Triggered RCS + Shutter Drag


The Right Power for Each Scene


Dodging and Burning via Light In-Camera


Subtle Light for Natural Portraits


Light Modification & Simple Compositing


Expanding Your Photographic Vision


Lesson Info

Wired, Infrared or Radio?

Wired versus infrared vs radio controlled this video is all about understanding the different technologies and frankly, which is the best technology for oh c f four off camera flash I love that word I just want to say it all day long so let's start from the top we're gonna start with the most simple way of getting your flash off the camera the most simple way is just to take it off er away but now I can't fire I'm just I'm kind of kidding I'm kind of not let me set the camera down for one second I don't drop it that would be a very bad part of this tutorial this is the velo tt l cable now you might remember this you might remember such cables from lighting one oh one this was in lighting one of when we use this actually to get the flash onto a bracket just above the camera. Okay for stylistic purposes, basically, but what we can do is basically attach this little flash to the hot shoe on this side of that fellow cable and then on this side we're gonna attach this directly to our hot sh...

oe and guess what? This is now off camera flash right? And look at this look at this I gotta show you this see, my foe takes metro's I still have a little plastic on their look why? Because I'm asian yes, persian is asian that's a whole nother topic but I am asian and growing up my family we would leave all the plastic on their sofas and also my dad was threatened wrap my remote control's uh for the tv and so forth so yes, I have a habit of leaving the plastic on don't kill me for it actually will take us off watch this they're so can you get that? I want to put it back on. I feel like this is naked now without it just kidding home but I really want to protect it, okay? So getting back to the point here this is now off camera flash right? We can now basically move the flat away from the camera we can put on different positions and so forth. Now the pros to this system is that it's simple. I mean, all we have to do is get this little cable and a fellow cable like this. This is the one that we recommend because it's expensive and it works fantastic and the qualities like really nice to this guy's twenty bucks you could grab it from being a tch, very inexpensive way of getting your flash off the camera also the cable okay, so the cable a gives you basically full tl control, which means that we still have teal'c ability from the camera. So if we still need to use things like high speed sink or rare curtain sink or all those kind of things, we still have that full control with this flash. So this is a very cheap way to get started practicing some of these techniques if all you've got is twenty bucks, go out and get this, and you start practicing these techniques in your home or in your studio and so forth. But what are the obvious downsides of this system? Well, the most obvious one, if you guys were if you guys are paying attention, is that there's a giant cable now attaching these two, hopefully you guys see that? Okay, so if if we're trying to move this anywhere beyond, like, five, ten feet from the the camera itself, we're going to have issues, right? We can't really move it in a certain positions. We could move it to camera left in the camera, right fairly easily. But getting this behind the subject without getting this cable in the way would require a very, very long cable, and this just becomes cumbersome to kind of shoot with so that's probably the most large or the most, the most large, the most large con that sounds weird, it's probably the biggest con all right, the other thing is that we can only control one off camera flash there's not really like a splitter cable that would allow you to control multiple off camera flashes in this way. So yes, this is a great way to start practicing off camera flash techniques and it's one that builds directly in the lighting one o one because if you watch lighting one when you bought this cable already well you're already ready to start practicing some of these basic off camera flash techniques but it's going to be limited and that limit is goingto basically present itself fairly quickly to you. And by the way, when you are doing this I'd recommend getting along table or if you get a quote cable like this just make sure that when you're placing this on a stand if someone's not holding this you make sure that stand is secure because as soon as you start pulling it's going to create tension and you could easily knock over your stands all right so let's ditch this guy wants to ditch the cable I wanna ditch it because I I still like that cable I find it very, very functional very, very handy I like that the villa cable okay let's put the flashing back on the camera now our next means or the next technology that we have to control and off camera flash is infrared flash now you might already know about this technique. We might know about this technology, because it's, commonly referred to as master and slave mode and basically what the cameras doing is or what the flash is doing is four flashes that are full feature flashes, meaning this foe takes meters plus is a full feature flash. It has this little infrared portion built in aa cannon five eighty x, which we have over there is a full feature flash, a nikon, s, p nine, ten or nine hundred. Whatever you have is a full feature flash. All these flashes have in fred systems built in now, some of their mode more basic models, like the cannon for thirty. Yaks also has an infrared slave built in, which means that if you have a five eighty x on your camera, you can control other five eighties as well as for thirty's, as well as whatever other cannon model that offers slave control. Same thing. The only thing here is that it's worth noting that photo ticks infrared can only control foe ticks, infrared flashes, and nikon and fred can only control nikon infrared compatible flashes and same thing with cannon. So they are brand specific. So just because you have a photo that does in fred doesn't making control an icon that does infrared. But the great thing about is that most of you are already gonna have one or two or three flash unit's already. And you're probably gonna have that master slave system all automatically. Right? So this gives you a system that you can start using right away. That's going to be wireless where you can start using one one two, three off camera flashes just out of the box. So that being said, why is it that we're not teaching you to use this technology on your shoots? Well, the main reason is the cons. The prose is that it comes built in the most full feature flashes and that you can control multiple off camera flashes. Those of the primary cons. I'm sorry, there's. A primary prose, but the primary consciousness are very they're very, very cons. They're super cons. Okay? And one of them is your limited by line of sight. Okay, so ella es linus. I simply means that if anything steps in between this master and the slave, so if you have a hand that you put right here, it prevents that signal from being transmitted. If a person is standing in between, it prevents the signal for me transmitted. If you have a light modifier in between, it presents the signal from being transmitted is a line of sight system down to the tea. Okay, so that means you can't really use it in situations where you have lots of light modifiers, or if you're placing a flash behind the subject, they can't communicate with each other. So that's a very, very big issue. The other thing, in addition to that is that the range is extremely limited. Okay, so inside of a studio like let's, say, in the side of a ten by ten or twenty by twenty working space hey, your infrared is gonna work pretty well, so long as you aren't having line of sight issues, but beyond that, infrared has an issue beyond twenty feet. You're gonna have very major consistency issues in terms of firing, the range is extremely limited. Also, there is an operational learning curve. It's not like a simple well, with this one right over here, we just pop that directly onto our, you know, we just put the cable on, and we're ready to go. Basically with this one, they're still operational learning curve in every one of these systems, whether it's, faux ticks or canon or nikon is gonna have its own kind of, well master slave system that you need to learn on how to control these flashes, but again, if you already have this, the main pro of this system is that it's already built into flashes that you probably already own, which means that once again you can start using these techniques that were teaching this course right away without buying any extra gear. But you're going to run in those limitations very quickly and that's, why we're going to be presenting number three option number three and the one that we prefer, the one that we teach throughout this entire course is radio flash control. There are a couple different ways of doing this for a couple different ways of controlling flashes via radios, and we're gonna talk about that in just a second. Let's talk about the pros first radio means that you're no longer limited by line of sight. You guys have a radio in your car, right? Can you guys see the radio station now? I can't see the radio station, but I still hear the awesome justin bieber music that plays through my radio. Yes, I'm a fan of the bieber not really, but all right, so we can't see radios, but it doesn't mean that they don't work without line of sight, so radios work and they do not require line of sight, and also the range is far, far greater once again, you know you could be miles away from the radio station, but you're still receiving a radio signal. Likewise with flash your transmission range is now hundreds of feet if not thousands like the party wizard can go like fifteen hundred feet so that is a very large distance that you khun broadcast across and you can even use pop quizzes to extend that distance by just using them as little extenders in between ranges and so forth so we're not limited by range anymore. In addition, we have some full feature radios that actually allow for full feature flash control like tl and high speed sync and rear curtains thinking that kind of stuff that option is they're as well but others like this pop quizzes plus three system are designed for manual flash use which means that you're giving controlling the flashes manually. Okay, so what are the cons of basically using a radio system? Well, number one is that it can require mohr gear what I mean by that is let me show you something let me show you something. Let me show you something. Okay? That's little jim carrey reference see that loom a pro right there on the stand or this bolt right here on the stand those are manual flashes. Okay, now they come built in with little ports and all we need is a pock wizard like this and then we need a little cable now let me just grab this little cable actually we have ah have this guy this is not a flash I'd recommend it's one of the uh it's the last on her arm will mention list which isn't no longer honorable it's honorable because of its past we'll talk about that little bit anyway it's going to require more gear in the whole point of that is that now in addition to your flash unit you now require a cable as well as the pocket wizard so there is a little bit more cumbersome stuff to deal with right? You could require more gear than just the just the flashing in itself also these radios can kind of get expensive so for example if I want to control two of these off camera flashes when it shaking like unlike this is the best billfold in the world ok so if I want to control two of these vivid tars I would need to park withered better hooked up this way and also one on my camera that can transmit the signal so now I need three pock wizard you need one on every single flash and also from the transmission point which would be your camera so that can get expensive right? This guy is one hundred fifty bucks ok? So if I need three of them that's four hundred bucks in addition to my flashes that I have to buy as well so that can get a little bit expensive but we have another option here let me show you this certain flashes, for example, the faux takes me chose plus have built in radio systems. That's. Why? The meters plus is our go to flash in this entire course. It's the one flash. If you're going to look for a full feature flash, this is the one that we recommend for canon nikon systems. They have both versions. It's, an absolutely fantastic full feature flash and it's four hundred bucks and for foreigner. But you're getting the whole kit and caboodle. Okay, but there's also the cannon e x or the cannon six hundred ex artie. Okay, that's, another flash that has a built in radio system. But if five hundred bucks and it was six hundred bucks until these guys came out and then cannon lowered the price, so they're a little bit more costly. But we kind of get rid of all the cables, because now this has a built in radio. This is also so this can act as a transmitter. It could also act of the receivers. So as long as I have a flash on my camera, I can actually transmit and receive the signals. So now I don't need actually extra cables. If I have to phone takes is off camera, I can control all those just from this one, I could also use that so takes odin right there, and we're gonna show you all these in complete detail later on, but that's, just a transmitter, so I could just put the transmitter on my camera. I want to have two flashes off camera and control it that way as well. So this is the built in radio system and as you can see, well, compare these two if I put this onto a stand and we'll show you guys pictures of those. But if I put these both onto stands, right, which system is going to be more simple? I mean, with this system, all have to do it. Just put a flash on the stand, and I can control it from my camera. And I'm good there's. No cables with this system with a manual flash system. I require maur gear. Okay, so in addition to the flash, you need your cable plus your pocket wizard. Sometimes the cables that it comes with will fit your flash. Sometimes, like this vivid tar, you need a separate flash cable. All right, so let's, go on to the next thing. Operational learning curve with radios. There is a little bit of an operational learning curve, but it's not really any more complex, complicated than a infrared flash system, and we're going to be teaching that entire kind of system here so we can teach you how to use radios, how to trouble shoot them and everything it's really not as bad as they seem okay, some require manual control flashes. We talked about that with these and then there's also, you know, some troubleshooting that can be required, but I don't want you guys to get worried about that component, and this is the whole reason why we didn't include this stuff in lighting one a one line in one on one we wanted to focus on just manipulating in shaping light here we're going to still focus on manipulating shaping light, but we have all this additional gear that we need to learn and kind of incorporate into that process now, but that's, why we separated them and that's why we have this course we're gonna approach in a very systematic and easy and fun way to learn. So hopefully this makes sense in terms of the different technologies when it comes to controlling off camera flash, and if you're wondering which is the best one well, don't wonder is by far a radio okay, radio transmission is the best technology for controlling flash because of range because of line of sight and all those things that come with those limitations in these other technology formats, so we're done with this video let's go ahead and move to the next one now

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Lighting 201 Slides

Ratings and Reviews


Pye is a god. His teaching style is really engaging, breaking down everything you could want to know about each example in a fun yet detailed manner. The course is absolutely jam-packed full of great information and fantastic inspiration. This course, as well as Lighting 101, give not only a perfect foundation for anybody learning about flash from scratch, but also have more than enough tips and advanced techniques in them to help experienced flash users seriously up their game. Cannot recommend it enough.

Lê Tiến Đạt

I'd like to say thank you to SLR Lougne, Creativelive and especially Pye for creating this wonderful Lighting series. Pye has a great sense of humor and he is also a great teacher. He expains everything in tiny details. I love his creativity, all the tips and dedication. Recommended!

Karen Ruet

I'm watching this live and am seriously considering buying this course. I really like the examples and all the information. Pye is super generous and easy to listen to. I also appreciate the talk about gear and am happy that Pye is giving us options for different price ranges. Thank you, Creative Live.

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