501 Blad flash reccomendation

Discussion in 'Medium Format' started by khitrovg, Aug 23, 2004.

  1. Dear PN users,

    I have been an active list member for a long time now. I guess it
    is time for me for a question.

    For quite some time I have been shooting 35 mm as well as the
    Digital (Canon 1Ds) weddings only

    I just bought a Hasselblad 501 and I am not sure which flash to tag
    along with me. Please recommend an on board flash.

  2. Depends how fancy and how compact you want to be with your flash exposures. A Vivitar 285 works just fine, especially if you want to use the flash on the cold shoe on top of the prism. Same with a Sunpak 120J, although some people have trouble with their forehead bumping into the unit (I don't). The Sunpak also can be used bare bulb and (using Quantum, Norman or Lumedyne modifiers) is quite flexible. It can be used with AAs or a battery pack. Any shoe mount flash that can be used in auto thyristor mode or manual would probably also work OK.

    Many people like the Quantum Q-flashes. I don't have one but heard good things about them. You need a pack for this one but you have a lot of auto apertures to choose from and more fine-tuning can be done with this unit. Manual goes down to 1/64th power. It is big though.

    There are also the Metz potato mashers--60CT-4 and 45CL-4 (I have both). The 60 uses a pack. Handle mount units are awkward to mount on a bracket above the lens, but the 60 has all the fine controls you would ever need. Use it in auto thyristor, with many apertures available; in TTL (I guess the 501 can't be used this way); and in manual, which goes down to 1/256th power. The 45 only has 3 manual power settings and has less power overall than the 60 but can be used with AA batteries. There are also the Sunpak handle mounts, which work well too.

    The Lumedyne Signature series units look really nice but they are expensive--I wish I had one.
  3. The 45 [...] has less power overall than the 60

    True. But the difference is less than one stop, less than one aperture number.
    But you get a unit that is overal easier to handle (no tethered and heavy battery pack), and just as good.
    I'd prefer the 45 CL-series over the 60-series any time.

    If by "on board" you mean a unit that mounts on top of the camera (you must use a prism finder with "cold shoe" to be able to do that), any of the smaller Metz units would be a good choice. Have a look at what they have on offer.
  4. I use a Metz CL4. Gives me auto apertaure - set aperture used on lens and fire away. It is excellent and can be used in full manual mode and has a good range of head adjustments plus small secondary unit for fill in flash plus ability to use a TTL adapter for other cameras that have TTL. Initially I used my Canon 550EX in manual mode too, but the Metz aperture auto is less fuss.

    Basically any gun that enables full manual mode can be used with a standard sync cable. Just make the calculations yourself. Likewise any gun with the old apreture auto mode will work as well. The only limit is TTL as the 501 does not have TTL capability. With the Metz if you ever upgrade to a 503 (that offers TTL) all you need to do is buy a Hasselblad adapter for TTL.
  5. I use a Quantum Q flash. Get the original model. It's cheaper. It produces really soft light.
  6. I've used my Metz 45CT4 first with 501CM, then 503CW (without SCA-390) and now with my 2000FC, and I like it very much. I'd also like to have a small flash (perhaps Metz 32Z2) some times when I use my 45 degree prism.
  7. I use a Metz 45CL-4 and a Quantum Q-Flash T2 you can see my setups here:


    I mostly use the Q-Flash T2, the round reflector goes well with the square format, and the removable reflector makes for a nice bare-bulb setup.

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