Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by mhc, Dec 15, 2010.

  1. I have a canon 580exII flash, that I bought a year ago. I find I rarely use it, I am debating just selling it and buying a faster lens...my question. Will I eventually be sorry? Keep or not to keep, that is the question.
  2. How can we answer that question?

    What do you shoot? Will you be able to photograph your subject effectively without flash? Is your subject the sort that
    works well with large aperture and narrow DOF? What gear do you currently have? What len(es) are you considering?
    Do you need a different lens and the flash? Is it necessary to sell the flash to fund the lens?

    We don't have a lot to go on, I'm afraid.

  3. Well, I mostly shoot outdoors, rarely inside. I want to shoot concert and indoor low light no flash..occasionally I guess I answered my own question, lol. I will be moving up to a 7D and higher iso. But I still wonder about the flash and will I miss it. The lens I'm looking at are 85mm 1.8 and 135 F2L. I have 50mm1.8 and tamron 17-50 2.8 and also tokina wideF4 12-24mm Right now canon 40D
  4. I like using the flash outdoors for fill on back- or side-lit portraits. The sunlight glistening in a figure's hair can be gorgeous. The built-in bounce card on the 580exII does a good job. Just a little fill goes a long way - too much flash looks unnatural.
  5. I never saw the need for the latest/very best flash. I still use my old 430EX (Mk.1). But an external strobe with bounce and AF assist is a just too valueable tool to sell it. Fast primes and flash are not mutually exclusive but usually complement one another. I wouldn't want to be found without either one.
  6. Hmm Ken, Bueh, you put doubt in my brain again.. I guess I'll just wait n see.. I hate hanging on to things that I rarely use. It was just a thought but maybe your right, if in doubt don't throw it out lol :) Thanks
  7. If you ever find yourself in a situation where you want to freeze subject motion, your fast prime may still not give you the shutter speed necessary to do so without cranking the ISO up too high. NR software is great, but it definitely comes at a cost in terms of sharpness.
    I have the 7D, and with noise ninja, I can take nice shots at ISO 3200. But even wide open at f/1.4, the shutter speeds are fairly slow in low light. I find the flash invaluable, but I do a bit of indoor shooting.
  8. If I didn't already have 4 580ex II, I would buy yours.
    If you're not using your flash, you probably need a few lessons on flash photography. With a single flash, you can do a lot of things. When outdoors in bright sunlight, you can turn down the flash power and use the flash as fill light. Or like Ken has stated, you can pull out the "Catch Light Card" and bounce the light of the card. Indoors, you can use bounce flash technique. I recommend that you get an OC-E3 cable and get the flash off the camera's hot shoe. By holding the light higher with one hand, you create shadows that drop. The theory is to get the flash away from the lens axis. Keeping the flash on the camera eliminates shadows on your subject's face. If you want to soften the light, get a light modifier. The bigger the modifier, the softer the light. Also, the closer the light is to the subject, the softer the light.
    Also, if you plan to get a 7D in the future, you can trigger the flash wirelessly. If you shooting stage performance, you'll be able to set up a flash on a stand close to the stage and trigger the flash without buy any other accessories.
    My personal opinion is instead of selling the flash. Learn how to shoot with it first. Once you do, you may want to buy more. I recommend my friends to buy minimum of two flashes (One as a main flash and the second as a fill flash).
  9. why not buy a 430EX II to compliment the 580. The 580 will trigger the 430 off camera. With the off camera flash, you will open up tons of new photo possibilities. Who knows, you may end up shooting more flash photography than you ever imagined. However, if you strictly shoot things that don't allow for flash, such as sports or concerts, then a faster lens may be of more use, otherwise I wouldn't give up on the flash yet. Once you learn the possibilities a flash can bring when used properly, you won't want to let it go.
  10. just read that you'll be getting a 7D, even more reason to keep it. The 580 can be triggered off camera from the 7D, without having to buy expensive remotes.
  11. What Nathan said.
    What's better than using Canon's top of the line flash? Using it off camera. Certainly flash is not necessary in some areas of photography and you may do all of your shooting under those conditions. I don't use mine a lot, but I'm sure glad I have it when I need it. Unless you really need the money, I'd keep it.
  12. Flash can make you a lot more versatile but if you have assessed your needs and realised you really don't use it, then yes, selling isn't such a bad thing. You'll fetch a good price.
  13. I too do little flash photography and like Bueh, I have only an old 430. Still, when you need one, you really need one, and as long as you've got the 'best' one, I'd hang onto it, if it were my choice.
    Used Canon 580 EXs have gone on eBay recently for between US $175 to ca. $250. Mark II ones seem to start at around $375 and go up to over $500. Most of the mark ii ones, are new.
    You're certainly not going to get much in the way of hi-speed L lenses for what it would bring.
  14. I think lightinging is one of the most important elements of photography. So for me I would sell a lens way before any of my lighting. I think a lot of people don't like flash because they hate the way it looks in the photos. However, I use flash in almost everything I shoot and people think it is all natural light. If you never use flash you probably won't like the look, but once you master it, you will find it will greatly enhance your photos. I absolutely love my 580 EX II and have many friends who are pure strobist and have been trying to get me to give up my Ab800's and convert to all Speedlights. If I had a 7D I could see using 2 -3 580 EX II only. The faster the lenses you have the less notable the flash will be when you mix ambient light with flash.
  15. I only do a small amount of flash photography, but when I do I need a good flash. A 580 EX II lives in my bag most of the time.
    But that's just me. :)
  16. Don't get rid of it- learn how to use it- then use it. http://www.strobist.blogspot.com/
    I used to think it was better to shoot all natural light so I bought fast glass and good low-light cameras. Then I realized I was missing the point and started learning how to light.
    Best of both words...
  17. I read it all, thanks, and now I`m reconsidering. The overall concensus appears to keep it. Yes I admit, I haven`t used it much and I don`t like some flash photos I`ve taken with it. Its probably a user thing. I need to know how, and getting it off camera is the first step I think. I will look at the links and photos here, thanks. Its good to get this advice and it is a very well made and powerful flash, and yep, now I think I would probably regret it if I was to sell it. Thanks all.
  18. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator

    You don't have to get it off-camera to make it work, it's more about learning how to set things and use them. This was taken with the 580EX2 on-camera, for example...
  19. Make what work, Jeff? The flash, or the image?
  20. Like you, I usually make pictures without flash, but sometimes, even with fast lenses, a flash unit can be very useful. For example if you photograph under artifical light conditions that contain a limited color range, a flash may be needed to achieve more natural colors, or when you want to "highlight" a subject, etc. So if you do not need to sell it keep it.
  21. Wow nice shot. I am looking the flash cord now, and will experiment with some on camera stuff until then. I will dig out the manual..sigh. I hope it snows this weekend. How long a flash cord is practical?
  22. Keep the 580EX II or learn to regret getting rid of it!
    Besides, you won't get enough out of it to purchase any exceptional glass anyway! It will come in handy someday, indoors or out!
  23. Flash is one of those must have accesories. Although you shoot out doors there are times when you need it, especially if the subject would need some fill in due to shadows. I would not sell it unless a better one comes out, still I might keep it to fill backgrounds.
  24. Hi Catherine.
    Like some have said here...flash is also good for outdoor photography to be used as a filler of light. Once you get used to using it outside you will miss it when you don't use it. I'll see if I can upload a few examples but I'm sure you can find them on the web flash vs. non-flash outdoors.
  25. Since when is a 430EX Mark I "old" (says the man who uses a 420EX at least once a week)? :)

Share This Page