Lightweight, Versatile, Some Shortcomings
March 30, 2015
If you are looking for an inexpensive and versatile softbox, this item can work fairly well, as long as you have enough power filling it. I've used it with speedlights, with video LEDs, and with studio strobes.
The umbrella style mounting makes for a lightweight and portable softbox, but when so mounted, the box has a tendency to rotate around the axis of the umbrella shaft. Note also that the light inside the softbox will make for a dark spot - so if you are lighting faces with these, the catchlights in the eyes will (literally) reflect this. These will also be teltale in any product photography in which you are looking to use the highlight (such as bottles).
Using these with speedlights - I would recommend two or more lights inside each softbox.
The stand is about as lightweight as you can get away with and still call it a stand. You wouldn't want to put anything heavier than a small LED panel or a speedlight on one of the included stands.
By saving in weight and expense of a machined mounting ring, you will pay a price in terms of the visibility of the light source itself inside the box.
If you are looking for a rim light for head shots, or head and shoulders, or a hair light, these can work well. Light enough to go on a boom with a speedlight.
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