19 Cool New On-Camera Lights and Modifiers for Event Photographers

December 4, 2018

By Greg Scoblete

Metz Mecablitz 64 AF-1

The mecablitz features a guide number of 64 at 200mm with a unique color touch screen on the back to navigate menu settings. The flash is available for Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Sony and Micro Four Thirds cameras and supports TTL, HSS and a servo mode for each model.

Price: $460

LumiQuest Wedding/Event Kit

A one-stop speed light modifying kit, this package includes a QuikBounce and FXtra, a nine-piece set of colored gels. The QuikBounce modifier is secured to your flash using the company’s UltraStrap, which applies 3 pounds of pressure to your flash to ensure the modifier stays in place.

Price: $59

3D Flex Flash WYNG

The brainchild of a pair of wedding photographers and 3D-printed from a factory in their garage, the WYNG is a speed light modifier that’s super light yet durable. The WYNG slips onto your flash head but won’t obscure any of its output. Its gently curved shape helps reflect light onto your subject. If you use gels, the WYNG will hold them securely in place over your flash.

Price: $30

Sony HVL-F60RM

The radio-controlled F60RM offers a guide number of 60 (200mm at ISO 100) with an illumination angle of 20-200mm. Recycle times clock in at 1.7 seconds but you’ll achieve even faster times using the optional $250 external battery adapter (FA-EBA1). The F60RM uses Sony’s Quick Shift Bounce that lets you move from a horizontal to a vertical orientation, 90 degrees right or left, upward by up to 150 degrees and downward by 8 degrees for positioning. The flash is dust- and moisture-resistant and supports TTL.

Price: $600

Profoto A1

Profoto’s 76 W/s flash features TTL metering, HSS and recycling times between 0.05 and 1.2 seconds. Power is adjustable over a nine-stop range and the lithium-ion battery is good for 350 full-powered flashes. The battery is interchangeable so you can pack a spare and shoot for hours on end. It has a magnetic mount so you can easily add modifiers—even stack them—to shape its output. The A1 has Profoto’s AirTTL built in so you can control other Profoto lights.

Price: $995

Promaster 100SL

The 100SL has a guide number of 100 with 22 different power settings. It has three bounce positions and can swivel 90 degrees to the right or left. It covers a range from 24-50mm and has a built-in LED that can be used as a video light in a pinch. It supports remote camera triggering plus wireless master/slave TTL functionality and a stroboscopic mode. The flash is available for Nikon, Canon, Sony and Fujifilm cameras.

Price: $150

Nissin i400

The compact i400 has a guide number of 40 at ISO 100 (105mm) and a zoom range of 24-105mm. It can be widened to 16mm with the included panel. Powered by four AA batteries, the i400 supports HSS and offers recycle times between 0.1-4 seconds.

Price: $150

FJ Westcott Pocket Box

The rounded Pocket Box gives you a sun-like shape and is compatible with any speed light using the elastic straps. It includes a removable, one-stop inner diffusion baffle.

Price: $20

Phottix Juno TTL

Packed with TTL, manual and stroboscopic modes, Phottix’s Juno TTL uses the newly released Odin Z Operating System, which automatically detects what camera you’re using, and sets TTL functions accordingly (for Canon, Nikon, Sony and Pentax cameras). It also enables the flash to function as a light meter and display real-time power settings. The Juno TTL has a guide number of 60 and recycling times under 4 seconds. It’s powered by four AA batteries.

Price: tbd

Lastolite Ezybox SpeedLite 2

Broadly compatible with most flashes on the market, the Ezybox includes both an inner and outer diffusion layer to soften up your light. The modifier collapses quickly with the push of a button and is built from a rip-stop material that’s designed for wear and tear. It has small magnets on the interior so you can connect grids or a gel holder to it as well.

Price: $70

Nikon SB-5000 AF Speedlight

Nikon’s first flash to operate using radio frequency, the SB-5000 can work without a direct line-of-sight when used with select Nikon cameras at a range of 98 feet. Owners of older Nikon models can still use the SB-5000, but you’ll rely on an optical trigger. If you use the speed light with the WR-R10 wireless transceiver and the D500, you can control up to six groups (A-F) or 18 flashes in all. The SB-5000 can fire up to 120 continuous flashes at 5-second intervals.

Price: $600

Lume Cube

Housed in a 1.5-inch cube (what else?) that’s waterproof to a depth of 100 feet, the Lume Cube delivers 150 Lux at 9 feet. The light has ten brightness settings and will last for roughly 45 minutes at full power or two hours at half power. The Lume Cube can also be used as a flash—it has an optical sensor to serve as a slave to a camera flash. You can pair your Android or iPhone to the light via Bluetooth to control flash duration, power settings and more, and you can control up to 100 Lume Cubes simultaneously from the app. It sports a ¼ -20 mount on the base, so it plays well with all your industry standard mounts.

Price: $80

Magnet Mod MagSnoot

With four collapsible stages, the molded rubber MagSnoot gives you several different beam patterns in one modifier. It attaches to your flash using the $25 MagGrip (sold separately). There’s an integrated gel slot on the snoot so you can alter colors or balance ambient lighting.

Price: $50

Savage Universal RGB300 Video Light

This budget-friendly LED can mount to your camera via a tiltable shoe mount and displays up to 300 different colors, no gels required. You’ll enjoy a CRI of 97, and the daylight-balanced LEDs can pump out 1,525 lux at 1 meter (when set to daylight). You can steplessly dim the light from 20 to 100 percent. The panel measures 5.5 x 4.5 inches and accepts the Sony-compatible NP-750 battery. In daylight mode, the light can run for 2.5 hours or up to 4 hours at full power in color mode.

Price: $120

Manfrotto Lumimuse 8

If you want a continuous light with plenty of easy creative effects, Manfrotto’s petite Lumimuse is a good option. It has several snap-on filters to modify color temperature and diffusion of the eight LEDs. The Lumimuse can be dimmed in four steps and has a CRI of 92+. It is daylight-balanced and delivers 550 lux at 1 meter. You’ll get about an hour of life on a fully charged battery.

Price: $120

Rotolight Neo 2

The NEO 2 can pull double duty as a strobe or continuous light. Thanks to a partnership with Elinchrom, Rotolight has integrated Elinchrom’s Skyport 2.4GHz radio into the NEO 2, enabling high-speed sync functionality (up to 1/8000 sec.) and the ability to control up to ten lights in four groups. When used as a strobe, the NEO 2 has no recycling time and no loss of flash power even when shooting long, uninterrupted bursts of flashes, the company claims. Used as a continuous light, it can simulate lighting effects like lightning or police sirens.

Price: $399

Canon 470EX-AI

We highlighted the 470EX-AI as our Editor’s Choice in October because it does something other flashes can’t: automatically determine the distance of the camera to the subject and to walls and ceiling to optimize the flash for bouncing. A brief double tap of the shutter will fire the flash, and then the flash head will automatically swivel into position for an optimal bounce-flash exposure. You can also disable this function and use the 470EX-AI as a typical flash. It has a guide number of approximately 154 feet/47 meters at ISO 100 and 105mm flash coverage. There are ten custom buttons and nine personal functions.

Price: $400

Lowel Go Lite

If your photography has you working in tight spaces, Lowel’s Go Lite is a great option. This compact LED can be hotshoe-mounted, but it’s light enough to be handheld off camera or mounted on a tiny tabletop tripod. It has an AF assist function to kick on with a half-press of the shutter to help you lock focus. Used as a continuous light, the Go Lite is dimmable in ten steps and is daylight-balanced with a CRI of 90+. It ships with a tungsten filter and a daylight diffusion dome, and it runs off of four AA batteries.

Price: $70

Flashpoint Zoom Li-ion R2 TTL

Delivering full-power recycling times of under 1.5 seconds, the Zoom Li-ion’s battery is good for up to 650 flashes at full power. In addition to TTL metering, the flash supports HSS and uses Flashpoint’s R2 radio technology for remote control of other R2-enabled lights. The flash is sold for Nikon, Canon and Sony. Versions without TTL are also available for Fujifilm, Olympus and Panasonic.

Price: $179

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