Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Spectacular Strobe Sale: Flashpoint Streaklight 360ws

Adorama is offering a complete Flashpoint Streaklight 360 kit for $399.95.  Hit the jump for details and why you might be interested.

The Streaklight is a battery-powered strobe, which is similar to a speedlight, but which uses an external battery pack to provide more capacity than typical speedlights.  Most such strobes can recycle more quickly than speedlights, with little chance of overheating.  Their bare bulb design also allows them to fill modifiers more evenly.  On the downside, they are bulkier than speedlights, and their reflector is not adjustable.
Compared to monolight studio strobes, battery-powered strobes have a few differences:
+ lighter and smaller
+ power source is lighter and smaller
+ usually, battery-powered strobes have a greater range of adjustment and can be adjusted down to 1/128 as opposed to 1/32 for some monolights.
+ can be used on-camera or with a bracket
+ some have TTL capability
- generally not as powerful as monolights
- weaker modeling light or no modeling light
- usually can't use AC power.
Because of these characteristics, they tend to be used for on-location setup shots, such as group portraits, or for lighting a large room.  I've also often seen them used for sports.
Probably the most well-known battery-powered strobe is the Quantum Qflash (reviewed here), which have been used by pros for many years.  Their tagline is 10,000 Non-Stop-Flashes, all day, every day.  Indeed, my Quantum X2 never overheated nor did I run out of power on any single session.  The biggest disadvantage of Quantum is their cost.  They are significantly more expensive than speedlights.  In addition, due to their modular design, it can be confusing for casual users to select the right components.   Not only do you have to buy the flash, but you also need a power pack, and the right kind of connection (which can vary depending if you want TTL or not).  The total cost can reach $1000 or more for a kit with one flash.  Not surprisingly, most of their users tend to be pros.
A few years ago, Chinese companies started trying to make battery-powered strobes at a much lower cost.  One such company is Godox, which made the Witstro AD180 and AD360.  It has been rebranded as the Neewer AD180/AD360, Cheetah CL-180/CL-360, Bolt VB-11/VB-22, and Flashpoint Streaklight 180/360.
The Streaklight 360 is a manual-only (no TTL) battery-powered strobe with 360 watt-seconds of power:
- adjustable to 1/128 in 1/3 stop increments
- built-in slave mode (S1 simple slave or S2 digital slave)
- compatible with Quantum and Lumedyne modifiers
It doesn't have a modeling lamp built-in, but an LED modeling lamp is available as an accessory. 
I haven't tried the Streaklight myself, but here are a couple of reviews of the Godox Witstro 360, which is practically identical to the Streaklight:
You can also check out the reviews of the Streaklight on Adorama's website.
Adorama's Flashpoint Streaklight kit includes:
- the Streaklight 360 (flash head)
- the Blast Pack (power pack)
- Transceiver Set (radio-based wireless remote adjustment - review TBA)
- Umbrella Reflector Kit (allows you to attach an umbrella directly to the streaklight head; includes an umbrella reflector to control spill).
Regularly $520, the kit is available for $399.95 with Free Shipping.
NOTE: We're not affiliated with Adorama, Godox, Flashpoint, Quantum, or any of the other companies mentioned on this post.

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