Saturday, August 4, 2012

CowboyStudio Umbrella Stand Adapter D

I was looking for a couple more umbrella holder brackets.  There are plenty of designs out there, and I chose a kind of bracket I had not seen before but had good reviews, the CowboyStudio Umbrella Bracket "D."  Here's a quick review.


The adapter is made mostly of metal (some sort of lightweight alloy).  Build quality appears decent.

The set includes a metal cold shoe, a spacer for the cold shoe, and a spigot.  The spigot has a removable bushing that can convert it from 1/4 to 3/8 inch.  That means the adapter can accept a light stand with either 1/4 (as in a tripod), 3/8, or 5/8 inch stud (by simply removing the spigot).

The business end of the adapter has a 1/4-inch stud, to which the cold shoe can be mounted (with the spacer to secure it).  You can also use many other third party cold shoes such as a Frio.  Alternatively, the spigot can be mounted on the 1/4 inch stud so that the adapter will have a 5/8 mounting stud.

- The receptacle for the umbrella can only take 7mm shafts.  Unlike some umbrella adapters, the receptacle is not angled (the umbrella shaft will be exactly perpendicular to the flash).

- When the adapter's knob is tightened, the adapter holds its position well.  It is possible to force it to move if you push it down really hard but in the real world the adapter is unlikely to encounter that much force.
- The receptacle for the light stand or spigot is secured both by a thumbscrew as well as a button.  Even if the thumbscrew is not locked down, you can't remove it from a light stand unless you press the button.
- There is a loop from which you can hang accessories such as radio triggers.
- It takes up less space in my bag than my old umbrella adapter.

So far I'm pleased with this umbrella adapter.  If I need another umbrella adapter, I would probably buy it again instead of the previous one I owned.  Alternatively, if you want to mount a speedlight on a light stand for use with an umbrella, the CowboyStudio Speedlight Bracket T places the flash closer to on-axis with the umbrella and can potentially be used with Bowens or Calumet modifiers, but the Bracket T will cost more and take up more space than the Adapter D.

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