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Author Topic: Elinchrom ELB500  (Read 1145 times)

nemophoto

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Elinchrom ELB500
« on: May 09, 2018, 08:57:29 AM »

Has anyone bought and uses this? I have the ELB400. Iím thinking of buying this by the end of the week, but Iíd love to hear from anyone who has hands on.


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TheDocAUS

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Re: Elinchrom ELB500
« Reply #1 on: May 11, 2018, 01:40:23 AM »

Here is a review of the 500 here. The reviewer upgraded his flash heads from the 400 to the 500.
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douglevy

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Re: Elinchrom ELB500
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2018, 08:49:39 AM »

Why? For 100ws and TTL? Get the 1200 (I have 2, they're amazing). The lightness of the 1200 for the power is ridiculous.

-Doug

Rado

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Re: Elinchrom ELB500
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2018, 11:47:30 AM »

I have ordered one over a month ago but it hasn't arrived yet, either the demand is high or they have manufacturing problems. This is the first battery powered Elinchrom light I have considered buying because it finally has HSS.
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calindustries

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Re: Elinchrom ELB500
« Reply #4 on: May 13, 2018, 09:25:15 PM »

Why? For 100ws and TTL? Get the 1200 (I have 2, they're amazing). The lightness of the 1200 for the power is ridiculous.

-Doug

Sorry to hi jack, Doug, if I remember correctly you used to have rfas rangers with lithiumís (I think we did conversions at the same time). Has the move into the newer kit been worth it?

I had considered switching to Moves as I use Bron in studio, but couldnít justify the money. The old 1100s keep blasting away with no issues.

Thanks in advance for any feedback

-Craig


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BobDavid

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Re: Elinchrom ELB500
« Reply #5 on: May 16, 2018, 12:42:27 AM »

I've got a couple Quadra "ready to go" hybrids. 400 Watts. Great units--consistent light and color output.
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douglevy

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Re: Elinchrom ELB500
« Reply #6 on: May 16, 2018, 08:09:51 AM »

Hey Craig,

Totally worth it - I had some other issues with my rangers, and the batteries were getting ready to replace from heavy use anyway. The new ones are smaller, lighter and more reliable/adjustable than the rangers were. If my rangers were 100% I'd have kept using them, but they were just beat up from use and ready to be replaced.

-Doug

calindustries

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Re: Elinchrom ELB500
« Reply #7 on: May 16, 2018, 10:37:01 AM »

Hey Craig,

Totally worth it - I had some other issues with my rangers, and the batteries were getting ready to replace from heavy use anyway. The new ones are smaller, lighter and more reliable/adjustable than the rangers were. If my rangers were 100% I'd have kept using them, but they were just beat up from use and ready to be replaced.

-Doug


Thanks! What heads did you end up going with if you donít mind me asking?


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douglevy

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Re: Elinchrom ELB500
« Reply #8 on: May 16, 2018, 11:34:15 AM »

2 ELB 1200's, one HS head, one action head

nemophoto

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Re: Elinchrom ELB500
« Reply #9 on: May 17, 2018, 09:58:03 PM »

I just bought the ELB 500 and got it Monday. I'll be using it for a week long location shoot next week, so I'll see how it does. While someone mentioned the ELB 400 (which i own with the HS head), and wondered why bother for only 100ws more, I suppose the answer is ease of use. It took me almost a year to dial in the ODS for HS on my 1Dx and 5Ds. And I still experience gradation of strobe, which under certain circumstances is VERY noticeable and hard to control. I love the ELB 400 and will keep it, but there are times clients get frustrated because i have to chimp like hell to fine tune the exposure since it's virtually impossible to meter the strobe the way I use it (micro pops for just a bit of fill). My initial tests with the ELB 500 make it a bit of a no brainer -- both on manual or TTL. But we'll see how it is living with it for a week.

Rado

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Re: Elinchrom ELB500
« Reply #10 on: May 18, 2018, 07:59:47 AM »

Nemo where are you located? It irks me that someone can just walk into a store and buy the ELB500 while I've been waiting for almost two months and still don't have mine. Elinchrom is not winning any brownie points with me here.
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nemophoto

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Re: Elinchrom ELB500
« Reply #11 on: May 18, 2018, 08:36:09 AM »

Nemo where are you located? It irks me that someone can just walk into a store and buy the ELB500 while I've been waiting for almost two months and still don't have mine. Elinchrom is not winning any brownie points with me here.

I live in PA and work out of NYC. B&H had them in stock a week or so ago, but now listed as ďmore in the wayĒ. I actually bought mine directly from the distributor, the MAC Group via PhotoVideoEdu.com. While they had the To Go kit in stock (I had written them inquiring whether they had them, which was affirmative), they did not have the extra battery I usually would want. So, thatís a supply chain issue.

From where did you order yours? Iíd cancel and do a search of the larger stores and see what you can find. For all I know, maybe I got the last one in stock at photovideoudu.


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Rado

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Re: Elinchrom ELB500
« Reply #12 on: June 05, 2018, 04:24:11 PM »

Nemo what's your experience with the ELB500 so far?

Mine finally arrived today so I'm eager to take it out for a spin (I spent last week at a photo workshop where I wanted to originally test it, sigh...).
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nemophoto

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Re: Elinchrom ELB500
« Reply #13 on: September 18, 2018, 01:35:54 PM »

Here's my update on the ELB 500: Fantastic!

I have use the strobe on a number of location shoots and even for some quick still-life. I have used it both in TTL mode and manual and it has worked almost flawlessly. I have used it extensively with the 70cm Rotolux softbox (which can be used with an included modifier like a beauty dish), the 100cm Rotolux and the 5" reflector. All have been great with lots of power to spare.

Now for better detail of how I use it. When I am on location,  I use it frequently in place of a reflector (ScrimJim, flexifill, etc.) because models have a much easier time with the strobe than a reflector in bright light. I use the strobe as a "micro pop" fill to keep things looking natural or to add light if I have to shoot in overcast. For me, because I shoot quickly, often with models walking, the strobe will generally keep up. (The fastest I could ever shoot using strobe is still an Einstein on 20w/s running off a Vagabond, but my Pocket Wizard sync was usually limited to about 1/320 to 1/400 on my 1Dx and 1/250 on my 5Ds.)

One of my favorite features is that I can shoot the strobe on TTL and it will give me a readout of, say, 2.9. (I have no idea what that's in relationship to -- PITA -- but it's a European power standard). I can switch to manual and maintains that power setting, so in effect "metering for me". Now, let's say I have the Skyport set to -3 on TTL and the power is still too much? I can switch to manual and dial down even more. The TTL has gotten me in the ballpark, but now I can tune to taste. I bought a Sekonic L-858D-U. Nice meter in some respects. (I can switch radio modules and so use my Pocket Wizards or switch to the Elinchrom transmitter.) I bought the bloody expensive meter because it was supposed to be able to read the HSS and HS strobes for my ELB 500 and ELB 400. Unless you are blasting power, doesn't work. So it's the old eyeball and chimping. But I digress.

Overall, an excellent strobe. I wish that an extensiuon cable was available so I could get a 2nd head and make it worthwhile. I also wish my Elincrhom ringlight worked with it, but it only works with the ELB 400. It's pricey, but if you do a lot of location work, it's well worth the money. On an average week long catalog shoot, I'll shoot between 500-700GB with my 5Ds and 1Dx. This is about 85 different shots, 90-350 frames per shot. I'd say I use the ELB 500 for about 60-70% of the shots. (Sometime more.) Until recently, I only had one battery since the battery was on backorder. The strobe would go all morning with a quick charge at lunch and then the afternoon.

Rado

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Re: Elinchrom ELB500
« Reply #14 on: September 19, 2018, 07:46:44 AM »

Yes I like my ELB500 too. Couple of notes:

- the existing quadra extension cables are compatible. the 2m one loses a bit of power, the 5m one loses about 1/3 stop of power

- the Sekonic 858 can meter HSS - I've tried it with various flashes and also with the ELB500, it works for me? What are your issues? I don't think it's technically possible to meter HS flashes and the 858 wasn't advertised as being able to do so

As you said it's a great light. The only issue Elinchrom still needs to fix in firmware is exposing both A and B ports separately for Skyport. As it is now the ELB500 shows up as one unit on the trigger even if you have two heads plugged in.
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nemophoto

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Re: Elinchrom ELB500
« Reply #15 on: September 20, 2018, 11:34:06 AM »

Nice to know about the cables, both from the standpoint of them existing, but also about the power drop. Interesting. When I used Speedotrons, I frequently had to use extension cables and never experienced a power output loss. I guess it's a factor of the battery.


The 858 does do both HSS and HS (one reason I bought it - depends on what module you use and which of the many modes you select). It is, however, incapable of distinguishing very low power strobes in ambient light (I'm talking sub-10% output compared to ambient). As I mentioned, I'm going for very low power fill most of the time. So, at this point, I strictly use it for ambient light and studio light readings and don't bother with HSS and just have to eyeball it.

Rado

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Re: Elinchrom ELB500
« Reply #16 on: September 20, 2018, 12:16:26 PM »

Sorry but the 858 does not meter HS mode (long tail sync, slow burning sync etc). Where do you have that information from? It's not in the manual or anywhere else. I do own the device so I'm fairly familiar with it. For flash you have the normal mode (cord, cordless and radio triggering) and the HSS mode (cordless triggering only). I suppose technically you can use the meter in normal mode while in HS territory but that won't give you correct results because in HS mode the flash doesn't cut off after the shutter closes like it does with HSS. This is the reason why I never owned any ELB models prior to ELB500, even though I use Elinchrom strobes in the studio.

I'm going to try to meter low light mixed with ambient, I'm usually at around 20-30% where the metering seems to work ok.
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nemophoto

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Re: Elinchrom ELB500
« Reply #17 on: September 20, 2018, 02:44:54 PM »

You may be right regarding HS. When I considered purchasing the meter, I spoke with someone from tech support at the MAC Group. At that time, it was fairly new, so perhaps they did not know what they were talking about when I discussed HS metering with the Elinchrom ELB 400. I even wrote Sekonic directly about the issue. They eventually wrote back and going over the email again, the guy references HSS. Because it's a little disjointed (as one might expect when writing in a non-native language), the fact probably never really sank in.

Since I've only owned the ELB 500 for a few months and gave up on the 858 metering accurately, I haven't tried the 858 with the 500.
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