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Thread: Profoto B1x

  1. #1
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    Profoto B1x

    Hi,

    The Profoto B1x is realized.
    I am disappointed by it. It seems that they are not aware of the new technology on the market.
    It's still 500ws, but the battery lasts just 330 shots. Great improvement on the vacuum but not comparable to the alternatives. It continues to be heavy, big and slow. No new compelling feature.
    It's better, on paper than the B1 but that it's all.
    Both Profoto and Broncolor continue to have the advantage in terms of f-stops (9 vs 8 or 7 of the Chinese counterparts). Profoto is supposed to be more durable (Broncolor is fragile, more so than the impact venture), and Broncolor has the app. Profoto doesn't have the exposed bulb.

    I don't know it seems to be that they don't understand the modern world.
    And old guy talking about how the pros and the people that "know" use X don't cut it anymore. We have the internet.

    Rants apart solid update. The practicality of Profoto modifiers is still there. And Broncolor has the Paras, but you can use the Baras with Bowens.

    Best regards,

  2. #2
    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Profoto B1x

    The Profoto B1X is a minor update, particularly for those that already have the B1. Good news is that the updates are also available by firmware for B1 users. The new B1X battery can also be used on the B1 for extended capacity---no new modeling light though!

    I'm currently testing and reviewing the new SMDV BRiHT 360ws strobe----I'm impressed, particularly by its TTL implementation (better than Profoto) and its lighter, smaller form factor make it ideal for wedding photographers. If I was still doing weddings, I'd pick up a couple (and still have money left over compared to my single B1 purchase).

    I'm waiting for the next generation B2, with fingers-crossed for a hybrid with the old Acute B600 pack: more power, but lighter and smaller.

    Ken

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    Re: Profoto B1x

    I'm keenly interested, as I'm at a crossroads.
    I'm currently in Africa with two Eli Rangers RX
    and one AcuteB.
    Two of my four RX batteries are dead, so are two out of four heads.
    AcuteB down to one Life battery.

    Question: since I've been using mainly the 1100ws of the Rangers,
    I'm not sure about the B1s at 500ws. The Broncolor Siro at 800ws seems
    too heavy and too expensive.
    Anyone who also works with Phaseone and Mamiya RZ have thoughts on 500ws being enough as main light?
    Yes I normally dominate ambient light. And only shoot at 50ASA or 100ASA in a pinch.

    Will find out soon enough when I start shooting - hoping I can get by with AcuteBs for a while.

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Profoto B1x

    How effective the B1 will be at overpowering the sun will depend much on your subject matter (how many/wide does light coverage need to be), distance, and choice of modifiers. The Profoto Magnum is good for about an extra stop of power. And of course, you've got those new leaf shutter lenses.... and built in Profoto Air on your new XF...

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    Re: Profoto B1x

    Ken - indeed. And at my widest, there's still many tricks to getting stuff done.
    Just a weird crazy scene right now - a new LiFe battery is $650, while a good used
    AcuteB kit with LiFe can be had for $900.
    Already that's almost half of a new B1X...lol.
    I think I'll head in that direction - with all my foreign locations, having not to deal with power packs,
    getting 300+ pops, a usable modelling light, seems the sensible choice...

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    Re: Profoto B1x

    I think the B1x is just a natural evolution of the product as technology has allowed. Good that backwards compatibility is maintained

    Over time I've blown through a lot of different lighting systems until I bit the bullet and went with Profoto Compacts with Pocket Wizard ... then some Profoto studio packs also with Pocket Wizard triggers. Most lights back then were semi-worthless when you went to sell them used, except the Compacts. I actually sold them for more than what I paid new. Not sure that would hold true today with all the choices available now. Still, Profoto does seem to hold value.

    Now there are a lot of different choices, many with tons of innovative features ... but I question the mounts and durability ...both being problems I experienced on set and location with other kits.

    I agree with the review video I just watched about the SMDV ... all the manufactures of TTL units need to realize the popularity of other camera systems like Sony and Fuji etc. ... Profoto and Elinchrom both have TTL transmitters for Canon/Nikon and NOW Sony!

    In reality, I haven't used the TTL feature all that much, but the HSS has been a fab addition to working with the Sony A7R-II and faster Zeiss glass outdoors.

    Question: Has anyone simply removed the flat diffusion glass on the D1 or B1 and use it with a Magnum to see if the output increases?

    - Marc
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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Profoto B1x

    Marc,

    I have not compared the flat diffused glass vs the glass dome on the B1 when using the Magnum, but the Magnum does increase light output by about a full stop on the B1 and the B2. I use the glass dome on the B1 primarily because I feel it gives slightly better spread when using larger modifiers. But yes, with the original flat diffused glass, output on both the B1 and B2 with the Magnum does increase by about 1 f/stop.

    That being said, you might want to order the new OCF Magnum reflector. Apparently this hard reflector was designed by Profoto specifically with the flat glass front of the B1, B2 and D2 in mind. It is smaller (portable) and has similar light spread as the Magnum----BUT it is claimed to increase light output by 1.8 f/stops! I have an OCF Magnum on order so am excited to test/compare. And get this: the OCF Magnum is less expensive than the original Magnum! There is also a new OCF zoom reflector that is claimed by Profoto to increase output by a stop. Only downside on the new OCF Magnum is that it appears to not have a Profoto grid option. I'm looking into seeing if there are alternatives for a grid...

    ken

    p.s. Add Olympus to the Profoto Air TTL transmitter offerings (Canon, Nikon, Sony, Olympus...)
    www.houseoflandscapes.com
    www.kendoophotography.com
    www.carmelfineartprinting.com
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    Re: Profoto B1x

    Yeah Ken, I have the new OCF Zoom reflector on my alert list at B&H. Good to know the specs for the OCF Magnum, although I already have the reg one.

    What I was curious about was whether anyone had totally removed the flat diffusion glass from a D1 or B1 to expose the bulb (no diffusion modification). I'm going to pull one out tomorrow and see if it is possible.
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    Senior Member aztwang's Avatar
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    Re: Profoto B1x

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Yeah Ken, I have the new OCF Zoom reflector on my alert list at B&H. Good to know the specs for the OCF Magnum, although I already have the reg one.

    What I was curious about was whether anyone had totally removed the flat diffusion glass from a D1 or B1 to expose the bulb (no diffusion modification). I'm going to pull one out tomorrow and see if it is possible.
    Back when I had Profoto (right before I switched to Broncolor) I tested a Bron head vs B1 w/ flat glass, w/out glass on a Para and the spread was about the same with & w/out the glass and fell real short of the light spread that an exposed flash tube of the Bron. provided. Not sure why Profoto sticks to their recessed tube when they know they can improve and make allot of their customers happy. The B1X would have been the perfect head to roll out a change like that.

    Cheers
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    Re: Profoto B1x

    Quote Originally Posted by aztwang View Post
    Back when I had Profoto (right before I switched to Broncolor) I tested a Bron head vs B1 w/ flat glass, w/out glass on a Para and the spread was about the same with & w/out the glass and fell real short of the light spread that an exposed flash tube of the Bron. provided. Not sure why Profoto sticks to their recessed tube when they know they can improve and make allot of their customers happy. The B1X would have been the perfect head to roll out a change like that.

    Cheers
    Thanks. However, the question regarding with/without diffuser glass was more about output rather than spread. Is there a gain without the diffuser glass compared to with it? Which is why we were discussing the Magnum modifier.

    While I would have also preferred an exposed flash tube, I think the B1/B2/B1X units are aimed at a different market ... a more "rapid mobile" one. In that regard, I've found little to no practical difference in actual use, (weddings/environmental portraits and smaller on-site commercial jobs) ... and some gains in convenience (easier to transport, smaller grid mods, new line of OCF modifiers and lots of use of umbrella type soft-boxes).

    I'm not a fan of using any monoblock in studio for most of my main modifiers like a 33" Mola, 7' softbox, or anything boomed ... I have a few pack kits with small heads and exposed tubes for that stuff. I do use the D1s and B1s in studio to supplement the packs when needed (usually an accent light, small BD, grids, or simple OCF modifier).

    IMO, the D2 is where an exposed flash tube would have made more sense (like the old Profoto Compacts), because they are more likely to get used in studio. I have the add-on dome diffuser on all my D2s but it isn't the same as an exposed tube under a dome. It improves the spread, but at what cost in output?

    - Marc

  11. #11
    Senior Member aztwang's Avatar
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    Re: Profoto B1x

    Quote Originally Posted by fotografz View Post
    Thanks. However, the question regarding with/without diffuser glass was more about output rather than spread. Is there a gain without the diffuser glass compared to with it? Which is why we were discussing the Magnum modifier.

    While I would have also preferred an exposed flash tube, I think the B1/B2/B1X units are aimed at a different market ... a more "rapid mobile" one. In that regard, I've found little to no practical difference in actual use, (weddings/environmental portraits and smaller on-site commercial jobs) ... and some gains in convenience (easier to transport, smaller grid mods, new line of OCF modifiers and lots of use of umbrella type soft-boxes).

    I'm not a fan of using any monoblock in studio for most of my main modifiers like a 33" Mola, 7' softbox, or anything boomed ... I have a few pack kits with small heads and exposed tubes for that stuff. I do use the D1s and B1s in studio to supplement the packs when needed (usually an accent light, small BD, grids, or simple OCF modifier).

    IMO, the D2 is where an exposed flash tube would have made more sense (like the old Profoto Compacts), because they are more likely to get used in studio. I have the add-on dome diffuser on all my D2s but it isn't the same as an exposed tube under a dome. It improves the spread, but at what cost in output?

    - Marc
    Makes sense. IMHO the Acute 600 was one of the best packs Profoto ever made. Light pack, the head was super compact, exposed tube and 600ws. I have not used the B2 series stuff and when they first came out I thought they were a bit underpowered and didnt make much sense but my bad!..Lotsa people love them.
    At what cost??? Man thats a tough one. Does my MF back make sense? Does the 1.4 lens make sense over the 1.8? Some of these decisions are hard to see, we have to trust test results and reviews...BUT the exposed tube IMHO is an obvious benefit especially when trying to provide even soft lighting out of a large softbox and especially on a Para which suffers considerably with a recessed tube when the head is pulled all the way out....it starves the outer 24 "pedals". I get what you mean "At what cost" I think there's an in depth article somewhere!.....LOL...BTW hows that big Mola caopare to a Profoto beuty dish?

    Don

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    Re: Profoto B1x

    Quote Originally Posted by aztwang View Post
    Makes sense. IMHO the Acute 600 was one of the best packs Profoto ever made. Light pack, the head was super compact, exposed tube and 600ws. I have not used the B2 series stuff and when they first came out I thought they were a bit underpowered and didnt make much sense but my bad!..Lotsa people love them.
    At what cost??? Man thats a tough one. Does my MF back make sense? Does the 1.4 lens make sense over the 1.8? Some of these decisions are hard to see, we have to trust test results and reviews...BUT the exposed tube IMHO is an obvious benefit especially when trying to provide even soft lighting out of a large softbox and especially on a Para which suffers considerably with a recessed tube when the head is pulled all the way out....it starves the outer 24 "pedals". I get what you mean "At what cost" I think there's an in depth article somewhere!.....LOL...BTW hows that big Mola caopare to a Profoto beuty dish?

    Don
    I agree Don, the Profoto Acute-B 600 AIR Lithium is still one of my favorite lighting tools ... I use it for mobile work with the head on a painter's stick, AND in studio with heavier boomed mods like the Mola 33". I also have a B2 kit, but the Acute-B 600 is far more versatile. Even though the B2 can be used in TTL mode, its 250 W/s and flat diffused glass limits it in certain lighting conditions ... where the Acute-B keeps going.

    The Mola I have is a 33.5" Beama which is the same size as a Euro but the interior is a highly polished silver that produces a "specular" light quality ... I use it for shooting figure or body-builder competitors, and some products. It can be diffused and used for portraits also. This BD is a monster requiring a very large Matthews rolling stand and boom arm.

    The Profoto BD is smaller and compares in size to the 22" Mola Demi. Molas produce a very nice quality of light, however, at the 20"-22" size I'd just as soon keep a Profoto if you already have one.

    Last year, as a "knock around" beauty dish solution for transport and such, I also added a 28" Fotodiox Pro BD that came with a honeycomb grid, diffuser, and speed-ring for Profoto ... at a cost of ... wait for it ... $170.!!!!!! At that price I wasn't expecting much but I was wrong. It has proven to be a fine tool for most work, and it isn't so darned "precious"

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    - Marc
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