Profoto B1 flash revolution

Profoto_B1.jpg

The benefits by using regular camera flashes, so-called Speedlites, are that they are small, cable free and have TTL (Through The Lens auto lighting calculation). This means that for example wedding photographers can act faster when pressed for time. The downside is that they are not as bright and the TTL is not always constant in brightness from image to image with similar motives. Studio lights are much brighter but usually need to be plugged into wall outlets or has a large and heavy external battery. They are also operated manually and are difficult to use out in the field.

Now the Swedish company have released a flash model, called B1, which is a mixture between Speedlites and studio flashes. B1 has a built-in battery (no large external batteries or need for outlets) and has a built-in radio control (no wires to the camera). They have flash power of 500 Ws, that means the brightness equals about 10 Speedlites! It makes it easier to illuminate a large softbox in daylight and get a beautiful soft light. It also has a LED modeling light power-efficient enough to also be used as video light.

Profoto B1 also has TTL and the light measurement is remembered when switching the camera into manual mode, which may allow a photographer to work a little faster than when using a pure manual mode. It also has a short flash duration and may take up to 20 flashes per second. This means that it can freeze many rapid movements. See more at Profos website here.

Professional photographers can register for a Profoto B1 workshop here.

Profptp_B1_back

Image from Profoto

General Specifications

  • Max energy: 500Ws
  • Energy range: 9 f-stops (2-500Ws)
  • Energy control increments: 1/10 or full f-stops
  • Recycling time: 0.1-1.9 (Quick burst up to 20 flashes/second)
  • Max modeling light (W): 20W LED (Output eqvivalent to 70W Halogen)
  • Modeling light control: Off, Proportional, Free (5-100%)
  • Mode control: Freeze (shortest flash duration) or Normal (color balance) mode
  • Flash duration Normal mode (t0.5): 1/11,000s (2Ws) - 1/1,000s (500Ws)
  • Flash duration Freeze mode (t0.5): 1/19,000s (2Ws) - 1/1,000s (500Ws)
  • Energy stability Normal mode: +-1/20 f-stop flash to flash
  • Energy stability Freeze mode: +-1/20 f-stop flash to flash
  • Color stability Normal mode: +-150K over range; +-20K flash to flash
  • Color stability Freeze mode: +-800K over range; +-50K flash to flash
  • Energy control increments: 1/10 or full f-stops
  • Guide number @ 2m / 100 ISO with Magnum Reflector: 45 2/10
  • Input power supply: Exchangeble Lithium-Ion Battery 14.4V/3Ah
  • Battery capacity: Up to 220 full power flashes

Syncronization and Control

  • Sync socket(s): 1
  • Wire sync voltage:Compliant to ISO 10330 standard
  • Wire sync connector:3.5mm Mini-Phono
  • Photocell/IR-slave and switch:Yes
  • Radio sync & control:Yes, Built in AirTTL supporting wireless sync, control and TTL. (Requires Air Remote TTL. Sold separately.)
  • Radio sync range:Up to 300m (1000ft)
  • MAC / PC control:Yes, via optional Profoto Air USB transceiver and Profoto Studio software.

Miscellaneous

  • Function display: Multifunction LCD display
  • Fan cooling: Yes, thermally controlled fan speed for low noice level.
  • Ready signalling: Yes, ready lamp, dim and/or switchable beep sound.
  • Auto dumping: Yes
  • USB interface: Yes, USB Mini port for FW upgrading
  • Quick burst: Quick burst capability of up to 20 flashes per second.

Measurements

  • Diameter: 14cm (5.5")
  • Length: 31cm (12.2")
  • Height: 21cm (8.3")
  • Weight: 3kg (Including batteries) 6.6 LBS 3kg (Including batteries)
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