Business website update & instagram & Godox X2T Trigger

I’m just making a small update regarding my business website. For those unfamiliar, I am in the process of coding a second website for my business side of things. This website has been a bit of an experimental process.

I’m a lot further to completing the theme, and it looks a lot more professional than the theme I’ve made on this website. I think that once it’s complete, I might look into changing the theme here as well. We’ll see.

If webdesign interests you at all and you’d like to see what I’ve been making, I post updates on my instagram story fairly regularly.

Godox X2T Transmitter

On a completely unrelated note, I’ve been toying with the idea of getting a second flash transmitter for a while now. For one thing, it’s always a good idea to have redundancy (especially as I had a pair of batteries leak acid inside–it’s lucky they didn’t break it) but it’s actually for something unexpected. For interior photography, normally I tilt the camera screen up, so that when the camera is next to a wall I can still see the screen. The Godox X1T screen (the Godox X2T Transmitter screen location will be the same) doesn’t have that luxury. The result is that when the camera is pushed up really close to a wall, it’s almost impossible to see the flash settings.

The Godox X2T transmitter will have bluetooth amongst other things, but I may not use it (I honestly don’t know). For this reason, I am considering an X-Pro2 instead. It’s a tough call to make because if the bluetooth feature is well implemented, I might be able to then use my phone more. Selecting between controlling the camera with my phone and controlling the flash might be a bit awkward so I’m back to considering a transmitter with the screen on top. Interestingly, for portraiture I’d prefer it in the same location as the Godox X2T transmiter. It’s pretty nice us Godox users have options.

 

Godox V1 Round Head Speedlight

Godox have officially announced the Godox V1 Round Head Speedlight. I’d like to buy one, depending on the price, and I will review it. It uses the same diameter head as the Godox H200R Round Head–an optional accessory available for the Godox AD200. This is great news because all of the magnetic accessories in the Godox AK-R1 will fit the Godox V1 flash.

From the looks of things, the Godox V1 Round Head Speedlight has a stronger hotshoe compared to previous models and it uses a quick release system instead. The user interface has been improved dramatically as a flash commander. As a slave, I don’t know if we will notice much benefit to the Godox V1’s revamped user interface.

The Godox V1’s hardened hot-shoe mount will probably benefit news, wedding and event photographers the most but I do not use speed lights on top of my camera. Nonetheless, things like this show Godox has listened. Personally, I’d prefer to see a portable off-camera flash the size of a Godox V1 but with a tripod screw thread instead of a hot-shoe mount; however, I’m probably in the minority. The Godox AD200 shown above has this but obviously it’s not as small as the Godox V1 Round Head Speedlight.

The flash power of the Godox V1 Round Head Speedlight is unlikely to be much different when compared to the Godox TT685S but recycle times will be considerably quicker.

Godox V1 prediction

There are three heads available for the Godox AD200. After various testing, I noticed the Godox H200R Round Head is the most colour stable head and it’s generally superior to the others. My theory here is that the bulb and perhaps the electronics are slightly different with the round head. The Godox H200R was released long after the rectangular fresnel head, so it makes sense. I believe the Godox V1 Round Head Speedlight will follow suit and surpass previous generation Godox speedlights in every aspect. These are things I will comment on when I buy a Godox V1 and review it.

Another thing to note is that round heads aren’t just marketing hype. You can read about that at my Godox AD200 review page.

Godox V1 new lithium ion battery

My main complaints or concerns are with the battery. Generally speaking, companies like Broncolor, Profoto, etc. buy Panasonic  or other branded 18650 lithium batteries, they then put them inside a cheap, plastic case, and they charge the earth for them. Sadly, loyal people who follow those companies tout the build quality or justify the cost, but really they are just a bunch of 18650 lithium batteries with a high price tag. Take the Profoto B10 Li-ion Battery pack for example. Judging from the weight, it’s about 6, 18650 batteries yet it costs £180. Each cell costs about £5; £5 * 6 = £30. Yet somehow they tax you £150 for a cheap bit of plastic we all know costs about £2 to make. I’m guessing they get a cheap deal on the cells too, lol. The electronics for this kind of thing aren’t that complicated either and if we saw as many disassembly photographs of flashes as we do lenses, people would stop this “Profoto build quality is amazing!!” rubbish.

The Godox V1 uses two 18650 lithium batteries housed in a proprietary case; I presume they’re made by panasonic. There’s nothing up with these cells, but personally I’d prefer they were separate–like AA batteries. Godox isn’t in the habit of ripping people off like Profoto and Broncolor do but I’d still prefer buy the batteries myself for £10.

The positive; however, is that they will get charged an equal amount. It’s never a good idea to have two lithium batteries with a different state of charge. Another negative is that with proprietary batteries comes a million and one chargers.

My little rant over, haha. The flash looks amazing though, I’m sure I’ll buy one at some point.

Website news, blogging, breakthrough photography and stuff

Hey,

Running this site has been a bit of an experimental process for me. Writing reviews has taught me that it requires a lot more effort than I realised, and as much as I’ve discovered what I want to do, I’ve also discovered what I don’t want to do.

I had a lot of fun adventures and experiences in Canada last year but I never really wrote much about them. I don’t want to make the same mistake again. Unfortunately, I kind of turned this site into more about reviewing equipment rather than actual blogging. That’s what happens when you don’t have a clear plan, I guess. At the time of making it, it was to write a bit about the Pacific Crest Trail in America. I wish I recorded audio notes while travelling in Canada or had a laptop with me and wrote a little each night (I should have done that), and then left my laptop at hotels / friends, when hiking. I’m quite good at writing stories and whatnot, so I think I’d be okay at it. I am terrible when it comes to writing reviews though, haha. I guess reviews are structured differently and I’ve had education regarding writing stories but not when it comes to writing reviews.

I’m currently working on a business website, for interior photography. I’ve learned it’s something that comes to me way more naturally than other types of photography. For now, my goal is to complete that website and create a portfolio for interior photography only.

When I’ve done that, I’d like to change the direction of this website a bit. I will start to write actual blog posts when I travel but I’ll keep on writing reviews. I’ve gradually been improving their quality but they need to improve a lot more also.

Lastly, unrelated but a while back I bought a Breakthrough Photography 6 Stop 52mm X4 ND filter. I was really impressed with it. I have recently ordered a Breakthrough Photography X4 82mm CPL filter. I’ll let you all know what I think of it :).

Sony 135mm f/1.8 G Master lens vs Zeiss for landscape photography

The Sony 135mm f/1.8 G Master lens was announced today. I saw some reviews of it and it looks like a fabulous lens. I’d still love to see a Sony 100mm f/2.8 G master macro lens because I’m not hugely fond of 90mm macro due to its clutch design and lack of sealing.

I don’t currently have anything longer than 70mm in my kit, but I used to own a Canon 70-200mm f/2.8 IS II L lens. 135mm has always been a focal length I liked. I think I prefer it to 85mm; don’t ask me why, there’s just something about it that I like.

Most lenses I buy now, I buy with weight in mind. That doesn’t necessarily mean weight is the deciding factor, for example I don’t have to take a specific lens on a long hike with me. As I currently lack anything longer than 70mm, it would certainly be nice to have a lightweight lens in a longer focal length for hiking.

My heaviest combination so far with Sony has been the Zeiss Loxia 21mm f/2.8 lens and the Sony 24-70mm f/2.8 G Master lens. Those were manageable for me, hiking around 20 miles a day. I think I could throw in a voigtlander 15mm but anymore than that will be a nightmare to deal with. I’m looking to lighten my load if anything, so here’s some potential combinations I’ve thought up…

My Zeiss Loxia 21mm f/2.8 & Sony 24-70mm f/2.8 G master lens combination is slightly inadequate for me as I find myself wanting a wider lens occasionally. I believe that I could really benefit with the Sony 16-35mm f/2.8 G master lens. The problem here is that I don’t anything like a Sony 135mm f/1.8 G master lens to fill in the longer length either.

At the moment I cannot afford any of this stuff, except potentially the Voigtlander 15mm f/4.5 FE Super Wide Heliar lens. So if I do go for a long hike this summer, I’ll probably buy that. Looking into the future though, I’m perhaps more tempted by the Zeiss Batis 135mm f/2.8 than I am the Sony 135mm f/1.8 G Master lens. What about you? That wider aperture would be really nice for evening shots too, but that applies to the Zeiss 85mm f/1.8 batis lens as well.

Sony 12-24 f/4 G lens review next steps

The Sony 12-24 f/4 G lens is proving difficult to review at the moment but I haven’t forgotten about it. I have another site I’m working on for work and I need to put my time into that.

I will be photographing some AirBnBs in the near future though and should be able to use those photographs for my review. I think it’s a subject better suited for the review as I believe the Sony 12-24 f/4 G lens is inferior to the Sony 16-35mm f/2.8 G master lens for landscapes, but it’s better for interior photography.