Photo [foh-toh] – 1. Light

How do you stand apart from the crowd of other camera-wielding enthusiasts? Anyone can walk outside and use the Sun’s natural lighting, but pictures really start to pop when you use special equipment to cross-light the subject; in this case, artificially with strobes. You are able to create much more stunning pictures with a unique level of exposure. It brings it up to a more “professional” for sure.

After doing some research, I finally have my hands on some strobe equipment. Reverting back to my perspective of how photography can be cheapER, I’ve applied the same concepts here. In order to trigger the proprietary flash units, you need a transmitter and receiver. These items can be expensive, and if you buy from the go-to brand PocketWizard, they are over $100 a unit. I purchased 3 units from a brand called Cactus, that included a transmitter and 2 receivers, for about half that price on eBay.

I also needed 2 flash stands to actually hold up the flashes, so I found some decent ones on eBay. All the generic flash stands look to be of equivalent quality, and do the job. Then I needed some 1/4″ thread to hotshoe adapter to fix the receiver units onto the stand, which I bought from eBay. Finally, it was time to actually purchase a pair of flashes. Luckily, for strobist purposes, all I needed was one with a Manual setting with adjustable power settings. I ended up buying a pair of Yongnuo YN460-II’s from eBay (notice the trend here?).

Flash units:

Flash stands:

Receivers and Adapters:


Just to keep it with the theme, I bought a pack of Kirkland brand AA batteries to go into the flashes. While all these components may not be as high quality as their more expensive counterparts… functionality wise, they are well equipped. Even though they’re not hand crafted in the USA, they do what I need them to do. Ballin’ on a budget as they say.

Is cheaper always better? Not entirely. Can cheaper do the job and produce the same results? Yes.

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