2014 again saw lots of new products become available.

I probably did not use as many as I might in previous years, but when your ‘kit’ and approach to professional photography is settled and working, only the really eye-catching are pursued.

For me, the one new product that proved most welcome came from ProFoto.

h2809_Argb_005_B1Although introduced in late 2013, their B1 Off Camera Flash units were utalised increasingly last year. And each time I liked them more and more.

Initially the main appeal was the 500Ws maximum output — just like the most popular power of a mono block studio flash head — but with portability, through a cable less battery.

That aspect has worked well, speeding up any positional changes of my lighting particularly on location.

Both indoor and outdoor shooting has taken on a whole new raft of possibilities with them, as there is also the capability to harness that power and flexibility with the companies extensive light shaping tools I normally use.

At first, while I did try the Air TTL-C Remote Control for the Canon dedicated user, I used them in manual mode mostly with my Nikon’s.

That has worked well, but more recently I have been using the Nikon dedicated Air TTL-N Remote for a TTL control option as well for my cameras.h2881_Argb_001_Airsync

Interestingly, it has encouraged me to use TTL control on a number of occasions when in truth, I would normally have relied on manual control for that particular lighting arrangement and situation.

Still like manual control when I can, but I will use TTL with these units as well.

Something else new to try has been the ‘Hybrid’ mode. It takes a little getting used to, but it has started to sink in and has it’s uses. It allows a beautiful combination of TTL followed by manual output control without the need for a flash meter.

Now we have FP mode (High Speed Sync on Canon) possibilities through a firmware upgrade to an existing Air TTL-C Remote control unit, and that has amazing potential. New versions of the Air TTL-C will already be equipped with this feature.

The B1’s are a beautiful design, and once you become familiar with the concept, are a joy to use.

The B1’s have given a reassuring knowledge that you have power, recycling speed and light shaping control. but in addition a brand who’s products I have used now for many years and have confidence in the way they are made for serious heavy duty users.

h2809_Argb_017_B1And while I do not put much emphasis on awards, they did win the 2014 TIPA award for ‘Best Professional Lighting’ category.

And in case you think I have ditched my Nikon Speedlights, I have not. They still get heavy and regular use, dovetailing nicely with the options I get with the B1’s.

Right tool for the right task.

For more information about the B1’s Click Here to go to the ProFoto UK web site.