(The Behind the Scenes Video above is German, sorry guys)
High Speed Syncing with Strobes at shutterspeeds lower than 1/250 of a second have always been available on small Flashes. But not too much power. Or you use the quite expencive new Strobes for about 4000,- Euro. With battery pack and cable attatched. What is missing so far, is a portable strobe with internal battery pack, no cables, high speed syncing and low price.
At Photo & Adventure in Vienna, Daniel Schalhas from Priolite told me they would be working on a high speed version of their MBX500 strobe. Priolite is about to bring a portrable strobe to the market, keeping the price tag under 2.000,- Euro they say. The MBX500 is a very nice strobe. In case you didn´t see this, Scott Kelby also gave it a try and did a Audi R8 Shoot with the MBX500. He also seemed to love it quite a lot.
We brought the MBX500 Hot Sync together with Cri Maierhofer from CMH Heliskiing to the Tauplitz in Styria to test this prototype. The snow conditions were ok für Dezember, though we would have loved to see more deep powder there. However, Cri managed to do some jumps there. Fast movement with shutter speeds between 1/2500 and 1/8000 were no problem at all, and even with sunlight in the back, the 500ws from the MBX500 were just enough to get quite good shots.
100% out of camera (Download all Full Size Photos at the bottom of this page)
In Portrait photography it is also great to have the ability to shoot with short shutter speeds sometims. Using the Canon 1Dx with the 85/1.2 at f2.2 needed shutter speeds about 1/6400 to 1/8000 in sunlight. To get the shutter speed down to 1/200 or 1/250 we would have needed a ND filter. Not that this is so bad, but Autofocus doesn´t like ND filters too much, at f2.2 you should be very exact with the focus and you want to see what you are shooting. With the MBX500 it was just much easier to get these shots with wide open aperture without any ND filters attatched.
As this is a prototype, i won´t do a too detailled review here. We can do this when the final version is on the market. Hopefully soon. But so far – this is a great strobe, filling the gap between expencive high speed strobes and small on Camera Flashes. No Cable, internal Battery, very portable. Shutter speeds up to 1/8000 are no problem for the MBX500 Hot sync. It works great, didn´t leave us hanging at any point (Even if we didn´t treat it too good to be honest and the wind was really cold up there). At full power the battery can give you around 200 flashes. The high speed sync has to be calibrated once with your Camera (Canon and Nikon will be supported) and you can save up to 9 Cameras as a Preset in the trigger. Once this calibration is done, the High Speed Sync works fine.
A very promising Strobe under 2.000,- Euro which gives you the full range of shutter speeds in a low price segment. Available soon on priolite.at