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    Rollei Profi Beauty Dish 80 cm
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Softboxes for Soft Light despite Studio Flash Units or Sunlight 

{0>In the first place, photo lamps and studio flash units supply only frontal, colour-neutral and above all hard and cool light for indoor and outdoor shoots based on their capacity.<}0{>.<0} In order to produce the desired lighting mood in direct sunlight or with a studio flash unit the “naked” luminaires are provided with different attachments, which are also called light shapers. Whereas reflectors, spotlight adaptors and aluminium reflectors are used primarily for hard light cones with a central focus for purposeful illumination of certain areas in product or portrait photography, then softboxes are used if it’s a question of even illumination of a subject setting or the background. They reduce hard shadow, avoid inadvertent light scattering and produce a soft flash light. Thus, soft diffuse illumination is created by the interplay of internal and external diffusors, whereby the matte black exterior of a softbox avoids undesired reflections, by swallowing light. In order to obtain soft, flattering light for portraits and fashion or glamour shots, you can install the different professional softboxes from Rollei by means of the popular, extremely stable Bowens connection on your HS Freeze 4 or HS Freeze 6 studio flash unit as well as on a multiplicity of further compatible sources of light.

While softboxes have long been indispensable in the photo studio, optimal illumination for outdoor shoots was often insufficiently or complicated to configure with the assistance of flash devices. Because traditional studio flash devices, thus plug-on flashes for direct mounting on the camera, are frequently not adequate with respect to flash output in direct sunlight, whereas classic studio flash devices are dependent on the mains connection and generators. Quite often the tangle of cables in the studio became a tripping hazard and  accessories became a burden when they were being transported to an outdoor location. With the HS Freeze series Rollei developed portable studio flash units, which, despite the mere use of rechargeable batteries, obtain maximum flash output even with recording modes such as HSS and Freeze and at the same time last through up to 500 releases with a charged battery. With the HS Freeze series you work completely wirelessly in combination with flash releases. To match this series, we developed optimal accessories from Rollei like the practical, compact softboxes, which can be assembled and disassembled quickly, by being opened and folded up like an umbrella. Thus they are suitable not only for optimal background lighting and even, soft lighting in the studio, but also in natural surroundings and in other remote locations.

Circular, quadrangular and octagonal professional softboxes for photography

Rollei provides softboxes in several shapes and sizes for different settings and picture ideas in product and portrait photography. From very narrow softboxes in the rectangular umbrella format like the 30 x 140-cm umbrella softbox, also known as a strip light softbox, to virtually square flash attachments like the 70 x 100-cm softbox all the way to the circular 80-cm beauty dish and the octagonal 140-cm and 90-cm octagonal softbox, the range covers professional models.

Additionally, the round 50-cm parabolic softboxes produce the very popular circular light reflections (catch light) in the eyes of the people in the portraits and broad expansive softboxes immerse the main level of the photograph in pleasant, soft light and are also eminently suitable for illuminating the background.

The so-called strip lights, softboxes that have a 1:4 or 1:3 aspect ratio instead of the typical almost square or octagonal form, are frequently used in nude photography or generally in low-key photography. Because with nude photographs the narrow shape of the strip lights produces exact light edges and silhouettes since they illuminate only a very narrow area of the image.

Beauty dishes however, are gladly used in the context of portrait and/or people photography in the field of beauty & glamour to show people and especially faces in a soft, favourable light. An interior reflector placed close to the light source distributes the light on the white inside of the beauty dish, which then reflects moderately scattered rays of light. If there is perceptible shadow, this also provides for soft basic lighting, particularly with frontal or slightly offset placement. Similarly to the octagonal softboxes and the parabolic softbox, beauty dishes also produce ring-shaped, natural catch light in the eyes of the model.

Depending on the equipment, all softboxes can be provided with an interior honeycomb (GRID) or accompanying external diffusors. The combination of design, size and aspect ratio, as well as of a silver interior coating, an optional front diffuser and a black exterior provides for neutrally coloured, reflected scattered flash light in every situation. Internal and external diffusers affect the intensity of the light, thus whether it creates a rather soft or rather hard effect. The size, thus the front surface of the softbox regulates the softness and uniformity of the reflected flash light.

An overview of areas of application of the soft boxes in photography:

  • Square softboxes & octagonal softboxes for uniform vertical and horizontal illumination. Octagonal softboxes also produce the popular catch light in the eyes. Square soft boxes are particularly well-suited for illuminating large surfaces such as the background of a subject, for example .
  • Round parabolic softboxes also produce round eye reflections and are ideal for portrait photography
  • Strip lights produce very targeted,  accented light for precise light edges and silhouettes in low-key photography (e.g. Nude and erotic photography)
  • Beauty dishes show the model for beauty and glamour photographs in a favourable light, even during perceptible shadowing. Like the octagonal softboxes they also produce catch light in the eyes of the model
  • The Bowens S-type bayonet connection provides for manufacturer-independent compatibility with accessories that may already be present and for extremely easy mounting of flash devices and light shapers
  • Honeycomb attachments/grids also increase the control options concerning the flash light reflected by the softbox. The raster only lets light with a minor scattering angle pass through and thus keeps its soft character on the one hand but can illuminate the subject in a more targeted manner at the same time.
  • For optimal use you should install a studio flash unit and a softbox on a lamp tripod
  • With our photo studio sets in only one order you buy optimal equipment consisting of a studio flash unit and softboxes as well as reflectors in the set

Assembling and disassembling softboxes on the indoor or outdoor set in no time at all

The Rollei softboxes of the professional line don’t only have the popular Bowens connection but can also be opened and closed like an umbrella within the shortest time. When they are folded up the photo softboxes take up very little space in your photo luggage and the durable, low-weight design also make the light shapers suitable for transport to outdoor locations, which can be reached exclusively on foot.

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