loading

Build a Studio Flash

Hello,
I want to build a studio flash on my own. Has anyone ever done this or does anybody know how it works. I don't have any clue
Need Help!

sort by: active | newest | oldest
gmoon5 years ago
I'm in agreement with the "this is very dangerous" group.

Years ago I disassembled a Norman 200 strobe power unit (not the battery powered 200B, but 200 watt-second unit you plug into the wall), 'cause there was a screw rattling around inside.

The unit hadn't been used for 6 months. Silly me, I assumed there was a capacitor bleed resistor in the circuit. Just in case, I shorted the (huge) cap with a screwdriver. CRACK! The spark jumped about a half an inch and scared me ____less.

There are small units (200WS) as low as $70 USD on ebay. 200WS is a whole lotta light...
sebastien.L5 years ago
Hi Nick

I'am working on a project like your's ....

My Idea it's not to redevelop the Flash hardware and electronic.

I'am actually trying to integrate a Strob (like this one http://www.thomann.de/gb/stairville_strobe_1500_dmx_power_strobe.htm)

Okay Okay it's maybe a lot of power .... but I'am looking for a powerfull flash to use in giant hall (garage).

How : Arduino + DMX library + integration of the standard pro flash functions (power selection full to 1/64, buzzer, external flash trigger, standard jack 1/2 trigger ...).

Electronic dev : DMX interface, Trigger from a standard remote for pro flash, Arduino interface with an LCD or 7segment for the power visualization, a pot to select the power, buzzer, led ...

everything will be integrated in the strobe case.

cost : 90€ (strob) + 50€ (Arduino + dmx interface + lcd screen + buttons).

later I would also like to add a modeling lamp (maybe using power LED or a 50 watts halogen bulb lamp)

I think that even if I decided to use a very powerfull strobe, all the arduino software should be able to be used with a different strobe hardware (DMX).

let me know, maybe we can share and work together.

/Seb
pdesmidt5 years ago
You probably know this already, but you need to be very careful when working on a flash. Even the small ones can give you quite a shock, and the charge in the capacitors of a studio flash could easily kill you. The charge can persist for a very long time.

One more worry: you have to be careful with the tripping voltage of the flash, as digital cameras can be sensitive to this. In fact using older flashes with higher than contemporary voltages can fry your dslr.
pdesmidt5 years ago
You probably know this already, but you need to be very careful when working on a flash. Even the small ones can give you quite a shock, and the charge in the capacitors of a studio flash could easily kill you. The charge can persist for a very long time.

One more worry: you have to be careful with the tripping voltage of the flash, as digital cameras can be sensitive to this. In fact using older flashes with higher than contemporary voltages can fry your dslr.
Figure out the kind of flash you want, then search it on 'ibles, I've seen a lot of types, if it's general purpose, a few of the DIY softboxes and snoots + a DIY flash unit would be a good start.

It also depends on your electronic skills and the needs of your project.
Nickmensch (author)  killerjackalope5 years ago
I'd like to have a kind of 400 W/s but maybe I'll just look for a cheap one :)
But thanks for the comments:)
Ah so it's the flash unit itself...

I'd start with a pile of disposable cameras and basing it on this ring flash for the electronics. 

Once you've gotten an idea of how to build a flash unit from that it should be easier to work out - for that kind of power I'd trying hitting repair shops for busted flashes, for parts and specifically the bulbs and controlling electronics, since the capacitor charger and trigger are relatively straightforward compared to the actual exposure bits. 

One way to get started could be to gut a couple of old speedlites, the most powerful you can lay hands on...
ebay or craigslist might have what you need. If not, window shopping is always fun at places like bhphoto.com, jr.com, adorama.com - pro photo shops
Nickmensch (author) 5 years ago
I already searched, but i want to make a real studio flash and not a kind of softbox or something like that -.-
caitlinsdad5 years ago
Start here. Digital or real-film?