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Gear & Apps

Elinchrom Announces Drool-Worthy ELC Pro HD High Speed Flashes

By Kishore Sawh on February 27th 2014

Elinchrom has just launched a new range of studio monolights. The new ELD Pro HD Compacts 500 and the 1000 model, are claimed by Elinchrom, to be the most complete and feature rich compact flash studio units. That I’m sure is debatable, but what they have on tap is certainly impressive.

The Elinchrom ELC 500 (500J) and ELC 1000 (1000J) each have an 8 stop range of power and operate with advanced triggering functions such as stroboscopic, sequential firing, and delay modes. All of this is easy to control and see from the nice and bright OLED screen on the back of each unit.


Sequence Mode – Allows for sequential triggering of up to 20 ELCs in either a continuous, or burst cycle modes. This allows you to make the most of your camera’s high speed, high frame rate options.

Delay Mode – This is the option you would choose to provide first or second curtain sync. It allows for customization in this area and also for predictive synchronization.

Stroboscopic Mode – This is quite cool as it would allow you to shoot using a stroboscopic effect in a single photo.

The new units report fast recycling times. Surprisingly fast. At full power, it’s 0.6s for the ELC 500J and 1.2s for the ELC 1000J. Add to that that each of them are equipped to offer fast flash durations with values standing at 1/5000s for the 500J model, and 1/5260s for the 1000J. You’ll be able to freeze subjects easily.


The President of Elinchrom, Chris Whittle, was quoted as saying,

We set out to make a unit that would not only change the way a photographer works but also the way that they think. We believe the ELC combines everything a photographer needs with everything a photographer wants, plus the consistency and reliability that you expect from Elinchrom.


Combing all a photographer wants and needs is an enormous claim. I’m sure many reading this really would’ve wanted a cordless power capability, especially at the price point. You’re looking to be out around $960 for the 500J, and $1,235 for the 1000J. If that’s just chicken feed for you then perhaps dropping $2,060 for the 500J dual head kit, and $2,610 for the 1000J dual head kit is more to your taste. Within the kits, you are provided with 2 reflectors, Skyport Transmitters, and a Pro Tec bag to carry these in addition to the dual heads.



That’s a nice sounding kit, though I really do find it surprising that the company didn’t opt for a cordless power function to compete with Profoto’s B1. Given the popularity of the B1 and LED panels now being used on pro shoots (recent Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition photographers used them extensively on location), you would think it ripe time. Sure the argument could be made that the B1s don’t connect to a main. I guess that’s why there exists  Profoto D1.

It’s harder to swallow this considering their other monolights and kits. Their BRX kits such as the BRX 500/500 2-Light To Go are so appealing with similar recycle times etc. I have a friend who has used them to great effect. At a significantly lesser cost, It seems you would really have to have a specific need for the 500J or 1000J.  What are you thoughts on the matter? Worth the extra coin?

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A photographer and writer based in Miami, he can often be found at dog parks, and airports in London and Toronto. He is also a tremendous fan of flossing and the happiest guy around when the company’s good.

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Brandon Dewey

    very cool

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  3. sife

    Helloooo all Of U

    Plz with the ELC 500 (500J) and ELC 1000 (1000J) can we really shoot with a canon 5d Mark 3 at 1/2000 s and more or the the synchronisation is juste 1/250 to 1/320 plz help me to know that thanks

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    • Blunt

      Why don’t you use Google, instead of asking stupid questions here?

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  4. Quentin Decaillet

    Yes they’re expensive which is to be expected for high end studio strobes. Let’s compare them to other high end strobres…
    Profoto D1 500Ws Air head is about 1200$US
    Elinchrom Digital Style 600RX 999$ (+ you need a radio receiver)
    Broncolor Minicom 600Ws1600$
    All are pretty much in the same price range, aren’t they? Then sure, you can buy into Alien Bee… if you are in the USA at least. Because they don’t sell outside of North America anymore unless you’re willing to use a freight forwarder (which can be very expensive and not always very reliable).

    Also comparing them to the BRXi range is fare …but not so much. I have a bunch of BRXi in my studio and they are fantastic! Perfect for portraits, fashion, babies, still life, etc. Though their recycle time and flash duration is not exceptional if you do liquid, animal, sport photography or any other kind of fast moving subject. Add in the fact that the BRXi are made in India with good but not excellent internal parts while the ELC Pro HD are built in Switzerland with high quality parts (just like the Style RX) and the price difference can be understood more easily. Also the BRXi are great but if you have a large studio the 500Ws might not be enough especially with big softboxes (OctaBank 190cm for example).

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  5. Cameron Akin

    You would think with as far as technology has come, someone could develope a mono block that could do a decent job at HSS. A 580ex ii does a better job a covering the entire image. Thoughts?

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  6. Peter

    I think if these can fire at a decent enough power and fast enough for a 10-11 FPS burst from a D4/D4S/1DX, then these would be very viable, especially if you can do it for about 2 seconds. No other light out there from Profoto can claim that yet. That would be a big selling point for sports/stills.

    Would help a serious photographer who wanted to freeze a few frames at high rate the same way a D4/D3S/1DX would help someone at a beach capture their friends jumping in the air (remember multiple tries and timing to get it with a point and shoot!)

    I mean, with the Ranger RX Speed AS and the Quadra, as well as the BRX 500, Elinchrom covers most of the things a pro would want (I shoot with the Ranger RX Speed AS, which I find a bit heavy if moving it a lot). Being able to strobe at a high FPS? Can be a big win if it works.

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