Gear Setup – Setting Up a Light Stand or “Stick” | Transcription

Our first gear set up. In this video, we’re going to show you, how to set up a pocket strobe light stand. What we affectionately refer to as “The Stick” Often times on shoots, I’ll tell my assistant. Hey, I need two sticks set up and this is the exact set up that we’re going to be talking about.

We are going to do two setups. We’re going to do one manual stick setup and one full feature stick set up. Just so you can see the differences and see how much more simple one is, than the other.

All righty. Lets go ahead and get started. That was a very high pitched sound that I just made there with my mouth. We are going to grab our standard umbrella bracket, we are going to pop it right onto our Manfrotto. Did I say Manfrotto? Manfrotto Nano Stand.

We are ready to put out flash on here. Just make sure everything is tight as you guys go. I am going to grab the LumoPro LP180. This guy is, indeed my favorite manual strobe. If you are looking for a great manual strobe you can buy new. Look no further than this guy. Comes with like a really funny box too. It has funny wording on it.

I am going to put this on here, and just tighten this up. I am going to go ahead and lock it in place as well. Again, at this point if you our … If you are, not our. If you are a lighting assistant or a photographer make sure that everything is secure.

What happens is my assistant, I go “Okay great put that light over here.” They go, “Great Pye!” and they lift it up and the head falls off. Generally we are shooting by the beach, of course and it falls in the water, and then I go “Gahh!” You must tighten the screws before you start moving things around.

Give it a little safety check at this point and make sure everything is good. Now what we are going to do is grab our Pocketwizard Plus III. It has a Hildozine bracket on the back. It is like a $15.00, $20.00 bracket you guys can pick up on Amazon. It gives it this little mount and you can now place it around a rod.

Here is what I am going to say, I am going to show you how to do it the wrong way first. What I am going to do, is attach it right here. What I would say, the reason why, there are generally not that many wrong ways to do something. We always say attach it to the uppermost rod when you are putting this on. I will show you why.

I am going to go ahead and grab this little sync cable. I am going to pop this into our 3.5-millimeter sync port here. I love the fact that the LumoPro has a 3.5-millimeter sync port. It has PC sync too. Anytime I can avoid using PC sync, I do. I hate PC sync. Okay, we are going to pop that right in there.

Now this is the problem, we are all set up and everything and if I tell my assistant, raise the light stand up now. This is the first issue you come across, when you start raising it up. This is attached below, on a rod below it. It doesn’t move with it. You start lengthening the cable and at a certain point, obviously you can’t raise ti above that until you fix it.

What we always say is when your are attaching the PocketWizard Raise the uppermost rod just a little bit and attach the PocketWizard to that rod. That way everything moves in concert with each other. See how it all moves together. How wonderful is that?

Let’s go ahead and turn this little guy, so you guys can see what’s going on here. Now, what we are going to do is. I am going to go ahead and just aim this right into you guys, so I can blind you all. I am going to turn on our flash, I am going to turn on the PocketWizard. I am going to go ahead and grab my PocketWizard over here. This is the camera, not a PocketWizard. I am surprised you all didn’t know that.

I have got my Pocketwizard Plus III on my hot shoe. I am going to power this guy on, make sure my camera is on. Of course the thing that we all do before we test and look at anything is we just hit the flash button. We are like hey wait, it’s not working.Well, come on. When you start it up, just give it a quick look-see. Here we are on transmit and receive for our radio mode. We are on channel one. Here we’re on channel one and I go, why is it not working? The mode is set to transmit only. This is only transmitting, this is transmitting and receiving. When it sends out a signal, this says, hey. I am not receiving anything, I am only sending signals out. We got to set this to either transmit and receive or to receive only. Either way.

Well, come on. When you start it up, just give it a quick look-see. Here we are on transmit and receive for our radio mode. We are on channel one. Here we’re on channel one and I go, why is it not working? The mode is set to transmit only. This is only transmitting, this is transmitting and receiving. When it sends out a signal, this says, hey. I am not receiving anything, I am only sending signals out. We got to set this to either transmit and receive or to receive only. Either way.

I am going to set it to receive only. I don’t need it to send another signal out, I just need it to receive. Now when we fire, hey. It works just fine. We have probably set up our light stand. This is our stick light stand with a manual strobe on it. Now of course when you are using PocketWizards this is only sending a signal to just simply fire the flash.

Anything we need to adjust zoom or power settings, that needs to be done manually from the strobe itself. Which means, you or your lighting assistant will need to go and do that. That can get a little bit cumbersome. Let’s go ahead and show you one additional set up. Logan, light stand me. I grab an extra little bracket right here. Thank you sir.

We are going to pop this guy right here onto our light stand. I am going to tighten him up. I am going to adjust this angle of the bracket a little bit. I still have a bunch of these old cheap brackets that I am waiting for them all to break.

I have a lot of nice Wescott ones that I want to put into use. I got to break all my old stuff first. That’s how I kind of work. Still have like 15 freaking Vivatars that I got to break. I purchases like the extended warranties on them too. I will have to break everyone of them twice.

We have those in place now, and now I am going to grab my Phottix  Mitros Plus. This is again a full feature flash with a radio built in. I am going to go ahead and just power this one. You could always put it on the stand and then power it on. It is up to you.

We are going to go ahead and just aim this. Let’s just aim this at you guys. All right, I will place it onto my cold shoe. Now I am going to tighten it in place, its locked in place now. Guess what? That was the entire set up for the full feature strobe. It is ready to go now. No cable, no PocketWizards, no nothing. All I had to do is just mount the flash.

Now on this side, I am going to go ahead and just switch this out. Radios are not compatible with one another. A PocketWizard will not control a Phottix Mitros. I am going to grab the Phottix Odin, this is the transmitter for the Mitros Plus system. I could also use another Mitro Plus if I wanted to.

With this on my camera, I just need to make sure this is currently set to channel one and group c. I do indeed have channel one and group c set The whole point of this is to show how simple this setup is, in relation to this set up. On this set up if I want adjustment to the power. I am going to take it up to, it is currently on 1/16th power. I am going to take it up to full power. I’ve done that now, just directly from my remote. Now it is firing at full power.

Whereas on this guy, any adjustments that I make, I have to go and walk over to the flash and do that. Now, that might not be a big deal when the flash is close to you, and you’re working the studio and so forth. When you have this placed inside of a soft box. It is much, much more convenient to control everything from the back of your Odin, or from the back of another Mitros. Rather than having to have an assist reach into the soft box, make adjustments and go from there.

We are talking about two flashes that really do the exact same thing. We are talking about more convenience on one side. That’s generally, just as a rule of thumb. Paying more for something, buying better gear, buying more professional gear. Doesn’t necessarily make your images that much better. What it does it makes you life that much easier.