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LumiQuest SoftScreen LQ-051M
|Price:||$14.99 & FREE Shipping|
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- Camera-mounted flash diffuser for digital SLR cameras
- Softens the harsh light emitted from digital SLR pop-up flashes
- Installs into the hot shoe and has optional Velcro for more secure attachment
- Application: To soften harsh shadows and reduce red-eye
- Dimensions: Folds flat to approximately 4x4-Inches
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|Item Dimensions||4.5 x 1 x 3.88 inches|
|Shipping Weight||0.2 pounds|
The Soft Screen is a camera mounted flash diffuser that softens the harsh light emitted from digital SLR pop-up flashes. It installs into the hot shoe and has optional Velcro for more secure attachment. Application: To soften harsh shadows and reduce red-eye. Dimensions: Folds flat to approximately 4"x4"
Top customer reviews
But the price was good and several of the reviews implied that it would work with other cameras' flashes; so I took a chance.
It works great! It even includes instructions for what you need to do to trim the part of the diffuser into the hot-shoe of the Canon Rebel XTi's. The Canon Rebel XTi (maybe others, too) hot-shoe has a very small micro-switch right at the anterior end of the hot-shoe's right channel that, if depressed, disables the on-camera flash unit. So you have to trip a very small little square of the diffuser's hot-shoe insert to make sure that the little micro-switch doesn't get inadvertantly depressed.
When I first go the diffuser, in great haste to try it out, I had neglected to do that little trimming. The result was the my on-camer flash refused to work. At first I was frustrated and just little angry. Then, with a little experimenting, I found out that I could get the flash to work if i didn't push the diffuser's tab so far into the hot-shoe.
That got me to pondering if there might some sage words of wisdom in the instructions (which I am natorioulsly bad about *not* readin) and low 'n behold, there were very nice, clear, and definitive instructions for exactly how to use the difusser with my Rebel.
A couple of little snips with some scissors and everything was perfect.
I have now taken about 200 pictures using this little device and I can say that it is truly amazing! It folds flat and fits nicely and without bulk into my shoulder camear case; so I have this little difusser with me at all times.
I normally use an off-camera flash and difussers on it; but at times it is just not practical to use that off-camera flash. This little difuser really fills in the gap and my flash photos have taken a noticable and pleasant turn for the better.
I would gladly and heartily recommend this diffuser to anyone looking for a difusser for their on-camera flash.
So here are things THAT MAKE IT INDISPENSIBLE to a DSLR USER:
1) It folds flat and weighs next to nothing, so it won't weigh down your camera bag or shirt pocket.
2) It does diffuse the light for much more flattering, warmer and natural photos with a pop-up flash.
3) It is so cheap, that you really have no excuse not to use it.
Some cautionary advice:
1) It won't work with Sony DSLRs without some major trimming with scissors (the back end is designed to fit into a standard hot shoe and Sony has a different format). But the good news is that it CAN BE TRIMMED.
2) Canon DSLRs have some sort of sensor in the hot-shoe, and you will need to cut off a tiny corner of the hot-shoe insert in order for your camera to function properly. Otherwise, the Lumiquest blocks the sensor and the camera doesn't know that the flash is on. Luckily, the instructions that come with the Lumiquest have a clear diagram what and where to cut off for your model. As easy as snip-snip.
3)You will need to use the velcro that comes with it. Unless of course you take flash pics extremely rarely and foresee only doing one at a time. Otherwise, readjusting the shifting lightweight gizmo is more of a distraction than a tiny strip of velcro.
4) The Lumiquest WILL reduce the light output of your flash but the camera won't know that you have it on, so you should compensate for the exposure accordingly.
So with all these caveats why did I give it a 5 star rating? Because your pictures will look SOOOO much better than without it. And in photography isn't that the marker?
First image, use of product on Canon 7D , 50MM.
second image Canon 7D ( I may be incorrect as this was about the time I was changing over from T2i) 50mm , this shows how it changes to almost no affect at a longer shot.
third image. No product, reflector only Canon 7D
First, it's a poor fit with my Rebel T4i. The slot that slides over the front Canon nameplate is engineered in such a way that it actually interferes with my flash popping up; maybe I misunderstood how this is supposed to work, but I basically have to have the flash already popped in order to install this. Otherwise, my flash won't pop, my camera gets confused, and I basically have to turn it off and then on again to reset it. And once the flash is up, you really can't close it without taking the diffuser off. So you really have to be committed to using your flash when you put this on.
Second, and perhaps more importantly, I was unable to discern a difference between using the pop-up flash naked and using the pop-up flash with this attached. I suspect it's just too small to make a difference.
I'll continue to experiment with this, but given the tedious mechanics I'm not holding my breath. If my experience changes, I'll update this review.