Nikon Creative Lighting System Digital Field Guide

March 3, 2012 by  
Filed under Digital Photography Product

Nikon Creative Lighting System Digital Field Guide

A full-color, go-anywhere guide to Nikon’s entire array of creative lighting possibilitiesNikon’s Creative Lighting System is like having a low-cost, wireless, studio lighting system that’s portable enough to fit into a camera bag. Although the possibilities are endless and exciting, setting up, synchronizing the equipment, and determining lighting ratios can be a bit overwhelming. Luckily, this Digital Field Guide has been completely updated to shed some light on the situation!Beginning with th

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Price: $ 19.99

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3 Responses to “Nikon Creative Lighting System Digital Field Guide”
  1. Conrad J. Obregon says:
    127 of 133 people found the following review helpful:
    3.0 out of 5 stars
    Give Us More!, January 10, 2007
    By 
    Conrad J. Obregon (New York, NY USA) –
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    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)
      
    (REAL NAME)
      

    One of the most exciting innovations in photography occurred a couple of years ago without any fanfare. That was Nikon’s introduction of the Creative Lighting System (CLS). This system allowed for the remote control of multiple speedlights (without any wires), including a balancing of their light outputs, from the camera. Even expensive studio lights don’t provide this kind of control. Yet ever since its development, camera users have been confused by exactly how to use these capabilities. In part that was due to the spare nature of Nikon’s instruction manual, including a lack of detailed explanation of the application of the system (although, to be fair, the manufacturer did provide a pamphlet with sample photographs that showed the deployment of the speedlights in each case.)

    This book attempts to remove the confusion by including simplified explanations of the method of setting up the speedlights as well as a lengthy section on using CLS speedlights for a variety of different subjects. After a general introduction to the CLS system, the author describes the setup of the two main speedlights in the system, the SB-600 and SB-800. This is followed by a section on the basics of flash photography and then a discussion of CLS wireless flash basics. Thomas then talks about setting up a portrait studio with such things as umbrellas and backdrops, with an emphasis on portability. The applications section gives examples of everything from sports photography to product photography, with an explanation of the author’s considerations in making sample shots. He finishes up with a simplified explanation of posing.

    Thomas includes reference to the D70, D70S and D200 camera bodies in Commander or master mode. He also mentions the D50 and D2 series, which are compatible with CLS, although requiring a separate master unit. He doesn’t deal with the newer D80 which has a commander mode or the D40 which is compatible with CLS.

    Unfortunately, although he gives us a broad view of wireless multiple flash basics, there are not enough specifics. I would have liked to have seen more pictures using multiple flashes, with a diagram of the flash layouts, and the settings used on the master flash unit to achieve the effect. I would have liked to have seen examples of uses of multiple speedlights for other than portraiture, e.g., interiors (even Nikon’s sample pamphlet does that) and maybe even some far out examples like nature photography (although I haven’t encountered anyone whose figured that one out). And for a book dedicated to photography, there are few shots of the setup of the LCD screens on the SB-600 and SB-800, and none of the custom menu screens. And yet it was exactly with the setup that I (and many other users) encountered difficulty when first using the CLS system.

    Even when he concentrates on portraits, the author assumes we know a lot. I think just the slightest discussion of the roles of main and fill lights would have been appropriate.

    If you need something more than the instruction manual provides to use CLS the chapters on the SB-600 and -800, flash photography basics and wireless flash photography will help. But if you really expect to get creative with CLS, I’d recommend spending time with some better lighting book like “Exposure and Lighting For Digital Photographers Only” by Michael Meadhra and Charlotte K. Lowrie, even though they don’t mention CLS. But keep in mind that anything you can do with strobes, other than turn out massive amounts of light, can be done more easily with Nikon CLS speedlights. (By the way, I am not an employee of Nikon, Inc. or in any way affiliated.)

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  2. Matthew Keefe "mkeefe" says:
    23 of 26 people found the following review helpful:
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Best Nikon CLS book on the market, July 5, 2007
    By 
    Matthew Keefe “mkeefe” (Natick, MA) –
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    (REAL NAME)
      

    After just finishing this book I wanted to let other photographers know how great it is. The book begins with explaining the actual flash and what all of those dials and switches do. That section also covers the settings for each mode. Then once you have an understanding of how the hardware works you move into the basics of photography which consists of studio lighting and strobes. This section was particularly valuable to me because the Nikon system meshes with this kind of setup so well.

    Only halfway through the book at this point and already learning a ton of very good information. The next chapter is wireless lighting which might be a little beyond the normal photographer, but something you should look in to. A basic basement or guest room can be made in to a great photo studio. You will of course quickly learn this flash isn’t only for indoor because it can also be used for some pretty interesting outdoor shots. One of which is extreme sports and events.

    Overall I was very pleased with this book and highly recommend you go pick up a copy of your own.

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  3. Richlain A. Robinson "Richlain Robinson" says:
    20 of 23 people found the following review helpful:
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    Full of Information, May 17, 2007
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    I felt the book gave plenty of information on CLS. Sure you have to know a bit to grasp what you are being told here, but one can assume that anyone owning a couple of SB800 already has some knowledge of lighting.

    For me it filled in serious gaps in the information Nikon gave in it’s manual and we are now able to coordinate four 800 units. The Lumedynes are now in the box for backup and nothing more.

    As I often say the great thing in my 40 year in the art and business of photography is that as I have gotten older, the equipment has gotten lighter and faster not to mention controlable.

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