In the past I was using Gary Fong diffusers, but never really liked them much. It was really difficult to put them on my flash units and they were not very customizable. I would often find that the tops of the diffusers would come off and get lost. In October of this year, I was speaking at the Photo Plus trade show in New York City, and came across the booth for MagMod, and what I saw looked really interesting. I was excited to get a couple of units to try out for myself.
The MagMod diffusers seemed to work a lot like the units I had been using, with a white dome up over the end of the flash, but the attachment method was light years easier and the ability to customize the diffusers was really unique.
Everything is done with magnets. This is ingenious and so easy to work with compared to the old way I was working.
I usually carry 4 or 5 Canon 600 EX-RT flash units with me in my ThinkTank roller bag. I attached a couple of the MagGrips to two of my flashes, which are the two units typically attached to my camera's hot shoes.
|MagGrip attached to my flash|
When I get to an indoor venue, I just reach into the same rolling bag and grab two of the MagMod MagSphere domes and snap them magnetically to the MagGrips.
|MagSpehere magnetically attached to the MagGrip on my flash|
For someone who has never dealt with modifiers, this might seem like a trivial issue, but the attachment process is so important for us photographers who rely on these things for countless indoor events. I showed my daughter (who sometimes second shoots for me) the new modifiers and she was said "Finally - I can attach these myself and not have to rely on you to do this for me!"
This photo of a saxophone player was taken with the MagSphere on my on-camera flash, at a holiday party last weekend. I really like the even light (not overly harsh) that is on the musician.
MagMod makes a bunch of other magnetic attachments, but I see myself relying on the following:
* MagGrip for the attachment to the flash - $24.95
* MagSphere as my diffuser of choice - $49.95
They also make a couple of other magnetic attachments, like the MagBounce and the MagSnoot, but I have not played with those yet. The MagBounce may work really well, but the overly large white rubbery piece looks a little too large to put on my flash without drawing too much attention to myself when shooting.
Earlier I talked about customizing the light. What I am talking about is the ability to put a color gel on the flash (even in tandem with the diffuser) or adding grids and other light shapers.
And I also have started using the following for changing the lighting:
MagGel Holder (for holding colored Gels)
MagMod Standard Gel Set - $24.95 (which has CTO Gels and some other colors)
MagMod Creative Gel Set - $24.95 (which has bright primary colors)
Because the MagGel holder uses the same magnetic system, I can choose to pop this onto either of my two flashes, which have the MagGrips on them. to hold the colored Gels. I can even sandwich them in between the flash and the MagSphere diffuser. How cool is that?
I have yet to play with the MagGrid2, but plan on doing so soon. They actually have a KIT with the MagGrip, MagGrid2, MagGel2 Slot and Standard Gels in one for a lower price of $89.95.
I used to avoid using Gels and Grids since they were such a pain to attach to my flash units. I tried custom solutions and even tried the old rubber band on the flash trick to hold colored Gels. I am writing this now for you all because I am totally sold on this new solution and it is a really reasonable price. Time to put this on your last minute holiday gift list for yourself! A camera gift idea for less than $100. :)
If you are looking for a really great flash diffuser, I think I just found one for you!
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