Using off-camera flash has become widely popular in recent years, with many accessories designed to adjust the hot-shoe mount device to work better remotely, but that’s exactly what they do – adjust an existing product to work differently.
Raman Evazians decided that photographers deserve a dedicated off-camera flash system specifically designed for their needs, and that’s where the radioSTROBE comes in.
The two-part system comprises of a flash unit and an advanced commander, and promises to be the first and only lighting option for off-camera flash photographers.
There are many advantages in building a product from the ground up, rather than building on an existing one, and this can easily be seen in the design of the dedicated speedlight unit. Be it due to a lack of economic interest or incentive, or lack of technological know-how, existing hot-shoe flashes are often useless or seriously handicapped as a standalone device.
The lyteR-1 speedlight on the other hand seems extremely capable with its built-in RF receiver, space for 8 AA batteries and an included AC adapter, and basically replaces not only your existing speedlight but also the radio receiver and battery pack.
The control unit, lynqT-1, was also obviously thought through properly and solves what I personally find to be one of the annoying aspects of using speedlights -having to lower my camera to change the settings. With the lynqT-1 gone are those days. In contrast to almost every other electronic device these days that seems to be getting an LCD screen, no matter how useless it is, this controller doesn’t have a screen or any menus. Everything you need is done at the push of a slider or click of a button.
As for power, you can select anywhere between 1/1 to 1/128 in 1/3 stops – again, without having to take your eye away from the viewfinder.
Allowing most photographers to control the entire set with just one control unit, the lynqT-1 can operate up to four speedlight groups as once.
Judging by the long list of features one could easily think one of the big names is behind this product:
- High-speed synch – allowing a shutter of up to 1/8000, while automatically determining your camera’s x-sync limit.
- TTL – you can set all four groups to TTL, manual or mix them anyway you like.
- 2nd curtain sync – all you need to do is toggle the switch and the lynqT-1 will do the rest, while automatically transitioning between 2nd-curtain and high-speed sync in order to avoid limiting your shutter speed.
- Autofocus assist – this feature works even in complete darkness, as the control unit automatically instructs the connected speedlights to fire low-powered assist flashes. No need to worry, the autofocus assist flashes will not affect the speedlight’s recycle time, so it’s all win.
- AC adapter – nothing fancy about this, just a convenient, easy to use endless source of power. OK, this free accessory is a dead giveaway that a big-name company is not behind this product…
- Power – radioSTROBE says the lyteR-1 holds 28%-100% more energy than hot-shoe speedlights thanks to its 1500uF and 360v capacitor. The extra space for the oversized capacitor is available due to the lack of a tilt/swivel mechanism.
- Fast recycle time – just 2 seconds after firing the flash at full power with a new set of NiMH batteries. This is up to 3-times faster than regular speedlights, according to radioSTROBE, and as an added bonus the recycling is silent. It also avoids heating your batteries, so they survive longer and you get more flashes out of each set.
- Less overheating – this product doesn’t say it will completely eliminate overheating issues, but its larger and higher rated Xenon bulb, as well as the flash’s design, means you will get more work done before having to let your gear cool down.
- Multi-photographer usage – several photographers can share the speedlights, while each one triggers the flashes based on the settings determined on his specific control unit. You can also share the flashes while using different brand cameras.
Head over to radioSTROBE’s Kickstarter page for more features and full specs for the speedlight and control units.
The lynqT-1 will be available in two versions (Canon and Nikon), while the lyteR-1 will work with either system as it communicates directly with the transmitter.
Super early bird packages are still available at the moment, so if you hurry you can snag a transmitter and speedlight for $650. If you wait too long the same set will cost you $750 or an expected $950 after the Kickstarter campaign.