Posted Tue Feb 19, 2013 3:45PM
Has anyone used one of these? I'm particularly interested in Paul Buff's one seeing how it's the only one that isn't priced in 4 digits
What's your impressions? How often do you find youself using it? Do you use it key light, fill light, something else? What type of shots have you done with it?
Posted Tue Feb 19, 2013 5:20PM
I have one of the 60 inch metallic buff ones and I love it. It's soft light, but it has a certain crispness to it.
Posted Tue Feb 19, 2013 7:11PM
Do you use it as a general umbrella or do you take advantage of its parabolic qualities? What do you use for mostly?
Posted Tue Feb 19, 2013 9:13PM
I have three of the silver 64" PLMs with on-axis speed rings and white diffusion fabric and I like them very much. Generally I go for shoot-through umbrella's first since they pack in my lighting kit bag and are cheap to replace. If I want a cleaner, larger light source I will use the PLM. By cleaner I am referring to the catch light which with the PLM looks better than an umbrella. I will often use a PLM as fill with one of PCB's octaboxes or beauty dish as a main. Sometimes I will use two if I have the space, but typically find myself only using two for larger groups. The third may come out for a very large group but it is primarily a spare. The PLMs are large and require a decent lightstand, I typically use a sandbag or two, especially outdoors. If the subject is indoors or close I use the diffuser. Outdoors or for larger fill I often just use the PLM. For $75.00 I find the PLMs to be a great value and mine have been through two years of hard use with no issues.
(Edited on 2013-02-19 21:14:07 by BanksPhotos)
Posted Tue Feb 19, 2013 9:55PM
Do you find that it lives up to being called "parabolic" or is it more like a big umbrella? Does it give you directional and controllable light or is it more like a general umbrella spill all over?
Posted Tue Feb 19, 2013 10:32PM
I would say they perform much more like giant, almost gridded, softboxes with better light output, costing much less are more portable and easier to set-up. Depending on the style and options you go with you can modify them for different results. I haven't used any other parabolic umbrellas but I find the description on the Buff site is very accurate. Google Paul Buff PLM Review and you will find better answers from those who have much more experience with light intricacies than me. I just skimmed a few and agree with most of what I read. The light is directional and controllable with little, if any spillover.
(Edited on 2013-02-19 22:35:19 by BanksPhotos)
Posted Fri Feb 22, 2013 2:09PM
I ususally use mine as a key light, and quite often as the only light. It's very efficient with power so you can shoot pretty fast. I would be afraid to use it outdoors since it's a huge amount of surface area to catch the wind.