Published June 30th 2006

Minolta HS5600 flash


The best flash I had ever had

This was the Minolta flash flagship when I bought it and still was when this was written. Its fantastic specs and facilities made it a great tool, and some of its features were just brillant, my favorite being the wireless operation. All external flashes should be able to work without being attached to the camera -- by wire or other means. It gives you a phenomenal freedom and enables you to do some nifty things like placing the flash very independently of the camera.

Twisting, turning, bouncing

This flash is in the league of flashes where the flash head can be tilted and turned to eneable the light to be bounced off cielings and walls as well as special reflectors or even umbrellas.

I usually just asses the surfaces around me and find a suitable color and angle, and turn the flash to hit that surface. Being able to operate the HS5600 in wireless mode, actually means that this twisting can be avoided by just holding the flash in one hand and the camera in the other. I often use the flash in this way, and that means that I can very easily find a good surface, even if I move around.

I prefer using a wall rather than the cieling. The light reflected from above gives a very neutral and evenly distributed light -- quite artificial, actually, and using a wall creates a more natural light -- as coming from a lamp or a window.

Gear mentioned: