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Review: The DIY Ring Flash

by Chris Gampat on 05/09/2011

Udi Tirosh is an amazing guy: he invented the Bokeh Master’s Kit and now he’s created the DIY Ring Flash. As a super-cheap and affordable alternative to the well reviewed Orbis, the DIY Ring Flash doesn’t come without its quirks.

Edit: In stock now at B&H Photo.

Construction


I’ll be the first to admit, I misread the directions and rushed into the project. When I did this, I had to take the entire thing apart and redo it again. But that was just a mishap on my part: to be honest the DIY Ring Flash is quite easy to put together within a couple of minutes. When you’re putting it together, you really come to appreciate the planning and ideas behind making it all work.

On the outside is what one of my co-workers described as a coffin. On the inside is some serious silver lining: which makes the light output from your flash very cool. Flashes are already balanced to daylight (which is cool light) and this only makes the lighting much cooler.

Perhaps the best part of all this is the Ring Flash Bracket itself. It slips into a back socket of the ring flash and can hold your DSLR in place.

My only problem is that my 580 EX II can’t fit in, only my 430 EX II can.

Durability

Some may question how this would stand up to abuse. Well today, I threw the DIY Photography ring flash around the office like it was a frisbee. The worst that happened to it was a part of it tore, but that was easily taped back together.

Seriously though, it’s a damned good frisbee.

Portability

I can stuff it into a messenger bag: then again, that’s like all my other ring flashes. It can’t fit into my M-Classics bag: only my Ray Flash and the Go Pro flash can do that.

Samples

Here’s one with the Fuji X100 as part of the review using high speed flash sync.

This is the original photo before I color corrected it.

And here’s the color corrected version. The skin tones are much more life-like and Joshua looks a heck of a lot more lively here too. That’s an advantage of the Orbis: the light output is very warm.

And here’s another original.

And once again color balanced. I was shooting in Auto white balance with the Canon 5D Mk II and 24-105mm F/4 L IS while doing all this.

You can see more photos in our Facebook gallery.

Vs Competitors

Ray Flash: The Ray Flash still remains to be my favorite of the bunch because of the combination of versatility, construction, and light output. Indeed though, it is pricey. We’re almost finished with the review. The DIY ring flash is quite a bit cooler in terms of output, lighter than the Ray Flash, but not as durable. Additionally, the Ray Flash can hold both of my flashes (one at a time of course.)

Orbis: The Orbis is the ultimate off-camera softbox/ring flash. End of discussion. The usability isn’t so high up there though. Either way, I still love the warm light output that it gives off. The DIY Ring Flash is the total polar opposite of the Orbis, and can’t really compete with it. In fact, the two compliment one another.

Go Pro: The adapter with the least consistent light output is also the one closest to the DIY Ring flash in price point. The Go Pro is much more durable and gives off great light output, but I personally prefer that of the DIY Ring Flash more. Will I stop using the Go Pro? No way! It’s still quite good, but it takes harnessing.

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