7 Powerful, Rechargeable Monolights Perfect For On Location Portraits

off-camera lighting
These rechargeable monolights will make it possible to do portrait shoots anywhere at any time.

Are you tired of not being able to hold portrait sessions once the light of the day disappears? Do you dread having to shoot on days when the blistering sun is high overhead creating harsh, hard shadows? Do you wish you could take your studio lights with you? If you answered yes to any of these questions, this roundup is for you. We are going to be taking a quick look at seven powerful monolights that will enable you to shoot anywhere, and at any time.

All of these battery-powered monolights are easy to use, they’re well built and reliable, and they will make shooting outside in various conditions a piece of cake. With one of these rechargeable monolights in your arsenal, you will be able to make your shots stand out from the crowd, and you will be able to say yes to your clients when they say they want to shoot in the mid-day sun. Understanding how to add artificial light into your workflow is a game changer, and these rechargeable monolights really make it easy. Check out seven of our favorite rechargeable monolights for on-location portrait sessions below.

 

Interfit Honey Badger Unleashed

 

Here are the pros and cons from our full review:

Pros

  • It’s like $350 bucks
  • TTL
  • HSS
  • Manual mode
  • Radio capable
  • 250 watt seconds of power
  • Powerful modelling lamp
  • Bowens mount
  • Umbrella holder built in and it isn’t proprietary
  • Fantastic battery life
  • Built surprisingly well

Cons

  • It’s bigger than we’d like it to be

Buy now ($349): Amazon

 

Flashpoint Xplor600 Monolight

 

Here are the pros and cons from our full review:

Pros

  • Consistent and accurate TTL transmission
  • Reliable
  • Incredibly sturdy construction
  • Modelling light works and stays on with the battery connected
  • Battery life lasts forever. One month’s worth of portraits and product photos lasted us a month
  • Wireless: so no need to hook up to a wall or tape down extension cords.
  • High Speed Sync transition is automatically done by bumping up your shutter speed
  • Super affordable and super powerful

Cons

  • The transmitter isn’t as simple to operate as a standard Godox transmitter, but it works well enough for the most part. This can be fixed with firmware updates

Buy now ($549): Amazon

 

rechargeable monolights

Pro Tip: Shooting with flash and artificial light can be a game-changing experience. You will be able to create rich, dynamic images with ease with a strobe or rechargeable monolights, but many shy away from them because they think it is difficult to master. This couldn’t be further from the truth, in fact, it is quite easy to add a monolight into your workflow once you have the basics down. This guide will show you everything you need to know about shooting with artificial light outdoors, and you won’t have to break the bank to get it either.

 

ORLIT RoveLight RT 610 TTL Monolight

 

rechargeable monolight

Here are the pros and cons from our full review:

Pros

  • Simple to use
  • Powerful
  • Available with a lot of different TTL types
  • Fast flash duration
  • Nice carrying case
  • Triggers available for different platforms

Cons

  • Manual mode won’t work if the Sony a7r III is in wireless flash mode
  • Best works when the Sony a7r III isn’t in wireless flash mode

Buy now ($599): Amazon

 

Flashpoint XPLOR 400 Pro TTL Rechargeable Monolight

 

Here are the pros and cons from our full review:

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Built in TTL
  • Can be used with Fujifilm, Canon, Nikon, Sony, Olympus, Pentax and Panasonic with the correct radio transmitter
  • Excellent build quality
  • Great battery life
  • Ultra fast recycle times
  • Quality, consistent lighting
  • Big, bright, easy to read LCD display
  • Can work with multiple modifier types

Cons

  • When the Bowens adapter is attached, the fastener for the light stand mount almost doesn’t have enough clearance to loosen and tighten the mount
  • The included reflector comes pre-installed with a Godox mount adapter and it takes tremendous force to remove it
  • Replacement Flash tubes are pricey

Buy now ($649): Amazon

 

 

Pro Tip: Having rechargeable monolights, or strobes is one thing, but you also need to make sure that you have great quality light modifiers too so that you can create a gorgeous soft light that will make your model even more beautiful. Fortunately, you don’t have to spend crazy amounts of money to get excellent modifiers. This Parabolic umbrella from Angler will help you create beautiful, even light, and the best part is that it’s under $50!

 

Flashpoint XPLOR 600 Pro TTL Battery Powered Monolight

 

rechargeable monolights

Here are the pros and cons from our full review:

Pros

  • Affordable price point
  • TTL built in
  • Improved Bowens mounting system
  • Compatible with almost all camera systems on the market as long as you’ve got the corresponding remote
  • Excellent battery life
  • Very fast recycle time
  • Completely wireless when using included battery pack (optional AC power adapter available if you’re planning on using this in a studio environment and want to keep the light plugged in at all times)

Cons

  • Not compatible with flash tube and battery pack from previous generation XPLOR 600
  • Did not fire once during testing, despite audible beep signaling the monolight was ready to be fired again (might have been a result of batteries in R2 Pro remote running low)

Buy now ($899): Amazon

 

Profoto B10

 

rechargeable monolights

Here are the pros and cons from our full review:

Pros

  • Small size
  • Lots of power output
  • LED light can change color for cinema use
  • Modeling lamp doesn’t drain the battery that often
  • In nearly six months of use we had to charge it maybe three times with weekly use
  • The Profoto Air TTL system works flawlessly
  • We’ve never had a misfire as a result of the radio, only recycling and with Sony’s weird hot shoe
  • App control is cool. The fact that you can update the firmware via the app is also nice

Cons

  • It’s pricey, but it’s worth the money over Godox or anything else out there

Buy now ($1,695): Amazon

 

Pro Tip: If you want to be able to spend less time in post, but still want to be able to deliver clean, consistent looking images to your client, you should consider using presets. There is nothing wrong with using presets at all. They can give you a solid foundation to build on. This bundle of 1500 Lightroom presets for just $29, is a bargain. You’ll never be left wanting more presets, and once you have found the ones you love, you can make your whole set from a shoot have the same look and feel in a fraction of the time it would take normally.

 

Profoto B1X

 

Here are the pros and cons from our full review:

Pros

  • Very color consistent
  • Well built
  • Powerful
  • Lots of power in the battery
  • Fairly simple to use
  • Lovely light output
  • Very bright modelling light

Cons

  • When working with individual lights, we wish that you could get a better reading as to what the actual output is via the Air remote. But Profoto didn’t do this because lots of photographers have multiple lights on a single group or channel. So the adjustments are done to cater to that crowd.
  • Pretty pricey, but if you want peace of mind and a light that will last you for years, you’re not going to complain at all

Buy now ($2,295): Amazon