How to Shoot Dreamy Portraits: Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro TTL Review

The Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro TTL Pocket Flash brings incremental but welcomed refinements to an already excellent portable strobe.

The Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro TTL Pocket Flash is an incremental upgrade to its well-regarded predecessor. Although there’s been no power increase, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. More power would’ve meant more components, and more components would’ve resulted in a light that became less portable. Considering the portability of the original eVOLV 200 was one of its biggest selling points amongst off-camera flash enthusiasts, focusing on upgrades that improved on build quality and usability rather than power was the right decision. The eVOLV 200 Pro’s form factor remains compact, making it the ideal off-camera light for solo shooters or those working with small teams. Our version of the Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro TTL Pocket Flash includes the optional Round Flash Head accessory. Find out after the jump if the changes made to the Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro add up to a worthy upgrade.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Compact and modular design
  • Affordably priced
  • Sturdily built
  • Excellent battery life
  • Compatible with most leading camera systems on the market via the use of the corresponding transmitters

Cons

Gear Used

We tested the Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro TTL Pocket Flash with the Sony A7R III, Sony A7R IV, Canon EOS R, Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III, corresponding Flashpoint R2 Pro triggers, and a variety of lenses and light modifiers.

Tech Specs

Tech specs for the Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro TTL Pocket Flash were taken from the official Adorama product page:

  • Maximum Watt/Seconds: 200ws
  • R2 Wireless (Slave Unit Mode): Nikon, Canon, Sony, Fujifilm, Olympus, Panasonic and Pentax
  • Flash Modes: Wireless off, M/Multi, R2 Slave unit, TTL/M/Multi
  • Compatible Cameras as R2 Radio Slave: Nikon cameras (R2N as master unit), Canon EOS cameras (R2C as master unit), Sony cameras (R2S as master unit)
  • Connectors: 3.5 mm Sync Input, Wireless Control Port, USB-C Port
  • Guide No. (ft/m ISO 100): Speedlite flash head: 170ft/52m (ISO 100) 35mm coverage, Bare bulb flash head: 196ft/60m (ISO 100, with the standard reflector)
  • Cooling System: Vented Air Flow
  • Flash Duration: Speedlite flash head: 1/220 to 1/15380 seconds, Bare bulb flash head: 1/220 to 1/13150 seconds
  • Mount System: 1/4″-20 Female Threads
  • Replaceable Flashtube: Bare Bulb Head only
  • Power Range: 9 stops: 1/256 ~ 1/1 in 1/10th stop increments
  • Stroboscopic Flash: Up to 90 times, 99Hz
  • Flash Exposure Compensation (FEC): Manual. FEB: ±3 stops in 1/3 stop increments
  • Sync modes: High-speed sync (up to 1/8000 seconds), first-curtain sync, and second-curtain sync
  • Delay Flash: 0.01~30 seconds
  • Mask feature: Yes
  • Audio Tone: Yes
  • Modeling Lamp (LED): Fresnel Head and optional Round Head
  • Optic Slave Flash: S1/S2
  • Flash Duration Indication: Yes
  • Wireless Flash: R2 2.4GHz radio and optical sensor reception
  • Wireless flash function: Slave, Off
  • Controllable slave groups: 5 (A, B, C, D, and E)
  • R2 Radio reception range (approx.): 330ft/100m
  • Channels: 32 (1~32)
  • ID function: OFF, 01~99
  • Power Supply: Lithium, 14.4 V / 2900 mAh, Power remaining indicator
  • Number of Flashes @ Full Power: Approx. 500
  • Recycle Time: Approx. 0.01-1.8s
  • Battery Indicator: Yes
  • Power Indication: Power hibernate automatically after approx. 30 minutes of idle operation
  • Sync Triggering Mode: 3.5mm sync line, Wireless control port
  • Color Temperature: 5600° ±200°K
  • Stable Color Mode: 5600° ±100°K over the entire power range
  • Dimension: 6.8 x 2.1 x 2.9in / 172 x 54 x 75mm (flash head not included)
  • Net Weight: 20.8 oz / 590 g Without Flash Head and Battery

Ergonomics

The Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro looks nearly identical to its predecessor. The ability to swap in different flash heads continue to be a major selling point of the eVOLV 200 Pro.

Our review unit came with three different flash heads: Flash Tube, Round, and Fresnel (from left to right). The Flash Tube head is similar to the bulbs you would find on larger studio monolights. The Fresnel head is similar to what you’d find on most speedlights. The Round head is essentially a circular fresnel combined with a built-in LED modeling light. A magnetic accessory attachment ring is integrated around the front of the Round head.

This magnetic attachment system allows you to attach a huge variety of modifiers to the Round head. These include color corrective gels, a reflective white card, honeycomb grid, diffuser plate, and dome diffuser.

You can also attach a snoot or a set of barn doors to the Round head. While the barn doors attach via magnetic attachment ring, the snoot is friction fit over the front of the Round head.

The Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro uses the same 14.4 V/2900 mAh rechargeable lithium battery as the original eVOLV 200. In fact, it slots in at the same exact spot as the original. With the eVOLV 200 Pro set to full power, it has enough juice for up to 500 flashes.

There is now a raised lip surrounding the eVOLV 200 Pro’s rear interface. This lip is designed to give the controls some protection in the event that the light comes crashing down. As you can see, that’s exactly what happened with our review unit (more on this later). The rear LCD is contrasty and easy to read, showing the eVOLV 200 Pro’s pertinent settings. You can make any necessary adjustments to the eVOLV 200 Pro from the controls in this rear interface, or remotely by using any of Flashpoint’s R2 transmitters.

For photographers using other wireless transmitters, a 3.5mm sync cord jack and sub wireless control port are also included on the side of the Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro.

There’s also a USB Type-C port that is used for firmware upgrades.

A 1/4″-20 threaded mounting hole is located on the side of the eVOLV 200 Pro. Also, note the redesigned power switch towards the end.

Another 1/4″-20 threaded mounting hole can be found on the bottom of the eVOLV 200 Pro.

Build Quality

Like its predecessor, the housing of the Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro is made of high-quality plastics. The most notable change is the redesigned back. Flashpoint/Godox has incorporated a raised lip around the controls on the back of the eVOLV 200 Pro/AD200 Pro. This helps recess the controls, giving it much-needed protection that the original eVOLV 200 lacked.

Thanks to particularly strong winds and an absent-minded assistant, the Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro crashed onto the concrete floor during one of our test shoots. I was sure the light was a goner when I heard the loud thud. There have been grim tales of the original eVOLV 200 meeting grisly deaths after taking similar falls. Much to my surprise, the damage sustained by the eVOLV 200 Pro was purely cosmetic. As you can see in the above image, there are plenty of scuffs and scratches on the raised lip surrounding the rear of the light. The housing on the opposite side of the scratches also split open as a result of the accident.

After inspection, I was shocked the eVOLV 200 Pro kept firing as if nothing had happened! There didn’t seem to be any internal damage or broken components, at least not according to my totally non-scientific shake test. Compared to the original eVOLV 200, this raised lip greatly improved the Pro version’s durability. I’m not sure if the light would still be in one piece, let alone functional, without it.

Ease of Use

“The ability to utilize different style flash heads continues to be a major selling point with the eVOLV 200 Pro.”

Though not a complete redesign, the Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro brings numerous welcomed refinements to the highly popular eVOLV 200. Think of it more like an update rather than a new version. It’s still as portable and versatile as ever. The ability to utilize different style flash heads continues to be a major selling point with the eVOLV 200 Pro. In addition to the existing Flash Tube, Fresnel, and LED flash heads, a new Round flash head is also available: undoubtedly inspired by the round head of the Profoto A1, but that’s a conversation for a different day.

The Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro functions identically to its predecessor. You can adjust settings on the eVOLV 200 via the onboard controls, or remotely via any of Flashpoint’s R2 or Godox’s X transmitters. The Flashpoint R2/Godox X system continues to support the most amount of camera systems on the market (Canon, Fujifilm, Nikon, Olympus, Panasonic, Pentax, and Sony). As long as you’ve got the right transmitter for your camera, you’ll be able to use the eVOLV 200 Pro. This flexibility is perfect for photography educators or people that work with different camera systems often.

Throughout our time shooting with the eVOLV 200 Pro, the light recycled quickly and consistently regardless of the flash head used. (We did not test the constant LED head.) When shooting at full power, recycle times never exceeded two seconds between firing. At lower power, the light will recycle even faster: less than a second in some instances. The eVOLV 200 Pro now lets you dial the power down to 1/256 power compared to only 1/128 on the original. The Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro is a reliable, easy to use strobe that will serve the needs of most photographers as long as you’re not trying to overpower direct sunlight during the middle of the day.

Image Quality

With the Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro, you’re able to bring studio-quality strobe lighting on location in situations that traditionally would’ve limited you to speedlights. This is very helpful when shooting solo or with a skeleton crew. The eVOLV 200 Pro has a new Stable Color Mode that keeps light output within ±100K of the 5600K range. Truth be told, I found the colors consistent enough with the eVOLV 200 Pro’s standard settings that I never needed to use Stable Color Mode. The quality of light produced by the Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro is consistent regardless of the flash head used. As someone who typically shoots with a custom white balance, the eVOLV 200 Pro delivered reliable and uniform results every time. Here are some images lit with the Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro, modified by a variety of octaboxes and parabolic umbrellas. All of these images were captured using either the Sony A7R III, Sony A7R IV, Canon EOS R, or Olympus O-MD EM-5 Mark III.

Conclusions

Likes

  • Competitively priced even factoring in the $50 premium
  • Excellent battery life
  • Compact form factor
  • Consistent light output
  • Redesigned exterior makes it much more durable than the original
  • Works with many different camera systems

Dislikes

  • Power output is still capped at 200 watt-seconds

With a price tag of US $349, the Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro TTL Pocket Flash carries a $50 premium over the original. While the eVOLV 200 Pro doesn’t reinvent the wheel, you’re getting a number of useful refinements. These include a redesigned exterior with recessed controls, improved On/Off switch, and the inclusion of Stable Color Mode. We didn’t find a need for the Stable Color Mode, but your mileage may vary. While the power output is still capped at 200 watt-seconds, the Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro TTL Pocket Flash is a robustly built strobe that’s just as portable and reliable as ever. Photographers needing to overpower the sun will want to consider Flashpoint’s more powerful offerings like the Xplor 400 Pro or Xplor 600 Pro.

The Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro TTL Pocket Flash (Godox AD200 Pro) earns five out of five stars. Want one? They’re really affordable.

Pauleth Ip

Paul is a New York City based photographer, creative, and writer. His body of work includes headshots and commercial editorials for professionals, in-demand actors/performers, high net worth individuals, and corporate clients, as well as intimate lifestyle/boudoir photography with an emphasis on body positivity and empowerment. Paul also has a background in technology and higher education, and regularly teaches private photography seminars. When not working on reviews and features for The Phoblographer or shooting client work, Paul can be seen photographing personal projects around NYC, or traveling the world with his cameras in tow. You can find Paul’s latest work on his Instagram over at @thepicreative.