View Full Version : Accessories STF-22 Twin Flash

Bill Huber
08-04-2006, 11:00 PM
If you shot macros a lot and really enjoy it, then this is definitely something you need.

The Twin Flash comes with a ring or shoe that will fit the 67mm lens filter threads, this is to hold the small flash heads. If you have the 50mm macro you will need the adaptor for it, this is a little high but a very good piece of hardware.

The Twin Flash has a guide number of 22 with both flashes and 16 with just one. It has a modeling light in each head and also has red eye reduction.

The control head is just like the FL-50 flash, the difference is where the flash tube is on the FL-50 there are sockets to plug in each flash of the twin flash or the ring flash. The head will move the same way as the FL-50 but this is really not necessary it is just because they are using the same mold for the two units.

On the back of the control unit are 2 knobs, one knob on the right is for the overall power, which again is like the FL-50. The other knob is for the control of each head.

This second knob, the one on the left is really the heart of the flash. By turning this knob you can adjust the power ratio to each flash. So with the center position it will be 1:1 meaning that the power to each flash will be the same. Now by turning the left knob you can adjust the power to each flash, 1:1 to 1:8 and also 1:1 to 8:1 so you can have 8 times the light on one or the other heads.

That is really neat but why would I want to do that?

When you think about an image and wanting to see detail, the detail comes from shadows. If you are using a ring flash you don't get any shadow so there is a lack of detail and the images are somewhat flat. By controlling where the light and how much light hits the subject you can get the detail in the image.

On top of the power to each head you can also tilt each head in and out or rotate them up and down. You can rotate the heads around the center. So you can put the light just about anywhere you want it to get the shadows you want.

The unit comes in a very nice case, it will hold everything, both heads, the adaptor, the control unit, the ring that attached to the adaptpr or any 67mm filter threads and 2 small diffusers. If you later want to add the ring flash there is also a pocket for it.

Here are some images of the flash on the E1 with the 50mm macro. This will give you a little better idea of how it all goes together.


Here are some images taken with the Twin Flash

http://tspore.smugmug.com/photos/86044095-M.jpg (http://www.pbase.com/wlhuber/image/45835341)
http://tspore.smugmug.com/photos/86044092-M.jpg (http://www.pbase.com/wlhuber/image/45184072)
http://tspore.smugmug.com/photos/86044097-M.jpg (http://www.pbase.com/wlhuber/image/52886750)
(Click on images for a bigger picture.)

Bottom line, I love the Twin Flash and really like using it, you can get some really great images with great detail. I know it's cost is really high but then what isn't. If you like shooting macros you sure will have a lot of fun with the Twin Flash.
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07-05-2007, 08:28 AM
Hello Mr Huber, I viewed your reveiw on the stf-22 twin flash and I loved your macro photos of the insects. Very Nice! I'd like to shoot with that kind
of light. I just purchased the stf-22 flash with the fr-1 adapter. I started shooting with it immeditately. It is a pretty powerful flash and so far I've found that shooting with one light with the EV set down to -7 helps decrease the intensity. Would you be willing to give me some pointers as to how to shoot with the kind of light you succesfully accomplished wtih your insect photos. I've found that a smaller aperture is beneficial. I'm still learning but would love to get the kind of quality your pictures showed. I shoot with an
Olympus evolt 500. Thank for posting your review. I know that with practice I'll get great results with my new flash but also realize that someone with experience can help me get there sooner than later. Thanks again.


Bill Huber
07-05-2007, 11:41 AM
John it is all in the light, which you have found.

I guess the first thing is the f stop, yes you want just about as high as you can go. On the first shot it was taken at f25 the second one at f20 and the third at f22. The higher f stop gives you better depth of field.

Now for the lighting, you have to think about what gives and image depth and detail. It is the light and the shadows. Here are 2 images, the first was taken with the light straight on and the second was taken with the light off to the side. You can see the first image has very little depth and not a lot of detail. The second image is full of detail and has a lot of depth. This was just because of the shadows that were made by the light, the rock or the camera were not moved. Now this is a drastic example but it does show what shadows will do to an image.



Now if I had added a little light, not a lot but just a little to the left side of the rock, the shadows would still be there but you would have been able to see them as much but you would still have the detail.

The problem with a ring flash is it hides all the shadows and you get a more flat image. With the twin you can have the shadows and control them at the same time.

The first spider image if you notice the shadows you can see the light is coming from 2 different directions. Look at the shadows from the legs, the light is coming from the left and right so you have some very good depth to the image.

The second spider has a lot of light coming from the right but just a very little coming from the left, you still have the shadows to give it depth but you have added a little light to light the left side of the spider. Without the left flash the spider would have been very dark on that side. The light on the right is over powering the one on the left so you do not see the shadows.

The third shot is just the same as the second in that the right light was very strong and the left light was used as more of a fill in. The shadows are there but you just really don't notice them but they are there and help give the image depth.

When I use the flash and get very close like this I really knock the power down, I can not tell you the settings I use the histogram on the camera to help with that and then I do view the image on the LCD. I put the camera in aperture mode and close it down as much as I can. Then I use the power dial on the flash to set the light where I need it.
The side to side lighting is just a guess in the most part, I look at what I am shooting and think about were I would like to have the shadow and what I want most of the light to be on.

I really don't think it is something that is very hard to master, just shoot a bunch and it will all fall into place in a very shot time. You have to try different thing and at first make big adjustments so you can really see the difference.

I hope this helps and have fun, I know I do.

07-06-2007, 08:15 AM
Thank you very much Bill, I really appreciate you sharing your knowlegde on the subject. Your photos are truly fantastic and as i've said, I would like to shoot macros that well some day. It must take much patience to wait for your subject to come into the field of view. I will have fun practicing with my new STF-22 and I truly do appreciate your help with understanding lighting. I look forward to the photos and comments I find on yours and everyone elses post here at 4/3 photo.com as I am a newbie. Take care and Thank you again.