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You have £1500 to Start a studio, What do you buy ?

oneoone

Well-Known Member
assuming you already have a good camera and lens, what do you buy.. Do you blow your budget on one really good strobe and a softbox or a cheaper 4 light setup ?? V- Flats, backdrops ?? what would you go for ?
 

Snips

Always on
No need (in my opinion) to blow everything on a single light and soft box in my experience but I don't use studio equipment that much - I've gone for budget (cheap!) stuff apart from one decent light and softbox and not regretted any purchase.

From memory I spent around £300-400 on my best light (which I don't use much) and about £3-400 on all my other studio equipment - table, batteries, speed lights, light meter, etc.
 

JAH-WAR

Always on
Premium Member
I wouldn't, I'd get a set of lowering springs, caliper covers, front chin spoiler and a new cold air intake for my car:D;)
 

Minor Problem

Always on
Premium Member
A single decent light is going to limit you enormously, I'd want 5 if possible so to remain in budget a cheaper kit would have to be the way and budget modifyers and perhaps wait for things like paper rolls backgrounds.
 

Petrochemist

Always on
I don't see how £1500 could give me the space, but I assume you have that sorted!

If used in a fixed location DIY modifiers such as foam reflectors, tracing paper on wooden frames etc can work every bit as well as purchased stuff. (Phillip McCordall has some excellent videos on YouTube w.r.t. this) and it can be in sizes not realistically available as pack-away kit while still storing flat against the wall. A little ingenuity can go a very long way here.

Likewise the supports for your background don't need to be anything sophisticated, but I'd want to make sure it's as big as practical in your location - this often causes issues at our photo-workshop, especially as not all members can be in the ideal spot.

I've never had the luxury of working with 5 lights, but would certainly want three, with a radio trigger, & lightstands.
I was lucky enough to get my Neewer 300s brand new for £30 :) The budget end of the market but every bit as good as the old Multiblitz unit I paid twice as much for. I'd say it's easily worth it's normal selling price.

The budget umbrellas I tried were not as successful, the shaft on one snapped on it's first use.

You've not mentioned what subjects your planning on shooting - I've assumed portraits as stills. The lighting requirements change significantly with video, and still life opens up other options too...
 

oldgeezer

Always on
Premium Member
Would like information on space of studio and what subjects you will be shooting.

@Minor Problem (Barry) likes 5 lights and I like one light. It all depends on what you want to achieve.
If you want a White background then you need 3 lights at least but other times, which I use is a mid to dark grey.
Anything now can be cheap but doesn't mean it is no good.

More info would be good.
 

Minor Problem

Always on
Premium Member
Would like information on space of studio and what subjects you will be shooting.

@Minor Problem (Barry) likes 5 lights and I like one light. It all depends on what you want to achieve.
If you want a White background then you need 3 lights at least but other times, which I use is a mid to dark grey.
Anything now can be cheap but doesn't mean it is no good.

More info would be good.
It's a very good point Pete. The shoot I did last week I used a maximum of 3 and did one set with a single but if I were setting up a studio I'd like the flexibility to use anywhere between 1 and 5 to cover as many lighting options as possible.
 

oldgeezer

Always on
Premium Member
It's a very good point Pete. The shoot I did last week I used a maximum of 3 and did one set with a single but if I were setting up a studio I'd like the flexibility to use anywhere between 1 and 5 to cover as many lighting options as possible.
With no information Barry, we can't really give any real advice can we. Let's see what info we get.

I'm with @Snips (Edward) here as when starting, cheaper gear does the job and knowing it is how to learn to get results.
Using it every day is another matter but I think the OP is just starting out asking this question.

Liking your latest stuff by the way. :bravo-2:
 

oldgeezer

Always on
Premium Member
Indeed it will but a bigger head turner and performer than most on here have;)
Indeed, if that is what you need !

Personally, I would love a fully equipped fabrication workshop but that doesn't help out the OP.

Still, not your aim is it.:grin:
 

JAH-WAR

Always on
Premium Member
Indeed, if that is what you need !

Personally, I would love a fully equipped fabrication workshop but that doesn't help out the OP.

Still, not your aim is it.:grin:
Don't need it just want it.

I'd like a workshop too.

No, not really. I'd spent 1500 quid on something else other than a studio and I have no clue about studio equipment so I'm not really in a position to.
 

oldgeezer

Always on
Premium Member
Don't need it just want it.

I'd like a workshop too.

No, not really. I'd spent 1500 quid on something else other than a studio and I have no clue about studio equipment so I'm not really in a position to.
I think most people who want to use studio stuff have too much expectation of what they can achieve by spending money on too much equipment.
Having wasted a few quid on gear that I wanted instead of needed because I didn't really understand lighting and how to use it, I try too impress on others to learn before doing what a lot of us do but mostly falls on deaf ears, unfortunately.
 

oneoone

Well-Known Member
I wouldn't, I'd get a set of lowering springs, caliper covers, front chin spoiler and a new cold air intake for my car:D;)
I have to be honest, I didn't see that one coming :)

A single decent light is going to limit you enormously, I'd want 5 if possible so to remain in budget a cheaper kit would have to be the way and budget modifyers and perhaps wait for things like paper rolls backgrounds.
I'm not sure you can get a decent 5 light setup for £1500, could you ?

Would like information on space of studio and what subjects you will be shooting.

@Minor Problem (Barry) likes 5 lights and I like one light. It all depends on what you want to achieve.
If you want a White background then you need 3 lights at least but other times, which I use is a mid to dark grey.
Anything now can be cheap but doesn't mean it is no good.

More info would be good.
It was, you have £1500 to start a studio. So you'd be shooting whatever you'd want. As for space well I guess that was open-ended. Soooooo a small home studio. :)
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Minor Problem

Always on
Premium Member
I have to be honest, I didn't see that one coming :)


I'm not sure you can get a decent 5 light setup for £1500, could you ?


It was, you have £1500 to start a studio. So you'd be shooting whatever you'd want. As for space well I guess that was open-ended. Soooooo a small home studio. :)
You could if you bought second hand. Why limit yourself if you don't have to. If your a member of Purple port there are 4 Elinchrome 400fx lights just gone in the for sale section for 200 quid this afternoon. I was very tempted even though I haven't got space for a studio!
 

oneoone

Well-Known Member
You could if you bought second hand. Why limit yourself if you don't have to. If your a member of Purple port there are 4 Elinchrome 400fx lights just gone in the for sale section for 200 quid this afternoon. I was very tempted even though I haven't got space for a studio!
I've never gone 2nd hand with my lights but yes it's a very good way to go. Also, I can't say I have ever heard of Purple port but will go and check it out right now. :)
 

oldgeezer

Always on
Premium Member
If it is a small studio space and you have obviously some lighting as you say you never go second hand, what else are you looking for ?
Also with multi lighting, does not mean you can shoot anything.
You obviously have some experience, I just think you asked the wrong question.
 

oneoone

Well-Known Member
If it is a small studio space and you have obviously some lighting as you say you never go second hand, what else are you looking for ?
Also with multi lighting, does not mean you can shoot anything.
You obviously have some experience, I just think you asked the wrong question.
I think you may have missed the point of the question. "You have to start a studio " I wasn't asking for advice, I was just interested what people would do given the money.
As for me, yes I already have a home studio. Three Strobes setup and a few off-camera flashes when I need some kickers.
 
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