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  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Houston, TX, USA

    Nikon Speedlights (SB800 VS SB600)

    Hi all,

    I have been researching the D70 compatible flashes and as I have stated in previous Posts, Nikon has a team of brain surgeons that decided to only make the D70 compatible with two flashes: The SB-600 ($249.99) and the SB-800 ($349.99). I racked my brain for a week trying to find out which one to buy and which was the best bang for the buck.

    I have decided on the SB-800. Reason being is that it has more features capabilities than the SB-600 and down the road I don't want to be asking myself the "what if..." question if I go with teh SB600. WHY? Here's why: Both are great flashes. Both have a moveable motor to compensate for distance and so on, both are IR compatible, Both can be used as a slave. The 800 can be used as a master with other 600's or 800's as slaves and it will talk to the other flashes during the shot. I do not know if the 600 will do this. The 600 runs a little faster on four AA batteries, but the 800 has an additional cartridge that attaches to the battery compartment allowing for 5 AA batteries to run it making it a little faster. Both flashes will power up and allow for up to 21 simultaneous shots before it has to recharge for the next round.

    More differences: The GN (ISO 100) on the SB-600 is 98 ft, 30m @ 35mm, whereas on the SB-800 it is 105 ft, 32m @ 28mm. This may or may not be a big deal to you. The coverage on the 600 is 14, 24, 28, 35, 50, 70, 85mm, on the 800 it is 14, 17, 24, 28, 35, 50, 70, 85, 105mm. Again, this may not matter to you. The 600 comes with a flip down diffuser built in, whereas the 800 has that, AND a light bounce card with technical info printed up top for quick reference.

    The one thing about these flashes that gets me though is the fact that if I want to use one of them as a wireless slave, say to flash it into an umbrella, I have to have my built in speed light up and in addition to the IR signal the 600 and 800 also need to see the flash on your camera in order to fire. NOW, I have heard that the 600 and 800 supposedly compensate for that, but that remains to be seen. I'll find out tomorrow when I get my 800! That is the only thing about it that bugs me besides the pricetag. One more thing, the SB-600 ONLY WORKS ON THE D70, the SB-800 works on just about any camera including the D70, D100 and more.

    If anyone has something to add or correct, please do. But I think I have covered every aspect that I could think of in my current skill level for what i want to accomplish with my D70. I spent about 8 hours plugging everyone at three different camera shops in Houston about these flashes to get the info I have here. Hope it helps.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    i can tell you what i use and it works great.
    sunpak 544 is the will light up a concert hall.i use it for weddings and indoor and outdoor events.i ues a hot sho adapter and a sync cord .it has a built in handle that i enjoy also.its a pro flash,and reads very well.its only about $150.00.i have not used the nikon speedlights yet ,but heard they did their homework on the 800.ill suck one up on ebay for cheap oneday,hopefully
    god bless

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    please let me know how many burst you can take quickly,or do you have to wait awhile between flashes,or is 21 the number,if so thats a great feature for sport shoots

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