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Photek Softlighter II, 7mm Shaft - 46"

B&H # PHSL54S Mfr # SL-5000-S
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You Pay: $79.95
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The Photek Softlighter II 46" Umbrella takes light from your strobe head or monolight, reflects it into its white, silver, or gold panel, then softens it again with a diffuser on its way out.

This ultra soft umbrella includes one each gold and silver light enhancing discs. These light modifiers can alter the color of your light or give it more sparkle and contrast, as well as increasing light output by a half stop.

This 46" size is perfect for a 1 - 2 person head-to-waist shot, or 3x4 ft product setup. It will illuminate ~11 sq ft.

This model is designed with a thinner than usual 7mm umbrella shaft, which is suitable for use with older Elinchrom, and Profoto flash heads.

Unique construction consisting of ten panels instead of the usual eight gives more reflective surface, more perfect circle of light - more flattering catch lights in the subject's eyes.
The removable black nylon cover stops all stray and ricochet, enhancing total light control.
With removal of its black cover and a reversal of direction, the Softlighter II becomes a "softbox" -- a shoot-through diffuser, providing light that can be used either as a main light source or as a flattering fill.
Note: For mounting shoe mount flash units to the Softlighter II a shoe mount light stand/umbrella adapter is necessary. Shoe mount flash units must be set to Manual because the entire flash will be inside the umbrella (unless the flash unit is equipped with a remote sensor).
Note: For strobe use only -- not for use with hot lights, or modeling lights over 250 watts.
Photek Softlighter II, 7mm Shaft - 46"
  • 46" White Umbrella with 7mm shaft
  • Diffuser
  • Gold Panel Insert
  • Silver Panel Insert
  • REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

    by PowerReviews
    PhotekSoftlighter II, 7mm Shaft - 46"
     
    3.5

    (based on 11 reviews)

    Ratings Distribution

    • 5 Stars

       

      (5)

    • 4 Stars

       

      (1)

    • 3 Stars

       

      (2)

    • 2 Stars

       

      (0)

    • 1 Stars

       

      (3)

    73%

    of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

    Pros

    • Durable (3)
    • Good color value (3)

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • General purpose (4)
      • Indoors (4)
      • Outdoors (3)
        • Reviewer Profile:
        • Pro photographer (4), Semi-pro photographer (3)
        • Was this a gift?:
        • No (6)

      Most Liked Positive Review

       

      Photek Softlighter- The Perfect Umbrella

      After many, many years of beating up my old Profoto umbrellas, I figured I needed some new umbrellas and after listening to my assistants decided to grab a couple of 46" Photek...Read complete review

      After many, many years of beating up my old Profoto umbrellas, I figured I needed some new umbrellas and after listening to my assistants decided to grab a couple of 46" Photek Softlighter II's. The main attraction of the Softlighter is its ability to quickly transform from a standard, big, soft umbrella into a light bank by simply stretching a diffuser 'sock' over the umbrella spines. The overall light is very soft (as you might expect from a diffused umbrella), but also very easy to control and direct the focus of the light. I'm fond of a harder, more contrasty light source, but the Photoek allows me to move the light in very close without any additional fill and the overall effect is very nice...actually better than a similarly sized light bank. And for the price, a rockin' deal...much more wallet-friendly than the $200+ Profoto umbrellas! I think the next purchase will likely be the Small (36") version.

      VS

      Most Liked Negative Review

       

      Great!... except for non-removable shaft

      I was trying to decide if I wanted a reflective or shoot-through umbrella and what "soft" light accessory I was going to add to my toolbox next, so when I saw this...Read complete review

      I was trying to decide if I wanted a reflective or shoot-through umbrella and what "soft" light accessory I was going to add to my toolbox next, so when I saw this Softlighter, I decided to get it because it is 3-in-1: The diffused Softlighter, a reflective umbrella, and a shoot-through. I use it with a Nikon SB-600 flash so I went with the 46" instead of the 60".

      It is great for portraits, I am loving the light it produces (I have only been using the diffused softlighter setup) but I can't really get it as close to the subject as I want because this model comes with a non-removable shaft (most models allow you to remove the bottom half of the umbrella shaft after you get it set up). I really wish I had known that before buying.

      Reviewed by 11 customers

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      Displaying reviews 1-11

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      (3 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

       
      1.0

      Doesn't fit Elinchrom 7mm

      By Elinchrom photographer

      from San Jose, CA

      About Me Photo Enthusiast

      Pros

      • Good Color Value

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Indoors

        Comments about Photek Softlighter II, 7mm Shaft - 46":

        These produce great soft, even light. However, the shaft is too thin and doesn't fit the Elinchrom 7mm holes which made it completely useless for shooting with my Elinchrom lights. I paid an extra $30 to ship it back and get the 8mm version which somehow fits the 7mm Elinchrom lights. Go figure

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

        Share this review

         
        5.0

        the best umbrella the best lighting tool

        By lumen12

        from Barquisimeto, Vzla

        About Me Pro Photographer

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Attach Securely
        • Durable
        • Good Color Value
        • Long-Lasting
        • Powerful

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • General Use
          • Indoors
          • Outdoors

          Comments about Photek Softlighter II, 7mm Shaft - 46":

          It is a great accessory, one of the best lighting tool. the price is very low. I use with Nikon Sb 900 flash and Elinchrom strobe monolight.

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

          Share this review

           
          5.0

          Awesome light quality

          By King Marvino

          from Annapolis, Maryland

          About Me Pro Photographer

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Easy assembly
          • Easy to set up
          • Easy to Use
          • Portable

          Cons

          • Flimsy

          Best Uses

          • General Use

          Comments about Photek Softlighter II, 7mm Shaft - 46":

          this light modifier is truly awesome!! the price is unbeatable for the superb quality of light that you get from this softlighter 2

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

          Share this review

           
          5.0

          Happy with my purchase...

          By Jon

          from Virginia

          About Me Semi-pro Photographer

          Verified Reviewer

          Pros

          • Attach Securely
          • Durable
          • Good Color Value

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • General Use
            • Indoors
            • Low Light
            • Night Time
            • Outdoors
            • Special Events

            Comments about Photek Softlighter II, 7mm Shaft - 46":

            This light modifier works as advertised. It's compact, versatile, and priced accordingly. Being a convertible product means there is a compromise somewhere, and that would be in the installation of the light softening panel (it's a little clumsy). To install the light softening panel you have to hang the grommets on the tips of the umbrella frame before fully opening it, but after doing it a few times it's really not that hard. Light reflection is very good (not much bleed), and using the warming/hardening discs yields noticeable results. I would buy another.

            • Was this a gift?:
            • No

            Share this review

            (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

             
            4.0

            Lovely light - Good product quality

            By arthemus

            from strasbourg, France

            About Me Semi-pro Photographer

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

            • Uniqueness - 10 facets

            Cons

            • Not distributed in europe

            Best Uses

            • Annie Lebowitz light -

            Comments about Photek Softlighter II, 7mm Shaft - 46":

            Nothing special to say but the fact that the product is well constructed...and of course "unique" on the today's market. The light delivered with my Elinchrom Ranger RX is awesome. Enveloping and accurate at the same time. Eventualy, we could mention that the flash head has a little difficulty to pass thru the sock, but it finally goes without damaging it.[...] Really no complaints.

            • Was this a gift?:
            • No

            Share this review

             
            5.0

            Love at first Shoot

            By [@]

            from Toronto, Canada

            About Me Semi-pro Photographer

            Verified Buyer

            Pros

              Cons

                Best Uses

                  Comments about Photek Softlighter II, 7mm Shaft - 46":

                  I love the light quality

                  • Was this a gift?:
                  • No

                  Share this review

                  (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  Photek Softlighter- The Perfect Umbrella

                  By BradTrent

                  from NYC

                  About Me Professional

                  Verified Buyer

                  Pros

                  • Durable
                  • Easy To Use
                  • Lightweight
                  • Reliable

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • Portraits
                    • Studio
                    • Traveling

                    Comments about Photek Softlighter II, 7mm Shaft - 46":

                    After many, many years of beating up my old Profoto umbrellas, I figured I needed some new umbrellas and after listening to my assistants decided to grab a couple of 46" Photek Softlighter II's. The main attraction of the Softlighter is its ability to quickly transform from a standard, big, soft umbrella into a light bank by simply stretching a diffuser 'sock' over the umbrella spines. The overall light is very soft (as you might expect from a diffused umbrella), but also very easy to control and direct the focus of the light. I'm fond of a harder, more contrasty light source, but the Photoek allows me to move the light in very close without any additional fill and the overall effect is very nice...actually better than a similarly sized light bank. And for the price, a rockin' deal...much more wallet-friendly than the $200+ Profoto umbrellas! I think the next purchase will likely be the Small (36") version.

                    Share this review

                    (1 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    1.0

                    Shoddy!

                    By The ticked photographer

                    from Kentucky

                    About Me Pro Photographer

                    Pros

                      Cons

                      • Flimsy

                      Best Uses

                        Comments about Photek Softlighter II, 7mm Shaft - 46":

                        I purchased this last year and have been so disappointed. I suppose the quality of the light is good with the baffel but the middle part does not fit around my Alien Bee light, the part of the shaft that can come unscrewed has to handled with kid gloves because the shaft isn't strong, and then yesterday at a wedding the top part of the umbrella that hold the whole thing together broke and the umbrella can't be collased. It is the most aweful product I have ever used!!

                        Share this review

                        (3 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        1.0

                        Nice Product - shaft too thin for Elinch

                        By Shoebox9

                        from Australia

                        About Me Pro Photographer

                        Pros

                          Cons

                            Best Uses

                              Comments about Photek Softlighter II, 7mm Shaft - 46":

                              The "7mm" shaft is not really 7mm, and slips too easily in/out of Elinchrom heads. By comparison the normal 8mm version is a tight fit, but works with Ranger/BX/etc.

                              Share this review

                              (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                               
                              3.0

                              Great!... except for non-removable shaft

                              By sirshannon

                              from Charlotte, NC

                              Verified Buyer

                              Pros

                              • Diffuses beautifully
                              • Economical
                              • Versatile
                              • Very mobile

                              Cons

                              • Non-removable shaft

                              Best Uses

                              • Portraits

                              Comments about Photek Softlighter II, 7mm Shaft - 46":

                              I was trying to decide if I wanted a reflective or shoot-through umbrella and what "soft" light accessory I was going to add to my toolbox next, so when I saw this Softlighter, I decided to get it because it is 3-in-1: The diffused Softlighter, a reflective umbrella, and a shoot-through. I use it with a Nikon SB-600 flash so I went with the 46" instead of the 60".

                              It is great for portraits, I am loving the light it produces (I have only been using the diffused softlighter setup) but I can't really get it as close to the subject as I want because this model comes with a non-removable shaft (most models allow you to remove the bottom half of the umbrella shaft after you get it set up). I really wish I had known that before buying.

                              Share this review

                              (1 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

                               
                              3.0

                              Defective

                              By Larry

                              from indianapolis, IN

                              About Me Photo Enthusiast

                              Verified Buyer

                              Pros

                              • 3 in 1
                              • Flexibility compactness
                              • Solid shaft is great

                              Cons

                              • Defective as received

                              Best Uses

                              • General Use
                              • Indoors
                              • Low Light
                              • Outdoors
                              • Special Events

                              Comments about Photek Softlighter II, 7mm Shaft - 46":

                              Received this 46" Softlighter without a center thread in the umbrella to attach the shaft. Returned to B & H without any problem and bought a 60". It was fine and works well. Great flexibility as a shoot through, reflector, and softbox. Without the defect, this is at least a 4 star product.

                              Share this review

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