When you see a photographer preparing for a professional shooting session, you will probably notice those strange umbrella-like light sources. While some of them are actually called umbrellas, the other similar type is known as softboxes. These sources of artificial lightning are usually preferred for studio photography, but they may also come in handy for outdoor experiments.
Anyway, the key task is not only to distinguish one from another. It is more important to figure out when and what kind of functionality will serve you better. Stay in the loop!
In order to proceed with a further comparison of these two products, the first task is to understand their main differences. Overall, there are the definites to consider and analyze:
- In photography, an umbrella is the simplest type of light modifier. Simply put, it is a cover in the form of an umbrella, which can be attached to an external source of illumination. At the same time, it functions as a light diffuser. This equipment comes in different colors (black and white), sizes, and lining.
- An enclosure that surrounds a lamp or another light source is called a sandbox. With its help, soft lightning is achieved, and this helps photographers to reduce harsh shadows. There are several versions of softboxes such as rectangular and strip ones.
Basically, both options are light modifiers, but nuances alter. When it comes to softening light, the two competitors are good choices. To define what is more beneficial in your particular case, stick to shooting conditions and the type of photography you are engaged in.
Ranking Factors to Consider
Umbrellas and softboxes are useful and efficient. Choosing durable and lasting goods of Profoto, a Swedish professional brand in the photographic equipment industry, your investment will always be worth it. All is left to do whether you need one type of light modifier or both of them:
- Since umbrellas and softboxes differ in size, you can find a portable and lightweight option in each category.
- People are more accustomed to opening umbrellas — the principle is clear. Softboxes are secured by velcros, which are not difficult to use too.
- Though the setup time is longer in the case of sandboxes, they are more lasting than their opponents. The difference lies in the preference of materials.
- Umbrellas can’t boast the same degree of light control as sandboxes. They will change the light color slightly, depending on the walls’ tone, unlike their rivals.
- If you shoot outdoors, sandboxes are more preferable. The chances they will fly away like Mary Poppins with her umbrella are minimized. Accordingly, umbrellas are less protected from this perspective — the strong wind is their enemy.
For more information, check the bestsellers of Studio Ausruestung — this will let you swim freely in the sea of multiple advanced gear goods: https://www.studio-ausruestung.de/. All in all, whatever your final choice is, ensure your experience is backed up by qualitative tools.