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Is The Profoto B2 Right For You? The System Goes Beyond Speedlites

Below is just one of many videos on YouTube about the Profoto B2. Is the system right for you? Watch the video and read what I've written below the video.

The #1 issue with the Profoto B2 for most photographers will likely be the cost. A one head system is around $2,000 and a two head system is $2,695+ pending rebates, etc. If you cannot comfortably afford that, then the Profoto B2 may not be a good fit. I'm all about any photographer shooting with what he or she can afford without going deep into debt to buy gear. Just do me and the photography community a favor and don't complain about pricing on social media. It's Profoto. It's not cheap.

Once you get beyond the price, there are lots of things that I like about the Profoto B2. I have been shooting with the B2 for several months as of this post and have a solid understanding about the system.

What I Like About The Profoto B2...
1) Lighting fast battery recycle time
2) Very portable and lightweight
3) 250WS which is 4 to 5 times more powerful than a speedlite
4) Lightweight, easy to setup, OCF modifiers
5) Get the setting quickly in TTL, then lock it in to manual
6) 45 minute full power battery recharging time. LOVE IT!
7) High Speed Sync

When reading the 7 reasons above, you could easily say that many of them fit reasons to use a speedlite. But there are differences that truly make a difference. I know because I also own TWO Canon 600 speedlites. Numbers 1, 3 and 5 make the Profoto B2 worth the investment for me compared to a speedlite. Yes, on #1, you could add a battery pack to a speedlite, but the recycle time is still not as fast as the B2. I know because I use battery packs on my Canon 600's when I shoot events.

What I Do NOT Like About The Profoto B2...
1) TTL is not 100% spot on when firing multiple times consecutively. It's close, but there is almost always an overexposure on a series of several shots back to back which is one reason that I love the ability to lock the setting in on manual after getting the correct TTL reading.
2) The batteries don't seem to last as long as they should. They are supposed to do a little over 200 full power flashes on a full charge. I'm not convinced that is the case with my batteries.
3) Since most light stands seem to be 8' to 10' in height, I think the cords on the heads should be at least 8' and not 6'. The 9' extension cord is $199. I own two of them. The cords can also be a barrier when compared to a completely wireless system like the Profoto B1.

Whether the Profoto B2 is right for you or not will be up to you to decide. Just know that not only the intial cost will set you back but also the accessories which can add up to several hundred dollars at the blink of an eye. However, for me, the Profoto B2 was one of the top equipment investments that I made in 2015 and I have NO REGRETS. I also incurred ZERO debt with them. The cash out of pocket hurts, but it's nice to know that the system with accessories is paid for. I said that to reiterate that you should buy what you can afford whether it's the Profoto B2 or a speedlite setup like one of my assistants who has a nice system for under $1,000.

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David Williams

Short Bio About The Author: I'm David Williams a professional commercial photographer focusing on corporate and business clients with some personal branding, lifestyle photography in the mix. My love for photography began in late 1981 while still in High School. I started making money with his camera in 1982. Brenda, my wife, and I started working together in photography in 1988 shortly after we met. Brenda and I married in 1989 and have two adult daughters. Please be sure to get a quote for services if needed. Call or Text: 919.723.8453. Please reach out to connect with me on LinkedIn.