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I'm so confused.  I have been using speedlights for my OCF, but am ready to upgrade to strobes.  Not being one to do things halfway, I'm thinking of getting a Profoto B1 location kit.  My issue is though, I'm clueless about what I need to get up and running.  With my speed lights, it was nice and simple once I got the adapter to hold the softbox or umbrella to the light stand. 

Reading about strobes though, you need a speed ring? I'm lost.  Say I were to get a profoto b1.  I know I need their remote for wireless triggtering, right?  What if I wanted to use a soft box with it.  What would I need to make that work?  I'm sorry for asking such a basic question, but I'm kind of lost.


  • TrevTrev Moderator
    edited February 2016


    A 'speed ring' is just a connector to suit a soft box and the flash unit you are using at that time.

    There are many many various 'speed rings' all to fit certain brands of flash heads, Bowens, Paul C Buff, Chimera, Elinchrom, etc. etc.

    So you have a B1 type flash, you need to get a speed ring which sits on the flash head in place of the reflector it came with, so a soft box will clip onto it.

    This is because once you remove the reflector, you are left with just the head of the flash and a bare bulb hanging out, no where for a softbox to connect to.

    Here is a sample of a B1 Speed Ring you would need.

    Then there are OTHER BRANDS also of course. Nothing more, nothing less than a simple device to 'connect' a soft box to the flash head.


    PS: You may also see '3rd Party' speed rings, like Impact who make various versions for different flash heads, and they are generally cheaper.

    And yes, you would need 'their triggering' to fire. There are many flash units out there with their own trigger/receiver unit set up, and there are others like PocketWizard who make trigger/receiver sets for various makes of cameras/flashes.

    In this case with a B1, you've gone to the expense (if you buy one) of owning a top mono flash and since the Receiver is already built into the head of the flash in most cases, why dick around with 3rd party triggers I would not know, so get something that will be reliable.

    Also, you can just buy a Profoto Softbox, it comes with a Profoto Speed Ring already attached (they may also make the same soft box with different speed ring to suit other flash head types) so you merely slip it onto the Profoto Flash Head you bought.

  • Neil vNNeil vN Administrator
    You could also just use your umbrella like you always have ... and then gradually dip into other light modifiers when your budget allows, and you have figured out what you need to achieve what you want. So don't stress about that yet.  A simple white umbrella can take you far. 
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