Godox AD600 Pro Flash: Worth the Upgrade?

The Godox AD600 Pro Strobe was recently announced to the public. Having myself recently shifted from a fantastic (but also pricey) pair of Profoto B1s to jump into the Godox (Flashpoint in the U.S.) system, I took notice.

Yes, the Profoto’s are expensive, and price factors in. But really, my core goal was simple: I wanted to have a one-size-fits-all system instead of what I had at the time, which was a mix of Canon speedlights and Profoto strobes, each remaining closed off from the other. To this point, the Flashpoint system delivered, and I now have universal lighting tools to fit a multitude of shooting scenarios. The additional upside was money that could be invested elsewhere.

Even with the goal of consolidating accomplished, when you step from prolonged use of the B1s, you certainly will notice the step down on things like build quality, menu system, and color accuracy as you cringe a bit over losing access to Profoto’s amazing selection of quick and easy-to-use, high-quality modifiers. So I’m happy to see early reports look promising over at Rob Hall’s channel with his review video and that the new Pro AD600 has addressed a lot of the original AD600’s minor issues.

Color Temperature Improvements

One major and welcome improvement is a stable color temperature mode, which locks the strobe within 75 degrees of 5600K over the entire power range. Early findings slot this ahead of even Broncolor and Profoto. This is certainly promising and could potentially negate a major advantage those two brands had over the previous Godox model. As a previous user of the B1s and now the AD600, I can say you do notice these slight shifts with the latter when culling through a shoot.

Improved Modeling Lamp

Another highlight for me is the improved 38-watt LED bulb modeling lamp versus the ten-watt on the original non-pro model. With this modeling lamp boost, the Pro model is much more versatile as well competitive to the high-priced alternatives. It also becomes useful outside of just dimly lit studios.

Those are welcome improvements for sure, but there are more surprises in store for those that check out Hall’s full review above to see if the sum of these improvements add up to a worthy addition to your lighting setup.

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40 Comments

Michael Coen's picture

I use the original AD600 and my experience has been, for the most part, fairly positive. I wonder if Godox fixed the XT trigger / light proximity issue. On the AD600, if you're close to the light while using the XT trigger, the light won't fire for some reason.

I think the Pro version is a nice step up from the original, but for folks like myself who aren't firing off shot after shot, looking for that sweet recycle time, $300 to upgrade is a bit steep. I think the big selling points for this unit, at least for those who might want to upgrade, are the color variation stability feature and improved modeling lamp.

Very cool unit, though. Thanks for the article.

Derrick Ruf's picture

That's a good question, I know the Xpro trigger launched not long ago, not sure if that resolved it. I'm with you Michael, this new flash it is a really solid alternative. The original had some nice sale pricing from time to time, hoping this one follows that trend!

Motti Bembaron's picture

Not sure about the AD600 but when using the new X-Pro trigger on my speed lights and the AD200, it seems to work perfectly fine even if they practically touching each other.

Derrick Ruf's picture

Good to know, thanks Motti.

Motti Bembaron's picture

Here is a photo taken with the Godox XPro-N trigger and AD200 (on a D750 if it matters). Camera and flash touching each other. Over exposed to show flash was triggered. I took a few with different power settings, worked each time.

Right bottom shadow is due to the fact that I am holding the flash in my left hand (to the left of the camera) and the flash head is slightly behind the hood of the 24-120.

I hope that helps.

Anonymous's picture

I do not know how relevant it is, but I have the same problem with X1T-O + TT600. The solution is quite simple, turn the X1T off, press the status button and turn on while keeping the button down for about 1/2 seconds. Then release the status button. This brings the transmitter in short-range mode where maximum range is around 30m, but it works even if you are very close to the light.

Michael Coen's picture

Thanks for the tip, Michele. I'll have to look into it – I don't recall seeing a status button on the unit, but it's been a while so I'll have to double check.

The trigger is fine. You will need to turn on "short-range mode" in order to make it work. just hold the test buttom and turn on the trigger. Restart the trigger to reset.

Its written on the manual.

William Howell's picture

It may be ahead of Broncolor and Profoto, but it is no match for the Einstein. Less than 50º color shift and a T1 time of a 13000 of a second, but the beauty part, less than $500.00. And Paul C. Buff has the most sophisticated remote in the industry. And Paul C. Buff makes the most powerful mono bloc on Earth, the White Lightning X3200. And Paul C. Buff makes one of the best snoots.
I love American made stuff, because its fast, good and reasonably priced.

Hans Rosemond's picture

I’ve said this on other threads, but for the money the ad600 kills the Einstein. No cords, high speed sync, Bowens mount, and wireless built in. I’ve owned both. A few degrees of color can easily be fixed in post. As for a faster flash duration, yes for that specialized use, the Einstein has the upper hand. Other than that the AD600 wins.

William Howell's picture

Hans I agree with the part of your comment relating to the mount, Bowens is better because of the breadth of high quality modifiers.
As for cords, I don’t mind'em, the trade off is weight savings. The X3200 produces 1320 Ws of light and weighs one ounce more than the AD600. With a couple of Vagabond Extremes you can power ten strobes, ten strobes. Now am I going to have string a boat load of cords, yeah. But the weight savings spread across ten strobes is like thirty pounds, that is a lot.
And the price of the top Godox is like a thousand bucks, were as the Einstein with a Vagabond Extreme is still one hundred dollars less than the Godox. To buy ten strobes from Buff will cost five Gs, the Godox, ten thousand dollars.
But that mount is a big one, because you can’t find unique modifiers for the Balcar mount.
And the biggest factor, all things being equal, to me is where the lights are made and the service.

Hans Rosemond's picture

I agree that PCB has killer service. As for the price, the original AD600 is $50 more than the Einstein. As for power, you rarely need that much these days. HSS takes care of most power issues. Of course, if you’re shooting wet plate or something that requires a HUGE amount of flash power, a pack and head system will be more sensible anyway. A cordless workflow is just so much more convenient and quick on location. Time is money. And any weight savings you’ve gained will be negated and then some by the need to carry multiple battery packs and replacement batteries if you’re firing full blast continuously.

I was a loyal PCB user for over a decade. But I think it’s time its customers stop handling them with kid gloves. They need to know they’re falling behind, big time. They’ve got customer service down. Now they need to step up their tech.

William Howell's picture

I agree, it is time to give customers something new and innovative.

Do you know how I could find a spot attachment, for product photography, for Buff mount?

Hans Rosemond's picture

Do you mean a snoot? Or a fresnel type light?

William Howell's picture

Fresnel or focusable lens, like the thirteen hundred dollar one from Broncolor, but not costing a small fortune. I have asked on multiple forums, but can’t find one. Thought I’d ask and maybe get lucky.

Hans Rosemond's picture

Hmm

For a budget friendly version your best bet might be an LED. for product, power won’t be as great of an issue. I’ve seen some for a decent price but I can’t speak to their quality.

William Howell's picture

Thank you Hans, that was what I was thinking, LEDs.

Motti Bembaron's picture

Agree! When Alien Bees came out with the DigiBees I thought, so? Why would I upgrade from an older Alien Bee's? It still does not have a self contain power source, not even a built in radio (that should be easy enough) and have 1/2 of the Einstein power.

Personally I was surprised that they did not think to start offering a more compact all-in-one unit.

And what's with their new web site? A friend called me and ask how exactly one can purchase when the cart can not be located. I also could not find where the cart is after adding to it. No menu, instead when clicking on the large banner photo it takes you to the photographer's site??? Really?

Am I missing something here?

William Howell's picture

Yes you are missing something, no snark intended.
Paul C. Buff was old school sound engineer and believed everything should be component. You know when the transmitter goes on the fritz, you replace with a different one, on the spot. All in ones have the down side of being all in one, thus if the battery goes out on the AD600 your pretty much stuck with a light that won’t work. With component equipment you can swap out the defective part.

I have heard the reason the Cyber Commander is able to control 16 lights on one channel, is because Helmut Newton would use up to sixteen lights, I don’t know if that’s true, but that is a pretty cool story.
Also Buff commented numerous times on this site, it is pretty fascinating to read his comments.

Spy Black's picture

"All in ones have the down side of being all in one, thus if the battery goes out on the AD600 your pretty much stuck with a light that won’t work."

Um, part of being a professional is having backup gear, like, um, extra batteries. If you're pro enough, you'll even have backup lighting, cameras, lenses,...

William Howell's picture

Oh yeah good point, any professional isn’t not going to be prepared.
But Motti’s question was, is he missing something about Buff not offering an all in one light. And I have read enough about Buff to figure that, that is why his company doesn’t offer an all in one. I don’t know how old you are, but I remember when all good stereo equipment was component.
Now for me I have only used Buff lights, not including speed lights, and I just know they kickass for the money.

Motti Bembaron's picture

It is true that stereo equipment sold in pieces (radio, amp, cassette player etc.) was always better than an all-in-one set (I am 56 so I remember that). However, I must disagree when it comes to lights.

I think technology is so far ahead that all in one still can have the same quality as components set. I believe even B&O has all-in-one amazing stereo systems :-).

Like Spy Black says, you HAVE to have spare of everything, batteries, bulbs, flashes etc. I am paranoid so I carry way more than I need.

I have extra batteries and extra radios if the internal radio does not work.

For me it is two major points: Value and weight. When doing school photography I used to carry the two Einsteins, two batteries, cables, extension cable (if battery fails), huge heavy duty stands, radio triggers and receivers (three times what I needed). To carry all that I have a bag I call a "body Bag" because you can fit a small person in it.

Today I carry two AD200's, two triggers and two compact stands, the "Body Bag" is collecting dust in my garage and thank God for that, my back is not what it used to be.

Value? Well, my Einstein set cost me around $1,600 CDN. The AD200 set cost me half that. True, it is less powerful but I never used the full power of the Einsteins so it was an over kill.

William Howell's picture

Ahh, yes Canadian would make Einsteins imports, thus maybe being jacked up a bit in price.
You are right, if Buff made an all in one I’d jump all over that.
And if you are in the image business, one better have redundancies, right? Hans commented that Buff needs to come out with something new and I agree with that.
Good conversation Motti, by the way your name sounds young, to me, what is it Italian?

Motti Bembaron's picture

Yes, that is another thing, Alien Bees reluctance to use shipper other than UPS makes it unnecessarily more expensive. Besides the shipping cost, UPS custom clearance price structure adds at least $50 to each shipment.

I too would love to see them come up with a all-in-one unit. If they keep the price reasonable and in line with their price point, it will be a bonanza.

Their QC and customer support would make them a top choice for many photographers, me included.

Origin? You were close....Israel.

Similar sun and gorgeous Mediterranean beaches. However, the food is way better :-)

Cheers.

Marketing Paul C. Buff's picture

We are really proud of our new website! The navigation menu is located at the top of the page, and condenses down to a 'hamburger menu' when scaled down based on screen size.

Like the majority of websites, including those of our competitors. The shopping is located at the top right of the page indicated by a shopping cart icon. And when condensed down it is the fourth line item located next to the "checkout button."

Additionally, "Add to Cart" buttons are located next to every product.

Yes! Our banner images rotate on a monthly basis and spotlight our customers using our product. We like to showcase their work and how our equipment is used to make it happen!

If your friend has any additional questions, they are welcome to give our friendly customer service team a call at 1-800-443-5542 between the hours of 9am - 5pm CT, Monday - Friday! Thanks so much!

Motti Bembaron's picture

My bad, just opened it with Firefox and I can see the menu. I hardly use Firefox. I think one of my Chrome plugins prevent the menu from showing.

I bet he had the same issue since he is a Chrome user too.
Thank you for the info.

So, any chance an all-in-one is coming any time soon? :-)

Motti Bembaron's picture

AdGuard AdBlocker Chrome plugin is to blame. Cheers

Marketing Paul C. Buff's picture

No worries! Thanks so much for testing it out. :-)

Motti Bembaron's picture

I just sold my two Paul B. Buff Einsteins with one Vagabond battery (and three large softboxes) for those reasons exactly. Portability and all in one unit.

Besides, the Einstein cost $500, the battery (one unit) $250 and a set of trigger/receiver around $150. That's $900 of heavy cumbersome setup that does not have TTL or HSS.

I personally opted for AD200's. I have two might buy another one.

Hans Rosemond's picture

They’re great little flashes. I have 2 to go along with my 600

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