Video Shows How High-Speed Sync Can Enhance Your Photos

For many portrait and wedding photographers, high-speed sync is a savior, but for those new to lighting, it can be a bit of a strange bird. Chicago-based Photographer Manuel Ortiz has created a great video that demonstrates why HSS is a desirable thing to have. 

In short, high-speed sync allows your camera to shoot at faster shutter speeds than its normal flash sync speed by essentially approximating a constant light source through the use of many very fast pulses. This allows you to shoot at those wide-open apertures that many photographers love, but still control your ambient light. You might ask why one doesn't use an ND filter, which many photographers have done for years. This is still a viable option, but it can make it harder for you to see your subject if you're using a DSLR, and can also make it difficult for the camera to focus, depending on how much light you're blocking. HSS eliminates this problem by allowing you to shoot normally at any shutter speed you please, meaning you can get those beautiful shallow depth of field shots with a proper balance between flash and ambient light. 

For more of Manuel's work, check out his YouTube channel, Facebook page, and Instagram.

[via DIY Photography]

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10 Comments

David Ferebee's picture

What strobe setup were you using in your shoot?

Flashpoint Xplor 600

Anonymous's picture

Sometimes you need a video so you can see the complex steps involved in a process. This wasn't one of them. A simple before/after photo and maybe a paragraph of text would have achieved the same thing.

Alex Cooke's picture

Everyone learns differently. The hands-on/visual type of learner will get a lot more from a video like this than a paragraph of text.

Anonymous's picture

My point was not based on what type of learner you are but that's okay.

Jon Dize's picture

You on a viewing budget Pat? I've been using HSS for quite awhile and though I did not learn much from the video, I sure appreciate that Manuel took the time to share HIS experience and methods with OTHERS. I love watching other people work out problems and find solutions, even solutions I have after 40 years in the business seen over and over again. It's refreshing at times, not painful for me as it appears to be for you. Manuel is proud of what he has learned and wanted to share. I am glad he did.

Anonymous's picture

Obviously not...I read your comment! ;-)
I've noticed that people have a tendency to react to comments made on the internet, before thinking about what the OP is actually saying. To my embarrassment, I do it too often. I'm also embarrassed that I have to repeat myself. It means I didn't make my point clearly enough.
HSS is definitely worth mentioning for those unaware of its existence and benefits. My point was the material in the article didn't merit a video. You could certainly justify one with a more in-depth treatment of the subject but a basic primer, such as this one, does not. It wasn't intended as a negative comment but rather a constructive criticism regarding effective presentation of information.
There are too many articles on this site which use a lot of words and/or video to say very little. On the other hand, others merely hint at information, inducing further investigation. I like those better. :-)

Thank you for featuring my video Alex Cooke. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but I have helped SO many people with my demonstration. Yes, it isn't very technical and probably not beneficial for "pro" photogs, but for beginner strobist, I know it is and that was actually my intent when I put this together

Jon Dize's picture

You did an excellent job Manuel. Keep doing what you do. You are absolutely right to share.

Jon Miller's picture

The video wasn't bad, just a need to know if this is possible with any DSLR camera, I use the Canon 5D MKII, Canon EOS-1D Mark IIN and Canon 5D.
My lighting ranges from the Quantum T5dR, Canon Speedlight 58)EX II to the Profoto B1.
Could use some help in this as one thing I liked in the video was how the background was completely gone..