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Introducing the Most Powerful Portable TTL Light

Designed for creative portrait photographers who demand quality and portability, here’s the Elinchrom ELB 500 TTL.

Here’s a situation that you should be familiar with as a photographer. You are booked for an outdoor shoot. The concepts are approved. You’ve researched the location. The weather forecast promises to behave. You’ve interacted with the models. Everyone knows what they need to do. Your equipment is packed, and you are ready to get going…

That’s when it creeps in. The dread and despair… as you look upon all the lighting equipment you are going to have to lug around. Additionally, you have to worry about whether or not there will a power source or if you have to carry one for yourself.

You start asking yourself, “Why do I have so many cables? Do I need these many lights?” Of course, you do. You’ve already planned the shoot to the last detail.

It is precisely for this reason that Elinchrom has designed the ELB 500 TTL. For photographers who appreciate ease and convenience, but not at the cost of quality and craft. The ELB 500 TTL was designed as a battery-powered photography lighting system for artists who realise photography should be mentally stimulating, not literally back breaking.

"We created the ELB 500 TTL for portrait photographers looking to take their work to more adventurous places with what we believe to be the perfect combination of power, features and value." - Simon Whittle, CEO, Elinchrom.

The ELB 500 TTL is perfect for professional photographers who frequently find themselves in time-sensitive and light-sensitive environments.

Simplicity by Design

The ELB 500 TTL allows you to take studio-quality pictures outdoors without the hassle of carrying heavy equipment. Moreover, you don’t need to figure out a source of electricity for all your gear, because the power source is built in, allowing you to shoot in terrain that would otherwise be impossible to shoot studio-quality portraits in, for example, pre-wedding portrait photography at a beach.

The ELB 500 TTL, like the earlier ELB400 and the ELB1200, is pack and head(s) lighting system. With pack and head lighting systems, many of the components of the flash can be housed in the battery pack itself. As a result, the ELB 500 TTL’s lamps are smaller than even traditional speedlights, while offering the power of traditional studio lights.

The additional advantage of this design is that a bulk of the weight is in the pack on the ground. As a result, the lamps themselves do not require heavy stands. In fact, they can easily be handheld by the photographer or an assistant during the shoot. This design, also, reduces the overall weight and bulk that you would need to carry in the field.

With the compact design, the dual-head kit gives photographers versatility without intimidating the subjects. "The ELB 500 TTL gives me the freedom to truly connect with my subject," says photographer Brett Florens.

It also comes with a large OLED display, easy-to-use menu navigation and intuitive controls. All of which make the ELB 500 TTL a pleasure to use.

Portable and Powerful

With an output of 500Ws, the ELB 500 TTL easily overpowers the sun. As a result, you can easily create dark skies and perfectly-lit subjects in any lighting conditions. The ELB 500 TTL offers a range of 7 f-stops, TTL, HSS, a recycling time of 0.005-2 secs, and gives you 400 (full power) to 28000 flashes (minimum power).

Photographers can, therefore, use the ELB 500 TTL in a wide range of creative scenarios. The innovative design fits all of these features in a body that is 2.48kg only (Unit + Battery). In low-light situations, use the AF assist feature on the transmitter and get pinpoint focus.

From Fully Automatic to Manual in a Snap

The ELB 500 TTL has added a TTL flash system which means you can have the perfect light right from the first photo you make. Through the lens (TTL) flash systems automate the flash output settings. As a result, photographers can go from setup to shoot with incredible ease and speed.

If necessary, you can quickly switch from TTL to Manual using the transmitter to take full control and tweak the settings. Another exciting feature that photographers will love is the Manual ‘lock’ functionality. Let’s say that you have taken a photograph using TTL that is not quite right. You can switch to Manual mode to fine tune the settings since the unit remembers the TTL exposure values used for the previous photograph.

As a result, the Manual 'lock' functionality takes away the initial guesswork, gives you a good starting point and speeds up your shooting process. Moreover, the less time you need to spend on technical issues, the more time you have to experiment with the composition and get the expressions just right.

High-Speed Sync

Using the Elinchrom Pro transmitter, photographers can use High-Speed Sync to synchronise flash speeds as high as 1/8000sec. HSS lets you freeze action shots or darken or overpower ambient light in your photographs. The Action mode goes even further, allowing for flash durations as short as 1/20,000 sec - ideal for freezing water spray, splashes, and other effects. When the Action ON option is selected, the unit provides the fastest flash duration possible while trading a bit of colour temperature stability. With Action OFF, the focus is on providing the best possible colour temperature stability instead.

The fast sync speed also gives you the ability to experiment with wide-aperture background blurs more easily. Earlier, photographers would need to fiddle around with different ND filters to get the shallow depth of field. Now, it can all be done quickly, in camera. 

Exceptional Light Quality

At 500W, the ELB 500 TTL offers 10 times more flash power than a speedlight. And, it does so without sacrificing the quality of the light, ease of use or portability. Additionally, with the EL range of accessories, photographers benefit from accurate light distribution and high-end light quality for every shoot. Thus, the ELB 500 TTL is ideal for photographers looking to get perfect colour accuracy and light consistency across a series of photographs.

Fully Asymmetric

Additionally, the lamp heads offer full asymmetry output for more creative freedom. On the unit, there are two ports: A and B. This lets the ELB 500 TTL control and power the two heads separately at the same time. Thus, unlike some other packs on the market, the power of port B is not dependant on port A.

You can adjust the power of the two ports up to 1/10th of a stop. As a result, you can have both lamps fire at 500W (250W each) or have one fire at the maximum and the other at the minimum output or some other combination in between.

Active Charging

Elinchrom has introduced the “Active Charge” technology along with these packs. Unlike most battery packs that don’t let you charge and shoot at the same time, with the ELB 500 TTL you can. Thus, Active Charging gives you an uninterrupted workflow. You don’t have to wait for the battery to charge up again before you can continue the shoot.  Additionally, thanks to the charge-while-you-use functionality, you can leave the modelling lamp on at all times. Both the trigger and the unit have a mod-button that allows you to quickly switch it on or off if you want to check the direction of the light.

The charger supports an Active Charging feature that allows you to plug in and charge the battery while shooting with AC power in the studio. Charging to 80% takes 50 minutes, while a 100% charge takes 100 minutes.

The battery pack has no memory effect, which means it is immune from partial charging and discharging. A built-in Automatic Fault Detection System disconnects the battery if temperature, voltage, or current levels exceed safe ranges.

Accessories and Extended Ecosystem

The Dual-to-Go kit comes with the ELB 500 TTL, the battery pack, two ELB 500 TTL heads, the charger, Q-Wide reflector, Q-Reflector grid and the ProTec Location Bag.  It is compatible with the Skyport Transmitter Pro as well as Phottix Odin II transmitter for using speedlights with TTL.

The entire system is compatible with the Q-mount range of Elinchrom lightshapers, protective caps and cables, which include Rotalux & Litemotiv softboxes, reflectors, grids, and umbrellas.  Additionally, the ELB 500 TTL lamps are backwards compatible and can be used with the ELB400.

With this kit, portability, ease-of-use and quick setup time do not comprise the quality of light or features. The ELB 500 TTL has a simple design philosophy, simplify the technical aspects, so that photographers can do what they do best, get creative. As artists, you can go from studio to wedding to street to outdoor, without breaking a sweat. Spend your time and energy on what matters most to you, executing on your vision. And getting the perfect photograph.

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