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"Dynaphos" products by Amvona?


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#1 Jonathan Bowerbank

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Posted 13 July 2007 - 08:30 PM

Just curious if anyone has used their softboxes. I hear their only downfall is the quality of material, but is the quality of light & control comparable to Chimera or Photoflex softboxes?

Here's a link to their website: http://www.amvona.co...c456948a52f8ebf

Their stuff is REALLY cheap on eBay, and I'm considering the "Octagonal Light Bank" to go along with a second Photoflex StarLite that I got through a promotion they were having through last month.

Cheers!
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#2 Kar Wai Ng

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Posted 13 July 2007 - 08:50 PM

I have one of their medium rectangular softboxes. Build quality is really quite decent...very difficult to construct and deconstruct so I just leave it built. I've only ever used it with small flash units (made my own bracket), not larger studio strobes or continuous tungsten lights, so I can't really give a fair judgment about its light quality compared to other softboxes. In general, though, I have no complaints about the light quality. Both the internal baffle and the exterior diffusion material are similar to what you might find on a Chimera, but perhaps a little thinner. I guess you could say that as a result the light transmission is relatively efficient. As a bonus it also came with a grid and two masks that can velcro onto the front. For the money, it's great value.

I've never measured out with a light meter to determine the photometrics or its evenness of distribution, though I guess that would be the most useful data to you.
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#3 Kar Wai Ng

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Posted 13 July 2007 - 09:01 PM

BTW, the size I have is 24" x 30", which they don't seem to have on their site anymore. Their largest rectangular seems to be 16" x 22". Everything else are the strips and octogonal banks, which seem to be the 'low profile' models, so I'd expect them to be less even.
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#4 Jonathan Bowerbank

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Posted 13 July 2007 - 09:37 PM

Yeah, I'm considering buying a medium softbox too, JUST FOR THE GRID! It's cheaper to buy their entire kit than it is to buy just a Photoflex grid at B&H, ha ha!
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#5 Stuart Brereton

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Posted 14 July 2007 - 07:25 AM

I have 3 of their softboxes. The quality of construction is easily as good as Chimera. You really can't go wrong at those prices.
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#6 Jonathan Bowerbank

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Posted 19 July 2007 - 01:01 AM

Sweeeeeeeeet

Managed to score the octagonal softbox (basically identical to Photoflex's OctoDome) w/ light & stand for $50 and a well sized case for $36 (not including shipping).

Seriously, can't beat those eBay prices. If it's as good quality as I'm hoping, I'll be buying from Amvona more often.

The light itself looks a little cheaply made, but if it works well I'll probably use it more to save the lifetime of my Photoflex StarLites a bit :)
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#7 Kieran Scannell

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Posted 19 July 2007 - 03:24 AM

Thanks for the info Jonathan!

Edited by Kieran Scannell, 19 July 2007 - 03:25 AM.

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#8 Jamie Lewis

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Posted 19 July 2007 - 09:25 AM

Before you buy check out their ratings. I've was about to purchase something from them a while back and checked out their rating. It's not too high. BTW check all internet store on this site before you purchase anything.

http://www.resellerr...om/store/amvona
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#9 Jonathan Bowerbank

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Posted 19 July 2007 - 01:23 PM

Thanks Jamie!

Looks like most of those reviews are for backdrops & tripods. I took one look at their tripods on eBay and instantly knew they were crap, so I'm not surprised at those reviews. The rest are mainly order processing issues.

Like I said though, I know the lighthead is cheaply made. I mainly got the kit for the softbox. We'll see how well put together it is when it gets here.

And, I'll surely post my assessment :)
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#10 Pouyan Fard

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Posted 24 July 2007 - 03:58 PM

I own a few of them. They work just fine but you have to be careful with them, they are just a bit dinky but beside that they are perfect for the price.
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#11 Jonathan Bowerbank

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Posted 26 July 2007 - 12:54 AM

OK, after a somewhat long wait as I tracked its shipping, the "Octagonal Light Bank Kit" showed up today.

I immediately got to assembling it, which seemly took FOREVER. It was easy to figure out, for someone who's already very experienced in assembling softboxes, but for a first timer it might be daunting.

In a nutshell, I got what I paid for. It's all quite cheaply made, here's a piece by piece assessment.

Lighthead: Plastic housing and "speedring" seem somewhat fragile and not built for the long haul. In fact, the entire lighthead gets quite warm after I had the light on for just a few minutes, which is something I don't experience with Photoflex StarLites.

Speedring: Attaching the softbox to the speed ring is a pain with one of the tentpole holes being made for one with a ballend that's supposed to lock in...but it doesn't lock in, quite the design flaw. And as said, it's made of some cheap plastic, I'm expecting it to break at anytime.

Softbox: The black outer fabric is fine, slots where the tentpoles go are fine and the inner muslin fabric is fine. But the reflective inserts are a pain to put in and not of the highest quality. The reflective fabric is the same you'd find on a prom queen's dress, but it seems to hold out alright over, under and near the 500w lamp I had in there. I'll use them until I see some burning. The velcro that holds them in place is quite cheap and noticeably hand-sewn with very little care. Also, the inserts don't really set in too flat or contoured to the dome, so what results when I took the diffusion off the front were some strange double shadows behind my test subject (wife).

Diffusion & Baffle: It's a thinner material than Photoflex & Chimera's diffusion, but it works. The baffle is a little loose inside and too close to the bulb, I could probably only use it if I plan on having the light up high and tilted downwards.

Grid: Almost worthless, the squares are so big they don't really make a difference in the spread of the light. I noticed a tightening of the spread by maybe 4 inches all around. I'd hoped it would be worth buying just for the grid, but it sucks. It's also a pain to velcro onto the front.

Lightstand: As good as any, solid construction, air cushioned with some good quality casters. I'd buy the entire kit again just for them!

Lamps: I got two 500w bulbs, somewhat solid construction, the glass might be a tad thinner than other E39 base bulbs. But their light quality and color temp were quite good.

So, to sum things up. I got what I expected. It's still very much useable on shoots, I'll just need a little more setup time and some modification and compromise might be needed in the future. In the meantime, I'm shopping for a real Photoflex OctoDome, which leaves this softbox in the dust!
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