If you’re in the position of needing more light output than what the average Speedlite can provide but want the same compact dimensions, the Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro is a likely option. This version is an upgrade to the original, with the same levels of output and improvements being focused on the build quality and features.
One of the biggest selling points of this unit is the way it can deliver studio strobe-like power in a very portable package. As the design leans more towards a strobe rather than a Speedlite, it’s also available with a range of accessories and in kit form. With the unit having the added advantage of shooting with either a bare bulb or with a range of flash heads and modifiers.
The power output of the Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro stays the same at 200W, with largely the same workings. The different flash modes available include multi, slave, TTL, and manual, with trigger units available for Nikon, Canon, and Sony cameras.
The general guide numbers at ISO 100 show a 52m range with the included flash heads and 60m with the bare bulb. The flash duration comes in at 1/220 to 1/15380 seconds with the flash head and 1/220 to 1/13150 seconds with bare bulb flash for freezing the fastest of subject matters. Power can also be adjusted in tenth-of-a-stop increments over a nine-stop range.
The overall ergonomics are very sleek and one of the biggest advantages is the range of flash heads and modifiers that can be swapped out. Generally, the unit is supplied with a bare flash tube, rounded head, and Fresnel version. A magnetic attachment ring can be used with the rounded head version to fit different types of light modifiers from grids to small diffusers.
If you’re coming from the world of Speedlites, there’s no fiddling about with AA batteries here, as the unit uses one 2,900 mAh rechargeable lithium battery. This should supply enough power for up to 500 flashes with additional batteries also available. There are also ports on the unit for firmware updates and for a traditional sync cord.
The rear interface has a raised surround to protect the buttons and display. The layout is very simple, having just the right amount of buttons and dials which can also be accessed via the R2 transmitter. As the strobe is designed to be used for off-camera flash, there is a quarter-inch thread on the bottom and side of the strobe for easy mounting on a tripod or light stand.
The Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro In Use
This incremental update brings a solid build quality to the unit and, without doing any drop tests for fear of complete breakage, it feels very solid and didn’t show any misfires with constant use. One other useful upgrade is the ability to reduce the power to 1/256 rather than 1/128 as before, which can help out with very close-up portrait lighting.
Where the Flashpoint starts to shine is when used as part of a mobile lighting setup. While on location, you never have to worry about having enough light output and there is a new Stable Color Mode to make sure the color temperature is within 100K of the typical daylight range. Most of the time this feature isn’t needed, as the unit has consistent color temperature output no matter the flash head being used.
The consistency of output follows through the different shooting modes, with TTL judging relatively good exposures each time. Manual settings are very easy to dial in, especially via the transmitter.
Generally speaking, having such a small and portable unit with the dimensions of a Speedlite and the output of a studio strobe makes it so much more convenient to light up a full subject and scene at a moment’s notice.
There really aren’t any downsides to the Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro apart from the odd occasion where it would have been nice to have additional output to overpower the sun. However, in this scenario, it’s a given that much higher power levels are needed as standard.
Let’s Compare It to the Quantum Instruments Q Flash Model X5DR
If you’re looking for at least 200W of light output, you would usually have to check out a traditional studio strobe. These are generally big and bulky and, although some come with battery packs, many require main power.
There are a few units on the market that have more compact dimensions, such as the Quantum Instruments Q Flash Model X5DR, which provides an impressive 400W, but also cost almost three times the price. As this unit has more output, it requires an external power pack, which does reduce its convenience.
The Godox AD200pro pocket flash is more or less the same unit as the Flashpoint and is probably easier to get hold of at more or less the same price point.
|Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro||Quantum Instruments Q Flash Model X5DR|
|Modelling Light||With additional heads||Yes|
|Modes||TTL, Multi, Manual||TTL, Multi, Manual|
What’s New with the Updated Flashpoint eVolv 200 Pro?
This updated Flashpoint eVOLV 200 Pro unit may cost slightly more than the original design, but it also brings with it an increase in build quality and refined features. The recessed controls look and feel more well-thought-out and the addition of the Stable Color Mode can help you fine-tune the light output in tricky lighting situations.
There were only a few times where the limit of 200W felt a little insufficient, but this was on the rare occasion of having to overpower bright sunlight. For the majority of other occasions, the Flashpoint is small enough to pop in and out of a camera bag and feels just as convenient to use as a regular Speedlite.
In total, the Flashpoint will serve those who need extra output than what a Speedlite can provide on location. Ideal scenarios would include wedding photographers who need to set up lighting at a moment’s notice or on-location model shoots. Also, considering that the kits can be picked up for the same price as a high-quality Speedlite, the Flashpoint is good value for the money.