ExpoImaging added another set of lighting design tools: the Rogue XL Pro Lighting Kit. The kit includes an over-sized FlashBender reflector with a black and silver reflector attachment, a soft box attachment, and a strip box attachment. All for just short of €80.00.
The Rogue FlashBender product family is quite extensive. There are at least two reflectors, a flag, filters, etc. They all have one thing in common: they’re quite small compared to studio lighting design tools and therefore perfectly suited to take with you. I heard of some photographers who have started a mobile photo studio; for these people, the Rogue family of lighting tools can be a brilliant part of their tool chest.
The Rogue XL Pro Lighting Kit allows for a variable width strip box, a low profile soft box and a multi-surface reflector. It’s a compact system of flash modifiers that packs flat and takes up very little room in a gear bag, but it’s a lot bigger than the earlier Rogue FlashBenders. While the XL Pro FlashBender Reflector allows you to control directional light by bouncing, curving, and reflecting the light where you want it, the Strip Box Attachment is used in combination with the XL Pro FlashBender for greater edge lighting control.
You can adjust the variable width of the strip to control how wide your light source will be and where the edge between highlight and shadow will fall. The Soft Box Attachment is used to create more directional light than the base reflector alone, directing light forward and preventing it from going straight up. The diffusion fabric reduces specular highlights. The Silver/Black Reflector Attachment is used with the XL Pro FlashBender to create a higher contrast light than the base reflectors medium contrast white material.
The black side of the attachment can be used as a large flag, providing limited reflectivity while the light is directed forward along the reflectors edge. In use, the XL size of the Rogue FlashBender demands that you lock your speedlight head-up so that it won’t move under the weight of the tool, as it’s considerably heavier than the usual FlashBenders. The weight makes the speedlight flash top-heavy and I was worried this would make handling the add-ons or bending the FlashBender itself a difficult task. I needn’t be.
It’s actually even easier to set up this large thing because you have much more material to work with. My LumoPro LP160 could handle the wiggling you inevitably introduce without a problem. The only thing that was a bit less simple to do, was setting up the strip box because when you do, you need to bend both sides of the FlashBender far forward so the box fits. That made the flash go all wobbly on me, but everything stayed well within reason.
As for the results you can get from using the Rogue XL Pro Lighting Kit, you can judge for yourself from the gallery of images I’m including on this page. I’ve added a diagram of how I set up my test so you can see whether it makes sense.
If not, please comment and I’ll try to answer and/or set up the test the way you suggest. My results are more outspoken than with the smaller FlashBenders, but that could just be me. I can imagine that a combination of smaller FlashBenders with the XL Pro Lighting Kit would accommodate for virtually any sort of lighting demand any photographer/strobist could wish for.