ELINCHROM ELB 500 TTL – Portable Strobe Announced

ELB 500 TTL

 

Elinchrom have announced the ELB 500 TTL Lithium-ion powered portable strobe, Elinchrom’s first flash unit to include TTL and pulsing HSS modes.

With Elinchrom’s radio functionality now a collaboration with Phottix, the ELB 500 TTL provide both Skyport, and Phottix Odin II TTL transmitter compatibility. Allowing Odin II compatible strobes like the Indra 500TTL and Mitros+ speedlites to be used alongside the ELB 500 TTL strobe.

New Elinchrom Transmitter PRO will be available for Canon and Nikon, with other camera systems to follow soon. And previous Skyport Plus HS transmitters can also be upgraded to full TTL and HSS functionality via a firmware update.

 

ELB 500 TTL

Other major upgrades from the ELB 400 include fully asymmetrical power control of the A and B ports.

And the IGBT flash now uses a single flash head, instead of requiring different optional heads for Action or Hi-Sync functions. The ELB 500’s Action mode providing 1/20,000s flash duration (at minimum power).

The 500Ws ELB 500 TTL provides up to 400 shots on a single battery charge, with 2 second full power recycle time. And a 7 stop manual power range.

For studio use an “Active Charge” feature allows the battery pack to be charged from a mains power socket while the strobe is in use.

The pack also features a high resolution OLED display.

 

ELB 500 TTL

 

ELINCHROM ELB 500 TTL  FEATURES

 

 

The ELB 500 TTL flash head now provides all functions, HSS, Action, etc in the one head unit. And a cord is now permanently attached to the head.

A 14 watt LED modelling light is provided, with On/Off, Free, and Proportional modes.

The umbrella mount is 7mm diameter, and the accessory mount is Elinchrom’s Q (Quadra) mount. Though a Q-Reflctor adapter is available to mount regular full size Elinchrom modifiers.

 

ELB 500 TTL

 

New Elinchrom Transmitter PRO will be available for Canon and Nikon, with other camera systems to follow soon.

And previous Skyport Plus HS transmitters can also be upgraded to full TTL and HSS functionality via a firmware update.

A Hybrid like TTL function is provided, allowing an initial TTL exposure to be converted to manual power levels for consistency and further refinement.

Only HSS, not Hi-Sync, is available with the ELB 500 TTL and transmitter PRO.

 

 

Elinchrom Transmitter PRO

ELINCHROM ELB 500 TTL  SPECS

 

ELB 500 TTL Pack
Maximum Watt/Seconds 500 Ws
Flash Variability 7 Stops (in 1/10 increments)
Recycle Time 0.05-3.5 sec
Flash Duration Action Mode: 1/20,000 sec
Normal Mode: 1/3400 sec
Distribution Asymmetric
Head Outlets 2
Battery Separately sold lithium-ion battery pack (14.4 V/72 Wh)
Battery Life 400 full-power flashes
28,000 minimum-power flashes
Dimensions 6.4 x 5.4 x 3.6″ / 16.3 x 13.8 x 9 cm
With Battery: 6.4 x 7.12 x 3.6″ / 16.3 x 18.1 x 9 cm
Weight 3.83 lb / 1.8 kg
With Battery: 5.5 lb / 2.5 kg

 

Li-Ion Battery for ELB 500 TTL
Battery Type Lithium-ion 14.4 V, 5 Ah 72 Wh
Battery Capacity 400 full-power flashes
Charge Time 50 minutes to 80% charge
100 minutes to 100% charge
Dimensions 6.4 x 3.6 x 1.9″ / 16.3 x 9.0 x 4.9 cm
Weight 1.6 lb (0.72 kg)
Charging Time 50 minutes to 80%
100 minutes to 100%

 

ELB 500 TTL Flash Head
Maximum Watt/Seconds 500
Changeable Reflector Yes, Quadra Mount (Q-Mount)
Color Temperature Flash Head: 5500K @ full power (+/-200K over 7 stops)
Flash Head Power Stability: 0.05%
Modeling Light: 5200K @ full power (CRI 90)
Flash Duration Action Mode: 1/20,000 sec
Normal Mode: 1/3400 sec
Cable Length 8.0′ / 2.4 m
Modeling Light 14 W LED (50 W halogen equivalent)
Modes: On/Off, free adjustment, proportional, timer, visual confirmation
Control: on ELB 500 TTL pack
Fan Cooled No
Mount 5/8″ (16 mm) Receiver
7.0 mm Umbrella fitting
Dimensions 3.5 x 3.1 x 6.3″ / 9.0 x 8.0 x 16 cm
Weight 1.5 lb / 0.68 kg

 

 

 

 

PRICE AND AVAILABILITY

 

The Elinchrom ELB 500 TTL To Go Kits are available for pre-order now from $1899.95, and Dual (head) To Go Kits from $2124.95 –

To Go Kit – Adorama, Amazon, UKB&H Photo

Dual To Go Kit – Adorama, AmazonUKB&H Photo

 

Elinchrom – Website

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17 Comments
  1. Martin 8 months ago

    I really haven’t got a clue what Elinchrom are playing at. As if anybody wants a 500w unit that is tethered to a battery with all the other options available in the market today that have the battery built into the head. It just doesn’t make any sense.

    • Elijah 8 months ago

      They wanted to be part of “worlds first” statement. On a side note, this is a pretty great flash and I would find it useful if I shot with Eli.
      I only say this because I use my Profoto B2 more than my Profoto B1’s. And I definitely will not switch to anything else now because of the A1. Between B1, B1 and A1, I’m all set for weddings. Too heavily invested in Profoto already…

    • Robert 8 months ago

      Martin, I mostly agree. The remote Elinchrom heads make for less weight swinging up in the air while on a stand, but you practically need a pack at every light anyway if your stands are more than 15′ apart. Who wants to be jumping over cables in studio or on location?

      Specs on these lights are underwhelming especially given the cost. The new AD600s make way more sense, except for flash duration and variable HSS where the Elinchrom’s have them beat. BTW, HSS is def superior to HS – you get more controllable flash power for sync speeds above 200th/second. Otherwise, these don’t seem to offer much value – unless I’m missing something here.

  2. Ron S 8 months ago

    Elinchrom’s own statements in one of their YouTube videos is that they ‘reinvented’ their flavour of HSS to be more efficient than that offered by competitors. This was always an argument in favour of HS flash over HSS and Elinchrom’s implementation of HS is very good. In a discussion over at Fred Miranda, apparently the ELB500 in HSS is very similar in usable output to the ELB400 in HS.

    As for them being late to the party, that is certainly true, but at least they are joining, unlike some other brands. And the pack/head vs. monolight debate will never be settled because there are advantages and disadvantages to both. The Quadra-style heads are extremely small and light, making it easy to put in places larger units wouldn’t fit, are easier for assistants walk around with in a modifier on the end of a boom, more stable at the top of a 13′ stand, etc. Some of these situations you’d end up splitting the AD600 into its head/pack configuration too, to keep 3kg off the end of the stand. But yeah, set up is faster without cables, especially for multi-head configurations. And you lose considerable packing portability of the ELB if you have to bring a few 5m or 10m extensions.

    Another consideration is service and support. Does it exist for Godox and other similar brands? I have not yet seen them offer a Mac OS based firmware update option, for example. Why should I have to install a Windows VM just to do a firmware update? And it sounds like service is spotty unless purchased through a reputable importer, such as Adorama, but my understanding is they just replace in-warranty products. I’m sure Elv could elaborate more on the challenges involved in communicating with Godox, etc…

    I’m extremely interested in the AD600 Pro, but not to replace my Quadra gear. They would replace PCB monolights. I’d actually rather get Profoto D2s for the full power flash duration advantage, but I have to draw the line at some point on the cost/performance scale.

  3. Lloyd 8 months ago

    It’s the 2 sec full power recycle time on this that I can’t work out. Are we missing something with recycle times. How have Godox seemingly managed to produce a piece of kit (AD600Pro) that has half the recycle times as the best Elinchrom and Profoto can produce. How have they managed it and no one else can. Recycle time is the most important factor for me.

  4. John Wilson 8 months ago

    Hi Lloyd!

    The ELB 500 has a 14.4V battery the AD600 Pro has a 28.8V battery. The higher the voltage the quicker the capacitors recharge.

    • Lloyd 8 months ago

      Thanks – that explains it. But why then don’t the other players use higher voltage batteries – are there any downsides that I’m missing?

      • John Wilson 8 months ago

        I’d guess it’s because this shares a lot of electronics with the ELB400 which uses 14.4V Li-Ion (or 12V Lead Acid) batteries.

      • Peters 8 months ago

        Yes, there are downsides, first Elinchrom, Profoto etc. build equipment to last 10 years or more, also they are known for to build flashes that can power all day long. The Godox can only do 50 flashes in HSS at full power in a row and then it goes into overheat protection. Ever done a commercial fashion shoot and in the middle of the shooting you need to tell the models, client etc. we need to stop because my flash has overheated ?

        It is no problem to make fast recycle times, but it is a problem to make this rock solid. The faster you recycle the more heat will be generated inside the battery itself but also inside the flash, capacitors get really warm and capacitors don’t like heat, heat will reduce their lifetime. A manufactor needs to decide between making an absolut stable flash which works under any conditions or to make one that is as fast as possible but stressing the electronic parts to and above their limits which could cause early failures and reduce lifetime.

        Also decision must be made to build equipment that can handle humidity and bad weather, the ELB 500 has some humidity protection whereas Profotos B1x, Godox AD600Pro have nothing, so the ELB can work under conditions where the others cannot work. Flashes with humidity protection cannot have an easy collong solutions like Profoto and Godox with their fans, these are all considerations that needs to be taken into account, if photographers needs sealed lenses and cameras for outdoor shootings at waterfalls, in the desert, in the early morning with fog in the grass, in snow etc., they would need also somehow weather protected flash equipment.

  5. Scott Goh 7 months ago

    would love to see how well these does in the wedding photography industry comparing to the rest of the major brands.

    • Author
      Flash Havoc 7 months ago

      Hi Scott,

      Well the interesting thing is from what some people are saying they do work with the Phottix Mitros+ as an on camera master speedlite.

      And having a compatible master speedlite is a major addition to the Elinchrom kit as far as wedding photographers needs go, so its a bit surprising that
      neither Elinchrom or Phottix are making a big deal about that, let alone not really stating it at all.

      I would have to think the Mitros+ is well due for an update though, and maybe we could possibly see an Elinchrom version then as well, which they would no doubt make a big deal about being their first speedlite, and expanding the Elinchrom system to wedding photographers.

  6. Chris B 7 months ago

    I’ve been using Eli Dlite 4RX’s for the last 5years along with the beast that is the Godox 800 battery. Luckily I’m quite fit otherwise lugging that thing around would have caused me a mischief. I chose this kit as I had little funds and this was the kit that got me most of what I needed for the smallest cost. The fact is that these lights have been brilliant and so has the battery. I’ve been on fishing boats in force 9 gales and the outer reaches of Scotland in changeable weather. They have fulfilled every need except for a few incidents where I needed a bit more ambient killing power in extreme harsh midday sun. I’m at the stage where I need to upgrade. I love the reliability of Elinchrom (I don’t like the way their softboxes fit to their lights – this could be easier/better) however I have been on shoots where I have been on location and wanted to fire a background light from behind my subject from quite a distance (and across a river!) and the cables have been a pain in the arse. Wireless systems like Godox come into their own in this instance. I’m now in the position where I want to upgrade and lighten the load and not sure which way to go ….Do I go Eli and buy 2 batteries for instances such as the above or go the cable-less route? I do like the size and form of the Eli’s (less weight on the end of the pole/stand) but the Godox’s have the ability to plug a 1200w head into one of the bodies for the moments you need the extra power……decisions!

    • John Wilson 7 months ago

      Hi Chris!

      I bought a set of the original Quadras with the lead acid batteries. I lasted about two months before I bought another base unit. I still have them and they still work but my AD200s have pretty much replaced them. I’d sell them but nobody would buy.

      These new lights look nice and fix some of the problems with the old lights (variable ratio, cable fixed to head so you no longer blow then if you haven’t fixed the cable just right, just one type of head). Remember you’re getting 500Ws split between two heads and the heads distance apart is limited by the cable length (You can buy extension cables, of course).

      Here’s some options for lights giving roughly 800Ws-1200Ws:

      Elinchrom 500 TTL: 2 X packs and heads. Cost ~ £3K, weight ~7Kg (priced from The Flash Centre)
      Godox AD200: 4 X AD200 + 2 X AD-B2 brackets. Cost ~£1.2K, weight ~5Kg (priced from (Essential Photo/Pixapro)
      Godox AD600BM: 2 X AD600BM + 2 X Remote Flash Head . Cost ~£900, weight ~8.8Kg (priced from (Essential Photo/Pixapro) If you needed the TTL version add ~£250, if you lust after the AD600Pro add ~£900

      The 1200Ws AD600 head is a bit pricey because of the cost of the bulb (beware cheap offers they don’t include the bulb) If you go the 2 X AS600 route and want this head I’d hang fire and see if the price comes down.

      You don’t,of course, have to do any of the above you can mix and match the Godox kit.

      Does this help?

  7. ChrisB 7 months ago

    Thanks for your advice John, I didn’t realise that if I ran 2 heads from one pack I would only get a max of 250w in each head, If that’s the case it’s pretty much a show stopper for me. Is it worth throwing the ELB1200 into the mix?

    • John Wilson 7 months ago

      Hi Chris!

      i had a look at the ELB1200 at the photo show in Birmingham the other week. It’s a heavyweight from all perspectives. A one head set costs in the £3k-£3.5K range a head goes for £800 (i.e. the same price as an AD600Pro) The heads have the full size Elinchrom mounts rather than the tiny mounts on the ELB500 heads that means they are pretty beefy. You can shoot one head up to 1200Ws or two at 60%:30% or 50%:50% ratios. You have the limit that shooting two heads from one pack means that there’s a limit to where you can place the lights. My feeling was that it’s attractive for existing ELB users who need the occasional bit of extra power.

      If I were you I wouldn’t commit all my cash at one go. Get an Xpro trigger, a couple of AD200s, a couple of S-Type brackets with Bowens mount (~£13 a go on Amazon) and have a play. Then get a AD-B2 mount if you need to combine the AD200 to get more power.

      If you get on with the system then you can consider how to extend it to fit your needs. Possibly one or two AD600s, possibly with one or two remote heads ,possibly with a 1200Ws remote head. But by then you’ll know the Godox system quite well and you’ll be able to spend the money in the most effective way for your way of working.

  8. Luciano C. 7 months ago

    On location I’ ve used Elichrom ELB 400 and Godox AD200 and AD360. They all work very well togheter . The pro/cons of separate head are been already well discussed: tiny and light head are useful outside, especially in windy days, but you have to manage with cables. For me not a serious issues anyway: I just bought a 5 meter extension cable and working with battery and with one of the lights near to you , there is just one cable around to manage.
    Anyway I don’t know about to upgrade to this ELB 500 TTL. Godox ADS600 Pro seems to be a very very interesting strobe, and it cost much less. About assistence, I don’t know. Here in Italy we have a official importer for Godox, and I hope it could possible to receive assistence for broken devices. PS: excuse my poor English.

  9. ChrisB 6 months ago

    Hi John, my apologies I missed your reply and really appreciate your advice inc the info on the 1200’s. I really like the robustness of the Eli’s, as mentioned I’ve had great use out of my Dlites but I often shoot in bright/sunny daylight and may need the full 500w from 2 lights so the 50/50 may not be good enough – I would prob need to buy 2 batteries. I also occasionally find myself in situations such as this: http://www.chrisboulton.co.uk/editorial-fashion/#/snegurka-1/ where I had one light across the stream and one back down the river etc…pretty tough to do with cables. And so I think I may take your advice and see how I get on with Godox. Thanks again Chris

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