FLASHPOINT XPLOR 600 PRO – REVIEW – Part 1

XPLOR 600 PRO

 

The Flashpoint XPLOR 600 PRO is the follow up to Flashpoint’s game changing XPLOR 600, TTL and HSS enabled 600Ws cordless strobe.

Both units being based on Godox’s AD600 PRO, and AD600B, and fully compatible with the complete Godox / Flashpoint R2 system of radio enabled strobes.

And what a transformation the 600 PRO is, both in function and design.

The 600 PRO are only Godox / Flashpoint’s second generation TTL cordless strobe, and already challenging the best available. In many ways setting a benchmark for others to follow.

The 600 PRO now offer exceptionally fast recycle times, powerful LED modelling light, and color accuracy to provide a serious alternative to traditional AC powered monolights.

 

 

This 600 Pro really are a significant development, being the first and currently only cordless strobe available (at any price) which provides all of the most required functions into one strobe, for studio and location use.

And that’s mainly because still no one else is offering a cordless strobe with the option of a remote head. And having these 2 options in the one strobe has been a large part of the success of the original XPLOR.

With fast recycle times, powerful LED modelling light, and Color Stability Mode, the 600 PRO now provides the additional flexibility of a portable location strobe and studio monolight in the one unit.

There are also significant refinements in the strobes swivel design, and even modifier mount, which make the 600 PRO now much more enjoyable to use.

The flash tube design and spacing has also been refined, which is discussed in more detail further bellow.

The only things missing are possibly a very fast flash duration mode, and 1/10th power level adjustment for studio use.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

Significant improvements over the original XPLOR 600 / AD600B include –

 

  • Super Fast 0.9 Second Recycle Time
  • Color Stability Mode (+/- 75K Over Power Range)
  • Powerful 38 Watt LED Modelling Light
  • Refined Flash Tube Design & Positioning
  • Streamline Reflector Included
  • Smooth Action All Metal Compact Swivel Mount
  • Refined S-Type Modifier Mount
  • Optional Rear Studio Tilt Handle

 

XPLOR 600 - AD600

XPLOR 600 - AD600

 

 

XPLOR 600 PRO FEATURES

 

  • 600Ws
  • GN 87M (ISO 100, Included Reflector)
  • Fan Cooled
  • 38W LED Modelling Light (Fully Adjustable)
  • Bowens S-type Mount
  • Optional Remote Head
  • Optional AC Power Adapter
  • Built in (removable) 28.8V / 2600mAh Lithium-ion Battery
  • Up to 360 Full Power Pops Per Battery Charge
  • 0.01 – 0.9 Seconds Recycle Time
  • Flash Modes – TTL / M / Multi
  • HSS to 1/8000th
  • Second Curtain Sync
  • FEC / FEB – 1/3rd Increments (±3 Stops)
  • FEL (Flash Exposure Lock)
  • Manual Flash – 1/256 – 1/1 Output (1/3rd Increments)
  • Flashpoint R2 / Godox X, 2.4GHz Radio System
  • Canon, Nikon. Sony, Fuji, M4/3, Radio Slave Modes (Auto Switching)
  • Range – 100m + with X1 as Transmitter
  • Groups – A / B / C / D / E
  • 32 Channels
  • Supports Legacy Godox FT-16 XT-16 Remote Manual Trigger System
  • S1 & S2 Optic Slave Modes
  • Flash Duration – 1/220s-1/10100s
  • Large Dot Matrix LCD Display
  • Custom Functions
  • Auto Memory Function
  • Type C USB Port for Firmware Upgrades
  • USB Communication Port (For FTR-16 & XTR-16 Receivers)
  • 3.5mm Sync Port

 

 

SYSTEM OVERVIEW

 

A major feature of the Godox / Flashpoint R2 System has become the cross platform support for Canon, Nikon. Sony, Fuji, and Olympus / Panasonic (M4/3) camera systems, supporting TTL and HSS.

The auto sensing radio receiver mode built into the 600 PRO, and most of the Flashpoint R2 system strobes, allows different camera brands to be used with the same set of remote strobes at the same time.

The recent R2 Pro / Xpro transmitters have provided a big improvement in the system, with a very user friendly interface. And an improved Flashpoint transmitter is still to come later in the year.

The provided TCM function is also a significant feature, allowing quick initial TTL exposures to be converted to manual power settings for further refinement and consistency.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO

 

Normally when looking at a new TTL strobe, examining the TTL exposures, and radio trigger performance, would be some of the highest priorities, though these are already quite a well known quantity with the Godox / Flashpoint R2 System.

As a very brief overview, a large part of the success of the original XPLOR / AD600 has been fairly solid TTL exposures, and a simple though reliable radio system from the beginning.

There are numerous intricacies and ongoing generally small loose ends which will hopefully be ironed out over time. And it would be best to look at the post on the transmitter or master flash version you intend to use to see more discussion on these.

If you’re a wedding photographer looking for an integrated system with a master speedlight on camera, at this stage I can only suggest trying a TT685 or V860II speedlight first to see if they are going to meet your needs.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

 

IN COMPARISON

 

The original XPLOR / AD600B, TTL or Manual versions, are not being replaced by the 600 PRO. They will still be sold along side the new version as a more economical alternative.

So I have tried to include something of a comparison between the strobes in this review.

The ORLIT RT 610 / Jinbei HD 610 have also been included in places, as they are generally the other main option people have often been weighing up between previously.

Though keep in mind, although the RT 610 in many respects weigh up favorably compared with the original XPLOR, they do not have a remote head option, and the radio system is not as mature as Godox’s.

 

 

SIZE

 

The 600 PRO’s body is actually now slightly longer than the original –

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

Though with the new included compact reflector, and slimline swivel design, the 600 PRO comes out considerably more compact overall.

Its clear the designers were conscious of the demand for a unit that is as compact as possible for transport and use on location etc.

The 600 PRO’s included compact reflector is more of a wide angle umbrella style reflector though, so its not a completely direct comparison.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

And even supplied with a similar size reflector, the ORLIT RT 610 starts to appear large overall in comparison.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

 

WEIGHT

 

The 600 Pro has also added 433 grams of weight over the original.

There is no free lunch unfortunately, and the trade off for fast recycle times, and powerful LED light etc, is some added weight, due to the additional metal heat sinks and cooling required.

The metal swivel and refined modifier mount would also contribute.

  • 600 PRO – 3234g
  • XPLOR – 2801g
  • RT 610 – 3008g

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

 

INTERFACE

 

The 600 PRO’s LCD interface is also a nice improvement over the original.

The LCD screen is the same size, though the resolution is higher, and important information like the Group and Power Level display have been emphasized.

The buttons are now spaced further apart for easier access, and the larger dial makes adjustments considerably quicker and easier.

I have noticed a trend with Godox simplifying things where possible, and so the Canon and Nikon etc optic wireless modes are no longer provided. Basic S1 and S2 optic receiver modes are still available though.

Overall the interface is very clean, simple, fast to use, and hard to fault.

 

 

There is a nice simple custom function menu, with numerous options available. The Alternate and Mask function being a significant feature.

One thing some people will be missing is 1/10th power level adjustment for finer studio use. Though hopefully that may be something which could possibly still be able to be updated with future firmware.

Personally I would really have liked to have seen a second LCD screen on the opposite side of the strobe as well. Mainly just to display the current group, and confirm when remotely adjusted power levels are changing on the strobe.

And an option to hear a beep when power levels are changing on the strobe would be nice as well, particularly for the times when you can’t view the LCD screen.

 

 

BATTERY

 

Possibly the most controversial change (at least for current XPLOR / AD600 strobe owners) has been the change from a 14.4 volt, to a 28.8 volt battery system.

Godox have apparently made the change to allow for the strobes very fast recycle times, which are certainly a significant upgrade.

One trade off though is battery capacity has now decreased from an exceptional 500 full power shots, down to around 360.

The other issue for current XPLOR / AD600 owners is that the new battery is not compatible with the original strobes. And that adds to the charger, AC power supply, remote head, and bulb all not being compatible between units.

Still the most important thing is that both strobes work well together on the same radio system, just like combining any of the other strobes in the system like the EVOLV / AD200 etc.

Though for people more serious about simplifying their lighting kit, this lack of compatibility means twice as much back up gear required. And this may be the point which will see people eventually moving completely into one camp or the other.

Personally I think that at least Godox have made the change relatively early in their system, and it will be interesting to see how other manufacturers possibly deal with this in the future.

Its also why I think Godox should really work towards a 360Ws version of the strobe, which would integrate seamlessly with the 600 PRO, and accessories. And eventually a larger strobe in the system as well.

As well as a separate compact 360Ws strobe (which would merge into a compatible EVOLV / AD200 system) using a common battery mount and accessories.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

NOTE – Lithium-ion batteries like to be used, and generally last longer with at least some occasional use.

If you’re going to store them its not good to fully charge them, and especially not good to allow them to completely deplete. Personally I just check them monthly and keep the level around 40% to 75%.

 

The 600 Pro battery is quite similar in size to the original, and and a little lighter at 566 grams, verses 618 grams.

Once again a battery level indicator is built-in (as well as provided on the strobes LCD display).

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

The battery mount has now adopted a system very similar to the one used with the EVOLV / AD200 modular flash head.

And the backing plate on the strobe itself is now plastic, rather than metal like the original strobe.

This appears fairly solid though, and its still fast and easy to attach and remove the battery.

As with the original strobe, an optional AC power adapter will also be available for the 600 PRO.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

 

FLASHTUBE

 

To allow for a larger, and unobstructed, LED modelling light, Godox have moved to a more traditional horseshoe style flash tube.

Though this is still a convenient plug in design (which also allows for the remote head unit).

The shape of the flash tube, spacing, and frosted front diffuser all have effects on the quality of light projected, which is discussed further below under the Power and Light Pattern heading.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

The flash tube has also been spaced out further from the modifier mount, so that it will protrude further into modifiers.

With the change of flash tube shape, this may not appear to have created much advantage. Though as shown further below, when using the average width Bowen’s speedring this can make a difference.

 

 

 

LED MODELING LIGHT

 

The 600 PRO’s 38W LED modelling light is a substantial upgrade from the 10W used in the original, and now brings the battery powered strobe far more inline with the capability of AC powered studio lights.

The LED has full manual control from 1% to 100%, as well as proportional mode to follow the strobes manual power levels. And can be set to run constantly, or intermittently (switching off just while the strobe fires and recycles).

Measured in a double diffused Glow ParaPop 38″ softbox, the 600 PRO’s LED provided a light meter reading of 0.6 stops more light than the Rapid 600 / QT600 II with traditional 150W halogen bulb. So comparable to around a 230W traditional bulb.

In the same softbox the 600 PRO was also 0.6 stops more than the 20W LED in the ORLIT RT 610.

And 1.6 stops more light than the 10W LED in the original XPLOR / AD600.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

The color temperature of the 600 PRO’s LED is a slightly unusual 4600K (measured at 4679K).

And the CRI (Ra) reading has also gone backwards a little from the original strobe, from around 93.8 back to around 91.

Note the ORLIT RT 610 is only at 86.3, with its warmer tungsten balanced temperature.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

The 600 PRO’s LED appears to be able to run constantly at full power for some time. Though after a few minutes at full power the fan will go into high speed mode, which does make some noise.

So combined with the CRI, the PRO’s LED doesn’t appear to be aimed at high quality video use. Though its probably fine for some impromptu filming.

Overall the 600 PRO’s LED now appears to work very well as a modelling light though.

The only main thing missing is remote power control from the transmitter. I had asked for that in the coming Flashpoint transmitter (which would likely flow through to the Xpro), though nothing has been confirmed there as yet.

 

 

MODIFIER MOUNT

 

The 600 PRO’s new S-type modifier mount has improved significantly over the original strobes.

With what appears to be a combination of using stiffer spring tabs, and just getting the tolerances right, modifiers now have a very neat and firm fit.

No more rattling reflectors or sagging softboxes.

Possibly just lucky, though every modifier I have tried fits straight on, and with a nice firm fit.

With the ORLIT / Jinbei strobes in comparison it sometimes requires filing down the outer diameter of the bayonet lugs, just to fit the speedring etc into the strobe mount. And once on they still rattle around!

So this new mount is a great step forward, and really makes the 600 PRO feel a lot more refined.

 

 

 

SWIVEL MOUNT

 

One of the nicest physical improvement over the original strobes has go to be the new smooth action, stepless, metal swivel mount.

This is really a very simple design, just using a disc made of friction material in the swivel joint, something like a miniature grip head.

It works well though and would hold my 120cm deep parabolic without creeping down. For larger modifiers it would be better to attach those directly to the light stand in any case.

There is no friction at all once you release the swivel’s handle though, so the strobe and modifier will basically free fall if not supported before loosening the handle.

Where the ORLIT / Jinbei swivels are a slightly more sophisticated design, always providing some resistance.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

And once the strobes optional handle is available, the swivel should really be a pleasure to use.

The handle will attache via the 4 small cap screws shown bellow near the battery.

The large ON / OFF switch now relocated to the bottom of the strobe is a nice improvement as well. It also switches off quickly now, though still requires a 2 second hold to switch on.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

One small issue with the swivel base is the depth of the hole when attaching to baby pin studs like those used on C-stands and Avenger light stands.

The 600 PRO swivel base does actually mount really nicely on these, though there is only 1mm or 2mm at most, covering past the recessed section of the stud.

That’s not really an issue on light stands where the weight of the strobe is forcing it down onto the stud, though it makes me a little nervous if using a Avenger drop down pin on the end of a boom arm.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

To fix this I would simply file more of a chamfer on the end of the drop down pin like this, so that it goes a bit further into the swivel base hole.

The light shouldn’t fall off completely in any case, though it would save giving someone a fright if it dropped a little and propped sideways on the stud.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

Otherwise the 600 PRO’s swivel fits nicely even on the C-stands without rocking at all. Where the ORLIT RT 610 will rock a little on the stud even with the thumbscrew tight

Which is a little annoying, and I hope Godox don’t read this and possibly try and make the hole deeper in the current 600 PRO swivel base, and possibly make it worse.

 

The hole in the side of the swivel base appears to be mainly provided to improve the mounting options when attaching the strobe to a light stand, during remote head use. Which is a good idea.

This was an issue with the original strobe sitting out a way from the stand, unless you could rig up a stud for yourself with a 90 degree elbow. (A superclamp etc is needed here, the image is just an illustration).

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

The 600 PRO swivel handle is once again plastic. It feels more solid, though still flexes a little.

The handles metal insert is now shaped like a regular nut though. So the handle can not strip on the insert, and leave you with a broken handle that is very difficult to remove, as can happen with the original strobes handle.

If using larger modifiers often it may still be best to just swap the handle with a metal one anyway.

 

 

The umbrella mount provides clearance on 8mm umbrella shafts, and just uses a simple spring tab to place a little tension on the umbrella shaft.

Some people don’t like the way this type of mount allows the umbrella shaft to sag down, and move around.

While others have said its a good thing that the umbrella will come out of the mount freely if there is a gust of wind, saving the strobe from damage.

One good thing is the mount is a separate part, screwed on, so Godox or third parties could possibly provide other options later.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

There is no longer a handle built in to the swivel mount like the original strobes.

Inexpensive handles like shown below can be purchased on Ebay etc though, which should do the job fine if ever needed.

If holding the strobe at head height or higher, its generally much easier to use a pole or monopod than hold your arms up for any period anyway.

 

 

Overall, unless mainly just using the strobe mounted on a pole, in a fixed position, the new swivel is a really nice improvement.

And I would personally really like to see an EVOLV Twin PRO bracket with a much nicer swivel and modifier mount as well.

 

 

CARRY CASE

 

Once again the XPLOR 600 PRO comes with a nice carry case. Now much more compact than with the original strobes.

The design has been revised, and being smaller makes the sidewalls and overall case significantly more rigid.

The strobe now fits into the case with the reflector attached, and a supplied end cap for the reflector protects the flash tube.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

With reflector mounted, the strobe only its in the case with the battery removed though. I wasn’t sure if this was intentional, or possibly originally designed for a different configuration.

Though I have just realized the strobe is not going to fit with reflector mounted, and the coming handle attached. So it may not be the most ideal option anyway.

If looking for a good inexpensive case that will fit the 600 PRO with battery (and handle) attached, ready to go, the ORLIT RT 610 case is actually one good option.

It needs some added padding at the end of the strobe, and the second compartment dividers could be wider. Otherwise its a nice option.

Ideally though its probably time to supply rigid plastic hard cases with padded dividers with these strobes.

 

 

 

COLOR & CONSISTENCY

 

Below is a quick overview of the color and consistency results as tested with a Sekonic C-700 color meter.

The XPLOR PRO’s Color mode is only available when using manual power levels, and outside of HSS mode.

Though I would really like to look into the color results in more detail in a separate post, covering HSS and TTL results where possible as well.

 

Note – When using Color Consistency mode with the 600 PRO, the strobe acts partially like a voltages controlled flash, so whenever changing to a lower power level you need to press the test fire button to release the excess energy in the capacitors. There is no auto dump.

 

In Color Consistency mode the XPLOR 600 PRO ranged from 5435K at full power, to 5624K at 1/32 power.

A total variation of 189K, which is possibly just within Godox’s spec of +/- 100K. Though outside the +/- 75K spec Flashpoint have stated at times.

CRI (Ra) readings are above 98 at all a power levels, and the Green / Magenta balance is mostly neutral, with a slight 0.1 Magenta tint only showing around 1/128 power level.

 

1/1 POWER

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

1/32 POWER

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

Please Note – The reading below are just provided as an indication. Results may vary from strobe to strobe, and with different meters, and test conditions etc.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO – COLOR MODE
VARI TINT
1/1 5445 K 5449 K 5441 K 5435 K 5438 K 5442 K 11 K
1/2 5510 K 5509 K 5517 K 5517 K 5507 K 5516 K 10 K
1/4 5535 K 5532 K 5532 K 5536 K 5543 K 5531 K 12 K
1/8 5548 K 5555 K 5546 K 5550 K 5566 K 5550 K 20 K
1/16 5594 K 5602 K 5594 K 5599 K 5584 K 5600 K 18 K
1/32 5619 K 5620 K 5624 K 5612 K 5599 K 5604 K 25 K
1/64 5596 K 5607 K 5573 K 5611 K 5607 K 5590 K 38 K
1/128 5570 K 5625 K 5603 K 5603 K 5572 K 5580 K 55 K 0.1M
1/256 5593 K 5547 K 5602 K 5569 K 5560 K 5540 K 62 K
Maximum Variation : 5624 K – 5435 K = 189 K

 

 

XPLOR 600 PRO – REGULAR MODE

 

In regular mode the XPLOR 600 PRO ranged from 5430K at full power, to 5788K at 1/16 power.

A total variation of 358K, which again is within Godox’s spec of 5600K +/- 200K.

Variation from shot to shot is still fairly minimal.

CRI (Ra) readings are also above 98 at all a power levels, and a slight Magenta tint creeping in.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO – REGULAR MODE
VARI TINT
1/1 5430 K 5446 K 5441 K 5445 K 5440 K 5442 K 16 K
1/2 5559 K 5571 K 5565 K 5562 K 5565 K 5568 K 12 K 0.1M
1/4 5650 K 5657 K 5615 K 5661 K 5650 K 5658 K 46 K 0.1M
1/8 5729 K 5726 K 5722 K 5738 K 5725 K 5723 K 16 K 0.1M
1/16 5718 K 5788 K 5781 K 5778 K 5782 K 5783 K 70 K 0.1M
1/32 5755 K 5746 K 5772 K 5763 K 5769 K 5763 K 26 K 0.1M
1/64 5711 K 5699 K 5693 K 5715 K 5711 K 5693 K 22 K 0.1M
1/128 5729 K 5728 K 5748 K 5695 K 5696 K 5726 K 53 K 0.1M
1/256 5748 K 5638 K 5630 K 5736 K 5631 K 5683 K 118 K 0.2M
Maximum Variation : 5788 K – 5430 K = 358 K

 

XPLOR 600

 

The original XPLOR 600 ranged from a cooler 5688K at full power, to 6435K at 1/256 power.

A total variation of 747K, which is well outside of Godox’s spec of 5600K +/- 200K.

Though again variation between shots is still mostly minimal, which is generally most important.

CRI (Ra) readings are also above 98, and slightly more Magenta tint is creeping in.

 

XPLOR 600
VARI TINT
1/1 5700 K 5695 K 5705 K 5695 K 5696 K 5688 K 17 K
1/2 5846 K 5836 K 5826 K 5843 K 5836 K 5833 K 20 K 0.1M
1/4 5951 K 5975 K 5945 K 5956 K 5962 K 5957 K 30 K 0.1M
1/8 6058 K 6055 K 6050 K 6052 K 6057 K 6043 K 15 K 0.2M
1/16 6125 K 6131 K 6139 K 6114 K 6128 K 6127 K 25 K 0.2M
1/32 6134 K 6122 K 6103 K 6146 K 6157 K 6157 K 54 K 0.2M
1/64 6096 K 6100 K 6124 K 6121 K 6150 K 6143 K 54 K 0.2M
1/128 6249 K 6216 K 6152 K 6310 K 6296 K 6277 K 158 K 0.2M
1/256 6390 K 6435 K 6434 K 6406 K 6388 K 6398 K 47 K 0.3M
Maximum Variation : 6435 K – 5688 K = 747 K

 

ORLIT RT 610

 

In Normal mode (not Freeze mode) the ORLIT RT 610 ranged from 5408K at 1/16 power, to 5790K at 1/128 power.

A total variation of 382K, which is just within ORLIT / Jinbei’s spec of 5600K +/- 200K.

Variation from shot to shot is again mostly minimal.

CRI readings (Ra) are mostly around 97.6, and a slight Green tint is starting to show around 1/16 and 1/32 power.

 

ORLIT RT 610 – NORMAL MODE
VARI TINT
1/1 5581 K 5587 K 5590 K 5582 K 5585 K 5578 K 12 K
1/2 5552 K 5562 K 5556 K 5556 K 5548 K 5549 K 14 K
1/4 5571 K 5567 K 5557 K 5579 K 5569 K 5565 K 22 K
1/8 5733 K 5738 K 5750 K 5730 K 5729 K 5734 K 21 K
1/16 5408 K 5435 K 5432 K 5436 K 5408 K 5422 K 28K 0.1G
1/32 5570 K 5586 K 5572 K 5562 K 5572 K 5577 K 24K 0.1G
1/64 5629 K 5624 K 5636 K 5631 K 5639 K 5636 K 15 K
1/128 5790 K 5759 K 5733 K 5746 K 5756 K 5746 K 57 K
1/256 5688 K 5632 K 5671 K 5630 K 5609 K 5569 K 119 K
Maximum Variation : 5790 K – 5408 K = 382 K

 

 

 

FLASH DURATIONS

 

Being an IGBT strobe the 600 PRO natively provide fairly fast T0.1 flash durations, stated as 1/220s at full power, to 1/10100s at 1/256 power.

Looking at it now though, it is a little surprising Godox did not include a Freeze Mode with faster durations, as this is the only thing stopping the 600 PRO completely knocking it out of the ball park on almost every level.

 

Measuring the flash durations with the Sekonic L-858D light meter I found most of the 600 / PRO stated durations to be fairly accurate, mainly the full and minimum power were a little optimistic.

I would like to go through these in more detail in another post though, and include all the power levels etc.

Interestingly the Rapid 600 / QT600 was reading much faster at full power than the specs state, so I need to look into that further as well.

 

If you’re wanting to compare with other strobes, keep in mind the durations are often stated as T0.5 times, not T0.1. So I have also included the T0.5 times for the 600 PRO in second pair of graphs below.

 

XPLOR 600 PRO –

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

XPLOR 600 PRO T0.5 –

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

XPLOR 600 COLOR MODE –

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

XPLOR 600 –

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

ORLIT RT 610 FREEZE MODE –

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

RAPID 600 / QT600 HIGH SPEED MODE –

XPLOR 600 PRO - AD600 PRO

 

 

RECYCLE TIMES

 

The 600 PRO recycle times are genuinely fast. A second or just under at full power, and less than half a second at 1/2 power.

That’s fast enough to basically shoot single frames whenever you want to at 1/2 power.

At 1/16th power the 600 PRO will keep up with 10 frames per second.

And the strobe will still allow 100 shots at 1/1 power before over temperature protection comes in. And again 50 shots at 1/1 in HSS mode like the original XPLOR.

That seems impressive considering the extra heat created when shooting over twice as fast.

Again I would like to look at this in more detail in another post. Regarding frame rates, HSS, and possibly how the “Alternate” function may react cycling between a couple of strobes etc.

 

 

POWER AND LIGHT PATTERNS

 

Considering the impressive recycle times of the 600 PRO, it wouldn’t be unreasonable to suspect Godox may have tweaked the overall power output to allow for that (if so they wouldn’t be the first).

To cut a long story short though, the power output of the 600 PRO does appear to be the same as the original strobes, as Godox have stated.

In modifiers like softboxes and beauty dishes the light output tends to be a little more than the original strobes, due to the different flash tube style and spacing.

The compact 5″ reflector supplied with the 600 PRO appears to be much more of a wide angle umbrella style reflector, than the more focused 7″ reflector supplied with the original XPLOR strobes.

And that 5″ reflector, providing a broader even light pattern, is nice, though over a stop less bright than the original XPLOR with 7″ reflector.

Where this gets tricky though, is placing the 7″ reflector on the 600 PRO does not focus, and boost the light output to match the original XPLOR.

So Flashpoint are currently looking into different 7″ reflector options that may suit the 600 PRO better.

Having said all of that, the 600 PRO with 5″ reflector is much like the ORLIT RT 610 with 5.5″ reflector, and even going back to the original Rovelights, many people have preferred to use them with the smaller reflector just for convenience.

 

 

As mentioned previously, the 600 PRO’s flash tube has now been spaced out further from the modifier mount, to improve penetration into speedring and modifiers.

 

 

And as show below, with an average Bowens style speedring, the 600 PRO’s flash tube can often be 100% exposed with a 180 degree spread of light.

Where in the same situation almost half of the original flash tube is blocked from directing light to the sides.

 

 

Also looking at the bare flash tubes, the horseshoe style tube of the 600 PRO natively directs a larger ring of light to the sides, all the way around.

And the frosted front diffuser on the face of the bulb cuts down and diffuses the light being projected directly forward.

 

 

When combined with the speedring the 600 PRO flash tube is still projecting a lot of light directly outward, which is going to help fill larger and shallow modifiers, and strip boxes etc.

 

 

And even in a relatively small 38″ ParaPop softbox below, you can start to see the broader even spread of light. And slightly greater intensity pushing light out further.

 

 

The 22″ beauty dish equalizes things more, though the different light pattern is noticeable from the 600 PRO tube.

 

 

And looking at the 600 PRO with 5″ reflector, there is a much broader spread of light. Though it doesn’t have the focus and intensity of the original XPLOR with 7″ reflector.

 

 

Projected into an umbrella the 600 PRO and 5″ reflector provide virtually full coverage, and much more even light than the hot spot created with the XPLOR and 7″ reflector. (Side view here as well).

 

 

 

Measuring the light output I have included the ORLIT RT-610 / Jinbei HD 610, which is also an example of the more commonly spaced horseshoe flash tube configuration found in many regular strobes.

(The frosted front diffuser does also effects the outcome though).

 

 

SUPPLIED REFLECTORS

The focused 7″ reflector with the original XPLOR meters 1.4 stops ahead of the much more broad light pattern of the 600 PRO and 5″ reflector.

And the RT 610 with 5.5″ reflector is somewhat similar to the 600 PRO, though 0.2 stops ahead.

 

Please Note – Although the light meter readings where taken at full power, the images where shot at 1/8 power. And the RT 610 was down 0.3 to 0.4 stops at 1/8 power compared to the other lights, that’s why those images look darker than the readings suggest.

For simplicity All images where shot at the same distance of 4′ (120cm) to the light itself. The lights where not moved back to account for larger modifiers being attached.

 

 

 

7″ REFLECTOR

With the XPLOR 7″ reflector mounted to the 600 PRO, the result was still 1.2 stops below the original XPLOR. The PRO still providing a very broad spread of light.

Though the RT 610 with 7″ reflector now matches the XPLOR.

I tried all of the 7″ reflectors I have from other strobes etc with the 600 PRO, and the best result was only 0.2 stops brighter (using a Phottix Indra500 7″ reflector).

So possibly I was just unlucky so far, otherwise Flashpoint and Godox may possibly need to create a dedicated 7″ reflector specifically designed for the 600 PRO.

 

 

5″ REFLECTOR

Mounting the 600 PRO 5″ reflector on each strobe.

 

 

5.5″ REFLECTOR

Mounting the RT 610 5.5″ reflector on each strobe.

This provides a better umbrella reflector style result with the original XPLOR than using the 600 PRO reflector as above.

 

 

45° LONG FOCUS REFLECTOR

The other main reflector options available then to focus the light and increase output are the 45° Long Focus Reflector (11″), and the 70° Magnum Reflector (14″) below.

And the 600 PRO does pretty well with the 45° Long Focus, at 0.3 stops behind the XPLOR.

The light pattern is more of a gradual fall off though, rather than the crisp edge which is likely more unique to the original XPLOR.

The 45° Long Focus roughly lights an area the same diameter as the distance its positioned is away.

 

 

70° MAGNUM REFLECTOR

With the 70° Magnum Reflector (14″), the original XPLOR is very efficient at 0.8 stops ahead of the 600 PRO.

So if you’re looking to shoot sports or similar at a distance the original XPLOR may be the preferred option here.

The RT 610 is very poor in comparison, almost 2 stops behind the XPLOR, and 1 stop behind the 600 PRO.

 

 

22″ BEAUTY DISH

In the 22″ beauty dish the 600 PRO starts to show its advantage, with slightly higher output, and even light pattern.

While the RT 610’s more recessed flash tube loses 1/2 a stop of light to the 600 PRO.

 

 

38″ GLOW PARAPOP

And with the 38″ Glow ParaPop softbox the 600 PRO is creeping ahead slightly further in output, and with broader even spread of light.

 

 

 

Bellow are some comparison sample images. I’m not sure how useful the subject is, though the shadow thrown behind provides something of an indication of how the light is reacting.

The exposures were equalized on the face, so this is not a comparison of output. All lights are at 4′ (120cm) from the subject, except the beauty dish at 3′.

Note the third image down is using the 600 PRO in all 3 images.

 

 

Its in the larger and shallow softboxes and umbrellas etc where the difference will be more prominent. Though again that’s a topic to explore properly in a separate post.

 

 

This has been part one of the review. I would like to look into things like flash duration, color consistency, recycle times (frame rates etc), power consistency, in further detail in separate posts.

 

PRICE AND AVAILABILITY

 

The Flashpoint  XPLOR 600 PRO TTL are available now from Adorama for $899.

Or $968 with R2 PRO Transmitter for Canon, Nikon, Sony, Fuji, and M4/3.

 

Adorama provide a 3 year warranty.

For details on service options its best to contact the brands team at brands@adorama.com

 

Flashpoint – Website

Flashpoint – User Manual

Godox – Website

.

40 Comments
  1. MTL 4 weeks ago

    Thanks ! This is a very informative review. Did you test by any chance the AD200’s colour consistency with the C-700 ?

    • Author
      Flash Havoc 4 weeks ago

      Hi MTL,

      Sorry no I didn’t think to include the AD200, though with the twin bracket they are actually another of the main alternatives to the 600Ws strobes. So I will include them when I go through the topics individually.

      I was going to work through all the flash durations next, as that generally provides some insight into how the color is being manipulated as well.

      • MTL 4 weeks ago

        Thanks. Indeed examining the flash curves could be interesting. Anyway, this is a great review, with actual information in it, so thanks a lot !

  2. Robert 4 weeks ago

    Great write up, really thorough and well done! Have you received any real ETA on the accessory handle, the line voltage power supply or the accessory remote head. The handle should have been bundled with with the light. IMO, adding it as an optional accessory is nickel-n-diming their customers.

    Thanks!

    • Author
      Flash Havoc 4 weeks ago

      Hi Robert,

      Sorry, no I’m not sure about the accessories yet. Adorama will no doubt set up a pre-order once they know the expected arrival date, which is usually a few weeks before they arrive.

      I’m not sure if the handle was originally intended as an optional accessory or not, though I have noticed on images of some of the original samples strobes which some people received that there where only 2 screws where the handle locates. And on the production strobes there are now 4 screws.

      So its clear Godox have already revised the handle mounting configuration, and that may be why the handle was held back,

  3. Ricardo Gomez 4 weeks ago

    As always, great review! I checked out the Godox AD600Pro at B&H and was generally impressed with the quality and style of it. Looks like it will last.

    I especially like the light quality as shown in your testing. It’s much easier to make a light source appear smaller and more focused. Not so easy to evenly spread out. That’s quality showing.

    Let’s not understate the value of having a unified system with strobes and speedlights either. Depending on what you shoot, you just don’t need to have all strobes lighting your subject. Sometimes, a strobe and a few speedlights will work perfectly. Seriously cutting down on weight and mass. Extremely useful for many applications outside the wedding photography business as well.

    I love the Godox V860ii speedlights and hope to incorporate these strobes into my toolset asap. Thank you Godox and Adorama for listening!

  4. MTL 4 weeks ago

    I have a question regarding the umbrella mount. If the light is pointing upwards and an umbrella is in the umbrella holder, does the umbrella slide downwards, even when the stand or light aren’t manipulated ?
    I also notice that the umbrella hole isn’t very well designed, as it can’t maintain the shaft perpendicularly to the strobe. A bit disappointing.

    • Author
      Flash Havoc 4 weeks ago

      Tilting the light upwards, the umbrella would not slide down in the mounting hole until the strobe was almost pointed straight upwards.

      I don’t know that the mounting hole is not well designed, its just that its the way it has to be for this type of friction mount.

      When using a clamping thumbscrew the umbrella hole can have a teardrop shape which narrows at the opposite side to the screw, so that it grips the shaft without any movement.

      As mentioned though, the umbrella mount just screws on, and someone could very easily offer an optional traditional thumbscrew style mount. Its only a small component so it wouldn’t be expensive to CNC machine from alloy.

      I can ask Flashpoint if they may be interested in producing something.

      I think you could even make a nicer option still, which clamped the shaft along the whole length of the hole, so that its not dented by a thumbscrew tip. That may take some more thought though.

      • MTL 4 weeks ago

        Thanks for the answer.

        There are friction mounts which don’t suffer from this problem. Profoto’s, for example, which tend to use longer grooves, most likely with a tighter diameter, and are now positioned above the light, and not below (which is better with some silver umbrellas as since the light is slightly off-centre, the umbrella needs to be angled a little bit relative to the subject. If the light source is above, it needs to be angled down a little bit, which can sometimes, and particularly with the deeper designs, means that the stand is in the way).

        Broncolor’s Siros have the umbrella hole right next to the body, meaning that the body blocks the shaft from tilting downwards.

        I think that they just neglected the umbrella hole design, just like most lights manufacturers do anyway.

        • Author
          Flash Havoc 4 weeks ago

          Ok, I thought you were referring to the hole itself in the current design. I’m not sure how that could be improved using a friction mount, other than maybe using 2 spring tabs, and with more tension. And making the hole a teardrop shape opposite the springs.

          I don’t know if that would work though, where I do know a thumbscrew or clamp will work with the current short hole deign.

          • MTL 4 weeks ago

            I believe that the whole stand mount can now be taken appart, right (not just separated from the body) ? So maybe there is some potential there for a bit of DIY.

            • Author
              Flash Havoc 3 weeks ago

              Yes, as mentioned, the umbrella mount is just held on by the 2 strews you can see on the side.

              Once you remove that you can take the main bolt out to disassemble the swivel completely.

              It would not be difficult to have an alternate umbrella mount CNC machined from aluminium. Some type of 3D printing may even be strong enough these days.

  5. david 4 weeks ago

    Thank you for a great and detailed review! Hopefully their AD200 and 360 will be more streamlined to work with this unit.
    Could you please elaborate on what will be an improved new Flashpoint trigger? Will it be an improved R2 Pro or a whole new trigger?
    I’m also interested to know if anyone attached a handle to this unit yet. How much weight does it add? Is it sturdy?
    Thanks

    • Author
      Flash Havoc 4 weeks ago

      Hi David,

      The coming Flashpoint transmitter has the same LCD display as the Xpro, though a slightly different case, and a different button layout, with a number of extra quick access buttons.

      To cut a very long story short, Flashpoint initiated the transmitter development with Godox, though it quickly reached a stalemate on the design when Godox did not agree with the group button layout we wanted. So Flashpoint then commissioned their own separate transmitter version.

      And what I thought should be a fairly simple added feature ended causing a considerable delay. So the Xpro were released first on their own.

      I haven’t seen the Flashpoint transmitter for some time now, so I’m not completely sure of the final functions myself. Godox want to keep the firmware similar though, so some more things may flow through to the Xpro as well yet.

      Even just simple things like double pressing a Group button to turn the group on and off quickly can make a big difference in practicality, so I’m hoping it goes well.

      I didn’t know about the 600 PRO strobe development, or have any direct involvement by they way. A lot of the features were discussed regarding the original XPLOR though even before that was released. And I have harassed Flashpoint about color modes etc for some time, not knowing a strobe like this was in development.

      Sorry I’m not sure about the handle yet.

      • Ulysses 3 weeks ago

        Elv, IMHO it would be a bad idea for Flashpoint to have its own transmitter, particularly if it’s produced by Godox. Things are confusing enough for most buyers even now as they try to distinguish brand names and which devices are fully compatible with one another. To have yet another transmitter thrown into the mix simply for the sake of branding just doesn’t sound practical or necessary. Maybe this is why the idea has been stalled.

    • david 3 weeks ago

      Thank you for the reply. Hopefully we’ll see a handle soon. The ones on Rapid 600 units that I’m using are pretty good. Hope for something similar.

  6. Mark Kitaoka 4 weeks ago

    Thank you for a really well done technical review of this unit.

  7. Nuno 4 weeks ago

    Wait, so this won’t work with the original AD360?

    • Author
      Flash Havoc 4 weeks ago

      Hi Nuno,

      They will work together with the same transmitter or master speedlite, though you need the XTR16 receiver attached to the AD360.

      • Nuno 4 weeks ago

        oh good 🙂 I wasn’t too sure after reading the review. Good to know! Thanks!

  8. Hoppy 4 weeks ago

    Good and thorough review – thank you. Would be nice to see some comparisons of HSS output in Part 2. Also, can the battery be put on charge while still working?

    Richard

  9. Ganesh Naravian 4 weeks ago

    Thanks for Detailed Review . I have one doubt . How to switch on the color consistency mode. Its on Strobe or in Transmetre ?

    • Author
      Flash Havoc 3 weeks ago

      Hi Ganesh,

      You have to switch the color mode on via the strobe itself. The option is in the menu, though pretty fast to access.

      • Ganesh Naravian 3 weeks ago

        Thank you. Got it

  10. John Wilson 3 weeks ago

    First rate review!

    I agree about the need for a dedicated standard (i.e. non umbrella) reflector. It would be nice if Godox made their own version of the Broncolor L40 reflector.

    Anybody else find it odd that the handle hasn’t arrived yet? You’d think it would be trivial to manufacture.

    • Author
      Flash Havoc 3 weeks ago

      Thanks, regarding the handle, I suspect its actually pretty tricky to make something strong enough (with the way they attache separately), as other people have been questioning.

      People are going to be carrying the flashes around by the handles, so they really need to be pretty sturdy. If they are plastic, I think they would almost certainly need to have a metal framework inside.

  11. Dennis 3 weeks ago

    Your review of the Flashpoint XPLOR 600 PRO is spot on! I love that it is cordless, which makes it super easy to maneuver at a moment’s notice! I am obsessed with cordless technology, like my wireless charging coil for charging my phone, so the fact that this unit is completely wireless makes my photography sessions a breeze! I’m glad to hear that Adorama provides a 3 year warranty, which is especially useful for when you’re using this unit on the go!

  12. Author
    Flash Havoc 3 weeks ago

    UPDATE – The XPLOR 600 PRO AC Power Adapter is now available for pre-order.

  13. jim 3 weeks ago

    Talk about IN DEPTH! And this is just part 1. Great work FH,

  14. C Doan 3 weeks ago

    Do you know if there will be a lower priced non-ttl version?

    • Author
      Flash Havoc 3 weeks ago

      Hi C Doan,

      Sorry no there is not going to be a non-TTL version at this stage.

  15. Scott Goh 3 weeks ago

    very comprehensive review. love it.

  16. Mike 1 week ago

    Great review. The recycle time is the killer feature of this strobe.

  17. tbdinh 1 week ago

    Any idea if they are making Godox AD400 in this all in one unit form?

    • Author
      Flash Havoc 1 week ago

      Hi tbdinh,

      I don’t know, though its something I have been pushing Flashpoint for, and they have been pushing Godox.

      I think everyone is aware though the goal would be to make it smaller and lighter, and just reducing the capacitors alone is likely not going to get there. So at best I think its going to take some thought and time.

  18. Jeff Ellis 6 days ago

    Thx for the excellent review.
    2 questions:
    -Does using the AC adapter shorten recycle time at all, or affect performance in any way?

    – Are there any repair or service centers for any Flashpoint/Godox equipment in the USA?
    Or if we need any kind of repair outside of warranty must we send the units to China?

  19. Jeff Ellis 6 days ago

    One more.
    Is the Bowens S type mounting bracket sturdy enough to use with a large or extra large soft box? Such as chimera extra large?

  20. Robert 3 days ago

    I have written Godox directly from their website 3x to “customer support” regarding the AD600 Pro. Not one reply. Talk about arrogance and lack of support toward customers.

    Some wonder why everyone RAVES about Paul C Buff customer support – because they actually support the customer.

    • Author
      Flash Havoc 3 days ago

      Hi Robert,

      You will need to contact the dealer for any customer support at this stage.

      I think Godox are feeling their way into possible future service models, though at this stage they have a very large and rapidly expanding worldwide user base, so it would be very hard to deal with that many people directly.

      • Robert 3 days ago

        Thanks for the reply! But given they are advertising additional components for the AD600 Pro that are not available anywhere, as of yet, with no real ETA for delivering the accessories, it makes it somewhat difficult to move forward with purchasing their gear as Godox, Flashpoint or any other flavor.

        I am specifically speaking of the handle, which in my mind should have come with the light….but I have no idea if they are actually going to produce it. I like my lights to have handles, it makes it infinitely easier to carry and move the lights around.

        The remote head, again, not ETA on this item – radically changes if I consider their lights or a competitor.

        The AC power supply, yes announced as “Pre-order” from Flashpoint….but what does that even mean? There is no ETA on these either.

        I hate it when manufacturers announce future gear so far in advance, yet offer no ETA for delivery of the accessories that might cause you to buy their gear.

        All that said, a friendly reply from Godox stating “please refer your questions to these authorized dealers” would be the smart thing to do. While I am not a huge fan of Phottix, but I have had the CEO of the company respond to email inquiries…..just sayin!

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

Anti-Spam Quiz:

©2018 FlashHavoc.com - PRIVACY POLICY

Log in with your credentials

Forgot your details?