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Do you wonder how tough the ELB 1200 unit is?

Michael Clark did a real-size field test to push the unit to its limits. Working with Red Bull Athlete, Rafa Ortiz, Red Bull Photography and some intense ingredients he ended up with astonishing results.

"In short, the ELB 1200 unit is damn near perfect!"


Michael, you are specialized in adventure photography. After all that you havee accomplished, how do you manage to go even further in this field?

In this day and age, where amazing images are created and posted online daily, as pro photographers we have to constantly keep pushing the envelope of our abilities and the technology we have at our disposal.

To that end, I am always staying up to date on the latest gear so that I can create new and exciting images with a different perspective or look than has been shown before. I am constantly thinking about how I can create images that will stop the viewer in their tracks, as with this whitewater kayaking shoot.

© Michael Clark

"The new lighting options, and the way in which we can radically alter the lighting in an image, even from far away, is incredibly exciting from a creative perspective."

© Jorge Henao

What is the story behind the kayak concept? 


We discussed a wide variety of possible sports for this ELB 1200 photo shoot. Kayaking always seemed to be at the top of the list. Whitewater kayaking is a sport that requires fast shutter speeds to stop the motion of the kayaker and the water flying everywhere. Adventure, water, speed, technology, it seemed like a perfect fit for using the Hi-Sync capabilities of the ELB 1200 along with the HS flash heads.


Once we decided on kayaking as the subject, we partnered with Red Bull Photography and Rafa Ortiz, one of the best waterfall kayakers in the world. Rafa convinced us that Spirit Falls in Washington State was the best location for this project.


In the end, the shoot went incredibly well and I got some of the best images of my entire career.


"I got some of the best images of my entire career."


Why was the ELB 1200 the unit you needed for this project? 


For this shoot, we not only captured the action, but also shot a lot of portraits and lifestyle images. We needed a flash that can light up a waterfall from 100 feet (30 meters) away and also be versatile enough to shoot portraits with a fast flash duration.


The ELB 1200 is by far the most versatile battery-powered flash unit on the market because of the three different flash head options.


Elinchrom has also optimized the Hi-Sync flash head across the entire power range, which means you get clean light from edge-to-edge on the sensor and you can vary the power output as needed to balance the flash with the ambient light. No other flash on the market, save for the ELB 400, has this ability.


"I don’t think there is any other flash system on the market that can deal with the torture we dished out and survive!"

"The ELB 1200 is tough!"


Lastly, the ELB 1200 is tough. I wanted to see how far it could go before it died and tried a lot of different things. It was dropped a few times (not on purpose) and kept on working. I never did kill any of the ELB 1200s on this shoot or on subsequent shoots.

I don’t think there is any other flash system on the market that can deal with the torture we dished out and survive—and there definitely isn’t any other system that is as versatile as the ELB 1200. In short, this unit is damn near perfect.

Follow Michael's work Facebook / Twitter / Instagram 

Follow Rafa's kayaking Facebook / Twitter / Instagram 

Red Bull Photography Facebook / Instagram

Chasing The Shot 

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  • ELB 1200 Battery Power Pack w/o Battery

    $2,449.99More infoAdd to cart

    ELB 1200 Battery Power Pack w/o Battery


    Elinchrom ELB 1200 Battery Power Pack w/o Battery and integrated wireless Skyport System. This battery pack with its robust practical design, large OLED display makes the control of its many functions simply intuitive.

    Add to cart

  • ELB 1200 HS (Hi-Sync) Head

    $899.99More infoAdd to cart

    ELB 1200 HS (Hi-Sync) Head


    Elinchrom ELB 1200 HS (Hi-Sync) Flash Head with daylight balanced LED modeling lamp for freezing action and to control ambient light at shutter speeds up to 1/8000s with the EL-Skyport Plus Transmitter HS. The new short glass dome makes the head more compact and protects the flashtube and LED modeling lamp. This lightweight and robust aluminum head connects seamlessly with all Elinchrom Rotalux and Litemotiv light shapers. It's ultra-bright modeling lamp can be used for both still and video applications. The cooling fan can even be deactivated when used in video mode.

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  • Elinchrom Skyport Transmitter Pro for Nikon

    $249.95More infoAdd to cart

    Elinchrom Skyport Transmitter Pro for Nikon


    The Elinchrom Skyport Transmitter Pro for Nikon represents the latest evolution in Elinchrom's venerable wireless ecosystem. It combines compatibility with three generations of transceivers and flash heads with cutting edge features like Hi-Sync flash sync speeds up to 1/8000 sec two way visual feedback and TTL with Manual Lock.

    Two Way Visual Feedback Interface
    The large LCD display of the Skyport HS features two-way control via a Visual Feedback Interface that lets you see the exact power of every light in your setup right on the transmitter. The individual strobes show up automatically on the screen, and users can control each light's power level and modeling lamp settings directly from the Skyport transmitter or on the strobe itself, which instantly shows the updated power settings.

    Hi-Sync and HSS
    Go beyond the X-Sync of your camera with two different flash synchronisation technologies; Hi-Synch and HSS. Hi-Sync is optimised for power and while HSS is easier to use and more consistent. The Transmitter Pro uniquely integrates both Hi-Sync and HSS so photographers can simply access sync speeds up to 1/8000s to freeze motion, overpower the sun, darken backgrounds, or use a wider aperture for a shallow depth of field.

    Hi-Sync is only achievable with Hi-Sync enabled flash heads and the Transmitter Pro must be used in manual mode while HSS only works with TTL enabled units with the Transmitter pro in either manual or TTL mode.
    Note: both technologies may be used simultaneously when the Transmitter Pro is in manual mode. (ex. ELB 1200 with Hi-Sync + ELB 500 TTL with HSS)

    Impressive Wireless Range
    The Skyport Transmitter Pro has 20 channels and 4 groups that can be used for either Normal or Speed mode, and a wireless range of 656' outdoors and 196' indoors. Users can instantly distinguish what sync mode they are in since the backlit display glows green for normal sync mode, and red for speed sync mode.

    The Skyport Transmitter Pro is compatible with previous generations of Elinchrom flash units including the EL- Skyport Transceiver RX module for Style RX, Digital RX, and Ranger RX systems and the integrated EL-Skyport modules for the BRX, D-Lite RX, ELC Pro HD, and ELB series. The Skyport Transmitter Pro adds synchronization capability and two-way control functionality to all Elinchrom lights with EL-Skyport capability.

    User Updatable Firmware
    Designed to be a future proof, users can update the firmware of the Transmitter Pro via included mini usb cable. Current Skyport Plus HS owners can update to full Pro functionality via a free firmware update on

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  • ELB 1200 Hi-Sync To Go Set

    $3,499.99More infoAdd to cart

    ELB 1200 Hi-Sync To Go Set


    Elinchrom ELB 1200 Hi-Sync To Go Set- EL10305.1 with 1 head equipped with a standard reflector and 1 battery pack. All packed in the included Protec location bag. The Location bag is designed with the photographer in mind, made out of durable nylon and YKK zippers. The Hi-Sync set is optimised to freeze motion, overpower the sun, darken backgrounds and use wider apertures with higher shutter speeds, using the optional Skyport transmitter Plus HS for Canon®, Nikon® Sony® Olympus® and Panasonic®. The Skyport Transmitter Plus HS is not part of this set and must be ordered separately.

    Item Includes:
    1x ELB 1200 Supplied with Li-Ion Battery, charger, sync cord
    1x ELB 1200 Hi-Sync Head Supplied with 4m flash cable and protective cap
    1x Reflector 16 cm / 90°
    1x Snappy carrying option with shoulder strap
    1x ProTec Location bag"

    Add to cart

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