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broncolor to introduce novelties at photokina – SIROS and HMI 1600

broncolor is to introduce two novelties at this year’s photokina, which open its doors on September 16th in Cologne. Not only will they present a powerful addition to the versatile HMI series but also a completely new compact device. All photographers working with studio lighting will not want to miss these unveilings.

SIROS – the Compact Powerhouse    Siros

broncolor’s new compact device combines unbeatable flash- and super-fast charging times with reliable and intuitive handling. At 400 and 800 joules, Siros will not only be available in two output versions but also as a basic- or S-model.

The flash time curve in the new Siros is controlled by broncolor’s widely known ECTC technology, which also guarantees flash times of up to 1/13’000 s (t 0.5) and constant colors. Charging times of 0.02 up to 0.65 s at 400 joules as well as an enormous control range – up to 9 apertures and reducible to only 2 joules – round off the impressive performance of the S-highend-model.

Siros 3units

Furthermore Siros is fully compatible with the extensive accessory range of light shapers that broncolor is so well known for and which offer limitless creative possibilities. Two of these light shapers have been especially developed for Siros: an umbrella reflector, which, combined with a lid, can also be used for protection during transport and an L40 reflector, optimized in size and, through a snap-in system, easily extendable with a honeycomb grid.

Handling and menu navigation are both easy and intuitive with Siros and are regulated through a single control dial, which allows for aperture adjustments in 1/10 steps or, by using the new “twist” function, in full apertures.Siros front panel

brand-new app “bronControl” for all-round control
Also new with Siros is the “bronControl” app, which allows remote control of all functions. As soon as Siros has established a WIFI network, different devices in the studio or outdoors are recognized via multi-colored LEDs and can be controlled via a smartphone or tablet.

New app “bronControl”Siros Cognition Light

PocketWizard technology for undreamt-of possibilities
Siros is not only ideal as an addition to already existing studio flashlight setups. The compact devices with their integrated PocketWizard receivers allow for the integration in already existing setups but also open the gates to the world of HyperSync™ photography, which enables a shutter speed of up to 1/8000 s. The ideal pairing of Siros and PocketWizard allows for limitless creativity while remaining simple to operate.


broncolor Continuous Light HMI F1600HMI F1600 with barn doors

Next to Siros, the new HMI 1600 light system will be presented as a powerful addition to the already existing broncolor 200-800 watt continuous light range.

The multi-purpose continuous light with its unique bayonet system allows the use of different reflectors and therefore makes it the first choice for photographers with high requirements in terms of performance, shaping and color, both for still and moving Images.

With a range of reflectors and softboxes that are available as accessories or as a kit, the light can be shaped as needed. In combination with the broncolor Para light shaping system, this creates completely new possibilities and expands the already high light yield even further.

broncolor HMI F1600 is dimmable while remaining color consistent and can be used with both flash and daylight. The light is absolutely flicker-free and ideal for high-speed imagery. Once again, broncolor combines innovation with the quality of its Swiss-made products for these two additions.

Both products are available from mid-January 2015. 

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broncolor live at Photokina – Program of the Action Stage in Hall 6

broncolor will be live on stage at Photokina with a variety of live acts, including two of our Gen NEXT ambassadors Benjamin Von Wong and Manuel Mittelpunkt – don’t miss the shows with super model Ophelia Overdose and the Dancing Liquid.

Creative master Karl Taylor and broncolor instructor Urs Recher will create new HowTo examples live on stage. Learn how to freeze motion when photographing dancers and about the differences between a Softbox and a Para.


broncolor Gen NEXT at Photokina

broncolor Gen NEXT, the program for young and talented photographers, is going into its 2nd year with an international online photo contest. Starting on January 15, 2015, a new generation of creative photographers will be given a chance to join the project and light up the world. Selected ambassadors will be equipped and supported by broncolor to showcase their work and experiences on


To kick off the project in May 2014, five of the hottest young photographers were selected as broncolor Gen NEXT ambassadors: Lara Jade (USA), Benjamin Von Wong (CAN), Dustin Snipes (USA), Manuel Mittelpunkt (GER) and Jason Jia (CHI), covering fashion, sports photography, still life and more.

MEET THE Gen NEXT AMBASSADORS AT PHOTOKINA Interested in finding out more about the photo contest? Some of the broncolor Gen NEXT ambassadors and team will be at the photokina in Cologne, Germany from September 16-21 (Hall 04.1, stand I040). There is also plenty of action happening on the stages so be sure not to miss out:


Tuesday 14:30 – 15:15 on the FotoTV. stage (Hall 6.1, Stand B-021):
Ben Von Wong – Cinematic studio lightingOphelia Overdose
Von Wong captures Ophelia Overdose in a fantastical world of motion and light.

Tuesday 15:15 – 16:00 on the FotoTV. stage (Hall 6.1, Stand B-021):
Strobe vs Sunlight – Balancing, overpowering and compromising
Von Wong runs over how to combat noonday sun using the power of the broncolor Move kit featuring celebrity model Ophelia Overdose in outstanding fantasy garb.

Thursday 11.00-11.30 on the communities stage (Hall 9.1, Stand B-037):
Talk about Gen NEXT
Come enjoy a talk with Benjamin Von Wong, Urs Gass und Ulrich Grill from the broncolor team – a great opportunity to learn more about the broncolor Gen NEXT photo contest!

Thursday 14:30-15:15 on the FotoTV. stage (Hall 6.1, Stand B-021):
Manuel Mittelpunkt – Liquid dance floor shoot
Still life specialist Manuel Mittelpunkt will give an inspiring demonstration of his amazing still life skills combining music and photography. Learn how to freeze dancing liquids.

Thursday 15:15 – 16:00 on the FotoTV. stage (Hall 6.1, Stand B-021):
Spirit of photography with Ben Von Wong
Together with celebrity model Ophelia Overdose, Von Wong will bring to life an ethereal and fantastical set. Come shoot together with us and grab some amazing images of your own!

See you at photokina! broncolor_gennext_photoby_vonwong_02

If you can’t make it, be sure to follow the journey on the blog where broncolor Gen NEXT ambassadors showcase exclusive content from their shoots – fashion, fantasy, still life, sports photography and more… Take a look and see the future of photography flash before your eyes!

For more info stay tuned to our social channels: 

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Welcome to Part 5 and 6 of broncolor’s Live “How To” training series

It was a pleasure for broncolor to have creative master Karl Taylor in Basel to meet up with our photographer and consultant Urs Recher to shoot part 5 and 6 of the live “How To” training series.

SHAPE LIGHT Part 5: In this fashion shoot video, our model Sharon is wearing white against a white background. Karl and Urs demonstrate the versatility of the broncolor’s Para 222 studio light and reveal a small selection of the many types of shot that can be achieved using this amazing giant light.

FREEZE TIME Part 6: Karl and Urs demonstrate how to get the best results to freeze motion. Learn step by step how to take advantage of the super fast flash duration of the Scoro power packs with 1/10’000s at t0.1, smashing two wine glasses capturing the breaking glass and flying liquid.

Watch the video to see that good results need patience, the right technique and a “few” glasses.

Last Blog posts about How To

All Live How To Videos

Red Bull Illume’s European tour kicks off in Cologne

Red Bull Illume 2013Red Bull Illume Exhibit Tour – Hong Kong
© Markus Berger / Red Bull Content Pool

The world’s largest action sports photography exhibition provides perfect curtain raiser to the 2014 photokina

Red Bull Illume is coming to Europe! The world’s largest action and adventure sports photography exhibition will be in Cologne the week of the photokina photography expo. The top 50 images from the photography contest will go on display from 15-21 September, giving photography enthusiasts an even better reason for visiting the city!


After touring Asia and North America, the first Red Bull Illume exhibition on European soil looks set to be as dazzling as ever. The illuminated nighttime exhibition will be set against the scenic Rheinau harbor, where visitors will be able to stroll and appreciate the life-size light boxes, which feature the world’s most exciting and creative action sports photography. Top photographers and athletes will attend the opening night on September 15, adding a further draw for visitors.


Red Bull Illume will also have a booth at the 2014 photokina and plenty of action is planned, for the biggest week in the photography calendar, such as live shoots and demonstrations, meet and greet with some of the finalist photographers. For anyone with an interest in photography, checking out the exhibition is an absolute must!


“The Redbull Illume contest is one of the most incredible contests that I’ve personally seen,” says K Madhavan Pillai, editor of Better Photography magazine and one of 50 judges to select the winning images. “I am amazed to see what these athletes can do, and then beyond that, I am amazed to see how a photographer can capture that spirit, that entire energy of the action so beautifully well.”


The 2x2m lightboxes will go on display from 15-21 September and the exhibition will come to life after sunset each night until 11pm. More information on the event can be found on the official Red Bull Illume website.


Red Bull Illume contest – overall winner
© Lorenz Holder


The Cologne tour stop is the fifth stop after Hong Kong, Scottsdale USA, Vancouver Canada and Atlanta USA. The exhibition will continue traveling around the world’s capitals and cultural hubs for the next year as a unique nighttime exhibition. 

Red Bull Illume Partners:

Leica is the official partner of the Red Bull Illume Image Quest for the second time, following on from the successful 2010 edition. New partners for 2013 are leading flash brand broncolor, and Sun-Sniper, maker of innovative camera strap systems.


About Red Bull Illume:

Red Bull Illume is the world’s premier international photography competition dedicated to action and adventure sports. Its purpose is to showcase the most exciting and creative action sports photography on the planet as art to the wider public. The 2013 Red Bull Illume Image Quest is the third edition of the competition after 2007 and 2010.

The overall winner Lorenz Holder received the new medium format Leica S camera. Category winners received Leica X2 cameras. Other prizes included broncolor’s new Move portable flash, and the latest strap system from Sun-Sniper. 

Hypersync easily explained by Fabio Gloor – Part 1

Questions about HyperSync and Highspeed Sync come up time and time again. That is why I want to explain this subject in detail. Since it covers a great deal of ground, I will divide it into two parts. Here in this first blog post I am going to explain theoretically how HyperSync works. In the second part, which I am still working on, I will demonstrate how to use it on the basis of a practical example. This will include showing you a neat trick how to use HyperSync with the broncolor RFS.

But for now, let’s concentrate on the theory.

X-Sync Time
Normally a camera shutter operates as follows:

1) The first curtain opens to reveal the camera’s image sensor.
2) As soon as the first curtain is fully open, the flash is triggered.
3) The second curtain closes to cover the image sensor so that no light reaches it any longer.


1_normalSo far, so good! But what is the X-Sync time?
It is a fact that the shutter curtains need a certain time to pass across the image sensor. This time differs from camera to camera, but is normally about 1/250s. So the X-Sync time is, in effect, the time the shutter needs to pass across the image sensor.

So how do I take a picture with a shorter exposure than the X-Sync time?
It is possible because this shorter exposure actually exists only for individual image pixels. The camera’s shutter is never completely open. That is to say the second shutter curtain starts to close while the first curtain is still opening. In effect a sort of scan procedure. It works like this:

1) The first shutter curtain starts to open
2) The second shutter curtain starts to close while the first curtain is still opening.
3) The effect is that only a narrow slit is open (it’s width depends on the exposure time selected) and the individual pixels are exposed for the correct period of time

5_hypersync_verlaufThen why do we need HyperSync? Can I not flash for a faster time than X-Sync?

The short answer is: no. The problem is that the flash is triggered as soon as the first curtain is fully open. In this situation, however, the second shutter curtain is already in action and covering a part of the image. So this part is not exposed and will appear as a dark bar across the image. Let’s look at it, step by step:

1) The first shutter curtain starts to open
2) The second shutter curtain starts to close so that the individual pixels are exposed for the correct period of time.
3) The flash fires when the first shutter curtain is completely open. But the second shutter curtain has already covered a part of the image. So the complete image sensor is never fully open to light
4) And where the second shutter curtain is over the image sensor a dark band appears in the Image.

3_verschlussvorhangSo when working with flash, you are restricted to an exposure time of about 1/250s. Indoors this is not a problem, because with broncolor you can have 1/10000s flashes. That is to say that in a dark studio the shutter can be open as long as it wants. The image will only be exposed by the ultra-short flash and will be pin sharp. Outdoors the situation is completely different. With an exposure time of 1/250s, you get an awful lot of light on the image, even at ISO 100. This means that even if I have the world’s fastest flash, my moving subject will still not be sharp. The other problem is that, for precisely this reason, you cannot use flash with a big aperture. Because if I take a photo outdoors with 1/250s and f-stop 1.4, with sunlight alone my image will be overexposed. So why bother with flash.

HyperSync – the solution
HyperSync gives us a way to circumvent the restriction imposed by the X-Sync time. Certainly everyone reading this has heard of it, but not so many know precisely how it works and what to watch out for.


This is a flash curve with which we are all familiar. As explained earlier, the flash fires when the image sensor is uncovered. This flash then fades and the image sensor is covered again. But we want to set an exposure time such that the image sensor is never completely uncovered. To achieve this we need something approaching continuous lighting.

How Hypersync works
To generate continuous lighting from the point of view of the image sensor, the flash must burn for longer than the time the shutter needs to pass across the sensor. That is to say longer than the X-Sync time, which, as already mentioned, is in the order of 1/250s. In addition the image sensor must be illuminated before the first shutter curtain is fully open. Or, more accurately, before it has uncovered even one pixel of the image sensor. It works like this:
1) The flash fires before even one pixel of the image sensor has been uncovered
2) The first shutter curtain starts to open
3) The second shutter curtain starts to close. These operations together give rise to the scanning procedure mentioned above.
4) The flash continues to burn and only stops when the scanning procedure is complete. For this reason we need the longest possible flash duration.


The longer the flash duration the better
It might seem unusual, but that is really how it is. On the other hand, HyperSync also has a few little snags. Some of you perhaps already know where this is leading.

It uses a great deal of power
Because the full quantity of light fails to reach the complete image sensor, a lot of light is wasted. So don’t be surprised then that when you switch to HyperSync you have an image that is darker than before.

The image will have a brightness gradient
When you look at the flash curve, then you can see that the image receives more light at the start than at the finish. As the flash fades, the quantity of light is reduced. The effect is that your picture is brighter at the bottom than at the top. For this reason, with Hypersync it is desirable to have the longest flash duration possible (it’ll make the curve flatter). This phenomenon is well simulated in the following animation.


One or another of you may think this is not really a problem. I could simply lay a brightness curve over the image to correct it. The basic idea may be right, but in practice HyperSync is mostly used outdoors. This means we’ve got a situation where real continuous lighting dominates, but is combined with flash. In this case the image needs to be corrected only where the flash is effective, while the rest of the image should stay as it is.

Colour authenticity not assured
As mentioned above, in a studio you can take steps to counter the problem with the brightness gradient. However a flash curve does not have the same colour temperature at the beginning as at the end. For this reason, with Hypersync colour authenticity is not assured.

HyperSync is a fantastic advantage. But it does have a few snags, and is no replacement for a short duration flash in a studio. However, especially outdoors it is a great feature; now you can use a large aperture to provide an out-of-focus background, or simply freeze super-fast motions. As mentioned at the start, I will show you precisely how that works in practice in Part 2. If you have any questions about this post, please send a mail to As I said, I am still working on the second part and perhaps your question may call for further discussion there. 


broncolor’s Partnership with Creative Master Karl Taylor


Karl Taylor has been a professional Photographer for over 20 years and has travelled the globe on assignments for some of the world’s most successful companies.

Unusually for an advertising & commercial photographer Karl is what he calls ‘multi-disciplined’. Having started his career in photojournalism he is comfortable and actively enjoys shooting across a range of genres. Karl’s ethos is that ‘variety is the spice of life’ and that the visual philosophies for creating effective images are universal.

Karl became involved in the photography training market several years ago after hosting lectures in photography and finding he had a knack for explaining the subject in an entertaining and understandable way. Since then Karl has become very passionate about his Masterclass Training Series and is keen to demonstrate professional but achievable photography techniques in the simplest way possible. As well as presenting and shooting he writes the scripts, formulates the ideas and formats the programmes and training.

In the following interview (part 1) you get a good opportunity to learn from Karl, how light is important and how broncolor gear supports his creative ideas and gives him the freedom to develop his vision. Karl is a very popular instructor with a huge community of followers. His natural but detailed way of explaining light, photography and his love for broncolor made him the natural choice for broncolor to start a long-term partnership with Karl.

For Interview part 2 & 3 follow Karl on his blog at

Karl’s remarkable understanding of photography and light coupled with his ability to impart knowledge motivates and encourages audiences. This formula matches and supplements perfectly broncolor’s own programme of teaching light.

Urs Recher and Nadia Winzenried from broncolor are also well known ‘light’ instructors, travelling the world for more then 15 years educating photographers. Their knowledge about lighting can be followed through the  ‘How To’ program on our website Nearly every week we develop new ‘How To’ examples. If you follow us on facebook, you will always be notified when a new ‘How To’ is published.

Karl was involved in the launch of the ‘How To’ project, and with Urs Recher created some great live How To examples. The ‘How To’ examples were very well-received by the public and photographers are delighted by the variety of ‘How To’ examples available. What is How To? Check out our previous Blog post “broncolor’s educational tool How To”.

The great news is there will soon be more, so stay tuned! Next week we will be presenting brand new Live ‘How To’ videos with Karl Taylor and Urs Recher.

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