Hello everyone, today we are going to talk about the brand new small form factor outdoor flash the Godox AD300 Pro. If you need a great and reliable flash unit to use outside, maybe Godox have a solution for your problem, because they have a lot of good options for this matter.
In its 3rd generation of flash units we can find lots of options for lighting solutions from Godox, with models like the AD200 Pro, AD400 Pro and AD600 Pro and now the new AD300 Pro. All these units work with an integrate and replaceable battery which gives then lots of versatility.
Godox AD300 Pro – unboxing
My first experience with the Godox AD300 Pro was great, the package is very simple, but well done. One thing that surprised me was its size, almost the same size of the boxes of my Godox flashes when i bought then years ago. Inside the box you gonna be presented with a little carrying semi rigid case which should be standard in all photographic equipment brands because it gives the product a premium feel, or as the name say a Pro feel.
The first impression was great. Godox is aware of what their customers are searching in their products. Which makes me wonder what’s gonna be the news for the upcoming years.
Inside the carrying case you will find the flash unit, the battery charger, a the flash mount, charging cable and user manual. In the case there is a space for the battery itself and mine came already installed on the flash.
AD300 Pro – built quality
One of the most important things about a flash unit is the build quality, and off course there are brands that excels in this aspect, I am used to use Broncolor units and I can say that they are solid in this department, nothing like the Speedotron ones which are built like a tank.
The Godox products are really good on the built quality department, everything that I have from the brand works well in any situation, my outdoor kit is all Godox products and never failed me.
The AD300Pro has a good build quality, though its case is made of plastic, It has a great sturdiness and feels solid. Is it a hard plastic shell with gives the unit protection but also keeping it light. Even Though the AD300Pro shell is plastic it feels great, I don’t thing that the unit can take high falls without been damage, but is a unit that you don’t need to treat lightly because its too fragile, this is not the case with the AD300Pro.
Size and battery
This unit is tiny, and I have to say, I love it. It is great to know I can carry around a small and powerful unit like this on my backpack with my cameras and lenses. It takes the space of one lens on your backpack which makes life much easier when you are going outdoors and don’t want to carry a huge amount of equipment.
In any situations that I need just one unit I pretty confident that the AD300Pro can be this unit, for its size and its power. And i think that if you use it and one reflector all your base will be covered for a single setup with two point light.
The is almost the same battery which is found on the AD200 line, so if you invested on batteries on the AD200 line you can use then with the AD300Pro. But due to differences in the amperage the recycle times will be a little slower. Good new is that they use the same charger, so if you have the AD200 charger you can use it to charge the AD300Pro with no problem. With a fully charged battery you will have around 300 shots with full power and the recycle times are about 1.5 seconds for 1/1 settings. This is a great number, and if you are not using full power the battery will last much longer.
The best feature of any Godox product is its ecosystem, it works like a breeze with all the line of recent products without a problem. If you have a X1T trigger you can fire without a problem most of the flashes and monoheads. Some triggers also can be paired with your smartphone or tablet and control your flashes via Bluetooth, which is the case of the X2T. The second big advantage of this unit is the size.
The AD300Pro offers a lot of features that are useful. It has a built in receiver for firing and adjusting the flash. The wireless system have a great range working well up to 100 meters. This flash unit works in TTL (Through the lens. Which leave the flash power adjustment to the camera ), works in manual mode and Multi flash bursts. One of the most welcomed features on the AD300Pro is the presence of a modeling light, a LED bi color modeling lamp that can be adjusted and used to help acquiring focus and to have a idea of how your light is.
Although the modeling light can be used for video lighting I would consider buy a dedicated unit for this purpose, but if you find yourself in a situation that your have just this unit modeling lamp as your light source you can get away with it, keep in mind that is is possible to hear the cooling fan if you are recording on a quiet environment .
It has one of my favorite things that is high speed sync, this features allows you to use the flash to work with shutter speed above the sync speed of your camera and is very useful to make great photos outside mixing natural and artificial light.
A great display and controls are found on the back of the, unit and the somewhat easy interface, if you are accustomed with the Godox products, the interface is not a problem but surely it could use a more modern layout.
Aiming to gain more space on the lighting equipment industry Godox launched its own proprietary modifier mount, Godox mount, and now they can produce not only lights but also modifiers. The AD300 Pro uses a newly designed Godox mount, which is smaller than the Bowens mount and makes the modifiers less cumbersome to carry around. They are already working on a selections of modifiers with this new mount and looks like there is more to come.
Even though you can use the internal reflector on the AD S-S65/85 to get something similar to a beauty dish I would love to see a proper beauty dish on this selection of modifiers in the future.
I used the Godox AD300 Pro with the collapsible softbox AD-S85 and this modifier is perfect for outdoor shooting because it has a great size and when collapsed carrying it is not a problem. If you don’t want to build a new set of modifiers you can buy the new S2 Bracket and use umbrellas or Bowens mount modifiers.
Or if you are deep on other mount system Godox offers adapters for most of the major brands so you can use not just Bowens or Godox mount modifiers.
The Godox AD300 Pro has a great light quality without shifts in color, good range and good power output. Working with the unit i didn’t feel its being to weak that I had to put the light to close to the subject and also its isn’t to strong to the point that I had to put the light to far of the subject or to use it in very low increments.
Paired with the AD S-85 with one layer diffuser it produces a very pleasing light to make good outdoor portraits. The image below the AD300 was over camera the softbox and ¼ flash power about 2 feet away. It produces enough light to lit a full body in this configuration. Outside during the day I didn’t feel the necessity to use the modeling lamp, but it is good to know that this flash has this possibility in case of a night shoot.
As all Godox products the usability is good, had no connections problems whatsoever and using the unit for more than 2 hours I had 0 misfires. Triggering and controlling the unit wirelessly was a breeze with the X1T. Using it in manual mode the flash behavior was expected and the recycle time is almost instantaneous if you are using it below the 1/1 setting. I can rank this unit just beside the Broncholors that I am accustomed using in terms of usability.
The menu system could be updated to a more modern visual, but this is just a cosmetic issue, nothing more than that, is very simple to use , but not always very intuitive for new users, so if you get one of these and never used a Godox flash before make sure to refer to the user manual.
Using it with a softbox mounted on the flash is light enough to be used in hands without need a light stand. Being a lightweight unit I would advise the use in sandbags to hold your light in place.
I don’t mind the beep sound firing during the session, but is good to know that you can disable it if you don’t like it beeping at every flash. The battery was barely touched after 2 hours of use and more that 200 shots. It makes the unit very reliable for long sessions, but as always I would recommend having a spare battery ready to go just in case.
The most eye catching item is here. The Godox AD300 Pro isn’t a cheap unit, but by any means is a super expensive flash. I would say that is on the right price tag if you that into consideration what you can do with it and the price of its competitors. On the time of this article it costs USD 499.00 while units with the same power and size from other brands goes for USD2000+. So it’s not rocket science, with the price of just one Profoto B10 you can get 4 AD300Pro and make a completely wireless studio setup on the road if you like.
As for the accessories like the AD-S85 softbox you gonna find it for USD79.00 which is a fair price as it comes with a grid. If you not sure to invest in the mount system I would recommend to buy a S2 bracket and use Bowens modifiers, unless you already have other type of mount.
For the overall quality and resources that this unit gives I think it is a great value and if you want something with more power you can invest on the AD400Pro or on the AD600Pro, keep in mind that these units are a little bit bigger and not so easy to carry around like the AD300 Pro.
Godox AD300 Pro – Technical Specifications
- Godox AD300Pro
- Power = 300Ws
- Compatible Cameras Wireless Radio = Canon, Nikon, Sony, Olympus, Panasonic, Pentax and Fujifilm
- Flash Mode = TTL/M/Multi
- Flash Duration = 1/220 to 1/11490 seconds
- Power Output = 9 Stops: 1/256~1/1
- Controllable Slave Groups = 5 (A, B, C, D, and E)
- R2 Reception Range = 328ft / 100m (approx.)
- Channels = 32 (1~32)
- Wireless ID = 99
- Power Supply Lithium Battery pack (14.4v/2600mAh/37.44Wh)
- Recycle time 0.01-1.5s (approx.)
- Battery Level Indicator = Yes
- Full Power Flashes = 320
- Stroboscopic Flash = Up to 100 times, 100Hz
- Manual flash exposure compensation (FEC) = Adjustable ±3 stops in 1/3 stop increments.
- Sync Modes High Speed Sync = up to 1/8000 second, First-Curtain Sync, and Second-Curtain Sync
- Delay Flash = 0.01~30 seconds
- Color Temperature = 5600°± 200k
- Stable Color Mode = 5600°±75°K Throughout
- Mask Feature = Yes / N1 & N2
- Fan = Yes
- Áudio Beeper = Yes
- Modeling Lamp (LED) = 3000°K ~ 6000°K / 10 Levels
- Optical Slave Sensor = S1 Standard /S2 Smart
- Direct Sync Trigger = 3.5mm Sync Cord
- Flash Duration Indication = Yes
- Display Dot-matrix LCD Panel
- Wireless Flash Function = Slave, off
- Power Sleep = Power off automatically after approximately 30~120 minutes of idle operation. User-selectable in Custom Functions.
- Dimension 7.5×3.8×3.4in / 19.0×9.8×8.7cm
- Net Weight (with battery) 3 lb 1 oz / 1.4kg
More Sample shots
Pros and Cons
There’s no perfection in any product in the market, and sometimes what is a pro for some people can a con for another. And here I gonna list some of pros and cons that I think is worth to point out.
- Light quality
- Integrations with other Godox products
- Battery life
- Good reclice times
- Menu System a little outdated (pure cosmetics to me, it doesn’t take anything from the light quality)
- Plastic body shell
- Light Stand mount could be a little more sturdy
Final Thoughts on the Godox AD300 Pro
I have to say, I love to use flash outdoors and have a unit that I can use without to be scary of it running out juice or having to bring along a generator gives me a great peace of mind. Not spending all my savings in a unit also is a good deal.
The AD300 Pro tick all this boxes and is an excellent for those who want to have a reliable unit at your disposal. Good light quality, good price, small package and a easy to use unit is all I care about. If you take good care of your equipment you won’t have any problem with the AD300 Pro even thought it having a plastic shell.
Since I bought my first Godox flash I was interested to see what the brand would bring to our future, and I glad to stay around to see that they are hearing their customer base and bringing some very well welcomed additions to our light game.
If you are in the market searching for a flash unit I can’t recommend Godox products enough because its prices and quality. I have been using Godox product for years and never had a problem with then.
This unit was sent to me by Godox in order to write this review, and here is all my honest thoughts about this unit.
And you do you have any Godox products? List your thoughts on the comment session bellow.