Hensel Porty Head EHT 1200 Strobe Heads

Porty Head EHT 1200

  • Available in single or twin power cord versions
  • Max output 1200Ws or 2x1200Ws
  • 50W halogen modeling lamp

  • User Reviews (2)

    Showing 1-2 of 2  
    markophoto1   Professional [Jan 19, 2005]
    Strength:

    Studio-like control, 6 stop trim range in .1 stop increments, very short flash duration, multi-voltage capable, with studio-level accessories and ringflash. Well-designed for the travelling photographer. Long-lasting batteries. Very capable of being used as a better-than-decent studio stand-alone system. Very good accessories, excellent accessory mount, durable, and excellent sync contact. The whole system reeks quality. I personally love this system and prefer it to the Profoto 7B and especially the Broncolor Mobil, which I'm not wild about, except for their cross-compatibility with the heads and accessories of their much larger and excellent studio lines.

    Weakness:

    Heavy batteries that tend to freak-out airport security if you travel with it, batteries are slow to charge, the old design Hensel ringflash is an unwieldy design to hand-hold. This kit, as with all things Hensel, is expensive. Limited availability, and back-orders common. And all things Hensel tend to be pricey.

    This review is not so much a review of the head itself, but the head/pack combination. A portable, battery-powered pack that puts out up to 1200 WS, trimmable down 6 stops in 1/10th stop increments), up to two heads at a time (though I very rarely plug more than one head into a pack at a time, easier to ratio that way), very short flash durations, and as fast a flash recycle time as you can find in a battery-powered unit. This is now my main strobe power/light source. A very slight bit of background: I'm currently a travelling fashion photographer, working mostly in Europe for the time being, and occasionally back home in the U.S. and at the moment I have no studio of my home. And about 75% of my work recently has been location work. This set-up is ideal for this sort of work. I'm not dependent upon the availability of AC power, I have studio-like control and flexibility, one unit (flash, head, batteries, stand and umbrellas) breaks down into one bag or case, two units plus ringflash and a few more reflectors, softbox, etc breaks down into two. As to the construction of the pack, the housing is built of a hard plastic, and I've found it to be very durable. All electrical contacts, including the sync cord input, are capped against dust and sea-spray. The control layout is simple as it is with most such modern studio packs. It seems like only Broncolor these days loves overly complex interfaces. The unit without the battery is rather light actually. With the battery, however, it is one heavy mother. As has occasionally been necessary, one assistant can carry the pack with the shoulder strap while I shoot. I've done it twice with the pack on my own shoulder. Not recommended but it can be done. Most of the time the pack stays mercifully on the ground while we shoot. The batteries change out very quickly and painlessly thanks to the drawer design that they're mounted in, and I have an AC adaptor that slides into the battery drawer that allows me to plug in directly when available. It's always difficult to rate the performance of the batteries as every job tends to be shot at a different power level, but over all I'd say you can generally expect a good 200-300 flashes per battery. Between two packs I have personally have 5 batteries which is always more than enough. The unit is multi-voltage capable. The charger even comes with various plug adaptors for the U.S., Europe, the UK etc. Plug either the charger or the AC adaptor straight into AC (with appropriate plug adaptor) anywhere in the world with confidence. I have. I travel back and forth between the US and Europe regularly. The unit is designed for it. Major important feature to me. Oh, a few things that experience with the units will tell you that you'll never hear from a salesman most likely. For one, the batteries are not only heavy as hell and they charge slowly (a good 2-3 hours per battery, longer if very deeply discharged), they also tend to drive airport security bonkers. They're made of lead-acid gel. This IS legal to carry, but many airport security types do not know this. I've taken to carrying around a print-out explaining that lead-acid batteries in SOLID or GEL form are in fact legal to transport through the air, as well as another print-out explaining that Hensel Porty batteries are lead acid in gel form. It shouldn't be necessary but occasionally has been. That's the bad news. The good news is that lead-acid batteries have no memory effect. This pack is as safe as they come. You don't get zapped with this thing like you occasionally have to worry about with the older Normans and Speedos and such. And it has the best and most reliable sync connection of any pack I have ever used. It's a bit more of a pain to plug into the pack but it positively locks, and you very very rarely have a sync problem mid-shoot. Nice to know since the sync cord are like $40 each. And the accessory mounting system on the heads is as good as they come. I personally prefer the bayonet mount on Hensel to both Broncolor and Profoto. Easy on, easy off, and secure. And Hensel-made accessories and reflectors are generally of very good quality. The only way you'll find a pack/head more nimble and easy to pack and carry around for location use than this is if you go down a grade and get something along the lines of a Norman 400B. And then you not only give up power, the studio-level of output control, battery life, recycle time, etc. You also give up the use of studio-level accessories, ringflash, focus spot, etc. Oh, one last minor detail that sometimes proves important. Hensel is a wonderful, but small manufacturer. They cannot keep up with demand. Stock tends to be limited, not all products are available where you need them when you need them, and back-orders are common. Just to keep in mind.

    Customer Service

    Thankfully not yet needed

    Similar Products Used: Profoto, Broncolor, Norman, Dyna-Lite, Speedotron, some others, both studio pack and head, and battery-powered, and a number of miscellaneous monoblock systems (mostly in rental studios all over Europe).
    OVERALL
    RATING
    5
    VALUE
    RATING
    5
    zzkenoman   Intermediate [Jan 05, 2003]
    Strength:

    Using 2 Hensel Porty EHT 1200ws asymetric strobes is more than enough to shoot a typical wedding or event. I can use AC or DC easily, and if you use it with flashwizards multimax, you can really be creative & totally wireless.

    Weakness:

    Accessories hard to find

    Excellent light to work with digital photography. I have always wanted a light system portable enough to bring with me, and not worry about underexposure, which I have struggled with in previous rentals. However, accessories are hard to find, fairly new to the united states, but if you want quality portable & studio like lighting, I would recommend this system highly.

    Customer Service

    Excellent with returning your emails, giving advice and sending material.

    Similar Products Used: Dynalite, Quantum, Nikon speedlights, Profoto
    OVERALL
    RATING
    5
    VALUE
    RATING
    5
    Showing 1-2 of 2  

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