SB-400 Speedlight Unit
Great Little Flash
This flash is great especially for my Nikon Coolpix p7700. I can rotate the flash to full 90 straight up; or different angles. takes 2 AA batteries I use rechargeables, and has a small profile which suites the camera just right. I do own the Nikon SB-700 speedlight also, but I found the sb-400 crates a much better and softer light than the harsh on board flash. The SB-400 keeps a lower profile my travel camera the Nikon coolpix p7700. Another great product from Nikon.
Here is some pic's showing the SB-400 on the Nikon Coolpix P7700 and you will notice the low profile of the flash
June 2, 2013
Pluses and Minuses to this lens...
small, light, just 2 batteries, variable angle flash (light itself tilts up/down), relatively inexpensive
Kind of an "incomplete" rather than "conclusive" negative because...
Mine was kind of broken on first receipt...at first I thought bad batteries caused the flash to not work...so
I just put it aside for a loooong time...when I finally got around to using it, my testing seemed to indicate it had a loose connection to my camera shoe, and that's why it was not working...but of course now it's out of warranty...
Maybe purchase of a better flash would have meant better construction...I don't know...but I'm just an occassional "mounted flash" user, so this price/size/convenience would have been ideal, but I just can't give it a conclusive review unless it worked properly...
March 8, 2013
SB400 Won't Fire - Owned it for 6 monhs!
I really like SB400 for my D3100 but recently it stop working. Put new batteries but nothing happen. So disappointed.
January 17, 2013
Brilliant little guy
Strong little guy, the recycle is pretty fast, need new or freshly recharged batteries though. the ability to bounce makes it infinitely better than the in body unit, it cannot swivel however. This is all you need if you are not doing weddings!
December 30, 2012
I bought this back before Christmas to try on my D5000 as the built in flash just wasn't enough a lot of time. I expected it to be better than the built in but for the price I didn't expect much more.
I was amazed! The flash is fantastic. Indoors I just angle it up and it gives a great fill. It cycles fast and isn't anywhere near the battery hog I expected. If this thing were to break tomorrow, I'd buy another one instantly to replace it.
My daughter needed a flash on short notice for her D40, and I looked for another one of these but they were sold out everywhere in the week I needed it quickly, and had to settle for another brand, which I won't mention. This thing blows it away!
August 12, 2012
Great little flash
Let's start by saying I am a hobbyist not a professionnal photographer by any means. I recently received the SB-400 as a father's day gift to complement a growing camera equipment list. I did a lot of film photography back in the college day. Now after 25+ years of other activities (marriage, kids, career, life in general) I have started back into it with Digital products and the fun is all coming back to me. :)
Upon opening the box, I was amazed at the size and weight of the Nikon SB-400. it is really compact which is great to carry around. It is well built and the metal shoe and lock are a great feature. matched with my D5100 (a Christmas gift) it's a great way to get back into photography.
True it doesn't have all the bells and whistles of the higher end models. But if it's simplicity and compact size you're after or are just looking to compliment your on camera flash with something a little more powerful and versatile (with the tilting head for bounce function) this is the flash for you. Sure there are other brands, but nothing works with Nikon like Nikon.
Right from the box, with 2 AA batteries I was shooting with fill flash to control shadows in a couple of minutes. and the pictures were fantastic. Better that comparison shots I took with the on-board flash all due to the control available by tilting the head.
I can't speak to durability yet as I have just started using it less than a month ago, as long as it doesn't fail I guess I won't be adding to this review.
Nothing in life is perfect and the SB-400 is no exception. The one drawback I found disappointing with the SB-400 is the "manual", if you can even call it that. It is a large folded map type of arrangement in 3 languages (English, French and Spanish). A good quality product should not have one of these map like fliers for a manual. As for the content of the flier, apart from the legal mumbo jumbo Nikon has to put into these instructions to protect itself, there is some nice information and tips to be had from it and a little booklet would suit it better.
Overall a very nice product. Simple, fast, light and compact. A booklet type users manual would make it perfect.
July 13, 2012
Como estou começando na fotografia é um flash rápido especial, irá me ajudar muito em ambientes escuros e assim aperfeiçoando as minhas técnicas no ramo da fotografia.
Eu lhe digo, esse flash vale ouro.
May 17, 2012
Nikon SB-400 Flash: Small Wonder
There's a lot to like about the Nikon SB-400. It may be small and compact, but that's where the beauty of this small wonder starts. It's the beginning, entry-level unit of the Nikon Creative Lighting System (CLS), and though limited in many functions that the larger Nikon Speedlights offer, such as the SB-700 or flagship SB-910, this unit make up for it in size and surprisingly good results for an on-camera accessory flash unit.
I've personally used it with my P7100 and D5000, along with my aging D200, and the performance has been excellent with each of these, primarily because of the i-TTL mode. The SB-400 was made to work with contemporary Nikon DSLRs made since 2004. It's small and it's not cheap, but its performance is surprising.
• Excellent construction quality; the SB-400 has a metal hot shoe
• Uses just two AA cells; excellent battery life
• Fast recycling, about 2 ½ seconds
• Shooting range 2 ft. up to 66 ft.
• i-TTL fill-flash with CLS-compatible cameras
• Bounce capabilities: 4 steps, to 90 degrees
• No sideward head tilt
The first thing that you'll note about the SB-400 when unboxed is the precision feel to the unit. I was surprised to see that it had a metal hot shoe, as so many flashes today have gone to plastic. There's also a lock lever on the rear, and it has indicators so that you'll know if you forgot to lock it. There's an excellent little zippered soft case that will store your flash and keep it from getting dinged up in your camera bag. The flash uses only two AA batteries that can be purchased almost anywhere, and though I'm not carefully measuring it, I get about 200 flashes per pair of batteries. I'm getting a recycle time of just over 2 ½ seconds with a pair of Sanyo eneloop Ni-MH 2000 mAH rechargeable batteries.
The tilt head is excellent, and if you're using your Nikon in horizontal (landscape) mode, it offers four vertical positions of 0, 60, 75 and 90 degrees. But if you're holding your camera in the vertical (portrait) mode, then you'll have to shoot with the flash straight on or bounced off of a wall. It's a tilt head, and doesn't have a swivel head like the more costly Nikon SB-700 offers.
The angle of coverage on the SB-400 is 18mm (DX-format) and 27mm (FX-format). For reference, this is the equivalent of about a 28mm lens on 35mm film camera. The flash coverage is excellent and generally well distributed. Tinting the head for a bounce effect will give you a softer effect, but if you need more, using a bounce card or any number of third-party diffusers for Nikon SB-400 will work.
For many, the SB-400 may be all that's needed as an excellent step upwards for Nikon DSLR owners who need more than their built-in flash offers, but some may be perhaps looking for more. As stated earlier, this flash is the beginning, entry-level unit of the Nikon Creative Lighting System (CLS). It supplements my aged Nikon SB-600 in that respect, but in truth I use the SB-400 far more on a day-in, day-out basis.
The Nikon SB-400 is an unpretentious, high-quality flash with all the features that many will actually use. But do you actually need one of these, considering that the built-in flash on contemporary Nikon DSLRs (and the P7100) are so good? Maybe not, but consider the SB-400 if you want an easy-to-use bounce flash, if you want faster recycle times than your camera may offer, and excellent coverage with your ultra-wide lenses. You'll also get more shots per camera battery charge, since your camera's built-in flash uses 2-4 times as much power; using the SB-400 means you don't use the built-in flash. Other flash features can be gimmicks that may even interfere with taking pictures, and will slow you down rather than get the job done. Considering all that this small wonder does, it's highly recommended.
May 9, 2012
Died just after hardly 18months of use
I bought this flash from Best Buy in 2010 for my wife to go with D5000 camera. She is a very careful and light user. Mostly uses for our kids birthdays, any school shows etc. We haven't used it much outdoors in too much sun or even in cold. Two weeks ago, it just stopped working. Very disappointing. After spending $130 for a simple flash, I would expect that to last for a few years. Nikon should be ashamed of the accessories quality, especially when they charge such a premium. I might as well buy a 3rd party flash for less than third the price and toss it after a few years. We are planning to go to NewYork this week for spring break and stuck without a flash. Now I have to shell out more money to get a poor-quality flash.
April 1, 2012
Compacto e eficiente
Leve e eficiente para a maioria das situacoes no dia-a-dia como entusiasta nao-profissional. Evita o aspecto algo agressivo de flashs maiores quando usados por um amador como eu. Direcionado para o teto,o efeito fica muito simples e agradavel, mas existem muitas outras situacoes onde o flash traz gratas surpresas. A inclinacao se da somente para cima, o que representa um ponto negativo, mas no geral estou bastante satisfeito. Para profissionais existem flash mais eficientes; como amador gosto deste SB-400 que uso na minha D5100.
March 29, 2012
$100 and no Swivel Head
Could be a great compact flash if not for the lack of a swivel head. Too bad Nikon engineers don't have the forethought to realize that sometimes we need to change the direction of our flash, not just up to the ceiling, to improve bounce lighting. I doubt that a swivel head would increase the cost of this flash buy even $5 or $10 dollars in total. Oh well!
March 26, 2012
Exactly what I needed
Nikon makes a decent camera flash, but I needed to bounce it off the ceiling more. I did use the inexpensive reccomended lightscoop, but it was a quick fix. This flash has made a world of difference on all my inside photos.
It does only move in an up down dimension and sometimes it'd be nice if I could turn it sideways as well. Now that I have used this so much, I'd consider spending more for that extra function which I didn't think was important when I was first shopping for it. This was my first flash I have bought for my DSLR, so I didn't know what I would find important or not. Price factored in this time....next time I will make sure I get one that has the full rotation since I do find that a bit lacking. I knew that before I bought it however, so it doesn't minimize how great this flash is :D
If you are just wanting something better than the on board flash, but trying not to spend alot, you cannot go wrong with this lens. If you have some money to upgrade it to one that rotates both directions, then I'd go for that one instead.
December 28, 2011
When I first purchased the Speedlight SB-400 I was anxious to see how it would work on my D700 and D50. It's small size was very interesting. Unfortunately after very little use, it just died. It was not damaged, I changed batteries, and still would not come back to life. Basically I was very disappointed.
November 3, 2011
I got this little flash to finally replace the built-in flash on my D70. Because of the built-in flashes limitations, I barely have any indoor photos of my dog who has one blue eye and one brown eye. (I don't have any photo manipulation software.) As you might imagine, the red eye/green eye situation is a nightmare. For the money, this little flash is perfect. Powerful, fast, and bounce capability. And! It's great to fill in when the subject is back lit. Huzzah! I finally have an affordable alternative to the semi-professional flashes out on the market.
August 16, 2011
I bought this flash because the built in flash on the D3000 had a few limitations. First, it vignetted pictures by being too close to the lens. Second, the color balance wasn't quite right.
Adding this little flash solved both problems and it added very little weight or bulk to my camera. While I still try to use available light, the SB-400 is very useful as a fill-flash and the recycle time is quick.
The small size is very handy as it fits in a small pocket of my camera bag.
August 3, 2011
SB-400 is most excellent!!
I love this flash! I got it because the built in flash on my D80 would leave a shadow across the bottom of the picture when using the 18-135mm lens. Nikon says the SB-400 will cover an 18mm lens, but this one never leaves a shadow even when used with my Sigma 10-20mm at 10mm. Fill flash is excellent and I rarely have to do any after-the-fact Photoshop color adjustments.
It's so simple, the wife can use it on her D40 without an 'instruction session' every time. On my recommendation, my daughter got one too, and loves it.
May 15, 2011
All you'll ever need
While it is generally true that the built in flip flashes supplied on higher end Nikon DSLR's have matured from being toys to being actual tools worth using, the battery drain of a day's worth of fill flash shooting could potentially leave one high and dry. Add to that the ability to adjust the SB 400's flash head vertically for bounce and you now have more flash than the average advanced amateur ever needs in a small, easy to carry package. Now, if it would only adjust horizontally somehow it would be just about perfect.
April 18, 2011
A lot packed in this small flash
Using this flash with the new series of small Nikon DSLRs is very much a treat. It is extremely easy to use but still allows full manual operation. I use it for my multiple stobe set up in studio to trigger the flash banks and add in a key light fill. Outside, it gives me perfect fill light light for nature close ups and portraits.
April 15, 2011
Too dark images
I bought this for use on my Nikon d300S. Set to automatic exposure the flash always produces images that are too dark. Every one requires image changes using Aperture.
April 15, 2011
Built-in flash was too weak for my needs as an illustrator using a Nikon D5000 with 18-200mm or 35mm DX lenses. SB-400 speedlight has proven to be a perfect fit for my work.
April 14, 2011
Cheap but unreliable
It just quit after six months with infrequent use. Not worth the postage and hassle to fix. Replaced it with a sunpack 2000 which I can't wear out. It cost less too.
April 14, 2011
Excellent flash for the money
I purchased this flash today, and I'm already in love with it. It produces excellent images, beyond anything I could ever expect from such an inexpensive product. This is definitely worth the money, and anyone interested in the Nikon family should pick this up. I use a Nikon D3100 with a very, very wide variety of lenses varying from wide-angles, to fisheyes, etc and this flash works perfectly with all of them. The recycling time has no lag at all, which is a plus. All in all, this is a great product and a must have for your photography arsenal.
March 3, 2011
Good small compact flash!
Would recommend this flash to anyone, small, light, and takes a quick flash.
February 28, 2011
Great little flash
I knew it was small when I ordered it, but was surprised to see how tiny it really is. The flash is well built, has a metal shoe, locks on the hotshoe, and can bounce off the ceiling. I use it with both the 10-24mm and 28-300mm with excellent results. It is simple to use, easy to carry, and provides vastly improved illumination compared to the built in flash. Only wished it worked on my older film cameras as well, but for the price, can't beat it.
February 1, 2011
A step up from built in flashes.
I got this flash after discovering the wonders of bouncing the flash off the ceiling and using diffusers. It is much better than any built in flash and provides softer light when bounced. Additionally, it is more powerful than the built in flash. My only regret is now that I'm planning on moving up to an sb-700, the sb-400 cannot be used as a commander for remote flashes.
January 1, 2011
This is the perfect flash for me and my D300. I'm so pleased my parents choose to gift this to me for Christmas. Although the built in flash on my camera is fine, it is too harsh. This flash lit up the room and was easy to install. Also, it's small enough to lug to school for yearbook purposes.
January 1, 2011
Just Do It.
Stop wasting time with built in flashes. This has bounce features and is just perfect for a room full of family and friends. Excellent on fast moving kids and dogs in the dark as it allows shots that VR is frankly not going to help with. Not a strobist plaything - just an average persons way to make much much better indoor shots and a steal at this price.
December 8, 2010
Worth Every Penny
Excellent low-cost, high quality product that does exactly what it says it will. Roughly 25% more throw than the built-in flash on my D90 and the ability to bounce flash make it invaluable. Not to mention saving your camera's batteries for just taking pictures. This is ideal for the prosumer that is looking to take the next step in flash photography.
December 8, 2010
The flash is not any more powerful than the built in camera flash. This flash is worth the extra money at all. Keep this money and add it to the cost of the SB600 or SB900.
October 29, 2010
very convenient flash
I carry this flash at the bottom of my camera case. It is so light that I often forget that I have it with me. But, when I do remember it works great. It is much lighter than my SB800 so I can use it for hours. The other day I shot with it for several hours at a memorial service. It was outdoors, so it acted as a fill light and the two rechargeable batteries lasted for the entire shoot.
November 20, 2010