In today's digital age, bulky hand-held flashes
like the venerable Metz 402 and the latter 60CT
series have largely gone out of fashion.
main problem with these Metz was the rechargeable
lead-acid battery. They were costly, needed maintenance
and didn't last very long. Replacing one of these
today is close to $100. As you can imagine, it's
hardly cost effective. For that amount, one can
purchase a modern "speedlite" that comes
with all the bells and whistles.
all is not lost. Battery technology has come a long
way since the 80s. NiMH with superior performance
have largely replaced NiCads. Even lead acid is
one may ask: "Why bother".
simple answer is COST.
one were to shoot outdoors where Mains Power is
unavailable, the only option is a battery powered
studio strobe. Even a cheap unit cost more than
$100. Considering the fact that one needs at least
3 units in hand for any shoots, indoors or outdoors,
it's not difficult to see how cost can escalate.
Unless one is making a living from photography,
it's hard to justify the expenditure.
is where vintage flashes like the Metz 60CT series
come into play. They are ideal substitutes for photographers
on a budget. With a Guide Number of 60, it is more
powerful than a 100 Ws studio strobe. The 60CT4,
in particular, is my favourite. The flash output
is adjustable in manual mode, which makes it invaluable.
good working units can be found on eBay for a fraction
of what they used to cost. With some minor modifications,
they can be put back into service.
are some of the modifications that I did with my
vintage strobes which may prove helpful to others.
Metz 402 / 60 CT series - modifying
the power pack for modern day batteries