Hands on with the new Profoto B2 Off-Camera Flash system

B2model1This January I was invited, along with forty other venders, to join Profoto in Puerto Rico for an introduction and training on the new B2 lighting system. The B2, like the B1, is a portable TTL enabled studio lighting system.

My first impression was how small both the battery/control pack and head were. About a pound each, they were very portable. Of course, small and light are great qualities for a lighting system, but performance is the bottom line. It was time to put the B2 to the test.

We started out on the beach with a bare B2 head mounted on a bracket. This is a very comfortable way to shoot since the B2 head is so light. The quality of light produced by the B2 was excellent, without the harshness that sometimes occurs with speed lights. The exposure calculated by Profoto’s Air Trigger in TTL mode was dead on.


Profoto has developed a new line of accessories known as their “OCF” line. These accessories are made of a new fabric that is a lighter weight and very easy to fold and unfold. Even in bright sunlight, the B2 had the power to fill a soft box and produce excellent color and exposure.

The second day we broke into groups of three and hit the streets of Old San Juan. We photographed just about we could find, Including light up a twenty foot tall statue back lit by the sun. The B2 had the power to do it! We then set up an impromptu studio in a bar, which as it turned out also sold beer…just a lucky coincidence. We set up a glass of water and dropped ice cubes into. We set the B2 head about a foot away, and tried to freeze the action. It worked to perfection, without blowing out the shot. The flash duration was short enough to freeze the action.

The Bottom line is the Profoto B2 offered a level of portability similar to speed lights, but with a much higher volume and quality of light. Anyone looking to push past the limitations of speed lights should check out the B2s.

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