Grids versus Snoots

Another question that came up during the Experimental Portrait class was "what is the difference between using a grid vs using a snoot?" I commented during the class that the grids had softer edges while the snoot had a harder edge to the light.

Here are some examples using 10-, 20-, 30-, and 40-degree grids and a snoot.

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The first shot in the sequence is using a plain 7" reflector on a Speedotron Force 5 monolight. The next four in the sequence are the 10, 20, 30, and 40 degree grids. The sixth image is using a Speedotron snoot on a silver 7" reflector. The last image in the sequence uses the snoot on a black reflector. The black reflector is designated for use with snoots and is not a very common item.

In this next sequence I just moved the camera back a bit so that you can better see the edges of the light.

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And a set of images of the grids and snoot pointed at a blank wall to better see their patterns:

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In case you are not familiar with these items, here are photos of the reflectors, grids, and snoot...

The snoot is basically a black tube that goes in front of the flash head to narrow the light output. The grids have a honeycomb pattern of metal (usually aluminum) that narrows the light beam. On-axis a lot of light can go through, but as you move off-axis the light is attenuated.