Overpowering Sunlight – the Quad Bracket

In my never-ending search for more power, I came across an idea for a bracket to support 4 (count ’em, 4!) hotshoe flashes at a time! I wish I could take credit for the idea, but I was inspired by this post. I modified the design somewhat to enable easy attachment to my extensible pole or C-stand arm, but overall, the idea is the same.

You might wonder why gang 4 Speedlights together when I could just take a studio light with my PCB Vagabond Mini powerpack into the field.  The answer is high-speed-sync.  When working against bright sky and you want to underexpose the sky for separating your subject from the background, you use shutter speed to control the exposure of the background (recall that shutter speed controls your ambient exposure / aperture and power controls your flash exposure) like this recent series of outdoor portraits:

Using dedicated Speedlights, I’m able to work at shutter speeds well above the standard flash sync speed of 1/250 second. But doing so reduces the power of the flash.  So bringing multiple flashes to bear is the solution.  I’ve built brackets to hold 3 strobes, but it seems I’m always looking for just a little more.  Hopefully 4 will do the trick!

Parts for the quad-bracket were under $10 (since I already had several cold shoes lying about).  A metal electrical box from the photography aisle at my local home improvement retailer, some lock washers, and a couple 1/2″ 1/4-20 machine screws.  I added the 5/8 spigot for mounting the rig on a standard umbrella swivel adapter:

I’m sure my VAL will complain about the weight…but I’m gonna love the extra light!

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