Nikon Sb 800 Test

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Nikon SB-800. This free website's biggest source of support is when you use these links, especially this link to the SB-800 at eBay; (see How to Win at eBay), when you get anything. Thank you! Ken.

Nikon Flashes Compared.

How to Use Wireless Flash Control.

I buy only from these approved sources. I can't vouch for ads below.


The SB-800 was announced 22 July 2003. It was Nikon's best flash until the complex SB-900 arrived in 2008.

THe SB-800 works with every Nikon camera made for the past 40 years. It's the only flash, along with the almost identical SB-600, that works properly with the D70 and the new i-TTL exposure system.

I have a page comparing the SB-600 and SB-800 here.

Read here about how to use it remotely, which it does for free with the built-in slave.

The SB-800 flash includes colored filters to match tungsten and fluorescent light. This is very important for use indoors. Currently I Velcro gels to my SB-28DX to match the ambient light. Most people are not familiar with this trick. This is an important feature since you need to match the flash to the ambient light for fill. If you already know how to gel your flash it's no big deal, but for most people this will be a big help. For my current flash I go to a theatrical lighting supply store to buy filter material made by people like Rosco in huge sheets for $5 each and Velcro it to my flash. You then set the camera's white balance to match the ambient light and everything looks much better, instead of having fill and ambient light with different colors.

The SB-800 adds a reverse flash guide number mode for flash where you set the aperture and the flash sets the level automatically based on distance. This is like the flashmatic modes of the 1950s, backwards.


The SB-800 has a rated GN of 125' at ISO 100 with the zoom head set to 35mm. At full manual power it has a recycle time of 6 seconds (alkaline) or 4 seconds (Ni-MH) and provides 130 shots (alkaline) or 150 shots (Ni-MH.)

Size: 2.8 x 5.0 x 3.6" (71 x 127 x 92mm), rated.

Weight: 12.3 oz. (350g), empty.

Nikon Product Number: 4801, in catalog as of spring 2008.

More tech data is here and here.

Here's a promo piece on how to use some of the features.

I have a page comparing the SB-600 and SB-800 here.

If you just need a master commander to use on-camera for controlling remote flashes then get the new Nikon SU-800.


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