Mere mortals cannot afford the Briese Focus system, but Korean manufacturer SMDV has brought something somewhat similar within our reach.
The SMDV BRīHT-360 is the company’s bare-bulb portable flash, with similar features to the Godox Witstro AD360II (if not superior, because it has an LED modelling lamp). It runs on a removable lithium battery pack and has a built-in radio trigger with Canon/Nikon TTL control and high-speed synchronisation. Various reflectors are available for the BRiHT mount, as well as adapters granting access to SMDV’s Speedbox range of softboxes.
Now, SMDV has added a unique accessory system that could have photographers switching over from Godox et al. The BRiHT Zoom Bounce system fits in between the BRiHT-360 body and its flash tube, adding a sliding arm that allows the photographer to position the light source precisely where desired in a large softbox.
The body and controls remain outside the modifier, so you can make adjustments and swap over batteries without having to disassemble anything.
Slide the rail forwards or backwards to ‘focus’ the light and change the apparent size of the light source. If it’s anything like the Briese system, this means you can effectively increase the intensity of your light source (at the cost of size/diffusion) with no colour shift because you didn’t change the actual power setting on the flash.
Unlike the Cheetah Chopstick system, Broncolor Para or alternatives from CononMark and Parabolix, the body of the flash stays outside the softbox, giving you full access to the power controls, battery and so on. What’s more, the entire thing can be set up in seconds, thanks to the quick-assemble design of the softbox.
A deflector plate at the very front ensures that there is no hotspot from direct flash. Also, like the Godox AD-B2, the Zoom Bounce adds an LED modelling lamp, so you can preview the effect before taking the shot.
The 100cm, 12-sided softbox advertised with the Zoom Bounce System kit is called the SMDV BRiHT Zoom Bounce 100, and comes with a removable diffusion panel. There are two versions: silver-lined, for an efficient, specular effect or white-lined for a softer look (pictured below). The focusing rail is also compatible with the company’s Alpha Speedbox softboxes, which come in a range of sizes from 80cm to 110cm in diameter.
The following test photos, courtesy of dealer Legio Photo, show the effect of the white-lined “W100” version of the SMDV BRiHT Zoom Bounce in action.
US pricing for the Zoom Bounce System is set at $659.90, available before the end of November. One Austrian seller has the Zoom Bounce System listed at €540 plus VAT and a Dutch dealer is offering it for €599 including VAT.
Another key accessory announced for the SMDV BRiHT-360 this year is the SB-07, a Bowens S-fit mounting bracket, which also helps support the weight of heavier Alpha Softboxes.
Would you use a focusable light modifier? Share your thoughts in the comments below.