Number crunching with the Nice n_flash 480A battery monolight

Quantitative tests of the colour, battery capacity and flash intensity of the n_flash 480A location monolight. Plus, where to buy it?

Nice n_flash 480A, bare tube

Following our qualitative hands-on review of the n_flash from Nicefoto, some people are keen to know more about the quantitative side of things. So here I have delved into the technical aspects of this wireless studio flash. These figures have also been added to the original review so you can find all the information in one place.

The Nice n_flash 480A is a monolight with a lithium ion battery built into the flash head. It has an integrated radio trigger, Bowens S accessory mount and IGBT circuitry. It is now on the market, whereas it wasn’t available for retail at the time of our original preview.

Nice n_flash 480A with kit reflector

Battery capacity

The manufacturer claims that the n_flash can pop 680 times at the full power rating of 480Ws. I tested the flash to exhaustion and got 667 full power flashes – consistent with the listed value – before the device switched itself off.

Nice n_flash 480A and lithium battery

Colour consistency

From full power to minimum power, the output colour temperature of the n_flash increases, indicating the light turns more blueish as the power is reduced. The results are charted below.

Graph of colour temperature against flash power level for the n_flash 480A

Power consistency

Guide numbers aren’t really a very good way to test the output of a flash unit since the spread of light will vary depending on the reflector used and the studio environment. Still, using a light meter at a fixed distance, I tested the flash intensity to see if there were any irregularities as you adjust the power level.

Recycle times

The n_flash takes around 2.5 seconds to recycle from a full power flash. At half power and lower, recycling is instantaneous. Interestingly, recycle time does not increase significantly as the battery drains, even to the point when it is nearly depleted.

For more qualitative analysis and example set-ups, see our hands-on review. For official specifications of the 480A and the smaller 280A, visit nflash.cn.

Where to buy

The Nicefoto N-Flash 480A is on sale now for US$500, shipped internationally from Hong Kong. You can also buy it in Australia for A$697 including tax. Update (Mar 13): The exclusive UK distributor is MrCad Ltd.

David Selby
Based in Paris, France, David Selby is editor of Lighting Rumours, a part-time photographer and a quantitative analyst.
selbydavid.com