It is now exactly two weeks since the launch of the B1 off-camera flash caused such a storm of clicks that our website came crashing down. We partly blame Michael Mueller for that. His images are just too good to ignore.
In early September, the B1 off-camera flash was ready to be launched to the public. But before doing so, the development team at Profoto wanted to give their new flash a proper test drive – or to be more precise, they wanted a professional photographer to do it.
The B1 is a cordless off-camera flash with TTL, designed to not only catch the action but also freeze it in time with absolute sharpness. So it seemed only natural to give it to a photographer whose images are oozing with adrenaline. If you are familiar with German sports photographer Michael Mueller, you know he fits that description like a glove.
Michael happily accepted the proposal and brought his team to a mountain to shoot death-defying downhill skateboarders rushing down a road. In their bags were B1s, a BatPac, Zoom Reflectors, a Phase One 645DF+ camera and standard Air Remotes, amongst other things.
“We didn’t have much time to plan the shoot, so there was no time to get a permit to close off the road” says Michael. “Instead we had to position the flashes and shoot the athletes as fast as we could. Every time we heard a car approaching, we instantly had to remove the setup and then rebuild it again. So there was no time to get into the details. This was a shoot and run shoot! In fact, I’m not even sure it would’ve been possible to do with any other flash than the B1.”
Early in Michael’s career, he shot with speedlights. Then he switched to flash packs, such as the powerful Profoto Pro-B3 and the lighter AcuteB2. But now that he has tried the new B1 off-camera flash, how does it compare to his previous experiences?
“The B1 is a lot faster and more powerful than any speedlight you’ll ever find,” says Michael. “In addition, you get to choose from all these Light Shaping Tools that are unique for Profoto.
“Compared to the flash packs that I’m used to, on the other hand, the B1 is a lot easier to work with. The fact that it is a single unit with no cords means that I can just place it wherever I want and shoot a second later. It takes it to a whole new level for photographers like me.”
If you can’t get enough of them, check out his website.