Profoto AcuteB 600r: A Review By Brian Roy

© Brian Roy

© Brian Roy

This past week I was fortunate enough to try out the Profoto AcuteB 600r strobe pack with an AcuteB head. As the name implies, the 600r is a 600 watt second pack, the R designation meaning it has a built-in wireless transmitter, which is fully compatible with the industry standard Pocket Wizard technology (32 channels, 4 zones, more options than you’ll probably ever need). While both the pack and head are diminutive in size, they are a classic Profoto design, built like tanks. All in all, the total package is small enough to fit in a backpack, and rugged enough for you to not feel bad about it. Basically a guerilla photographer’s dream…almost.

Allow me to preface this critique by saying quite honestly I did not fully charge the pack before I took it out. When the pack was on, it was really on; quick recycle times, consistent output. But once I depleted the battery I found myself having to wait minutes before being able to start the pack up again and go for another burst of say…20 or so shots. Luckily the clients were friends of mine and our time was not restrained. After the Indoor shots, we had plans to do another set on top of their parking deck (In twenty degree weather in the middle of the night mind you), so I allowed the pack to charge for about an hour before we gave that a go, since, needless to say, I wanted to slim my time out in the cold down to as little as possible to get the shots we needed. The trick seemed to work and this was when I really felt the pack shined. I fired off at least 120 shots at about three-quarters power no problem, turning the pack off briefly in between models to set up various scenes and warm my hands up in the deck’s elevator lobby.

Now I know it’s only a 600 watt second pack, and any photographer worth his salt can make a single light set up look like a three or four light set, but I would have certainly liked the option to have a second head for this assignment. BUT, I must say, that one head is certainly no slouch, and Profoto heads are definitely my favorites to date. They’re solid, small, consistent, and the reflector system is genius. Honestly I don’t know why companies haven’t bitten off their idea a long time ago. It simplifies light management so much to be able to just slide the modifier/reflector along any point of the head instead of building a zoom function into the light itself making more things that could possibly break.

Overall my experience with the 600R was for the most part positive, however an AC connection would be a welcomes feature on future models. Hopefully Profoto will jump on the lithium bandwagon to make longer lasting battery packs, but until then, the 600 and 600R seem like fairly good deals to me particularly if you’re a student buying through Mac-On-Campus. I liked the 7-stop adjustability of the pack as well as its solid construction and the head’s simplicity and sturdiness.


Tags: , , , , , ,

2 Responses to “Profoto AcuteB 600r: A Review By Brian Roy”

  1. John McD. Says:

    I just bought two of these today from B&H with two free heads. I was going to get the 600 R. But since I already own a bunch of Pocket Wizards I decided to check the price without the PW receiver built-in. The difference was a staggering $552 per pack. I save over $1100!

  2. Robert Huber Says:

    After seeing Brian’s review of the Acuteb 600R, I was curious as to how well Profoto integrated the Pocketwizard function into the pack. Time to take to the Field!

    I took the pack with one head, a 4×5 rail camera with a Rodenstock 210mm lens, and one Pocketwizard and went out to shoot some architecture to fulfill a “commercial exterior” assignment for school.

    After glancing over the instructions for a brief moment, I found it to be a piece of cake to operate. Turn the pack on, set the Pocketwizard to whatever channel you’d like to operate on, hold down the test button, and as soon as the head fires you are synchronized. So easy! I fully charged the pack before going out to shoot, and it lasted me a good four hours. I fired about 200 full power flashes from it, and I didn’t appear to exhaust the battery at all. The pack and head were both small, light, and extremely easy to transport and use. I was surprised to see that there were no adjustments to be made on the pack to change the channels or anything else for that matter. Not that it impacted my personal application of the system or anything, but a curiosity nonetheless.

    In conclusion, the system was extremely easy to learn to use, easy to move around, and worked flawlessly for the whole evening.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: