Posted on Feb 28, 2008
Posted in Photographers

An audience with the King.

Got a chance to meet Kevin King, inventor of the RadioPoppers, the amazing cool new wireless transmitting device for off camera flashes. NOTE: this post is for the particularly geeky photog types so the rest of y’all might want to move on…

First, I don’t know why, but I was surprised about how young this guy is. Something about the name KING just made me think white beard and silver blond hair. For some reason I kept picturing the Burger King guy…At any rate, Kevin is one of the most unassuming down to earth (brown haired)guys you’ll meet and it was a pleasure chatting with him.

Ok, the skinny. Kevin made a cool device called RadioPoppers. Essentially what they do is make wireless infrared flash photography possible at incredible distances, and eliminate the need for ‘line of sight’ shooting. Before these cool doo dahs, in order to use a flash off camera in ETTL mode, your transmitter had to ‘see’ or be pointing in the direction of the other flash unit. Who cares right? Well, now you can put flash units wherever you want (behind trees, on balconies, under staircases) and get a balanced exposure all controlled by the unit on the camera.

This is really cool for wedding photographers. Now we can set up all kinds of lighting before the event, and make adjustments on the fly without even seeing the other flash units. No more asking assistants to adjust the lights and no more missed shots from flash misfires.

I asked Kevin how they work and he was thrilled to tell me. Unfortunately, after ten seconds all I heard was mwaa mwaa, blaahh mwaaa…. or something about a gated hoopflange…

Kevin, I appreciate your intellect, but all I really want to know is, can I put a flash in a trash can and fire it from across the room? Apparently the answer is yes.

For those in the know, and anxiously awaiting…they WORK! It is quite awesome to use them. I dare say, and I might be speaking prematurely, that these babies may forever change wedding photography…heck flash photography in general. Can’t wait for the first production run (hey Kev, I’m on the list right?), these things are going to be fun!!

Kevin was nice enough to strike a pose here showing off his new toys. Best of luck!!