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Kickstarter: MagMod Introduces the MagBeam - Fresnel Lens Flash Extender + MagMasks

Today, MagMod has just launched their 3rd Kickstarter project. The newest item they are launching is called the MagBeam along with MagMasks which requires the MagGrip (check out our reviews). Within 96 minutes of launching (182 backers), they have met their pledge goal.

The MagBeam is the most unique, versatile, and totally awesome fresnel lens speedlite flash modifier ever created for photographers.

What is the MagBeam?
The MagBeam is a revolutionary new fresnel-lens modifier that gives you increased power output, a killer beam pattern, and projection masks (gobos/cookies) that turn your flash into a pattern-projecting-thing-of-wonder. The MagBeam brings you ninja-style light shaping in a fast, easy, and simple package.

It comes with a Telephoto lens for a laser-like precision beam with 2 to 3 additional stops of light output.

Add a Wide Angle Lens and our custom MagMasks to project patterns, shapes, and awesomeness--anywhere you want.

We're looking to providing a full review of the MagBeam and MagMasks. Be sure to follow us and check back often.

Continue reading for more information.

Existing fresnel-lens modifiers:

Today, fresnel lens modifiers are kind of a rare-bird--especially for speedlites. The ones that exist are primarily made for wildlife photographers, and they come with their fair share of...annoyances.

For starters, they look kind of primitive. Literally, like two plastic sticks with a lens stuck to the end, or, like a bulbous box that takes up more space in your bag than your camera does.

They’re pretty flimsy, hard to get on, leak light all over the place and don’t inspire confidence. Laaaaaame.

We decided enough was enough, and we’re stoked to show you how MagMod kicked the fresnel lens up a notch. Meet the MagBeam.

The MagBeam
Magnetic Attachment

The MagBeam is the bees knees because it features our patented MagGrip design, which attaches the MagBeam to your flash in, well, a flash. And, once it’s on there, it's on like Donkey Kong.

With a single ninja-like motion you can attach the MagBeam and fully extend it all with one hand. No more fiddling or velcro-ing. Booya.

2 to 3 additional stops of light

Sometimes photographers need more juice from their speedlites, and the MagBeam is up for the job. It’s designed to give you up to 2 to 3 additional stops of light compared to your bare flash. This means more light at a greater distance, and your flash recycles 4 times as fast. Ya, its a big deal.

What else can you do with 2 to 3 additional stops of light?
  • Use a faster shutter speed with wildlife and bird photography for sharper photos. With 2 to 3 stops, you could go from 1/50s to 1/200s or 1/400s! That's a big deal.
  • Use a lower ISO speed to improve your image quality. Going from ISO3200 down to ISO800 or ISO400 is a huge improvement!
  • Place your flash further away from your subject -- this is especially helpful with photographing people outdoors, and you want to overpower the sun, but a bare flash doesn't cut it, so you have to bring your flash in real close. Move it further away for a wider composition!
  • Overpower sunlight for outdoor portraits. Sometimes you want that darker sky, but don't want to bring out a big, heavy, expensive flash to give you the power you want. With 2 to 3 extra stops of flash power, your sky can go from near-white, to a rich blue!
  • Turn your flash power down to improve your recycle times. You'll get more flashes, more consistently, in a shorter amount of time when your flash doesn't have work so hard to recycle its power, which means you'll capture more photos with better flash quality!
Sharp, multi-spotlight control!

When fully extended, the MagBeam + Tele Lens give you super-focused light with a harder edge, similar to a stage spotlight. Not to mention the 2 to 3 stops of extra output, the MagBeam delivers light shaping like you've never had before.

MagMasks are a thing of wonder

And finally--you might want to sit down for this one--its collapsible design isn’t just for portability. Collapse it down all the way, swap in a wide-angle lens and now you’ve transformed it into a pattern-projecting-thing-of-wonder. MIND. BLOWN.

What is MagMask?

You might know them by other names: gobos, stencils, cookies, or masks. Whatever you call them, they all basically do the same thing: 'go between' the light source and lens to create a pattern or shape of light.

MagMasks are our paper-thin custom-made stainless steel 'gobos' that 'go between' your flash and the lens in the MagBeam. When placed at the focal point (aka the sweet spot), this pattern is imaged through the lens and projected out where you want it to go. Sweet huh?

Combine a MagMask with our rigid MagGels and now your creative possibilities are endless. Seriously, how cool is that?!

Gobos have been around for decades, just like fresnel lenses, and are commonly used to project shapes, names, and patterns with constant light sources.

The MagBeam now brings you the same creative power, in an incredibly compact, slick, and easy-to-use product.

What can you do with MagMasks?

Oh we never thought you'd ask. Actually, we read your mind. It might be easier to ask "what CAN'T you do with MagMasks"?

Feast on these samples below:

What MagMasks are available?

Why 2 lenses?

Both lenses serve a unique purpose in shaping light like a boss. Think of it like having two prime lenses for your camera--one is to shoot wide, the other is for focusing on what is important.

Tele Lens

The Tele Lens is supplied in ALL versions of the MagBeam, as its application is more broad. It focuses light in a very tight beam, and increases total light output. Wildlife photographers who need that extra reach or recycling speed, this is the only lends you need.

For Portrait photographers who want a spotlight effect (tight, normal, or wide beam) with a harder edge, the Tele Lens is your go-to lens. And because the MagBeam collapses in 3 total stages, its like having a zooming spotlight in your pocket.

Wide Lens

The Wide lens is only used when you want to kick it up a notch with MagMasks. Its specific focal length is designed to image the MagMask pattern and project that pattern out to create super awesome stuff.

*The Wide lens is only used when the MagBeam is fully collapsed.*

What should you get?

If you only shoot wildlife, then the MagBeam + Tele Lens will keep you smiling, big time.

If you want to take your light to the next level with both spotlights and gobos, then the MagBeam Kit is the bees knees.

Like all of MagMod’s magnetic, modular flash modifiers, we’re pretty jazzed about the way we’ve transformed a formerly clunky design into a tool that makes awesome photography easy. We know you’re going to love how the MagBeam lets you SHAPE LIGHT LIKE A BOSS.

The MagBeam in a nutshell
  • Two to three more stops of light - The MagBeam’s special lenses collimate light (which is a fancy word for “making light travel in a straight line") that increases total flash output by 2 to 3 stops of light. This gives your flash greater reach when shooting distant subjects, or, brighter light when you need more than just your bare flash. This increased output also allows you to reduce your flash power to significantly increase recycle times. Ya, it’s a big deal.
  • Variable spotlight pattern - When fully extended, the MagBeam gives you super-focused light with a hard edge, similar to a stage spotlight. Collapse the MagBeam down one or two stages to create a wider beam pattern while retaining the beautiful shape and crisp edges. Finally, a Hollywood-style fresnel spotlight for speedlites.
  • Gobo-projecting thing-of-wonder - Collapse the MagBeam down, swap in a wide-angle lens, and add our custom MagMasks and now you’ve transformed it into a pattern-projecting-thing-of-wonder. MagMasks are our paper-thin custom-made stainless steel 'gobos' that 'go between' your flash and the lens in the MagBeam. This pattern is then imaged through the lens and projected out where you want it to go. Sweet huh?
  • Collapsible design is easy - With a single ninja-like motion you can attach the MagBeam and set it up all with one hand. The MagBeam’s collapsible design also makes it incredibly portable and easy to store, freeing up valuable space in your camera bag.
  • Magnetic, modular system - MagMod utilizes the invisible powers of magnetism to attach modifiers to your speedlites, completely eliminating the need for messy velcro, adhesives, straps and bands that all add complexity to your system. We make awesome photography easy.

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