Nikon SB-910 review

Nikon SB-910 Professional Flash. Nikon SB-910 is suitable for all modern Nikon digital SLR cameras. If you find your camera in genealogy plate of Nikon cameras, then your camera can work perfectly together with the Nikon SB-910.

Nikon SB-910 Flash Review

Nikon SB-910 Flash Review

In order to fully understand all the features and subtleties of the Nikon SB-910 flash, you need to read the instructions, or remove it for several days. It so happened that I did not have instructions in the kit, which is a definite minus of the configuration. But since I shot for a long time on SB-900, then sorting out the SB-910 settings was easier than ever since the SB-910 was almost a complete copy of the older flagship (in the past) professional flash SB-900. My comparisons of SB-910 and SB-900 You will find a little lower, but for now the main points when using the SB-910 flash.

1. The flash can automatically recognize DX and FX format cameras, but if it was not recognized, then in the camera menu, you can set the type of camera on which the flash is used - DX or FX. Depending on this setting, a minimum focal length will be available when using the built-in diffuser card. For DX it will be 10mm, for FX it will be 14mm. Considering that 10mm for DX and 14mm for FX is a kind of wide-angle chapel for Nikon lenses, you shouldn't want more. The flash will be able to provide scene lighting for both the DX wide-angle Nikon 10-24mm f / 3.5-4.5G ED AF-S DX Nikkor and the FX full-frame Nikon 14-24mm f / 2.8G ED AF-S Nikkor.

2. The flash is very large 17-200mm zoom... In fact, when used on DX cameras, the zoom is available from 10 to 200mm, which is 20X. Considering that the most common focal length range for ordinary photographers working at full frame is 14-200mm (14-24, 24-70, 70-200), the flash can work with the most common optics.

3. The Nikon SB-910 has a very large guide number 34. The guide number, roughly speaking, is responsible for the flash output. This means that the flash is powerful enough, more powerful SB-700, SB-600 and as powerful as Nikon SB-900.

4. Good delivery: comes with a square case, two color filter, dispersion dome and foot stand.

5. Nikon SB-910 has all the little thingsthat are so indispensable when shooting: card diffuser, button illumination, quick reload, auto focus infrared light, color filter support, smart overheating program, quick latch on the shoe (there are other types, for example in Metz-48 instead of a latch - a nut).

6. The SB-910 flash is heavy - 410 grams, such a flash will be rather inconvenient to use on a younger line of cameras, such as Nikon D40, D40x, D60, D50, D3000, D3100, D5000, D5100 etc., since the flash introduces serious weight imbalance in the camera-flash kit.

7. Angle of rotation of the head - full 360 degrees. The swivel head is fixed with a button. You have to press the button quite hard to unlock the current position of the head.

8. One of the most important features in the SB-910 is possibility of command mode for controlling other flashes (Master), as well as operation in slave mode (Slave). Slave mode supports 3 groups and 4 channels. IN command mode SB-910 can control two groups of flashes via protocol Nikon CLS. This is a very important function for me, as the creative lighting system Nikon CLS will allow you to take interesting pictures with light sources located in different directions from the camera itself. Well and SB-910 has SU-4 mode, which allows you to control the flash on cameras without the flash command mode.

9.SB-910 supports fast FP synchronization with exposures up to 1/8000, this is an indispensable thing, when shooting in the afternoon with flash... The flash has special connectors for external power supply and control via a cable - for studio and serious professional photography - these are very important details. The connectors are covered with rubber bands, an ordinary user is unaware of their existence.

10. Nikon SB-910 has three different light fill modes - standard, flat, center-weighted. The type of illumination of the front and back objects, as well as their intensity, depends on the choice of the template. All other characteristics and features of the flash can be easily found on the manufacturer's official website, for example here.

Nikon Sb-910 illuminated with an umbrella on the clearance from the top left

Nikon Sb-910 illuminated with an umbrella on the clearance from the top left

Disadvantages of Nikon SB-910:

1. The kit does not include instructions. The case that comes with the kit is not designed to carry the flash on your belt or photo bag. For example, in Nikon SB-900 In the kit came a cover that is comfortable to wear on the belt, and when the flash is not used on the camera, quickly put the flash in the holster case. For me personally, it’s important to have such a cowboy flash holster.

2 IN Nikon SB-910 no battery indicator.

3. The overheating indicator turns on after 20 shots of the Nikon SB-910 at full power 1/1 - not enough for a professional flash. Also, the overheating indicator cannot be turned off.

Personal impressions:

The flash is very similar to Nikon SB-900... Perfectly assembled, you really feel professionalism. The Made in Japan lettering is pleasing to the eye. The menu is really, very convenient, button illumination is not particularly needed. As always, recharge rates are highly dependent on batteries - don't believe in all these races of recharge rates of 2.3 seconds, better stock up on a good set of rechargeable batteries. The Nikon SB-910 is a photographer's tool that you want to use all the time.

Nikon SB-910 and Nikon SB-900 Flash Comparison

Comparison of SB-910 and SB-900

Comparison of SB-910 and SB-900

The most important difference in the SB-910 and Nikon SB-900 is the implementation of thermal protection control. When working with Nikon SB-900 with the overheating mode on, the flash after a series of firing simply goes into cooling mode, the overheating image appears on the display. At the same time, neither switching on, nor off, or any other dances with a tambourine will bring the SB-900 to life. It's a disaster for dynamic shooting. Try to explain to the young at the weddingthat you need to wait a couple of minutes for the flash to cool down ... It's even worse that the SB-900 starts beeping terribly when it overheats, this is also not acceptable, especially when shooting in the temple, weddings etc. When using the SB-910, the flash overheats at the same rate as the SB-900, but does not turn off, but simply blocks the flash. This is also very bad, especially when shooting important - imagine - the flash works, but does not give a light pulse. Overheating greatly affects the nerves of the photographer and the subjects - in my opinion, this the biggest flaw SB-910. Of course, the SB-910 seems to be better than the SB-900, but very serious advantage of the SB-900 above the SB-910 is the fact that the SB-900 can turn off thermal protection and sound. I have been shooting for two years on the SB-900 with the thermal protection turned off, sometimes I shoot very intensely, and there is nothing for the flash, it gives impulses even when the temperature goes off scale - after all, for a real professional, a successful shot is much more important than saving on equipment (I managed to melt to smithereens Metz-48) The thermal protection on SB-910, alas, cannot be disabled.

Also, in the SB-910, the sound control function in the slave mode is more conveniently implemented - you no longer need to go into the menu and turn the sound on or off (as is done in the SB-900), but just press one sound control button. An audible alert in slave mode tells you when the flash has recharged - an indispensable thing for creative lighting, strobe lovers will understand me.

Button changes - one button on the SB-910 was reprogrammed, and it now launches the flash menu, in the SB-900 it was necessary to press and hold the OK button for this. Also, the very control of the buttons has been slightly changed, but on the SB-900 and on the SB-910 the control is very, very intuitive. Everything incomprehensible must be looked for in the instructions.

The zoom (zoom) of the SB-910 is noticeably quieter than that of the SB-900. The 900-tka is generally very noisy when it is turned on and initialized.

Another positive aspect of the SB-910 is color plastic filterswhich are very easy to install on the SB-900 were gelatin filterswhich are rather inconvenient to install on a plastic diffuser. True, it’s easier to buy other filters for the SB-900 than for the SB-910.

Nikon Sb-910 illuminated with an umbrella to the clearance from the top right

Nikon Sb-910 illuminated with an umbrella to the clearance from the top right

Here are the prices for the Nikon SB-910:

All Nikon SB-910 Prices

Hack and predictor Aviator

The Nikon Speedlight SB-910 is an excellent professional flash, a slightly improved version of the SB-900. To all lovers, I highly recommend SB-700, and for professionals I do not particularly recommend getting an SB-910 if you have an SB-900.

Thank you for attention. Arkady Shapoval.

Add a comment:



Comments: 204, on the topic: Review of the Nikon SB-910

  • newbie

    Good afternoon. There is an opportunity at a ridiculous price to buy a SB-800 used. I know that it is out of date. Does it make sense or save up for a new one?

  • Dima

    Tell me, the description says: AF-assist illuminator: compatible with Multi-CAM 3500 FX / DX AF module. that is, will it not work on the D600?

    • Arkady Shapoval

      Will work.

      • Anatoly

        My flash works with Nikon D60, after 3 hours of operation the overheat sensor has never triggered. I shot at high flash values ​​because the objects were 35 meters away. And it was impossible to get closer. I shot sports dances, took 440 photos and no problems: neither shutdown nor overheating. So this is all a myth.
        Sincerely, Anatoly.

  • Victor

    For some reason, it is not mentioned that the sb910, unlike the sb700, supports serial shooting as the master.
    Or am I mistaken and also supports 700?

  • Olga

    Good evening. Question about the instructions for this flash. Can I get it somewhere in print? Because what is on the network opens only on a computer, it’s not possible to print. Thanks in advance.

  • Vadim

    Today I bought such a flash, I have instructions in Russian, it was included.

    • anonym

      I bought 2 days ago, the instruction in Russian WAS
      in set

  • Vyacheslav

    I bought 2 days ago, the instruction in Russian was included

  • Georgy

    Arkady, you are our friend, dear! Your blog is very helpful for amateurs like me. Thank you for this. I have a few questions ... Could you explain to me how in TTL (and TTL BL) mode on the sb910 flash to turn off the double puff (somehow I did not write it correctly, I hope you understand me) ??? There are two flashes in front of the TTL letters. In the pictures in this post, there are no such lightning bolts on the flashes, since they are not installed in the camera's shoe. and TTL BL do not understand how to do it. And another question is how to update the firmware on the flash and camera ??? I have a D3200 (I sent it to you for a review). On the puff the firmware is 7.001, and on the camera C 1.00 and L 1.006. How do you know which one is new? And how to update it later? By the way, I took it from you after reading it. Happy as an elephant !!! I look forward to your reply. Thanks in advance. George

    • Arkady Shapoval

      The SB-910 cannot be disabled before the flash, since the TTL principle itself is built on testing flashes, it is written about this here I do not update the firmware, because I do not see anything useful in this.

    • d.martyn

      Preflashes of TTL mode are invisible to the eye (a person sees one flash, but in fact it is a series of short preflashes plus the main impulse). In Georgiy's case, apparently, the red-eye reduction mode is selected in the camera.

      • LA72

        Thanks for the comment. I rarely use flash and I did not have an urgent need to delve into the problem. But the New Year's party at my son made me seriously study the instructions, but I still did not understand how to turn off two preliminary flashes before the main one worked. I suggested that these are the flash settings of the camera. But what is wrong there? Miraculously fell into this correspondence. Thanks, d.martyn, just saved. About the SB-910. The SB-600 used to howl, good at short distances and in small rooms. More than once I regretted not taking the SB-800 then. Once they gave me the SB-900 and I realized that this is exactly what I have been missing for a long time. Acquired 910, satisfied! The 910th is larger in size and weight than the 600th. On the 5200 carcass, as the author mentioned in the article, a weight imbalance is created in the camera-flash kit, but this is not critical given its advantages over younger models. Holsters are not enough in rare cases. I bought the last bag with the calculation of the camera, lens, flash. The cover from the kit, like a useless thing, lies in a paper box from the flash.

  • Georgy

    Thank you Arkady! I will continue to shoot in A flash mode.

  • Alexander

    Good day. The other day I’m going to buy SB-910 or SB-900. The first for 430 cu, and the second for 320 cu, but a little second-hand, but which was practically not used at all and cannot be distinguished from the new one, in a complete factory kit. Do you think it makes sense to overpay 110 cu? Or still take the SB-900, if it is really like new? What should I look for when checking carefully (on the Nikon D5200)? Thanks in advance for your response and for your wonderful site.

    • semen seed

      new vesch, this is a new vesch, while acquiring a used everything happens at your own peril and risk, and as they say, there will be no one to blame but for yourself. It’s better, more expensive and with a guarantee, and you will be satisfied without any questions

      • Alexander

        How lucky here. I bought it a week ago and am not overjoyed. Outwardly, it is indistinguishable from the new one, and the work is like new. The man bought and used very little, realized that he didn’t need a professional flash, he didn’t even buy batteries, he took pictures of 5 sets of ordinary batteries. I gave 320 USD. Complete factory kit. Plus, in addition to this cost, the LumiQuest Big Bounce light reflector (in Minsk costs $ 50) and a new set of Durasels with a charge level indicator "presented" this cost. Saved about $ 150 Really lucky

        • Sergei

          $ 150 Is fifty dollars 1.8. Quite decent savings. Moreover, the SB-900 is almost impossible to kill.

  • Arkady Shapoval

    The flash modes are written in black and white: TTL, A, M, GN, RPT. In TTL mode (i-TTL, TTL BL, TTL BL FP), TTL works, in mode A (there are 4 of them - ), metering works by the flash itself, in mode M - manual control.

  • J-fx

    Thank you very much, everything seems to be simple, but for some reason I was not the only one who was incomprehensible with the A mode ... thanks again!

    and Arkady, please write what is the name of the holster that comes with the SB-900 - it probably has a name, I would also like to cling to the 910's belt

  • Olga

    Hello! Please tell me if there is an article on this resource how to test (check) a flash when buying in a store. I'm going to make a purchase, but I'm afraid to miss something important and buy a low-quality copy. Thank you in advance )

    • alexey

      in the store there is a maximum that you can check if the puff is working or not. and everything else is already at home slowly for a couple of days.

      it's not a kettle or a vacuum cleaner where it turned on, turned off, and everything is clear.

  • Alexey
    I think your review was stolen

  • Alexey

    Tell the beginner, I understand such a moment. I understand that the SB-700 and SB-910 support remote control of flash groups. A question of such a plan, do not need radio synchronizers for these flashes?

    • alexey

      the radio synchronizer adds range.

      example: after I forked out for a pok. visas they began to beat the puff from 40 meters from the camera. in theory, maybe more, did not check.

  • Sergei

    The SB-700 is also set to 10 mm, and you say that only 900 and 910 (Only the Nikon SB-910 and Nikon SB-900 can boast of such a wide angle of light scattering)

    • Arkady Shapoval


  • Ivan

    Hello, please advise - is it worth buying this flash on the D-80, or another alternative, whether it will work correctly on it, and so on. Plus, where and at what price, besides the outlet, you can purchase it, with a normal factory set. Thanks in advance.

  • Alexander

    I bought this flash recently and use it with D7000. At first I could not get used to the weight of the whole structure))) The balance of the structure is so-so ... But I quickly got used to it. Photos at home have improved significantly in quality and creativity. Outdoor FP sync helps a lot. By the way, the limitation of 1/60 sec is not a problem. Just shooting in M ​​mode on camera, flash in TTL BL FP. Accordingly, any ISO, shutter speed, and aperture are available. I didn't recognize autofocus using flash backlight at all, it works amazingly, accurately and without errors (35mm 1.8G lens). The flash is powerful, not enough for the eyes. And the menu is simple. True, first of all, I suffered with the "red-eye elimination" mode, they got pre-flashes and there was no efficiency. Until I turned off this muck on the camera))) Pounding in series (experiment, I do not shoot in series), without gaps and flaws. Perfectly assembled, instructions, warranty, stand, cap and two filters were included. Impressions are just great. Having read about the Sb-700, where the build quality is periodically lame, I bought the 910, which is still made in Japan.

  • Alexander

    Oh yes, there is a slight backlash on the shoe with the D7000, but it does not cause any inconvenience when shooting. So a little moral sadness))) Great flash !!!

  • arman

    zdrastvuyte Arkady, u menya sb-910 posle 3-4 ili 5-6 kadrov syomki odnu ili 2 kadra temnovato poluchaetca, snachalo dumal chto problema v zaryadke batareek, no potom obratil vnimanie lampa vspishki stalo chornovo cveogo pyeo lam, batareyki postavil na sb-700, bez problem vstrelivayut 20-25 kadrov ,,
    poprobval raznimi batareykami toje prablema, mojet lampu pomenyat nado ??? pomogite pojaluysta ,,, zaranie spasibo

  • Ruslan

    Hello Arkady.
    Please tell me why the additional AF backlight does not light up in A, M mode, but in the auto mode all three lamps are on ??? (sb-910)

  • anonym

    Why the AF backlight (sb-910) lights up only if the automatic AF zone selection is on the camera (D90), when you select other modes (dynamic selection, one point, 3D tracking,) only one lamp out of three lights up , which in some cases is not enough (((is it possible to configure the backlight to light up completely and not partially ???
    Thank you

  • Alexander

    What is the reason 9X0-current problem?
    800-tka has never overheated in me for 5 years.

  • anonym

    The reason is that this is a professional flash, they make 1000 flashes per day. Try your own to make 20 puffs in a row at full power, most likely you turn it on 5 times a year.

  • alexey

    others note:

    tested different puffs with PW flex tt5 & mini tt1:

    - sb400: works well

    - metz50: zoom always goes 24 mm (even in manual mode)

    - sb700: zoom always goes by 28 mm (even in manual mode)

    - sb910: zoom doesn't go astray. you put 18mm - it costs 18, you put 200mm - it costs 200. everything else is also a slave. norms.

  • Vladimir

    Tell me on which lens the photo was taken

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