[REVIEW] Profoto B10 Plus, B10 & B1

Profoto B10 Plus is the latest battery powered light from Profoto, a few inches longer than the Profoto B10 and slightly heavier. And you will get twice the light output (500Ws compared to 250Ws) but half the number of flashes at full effect (it uses the same battery as B10).

That was the short version of my review. Scroll on to read the rest, and see a size comparison between Profoto B1, B10 and B10 Plus.

A longer and stronger Profoto B10

Profoto B10 is really small and neat, Profoto B10 Plus feels like that, plus a few inches. The added length and weight doesn’t really make it heavy or bulky. Place it beside a Profoto B1 and you will see (I did, of course).

Here is my review of the Profoto B10 if you would want more details and start from the ground with how it works.

Comparison: B10, B10 Plus & B1

You can see that Profoto B10 is a slim and relatively small studio light, compared to my old Profoto B1.

Works well with lightweight stands

If you are a photographer like me and work almost exclusively on-location, the weight of the light stands you will need to bring adds a very large portion of the total equipment in kilos.

Profoto B10 doesn’t need a heavy duty light stand to feel safe up there, unless it is a windy day of course. Profoto B10 Plus feels like that, and that saves me a lot of weight every day.

Add a Profoto A1 (or A1X) on a Nano stand and you will get a lot of light sources to work with, but not too heavy equipment bags to carry.

Same battery as Profoto B10

And the same charger as well. The result is that the Profoto B10 Plus will give you (only) 200 flashes at full effect, compared to the B10 that will manage around 400. The upside is of course that you can use B10 and B10 Plus without having to invest in yet another type of battery, or charger. But a spare battery is always something to include in the equation.

Same modeling light and variable color temperature

Profoto B10 Plus has the same modeling light as B10 with a maximum light output of 2500 lumens, adjustable from 10 to 100%. And you can change the color temperature in the same way as with B10.

Same stand adapter as Profoto B10

When I reviewed the Profoto B10, I wasn’t really impressed with the smooth and totally round piece you work with to lock the light in a certain position. Especially in cold weather with gloves.

I can still feel the same way about it, but now I have gotten an explanation to why Profoto chose to design it like this. The inner workings of this construction is different from the larger lights, for example D2 or B1X where you had to apply enough force to lock it.

Profoto B10 and B10 Plus uses a different approach and has “teeth” inside so you only have to align them right and the light will hold its angle. Everything to make it smaller and easier to use (I still would want something else than this super smooth and round construction, but now I know why it is like it is).

Perfect for on-location portraits

Since Profoto B10 was launched, I have almost never used my old Profoto B1 anymore. But, now with sunny days, I can feel a need for a little more light in my portraits. Here the Plus will be a great addition to my Profoto B10 and A1. One more stop of light can make a big difference.

My On-Location Photography Rolling Case with large wheels (DIY)

The Think Tank Logistics Manager 30 is the most useful equipment bag I have ever owned. Add large wheels to the rolling case (as I did in this blog post) and I can bring anything I need without breaking my back.

Add my DIY Piggyback stand case addon and the large wheels will carry even your light stands, umbrellas and other stuff.

In the photo above of my LM30 I can fit these things and still have a bit of room for other special equipment:

  • Two cameras (Nikon D5 + D750)
  • Three lenses (50, 85 and 24-70mm)
  • Two Profoto B10
  • One Profoto B10 Plus
  • Two Profoto A1
  • Reflector
  • Barn Doors
  • Two Air/TTL Remotes
  • Extra batteries of every kind
  • Duct tape and a lot of small stuff

Which Profoto light should you buy?

Good question, it depends.

I would say that the most economic alternative today is to pick up a used Profoto B1 or B2 if you want to try OCF Lighting. Or buy a Profoto B10 right away. One you can fit in the backpack, the Plus model takes a bit more space and you might need a camera in there.

If you already own a Profoto light, the B10 Plus would be a good choice if you need the extra power. The B10 series has its limitations though, Profoto recommends not to use heavier softboxes than the 4-foot Octa and such. With larger modifiers, a Profoto B1/B1X is better suited for that.

If you have a Profoto A1/A1X and want to use more lighting modifiers plus have more light output at your disposal, a B10 or B1 is a good choice. A B10 Plus would be a good addition as well.

The main questions are:

  • Will you use heavy light shapers?
  • Will you mostly use small/medium sized OCF products?
  • Do you need fast recycling times?
  • Is weight an issue?

Will I buy a Profoto B10 Plus?

One, please.

I already own two Profoto B10, plus two Profoto A1. The reason for me to add a Profoto B10 plus to my arsenal is to get that extra f-stop of light for my main light. It will give me a bit more room for my lighting setups, and I can work without having to always place the main light so extremely close when using High Speed Sync on a sunny day for portraits.

If it would take too much space in my rolling case, I wouldn’t be so sure. But now it fits perfectly in the same space a regular B10 needs.

That is everything I can say about this for now, hope this can help you in chosing the right light for you.

Please let me know if there is anything missing from this review or if you have any questions I might be able to answer.

/Stefan

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