When taking photos below surface level, the use of underwater photography strobe lights is one of the many options you have as a diver. But, not all photographs are going to benefit from the use of strobe lights. With this in mind, there are a number of advantages to using them. So, what exactly are the good, the bad, and everything in between as it pertains to using strobe lights?

Strobe Light Pros

For starters, strobe lights are far more powerful than flashguns; this is even more so the case when photographing fish (or other live objects) as the strobe light will not scare your subject away. But, there are additional benefits, which include:

  • Offer a powerful light source, regardless of depth, light temperature, or external circumstances you can’t control when taking photos.
  • You have full directional control, regardless of the camera or source of lighting being used.
  • If you are shooting against the sun, strobe lights allow you to lose the silhouette which would be present with flashguns or other video equipment.
  • Your strobe light is also going to allow you to fill the flash. So even if you aren’t using external lighting sources, you can still capture excellent quality photos.

Strobe Light Cons

There are a few drawbacks one has to consider when using strobe lights for diving and underwater photos as well. These include:

  • They are bulky, can be heavy, and you may need additional resources (carrying case or bag) when diving.
  • Distance-dependent shoots. This basically means strobe lights will limit your range of light, and depending on the subject you are shooting below water, it might not capture the clearest, crispest shots.
  • You might also require a little time to master using a strobe light, before you are really happy with the quality of the photos.

With several options for dive excursions, these are a few pros and cons to consider if you are new to underwater photography (or advanced) and want to decide whether to rely on strobe, flashguns, or other light sources for below water shoots.