MagMod founder, Spencer Boerup worked as a photographer for several years and it was during a wedding shoot in April 2013 that he had the idea for a flash modifier system that used magnets. Six months later, the first MagMod system launched on Kickstarter. Thanks to its robust build and ease of use, it quickly caught the attention of portrait and wedding photographers who regularly use flashguns or strobes.
The stretchy design of the MagGrip means that the MagMod system can be used on a huge number of flashgun. The MagGrip 2 builds on this making the system compatible with an even wider range of flashes.
MagMod Professional Flash Kit 2: Specifications
Kit includes: MagGrip 2, MagSphere 2, MagGrid 2, MagBounce 2, Pro Correction Gels, soft pouch
Compatible with: most flashguns/strobe with rectangular or round heads eg Profoto A1, Godox V1, and Westcott FJ80
MagMod Professional Flash Kit 2: Key Features
MagMod sells all the components of its Starter Kit 2 and Professional Flash Kit 2 separately, but if you’re buying for the first time, it makes sense to buy a kit. The Starter Kit 2 includes the MagGrip 2, MagSphere 2, and MagGrid 2, and the Professional Flash Kit 2 adds the MagBounce 2 and Pro Correction Gels to the Starter Kit bundle.
The MagGrip 2 is essential to using the system. It’s made from tough but stretchy silicone and fits on the head of flash, housing magnets that enable the modifiers to be attached.
The MagSphere 2 is the upgrade to the MagSphere which is the MagMod modifier that you’re likely to have seen in action the most often. It transforms a flash into a diffused omnidirectional light source, making the light softer. The MagSphere 2 is made from white silicone and has the same squishy feel as the original version, but at 88g it’s 40% lighter in weight.
Similarly, the MagBounce, which is designed for use on a flash that points upwards rather than forwards, is made from white silicone and is lighter than the original version. It’s claimed to increase the apparent size of a flash by over 300%.
Unlike most lighting grids, the MagGrid is made from silicone, which means it’s bendy and soft rather than brittle and hard. It also weighs less than 49g and has magnets that enable it to mount quickly on the MagGrip 2. It’s more compact than the previous version and offers a 40° light pattern.
MagMod’s Pro Correction Gels are made from rigid polycarbonate which means they are easier to handle than gel sheets. Unlike the original MagMod gels that need to be mounted on a holder, the new gels have a magnet on either side so they snap straight onto the MagGrip 2.
MagMod Professional Flash Kit 2: Build & Handling
Although they are lighter than their predecessors, the MagGrip 2, MagSphere 2, MagGrid 2, and MagBounce 2 look very similar to their predecessors. The MagGrip 2, however, has a larger, more rounded aperture that makes it easier to fit on flashes with a circular head. That said, it still takes some finger strength and a bit of wiggling to get it onto a Profoto A-series flash. It means that if you have more than one flashgun, you won’t want to be swapping the MagGrip between them and you’ll want one for each light.
MagMod is a modular system which means that once the MagGrip is on the flash, the modifiers can be used by themselves or stacked together.
There’s a powerful magnetic attraction between the MagGrip and the light modifiers which means that once the modifier is around 2 cm from the MagGrip, you can safely let go and the MagSphere, Bounce, Grid, or Gel will snap smartly onto the flash.
MagMod supplies a small drawstring bag with the Professional Flash Kit 2. Thanks to the squashable nature of the MagSphere and MagBounce, this has just enough room to fit the kit components, keeping everything together in your bag.
MagMod Professional Flash Kit 2: Performance
Once the MagGrip is on the flash, using the remainder of the kit is a cinch. The MagSphere 2 does a nice job of diffusing and softening the light so that highlights are less harsh and shadows aren’t as deep. If you need a wider throw of light, however, the MagBounce is a great choice because it spreads the flash brilliantly.
Conversely, the grid reduces light spill well and there’s rapid fall-off towards the edges of the frame (depending upon the direction of the flash).
Meanwhile, the six correction gels (1/4 CTO, 1/2 CT, Full CTO, 1/2 CTB, Plus Green, and 8x ND) give you a good scope for matching the flash to the ambient conditions. If you want to get more creative with the color of the flash, there are the Pro Artistic Gels and Pro Creative Gels, each with six filters.
While it’s not a major issue, it’s worth being careful where you place the MagSphere and MagBounce when they are not in use as the silicone seems to act like a magnet to dust, specs of dirt, and hair. It doesn’t cause a problem in their use but it doesn’t look very nice, especially in a professional setting.
MagMod Professional Flash Kit 2: Verdict
MagMod’s Professional Flash Kit 2 is well made and very easy to use, and it should give years of service which helps to justify its comparatively high cost. If the price is a concern, the Starter Kit 2 makes a saving of around $90/£120. It means forgoing the MagBounce and the Pro Correction Gels, but if you’re just getting to grips with flash, that’s likely to be acceptable and you can buy them separately at a later date.
If you have more than one flash you’ll need to buy extra MagGrips because you won’t want to swap it between flashes and the ease of use encourages experimentation and creativity.
Read more: check out our top picks for the best flash diffusers, softboxes, and modifiers.