Lastolite Kickerlite Softbox Review


The good folks over at Bogen sent me one of the NEW Lastolite Kickerlite Softboxes to check out. My friends over at NAPP were raving about it and my buddy Scott Kelby did his review a few weeks ago. Although I’ve had it for a while now, I just didn’t have the right shoot lined up to try it on. Well that all changed last night. Last night I got to work with one of my favorite models and my goal was to use the Kickerlite during the shoot. Scott let me get a sneak peak at his NEW Digital Photography Book Volume 3 and in it I found a technique that I just had to replicate:


If you want to learn how to do the exact setup for this shot, grab a copy of Scott’s book.


How does the Kickerlite Softbox work?

The design is actually pretty cool. Like most Lastolite products it comes folded up in a blue bag. Set up is so simple that the instructions are just pictures. No words. The only thing you really have to spend a few minutes assembling is the support bracket that holds your strobe/flash. The kit also comes with a pop up reflector that you just lay inside the Kickerlite to reflect the light up. Since you can use basically any light you want, you have complete control over the intensity and remote triggering. In my shoot I used my Elinchrom 600RX strobes. The main light was shooting through a 54" Mini Octa softbox and my other 600RX was mounted on the Kickerlite. I controlled the triggering with my Skyport triggers.


Testing it out

After I got it set up I started testing it until I got the right settings. Then I started shooting away. However, I really wanted to see how much of a difference it was making, so I turned it OFF (well actually I just switched groups on my Skyport trigger to not fire that strobe). The great thing about the Skyport system is that you can change the settings of each strobe right from the commander on your hotshoe without having to walk over to each light.


I was stunned at how much of a difference it was making. Basically without it, the image was dull and flat looking. Now of course If I didn’t have it, I would have used a reflector instead to bounce light back up. So I did a couple of tests with the Kickerlite, without it and with a reflector instead and the results continued to prove that the Kickerlite blows away a reflector and certainly blows away not using any secondary light at all. 


The first one is with the Kickerlite, the second one the model is holding a reflector and the third one is just the main light. Also keep in mind that in this shot she’s standing and the Kickerlite is down by her feet.


The Bottom Line

Lighting is everything! If you don’t get the lighting right, not much else matters. There is no official lighting committee that will come down on you for a shot that may be improperly lit, but if your shots are compared to someone who did light it properly or better, they will appear to be a better photographer than you.

The Lastolite Kickerlite Floor Level Softbox is another tool in my ever growing arsenal  of lighting and photographic equipment. 

The Kickerlite Softbox goes for $206.95 at B&H Photo. Learn more about it here.

Makeup by Renata.

8 Replies to “Lastolite Kickerlite Softbox Review”

  1. Interesting approach to lighting but to be critical… I think the shot above needs a little lighting adjustment or post work. The blue tint to the hands in the shadows are distracting to my eyes. The rest of image is lit nicely with warmer tones but the blue hands just look odd and out of place. Nice to see the effect in use though.

  2. Thanks for great info once again terry. This looks like one cool little light modifier but as I need to save some cash right now, I think I will try to use a reflector and just put a flash firing directly into the reflector to give a little more pop out of it. Hey! Its worth a shot.

  3. Great review Terrry. You can also use tilt head flashes in the KickerLite or use it to help separate out the background.

    Mark Astmann
    Lighting Product Manger
    Bogen Imaging

  4. Thanks for the nice comparison. I shoot a lot of headshots and this type of lighting is something very useful to me…

    However, just to be a bit critical, the use of the reflector in the middle pic in the triptych examples does not look quite right. The angle and positioning of the reflector is not optimized to fill the shadow in her face. This comparison would be better if that one point was fixed.

Comments are closed.