We have noticed a large number of people reaching out about the Godox SK400ii studio flash strobe over the past few months so we have decided to publish our full Godox SK400ii review as today’s article. Our hope is that we will be able to help any of our readers who are looking to pick up a great little studio flash strobe as we feel that the Godox SK400ii can make a solid addition to your camera accessories.
Over the last five years or so, Godox has really upped their game when it comes to flash units becoming one of the leading brands in the space. On top of this, Godox has always managed to keep the price tag of their products as low as possible too ensuring that you can often save a little money by going with the Godox option over the competition while getting a very similar level of performance and the SK400ii is no different.
It’s no secret that the Godox SK400ii has managed to build up a large customer base since its release onto the market and earn itself a decent slice of the market share. In addition to this, the SK400ii has also managed to earn itself an outstanding reputation amongst the community that just keeps getting better and better as the months come and go.
If you are just starting your own studio photography business then we honestly feel that the Godox SK400ii is one of, if not the best starter lighting units on the market at the time of writing. We have seen a number of reports from third-party, independent photographers who purchase four of five of these units to meet their initial needs as they get their business off the ground.
One thing that we often see reported by people in this situation who use the SK400ii is that it is often their other camera accessories or own skill level that is the limiting factor as an entry-level studio photographer rather than the SK400ii. This is due to the excellent versatility of the lighting unit and the fact that you can quickly and easily tweak its performance to meet the needs of a number of common situations whereas some compeating studio strobes can be quiet restricting.
Performance And Functionality
In addition to performing very well for standard portrait photography, it also performs very well for other niches such as lifestyle, product, food, and e-commerce photography too in both small and medium studios. You can also use the SK400ii as high light, a background light, or a hair light depending on your needs for your specific situation and is one of the reasons so many people purchase more than one Godox SK400ii when getting started.
The unit comes with a Bowens mount as standard meaning that you can mount all Bowens mount compatible lighting accessories to the SK400ii without issue too that really opens up what you can get done with the light. In addition to this, the vast majority of retails will sell the SK400ii with a barn door and color filter bundle included as standard too. That said though, if you are wanting to use a softboxwith your SK400ii then it will have to be purchased separately as there are currently no SK400ii bundles that include a softbox as standard.
Although commonplace these days, the SK400ii comes with 2.4G wireless technology included as standard too allowing you to use a number of popular wireless flash triggers with the unit in your studio. That said, if you are looking to purchase a flash trigger to use with your Godox SK400ii then we would highly recommend the Godox X pro-TTL Wireless Flash Trigger. It works flawlessly with the SK400ii and the flash trigger has one of the best reputations going within the community too. The wireless technology on the SK400ii also enables full synchronization with popular camera bodies that support the one preflash firing system too.
The SK400ii also has a slight limitation when it comes to its maximum flash duration being capped at 1/2000 but this is common in entry-level studio strobes as it is enforced to help prevent any overheating issues. If you are planning to use your SK400ii for capturing photographs of people or static objects then this will not be an issue anyway but if you are going to be working with droplets or splashes then something like the Godox AT range will be a better option but keep in mind, it is more than double the price of the Godox SK range flash units.
The unit comes with a variable flash recycle time between 0.1 seconds and 1 second to allow you to tweak it as needed for your session. This should be fine for the vast majority of people in the market for this type of studio strobe and again the 0.1-second limitation is enforced as a part of the overheating prevention system on the flash. The high capacity capacitors in the flash unit charge very quickly for their output levels and ensure that a stable voltage with a price light output is achieved with each activation of the flash too.
Considering the price tag for the Godox SK400ii, it is easy to see why it is such a big hit within the community and why it has managed to earn itself so many excellent reviews from third-party photographers. If you do have some free time then we would highly recommend that you skim over some of those reviews of the SK400ii as they offer some great insight into its performance for other photographers who use it as their studio strobe of choice.
User Interface And Control System
Th control system allows you to quickly and easily switch through the nine different levels of brightness that the flash supports as well as adjust the unit’s power through all forty available steps. On top of this, the system also offers quick and easy access to all other settings supported on the SK400ii and its easy to navigate menu allows you to get to them within seconds.
If you are working in a busy studio with clients and models in your studio then over the course of the day being able to quickly tweak the output of the unit can actually end up saving everyone a fair amount of time. All of the buttons are responsive and easy to press with the rotary dial being very easy to rotate with just enough resistance to ensure you can accurately turn it as required.
We are big believers in giving credit where its due and we feel that Godox has done a great job with the SK400ii and blown the compeating flash strobes at this price point out of the water when it comes to their user interface system on the unit. It is just so easy to learn and effective to use that it fits the needs of its target market perfectly.
Build Quality And Design
A large number of entry-level studio strobes tend to be heavy due to the manufacturer using heavier materials in the construction of the strobe but this is not the case with the SK400ii and in addition to using lighter materials, Godox have also managed to keep the cost of the unit as low as possible too. Godox has done a great job of designing the SK400ii for maximum heat dissipation too and in addition to the technical restrictions that we covered in the performance section above, you can use the SK400ii for long photography sessions without having to worry about it overheating.
The SK400ii also has a built-in cooling fan that kicks in to cool the flash tube during use when the temperature of the unit is getting a little hot. One thing that we would like to point out about the cooling fan is that if you are doing any type of videography work then it may have a small effect on your audio track as the fan does have a slight hum when working. That said, this should not be an issue for anyone using the SK400ii for regular studio photography though and for the price tag of the unit, we can’t expect a silent cooling fan.
Although your Godox SK400ii should come with a seven-inch standard flash reflector, we have seen one report from someone claiming that they received a smaller six-inch diameter reflector instead. As we have only seen one single report of this, we are just presuming that it was a one-off due to an oversight in the packing factory but just wanted to make our readers aware that there is a small chance this could be the case for you too.
Another thing is that even with the seven-inch reflector, the model lamp does protrude ever so slightly past the end of the reflector. Although this will not be an issue for the vast majority of photographers who choose the Godox SK400ii, it does prevent you from totally closing the included barn door system while mounted to the unit.
That brings us to the end of our Godox SK400ii review and as you may be able to tell, we are huge fans of the Godox SK400ii and feel confident recommending it to any of our readers looking to add a great, cheap studio strobe light to their collection of camera accessories. It offers a ton of versatility with the best performance that we have seen at this price point in the market and the popularity of the unit goes to show that it is a solid investment.
If you have not made your mind up about the Godox SK400ii yet then you can click here to read a number of additional third-party reviews of the SK400ii. These reviews are definatley worth skimming over as they have been posted by independent photographers who use the SK400ii in their photography studio on a regular basis and have decided to publish their own thoughts on the review.