Angler 60″ Deep Softbox Review Working with a giant softbox in the studio

A few months ago, we got several products from the Manhattan-based professional lighting manufacturer Angler. One was the unique wall mount for light modifiers that we tested, loved, and are still using in the studio (we even purchased a few extra ones recently). The other was the huge 60″ Angler deep “parabolic” (*) softbox which we shall look at today.

The Angler 60″ is by far the largest softbox that we have ever used. It measures around 150 cm across when open and 80cm deep and is 110cm long when closed down. Even in our very large studio, working with this type of giant modifier is a challenge so if you are planning on getting one make sure you have the room and height for it.

The giant 60″ Angler deep “parabolic” softbox

You will also need to consider a heavy-duty light stand, preferably one with wheels if you want to move the unit, and to fill such a monster you will need a powerful light. We used our Forza 300 and it was barely enough. For stills, our Godox QT400IIM worked well so keep this in mind if you are going to use this softbox for video as well as stills.

In the box

The softbox comes in a long fabric soft case including the two diffusion layers – we wish they had a special compartment for them on the outside but from our perspective, most people are not going to open and close this giant softbox all the time.

Setting up/down the Angler 60″ Deep Softbox

To open the softbox you follow the instructions that come with the unit and pull gently but firmly each rod until it locks in place. Initially, it required some more force but after a couple of times, it did become a little easier. Working with such a large softbox is always a challenge and if you have another person to help you it is highly recommended especially for connecting the softbox to the light and placing it on the stand.

Like other softboxes, the Bowens connector can spin and you can lock it using a metal knob but we didn’t find the locking mechanism very convenient and we suggest that you make sure you lock the knob very securely otherwise you will find it difficult to connect to the light without the whole thing spinning (we should mention that this unit does have adapters for other mounts sold separately including Profoto, Elinchrom, and Broncolor).

The rods design on the Angler 60″

The softbox comes with two diffusion layers. The internal has a white hotspot in the middle and snap fasteners for securing the fabric which is nice and easy. The outer diffusion has Velcro and due to its size takes a while to secure correctly.

Disassembly requires you to push down the locking knobs and pull up the rods. This usually worked fine but some users reported bending rods and one of ours came out but we secured it back in. Talking to Angler they told us that “Opening a 60” softbox does take some amount of strength. They have noted the difficulty mentioned by a few customers and are working with the factory to improve the 60” Quick Open in terms of the strength of the rods and they anticipate that the next batches will be better in strength”. So good news on that front.

We used the softbox a lot in the past few months for both stills and video work for shooting people and products in the studio and having such a soft large light source is truly fantastic – you can see some behind the scenes that we took in our video.

Some behind the scenes during one of our product photography shoots

Performance and light loss

We also tested how much light loss you get with the fabrics from 1 meter away with our Forza 300 light.

  • No fabric – 3880 lux.
  • 1 layer (internal) – 2330 lux.
  • 2 layers (Internal and external) – 1620 lux.
  • Temperature shift with the fabrics – 5577K (no diffusion), 5520K (1 layer), 5320K (2 layers).

You can also see from the video how such a giant softbox makes the shadow falloff much more gradual. If you compare it to the much smaller 18” Angler Silverbox Softbox that we also got from the company you can see the difference in the shadow falloff and the way it looks on the face.

Conclusion

If you are in the market for a truly giant softbox for portraits, products, and other types of shooting and you have a very large studio space with high callings, strong rolling light stands and are not looking to use it on location too often than the Angler 60″ Softbox is certainly a recommended option.

An affordable deep parabolic softbox

If you never worked with such a large deep softbox before keeping in mind that it can be quite cumbersome, you might need a helping hand setting it up and powerful light to really get the most out of it.

Angler 60″ Deep Softbox Pricing

As for pricing at the time of writing it is on sale for only $157 which is a pretty good deal considering how big this modifier is (Angler told us that the unit does come with a 40-degree grid although our test unit did not arrive with one). There are also 26″/36″ and 48″ versions of this softbox by Angler starting at $100).

  • Note: This modifier is not a true parabolic light in the technical sense of the word, we hope to go into the reasons behind this in a future video but you can get some good insights on Photographer Karl Taylor’s blog post.

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