ASK ANY PROFESSIONAL WHICH kit they love the most, and inevitably it’s going to be something flexible enough to be used across a wide variety of situations, while also being portable, reliable and sturdy so that it can take the inevitable knocks that are going to come with the territory.

The new 522Ws Elinchrom FIVE neatly ticks the boxes on all of those fronts, being freed from the curse of the mandatory mains cable through its active charging, and as a battery-powered portable monolight that lets photographers work equally well in the studio or on location. Available now for an SRP of £1619, features on board include High-Speed Sync (HSS), a continuous running modelling light and a removable battery, re-chargeable through USB-C, which offers the ability to power the light for up to 450 full power flashes per charge.

It’s clear that the FIVE has been designed from the ground up by a team that fully understands the many and varied requirements of the working professional. A key advantage is the fact that if you’re using the light in a situation where an external power source, such as a mains socket, laptop or a power bank, might be available, then you can easily connect to the light via a USB-C cable and its active charging feature that’s on board will ensure you can get working straight away, even if the battery doesn’t happen to be fully charged.

The FIVE is also a compact, lightweight and intrinsically portable unit, being just a little larger than its sibling, the ONE, at 26.3×16.7x28cms. While its weight with the battery is 3kg, and just 2.4kg without, making this unit suitable to use on a light stand. It’s incredibly quick and simple to set up and be ready for action, and it’s fast to work with as well, offering a recycling time of just 1.6 seconds on a full charge.

Easy to take out on jobs it might be, but the Elinchrom FIVE is a unit that comes with the ability to pump out plenty of power, which will be hugely appreciated by the pro in a multitude of situations. It can deliver High-Speed Sync (HSS) at up to 1/8000sec, overpower the sun if required in location situations and it’s the perfect partner if you’re looking to balance natural lighting with a little extra power to control a situation.

With its Elinchrom Modifier Mount, the FIVE is also natively compatible with various modifiers such as umbrellas and softboxes, ensuring total flexibility in any shooting situation. It also means that if you have accessories that you’ve used with previous Elinchrom lights, these should also be perfectly suited to the FIVE.

While flash power is at the heart of the Elinchrom FIVE, the increasing importance of motion in the lives of professional photographers has been recognised by the inclusion of a bi-colour 26W LED Modelling Lamp, which features an adjustable colour temperature of 2700K through to 6500K, and an output of 4000 Lumens with a CRI of 95. It’s a really useful source of continuous light to have on board and is sure to be welcomed by those who need to bolster available lighting for filmmaking purposes.

Last but not least, the Elinchrom FIVE also features built-in Bluetooth, so it’s possible to adjust settings and to control the light remotely through the use of the Elinchrom Studio App. While the clever, cutting-edge on-board electronics of the unit allows it to learn your shooting style and to adapt its cooling cycle to fit.

Overall this is a an incredible piece of kit for the money, perfectly in tune with the needs of the professional, adaptable enough to go anywhere and with enough power under the bonnet to deliver the light you need across various situations. It’s a fine continuation of the considerable Elinchrom legacy and a light that’s destined to be setting a new standard for professional performance.

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