After covering a few of the other high-end flash units on the market recently, we have noticed a number of people reaching out for advice on the HVL-F60M. Due to this, we have decided to research, type up, and publish our full, dedicated Sony HVL-F60M review.
Being one of the premium flash units offered by Sony, it is no surprise that the HVL-F60M has been so successful amongst the Sony owning photography community. In reality, the only real downside of the flash unit is its price tag but you can often pick up a used or refurbished Sony HVLF60M at a heavily reduced rate (Click here to check for product prices and availability). This can be a great way to offset the cost of the flash unit while still allowing you to pick a HVL-F60M up without having to break the bank.
Many people who use it as their go-to camera flash of choice have posted their independent reviews online (click here to read some of them) sharing their opinions and experiences of using the flash unit. Reading a few of these can be a great way to see how people who use the HVL-F60M as their main flash feel about it as well as get external insights into its performance, build quality, functionality, and features.
User Interface And Control System
The photograph above shows the control system on the HVL-F60M and as you can see, it is very similar to the majority of other popular flash units available on the market today. Sony has chosen to stick with the popular rotary dial and button system rather than try and blend any modern technologies into the flash unit like a touch screen.
This can work to your advantage as it makes transitioning from other button-based flash units to the HVL-F60M extremely easy. If you have used any of the other modern Sony camera flashes recently then you will be familiar with what most of the buttons and their uses. For example, the Flash mode button allows you to quickly and easily switch between the various flash modes such as TTL mode and manual mode without having to waste time.
Although the actual navigation menu on the HVL-F60M is very similar to other Sony flash units, it has received a few upgrades since previous generations but almost all of them are all based on direct feedback from customers of other Sony products. Almost all of them are based around making the menu easier to navigate while also taking less time to tweak commonly changed settings.
If you are brand new to using a Sony flash unit then we feel you should be able to quickly pick the system up as both the control system and navigation menus are similar to those of other popular flash brands. We feel that if you are able to use any other modern style flash from any brand or even navigate around a modern smartphone you will quickly pick the HVL-F60M’s control system up without issue.
Performance And Functionality
The Sony HVL-F60M really does shine when it comes to its performance, functionality, and customization allowing you to tweak its performance no matter the situation to ensure you are getting the best image quality possible for your flash photography. As we mentioned earlier in the article though, you do pay for this privilege due to the flash unit having such a high price tag.
As the HVL-F60M is jam-packed with various features that we could talk about all day, we have decided to make a short list of the ones that we feel our readers are more likely to use on a regular basis:-
- Full TTL metering functionality
- Multiple Protocol Wireless Flash Operation
- Full Wireless Multi Flash Ratio Control
- Full High-Speed Sync
- Quick Shift Bounce Technology (90 Degree Left or Right)
- -10 Degree To 150 Degree Flash Head Tilting
- Guide Number Of 60 (105mm lens at ISO 100)
- Built-in 1200 Lux LED Torch Light
- Advanced Distance Integration
- Effective Flash Range Of 90 Feet (28m 105mm lens @ ISO100)
- LED Light Effective Range Of 6 Feet
- Multi Interface Shoe (MI Shoe)
As you can see, the HVL-F60M is well equipped with anything you could ever need to allow you to use it in any flash photography situation that you could ever think of. This, coupled with the ease of navigation on the menu allows you to easily customize the performance of the flash unit to meet any requirement that you may have of it.
As you would expect for a flash unit with the price tag of the Sony HVLF60M, its build quality is excellent. Everything feels smooth, sleek, and professional and nothing has that cheap feeling that some of the entry-level flash units can have. The design of the flash unit is also solid ensuring that it is really easy to rotate or tilt the head as required without issue.
The additional dust and moisture resistant sealing that the Sony HVLF60M comes with as standard also helps to keep the internal components of the flash unit protected during use helping to increase its life span too. That said, we have seen a few reports criticizing this as some people report it resulting in an overheating issue as a side effect.
As you are probably aware, overheating can be a common issue in some of the entry level and mid ranged flash units but there definitely does seem to be a very small percentage of the Sony HVLF60M owners reporting overheating issues. The problem with third-party reports is that you rarely get all of the information, for example, they may be using low-quality batteries with a low flash recycle time over an extended period of time that would increase the chances of a flash overheating no matter what.
That concludes our Sony HVL-F60M review. We have tried to be a fair as possible throught the whole article pointing out both the possitives and negatives of the flash unit. If you have the budget available then we have no doubt that the Sony HVLF60M will make an excellent addition to your collection of camera accessories. We feel that it will help improve your flash photography performance and get you the best possible image quality no matter the situation.
The video below offers an additional third-party, independent review for the Sony HVL-F60M flash unit to offer our readers an independent opinion of the product.
Shared under Creative Commons – https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/
dallashangerphoto – Bekah Timm – https://flic.kr/p/8rXMCh
Igor Menezes Fotógrafo – 15 Anos – Daniele Dias – https://flic.kr/p/jCG2E8