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3 methods for impressive high-speed photography

Highspeed-Fotografie Weinglas kaputt schlagen

An extremely diverse trigger is said to be theMiops Smart+ and, according to the manufacturer, ideally suited for high-speed photography. The device can be triggered by movement, sound or a laser that is aimed at the trigger.
What shots of this particular area of photography with the Smart+ are possible, we at Rollei wanted to know more about it and tested it with professional photographer Paul Reiffer.

 Method 1:Triggered by sound

Method 2:Triggering by laser

Method 3:Triggered by water droplets

Highspeed Fotografie gefülltes Rotweinglas mit Hammer zerschlagen


Method 1: Triggered by sound

At the beginning we dedicated ourselves to triggering the sound and smashing a filled red wine glass with a hammer in a visually stunning way. The is exactly suitable for such a picture Miops Smart+.

Highspeed Fotografie gefülltes Rotweinglas mit Hammer zerschlagen

Which accessories and which technology you need

Highspeed Fotografie zerbrechendes Rotweinglas

Photography also thrives on preparation. That's why we prepared our Rollei studio in detail before the recording, so that everything is designed for broken glass and spilled wine.

At this point we would like to point out safety goggles and protective gloves, which are really essential when working with flying broken glass. A smock that can get red wine on it is also an important utensil.

Zerbrochenes Rotweinglas

example: table fireworks

Also we have oursRollei HS Freeze 6 fitted with a spot attachment. one light shaper, which ensures that in this case, above all, the red wine glass is well illuminated for the picture and no light streams off to the sides. We placed the glass with the wine in the middle of the table and thatMiops Smart+ set to fire the flash and not the shutter. The reason for this is that the sound first has to go to the camera and be processed there.

The problem: The camera is not fast enough for this, which can be easily imagined by looking at a table fireworks display. The fuse burns and the black powder ignites the fireworks after the bang the contents of the table fireworks are distributed and the recording is triggered..

It's also easy to visualize by thinking about the shot of a gun firing a bullet:

  • The more modern the pistol, the faster the bullet leaves the barrel, and the more difficult it is to realize this type of high-speed photography.
  • The older the pistol, the slower the bullet, the easier it is to capture the subject.

In the worst case, the subject is already over when the camera releases. So you have to rethink if you want to have explosion and ball in the picture.

In studio photography there are three scenarios for this case:

  • The studio is very, very bright and you can take photos without a flash
  • The studio is very dark and you can use the flash to take the picture
  • The studio is mediocre lighting and you give the subject enough time to trigger everything without a flash

Paul Reiffer explained:

„If you fired the shutter with the Smart+, the fastest shutter on a Canon would be 1/4000. For a good photo you either need a lot of brightness or a lot of ISO, which in turn leads to a lot of noise. That's why you have to trigger the flash so that the camera can already see the subject when it's there and not only afterwards. So the light has to be particularly fast. At this point there is the next difficulty. Because when the light is very fast, the camera can't keep up either.“

Laser triggering is easier for high-speed photography

The solution: The shutter of the device must already be open before the flash is triggered. However, the ambient brightness for the recording should be very low.

Sound is therefore probably the most difficult option for high-speed photography Miops Smart+ to trigger, because the sound around us is not filtered, and spreads out as it will. Laser would be much easier to control for the recording, but you have to be very precise, explains Reiffer.

In any case, this type of photography is all about trial and error until the perfect result is finally there. But that's also part of the attraction.


Method 2: Triggering by laser

At the beginning of this blog post, we looked at triggering by sound and smashing a filled red wine glass with a hammer. Our next project with themiops-Triggering was then the triggering by laser. We recorded the moment when strawberries fall into the water (a picture as known from advertising, for example).

Highspeed Fotografie Erdbeeren ins Wasser fallen

What setup and what technology do I need for this type of photography with Miops Smart+?

Highspeed Fotografie ins Wasser eintauchende Erdbeeren

The challenge: how to photograph strawberries dipping into water

At the triggers ofmiops working with the laser requires a lot of practice. Again, it all depends on what you want to photograph.

In connection with high-speed photography, one often sees images in which, for example, a balloon filled with water is smashed in mid-air with a baseball bat. These kind photos are with themiops-Triggers are definitely possible and they also look fantastic but need a relatively large number of repetitions with the laser function, because you can only get a good picture right away with luck..

The reason: In this scenario, the camera is triggered exactly when the baseball bat breaks through the light barrier and then hits the balloon. The moment is always different because you never hit with the same force (and therefore never with the same speed) as in the previous attempt. Adjustments are therefore difficult to implement.

We have them in the Rollei studio laser function ofmiops-Triggers with strawberries tested, which we dropped into a water tank from above. You can work very precisely with this motif because the force of gravity always remains the same and therefore only the height and not the speed at which the strawberries hit the water has to be adjusted. Again, there is the option of connecting the trigger to either a flash or a camera.

The challenge: If you connect the trigger to the studio flash, it may already be triggered before the fruit hits the water. If you connect the trigger to the camera, it may not be fast enough to capture the subject. To make matters worse, the equipment must not get wet and you should therefore use a long connection cable to connect the trigger. However, some time has passed before the signal from the trigger has arrived, which must be taken into account in the subsequent adjustment.

The solution: As in the previous shoot, we triggered the flash. To do this, the studio must again be particularly dark and the shutter already open so that the motif is already visible when the flash

Highspeed Fotografie Erdbeeren im Wasser


For the triggering with the laser you can use a normal laser pointer, which does not have to be particularly powerful and is also sold online. When positioning the equipment, it is only important that the trigger and laser do not move during the shoot, because the separation of the trigger and laser triggers the image.

An obvious idea would be to use tape. However, if you use tape for attachment, you have to be aware that the tape will move, which in turn would result in a camera release. So if tape is used, one should allow it to set a little before using it. It is best to give the tape a few hours before the photo is taken.

Metal clips like clothespins are even better. They don't move and then yours really suits you  impressive photo nothing in the way.


Method 3: Miops Splash

At the beginning of this blog post, we looked at triggering the Miops triggers by sound and smashing a filled red wine glass with a hammer. We then released the triggers with a laser and photographed the moment when strawberries fell into a pool of water.

For the end we have saved a special treat that fans of macro photography should like. Namely that„Miops splash kit“, with which you can photograph water drops in a really impressive way.

Miops Splash Kit Wassertropfen

What setup and technique do I need for this type of photography with the Miops Splash Kit?

The challenge: how to photograph a drop of water falling into the water?

While the other triggers require a little more practice every now and then, you get the hang of it„splash kit“ out pretty quick. You have to think of it like an automatic pipette that drops drops at a certain interval. The intervals can be set in the associated app, and the size of the drops released can also be determined.

Miops Splash Kit Wassertropfen

With the right camera equipment you are with thesplash kit able to take pictures of the fantastic water formations that arise when the drop hits calm water.

However, it is also possible to first let a drop hit the water and then another drop to hit the water column created by the first impact. This results in an interesting formation consisting of a water column that is wearing a hat, so to speak.

Miops Splash Kit Wassertropfen

Experiment with food coloring, for examplee

We experimented with food coloring at this point so the falling drops were yellowish/orange and the water they hit was colorless. An interesting color effect also results if you use color foils in combination with the studio flashes and flash the water from the back. We then took it to the extreme by illuminating the water with a red flash head and a blue flash head while flashing the water colorless.

Overall it's likeall triggers of miops an exciting and entertaining tool that you should try out.

Miops Splash Kit Wassertropfen

Here are some tips for using the Splash Kit:

  1. Focus manually before dropping the drop from the fixture. Your camera's autofocus will not be able to capture (well enough) the drop and subsequent formation.
  2. The cable release will again cause a certain delay, this is absolutely normal. Try it out a little, you will quickly have taken this into account. In this case we had the splash kit trigger the camera, which in turn triggered the flashes..
  3. When shooting this close to the subject, the entire image may not be sharp. But this circumstance can also make your picture a little more artistic, so don't worry..
  4. As a reminder: the more power your flash has available, the more light it will have available in freeze mode with a particularly short burn-off time. Of theRollei Freeze 6 For example, has a power of 600 watt-seconds available, so you can easily freeze your subjects (as in this case) with 1/13,000 and with a power of 9.4 Ws.

More from Paul Reiffer

1 comment


ihr schreibt zwar das man einen Laserpointer braucht, was für einen gebt ihr nicht an. ZB. Grün oder Rot, was für eine Stärke usw.


Lutz Klapp

Lutz Klapp,

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