The Nissin MG80 Pro is a flash we initially weren’t sure of, but it grew on us and now we like it.
This past year I’ve been looking at small flashes again, and the Nissin MG80 Pro has seriously caught my attention. Years ago, I reviewed the Nissin MG8000, one of the company’s first flashes to use a Quartz bulb. I liked the results, but the interface was a tad odd. Fast forward about seven years, and I’ve got the Nissin MG80 Pro in my hands after a previous announcement. This flash still uses a Quartz bulb and has enhancements that I really like. To be in line with the needs of the modern photographer, it has a modeling lamp that can be used as a small constant light. The zoom head’s quality can be confusing until you realize it’s removable. And one will also be very impressed with the battery life. But, if you want to use it off-camera, then be sure to pair it with the Air 10s transmitter correctly. If you do, you’re going to get one of the best flashes you can buy for the Canon system.
Editor’s Note: Previously, we published a piece of sponsored content that Nissin paid for. This is our full, unbiased review. Our reviews are done independently of whether or not there is a promise of sponsored content as we value and pride our transparency with our readers.
Pros and Cons
Strong constant light
Pretty well built
The lock feature is very nice
Pretty simple to use
When it goes to sleep, it will come back to shooting exactly where you set it before with no issues.
The head is nice, but I don’t totally like the hollow feeling
It survived bumping into a ton of people at a party
Difficult to pair
Making sure the constant light stays on is sort of difficult
It uses an older TTL style where Canon’s flash protocols are underpowered, so you need to deliver a full stop of power more than you’re outputting
We used the Nissin MG80 Pro with the:
Canon EOS R
Canon RF 50mm f1.2 L USM
As a constant light, we tested it on:
Panasonic 24-70mm f2.8 LUMIX PRO
Sony a7r III
Sigma 24-70mm f2.8 DG DN Art
Here’s the front of the Nissin MG80 Pro with the Air 10S commander. As you can see, it’s a very standard flash. There’s an IR sensor on the front, and it’s overall built super well.
Turn to the back of the Nissin MG80 Pro, and you’ll find this interface. A, B, C, and D correspond to the groups. There is a test button, lock button, sound on/off, constant light, manual/TTL, and turning the flash head on or off. The LCD screen is brightly lit, too, so you can see all that you need.
The side of the flash head has a button that locks the head in place. When you press it, you can change the position of the head. There are also ports there when you need them.
Here’s a shot of the head bending needed. The head can tilt and swivel into nearly any position you need. It’s much unlike the Sony style Cobra heads.