I've seen a couple of posts pop up with [strobes]; I think we may want to prefer [flash] or, at least, the variations discussed here: What term should we adopt for Speedlights/Speedlites?

Any objections/other opinions?

  • I agree, but that seems like not enough for an answer.
    – Reid
    Jul 28, 2010 at 2:06

1 Answer 1


I think the distinction is somewhere around what fresnel lens question suggests: "strobe" almost always refers to studio equipment, so we might use them when having questions that deal with those.

So what about having:

  • [flash] as generic term for something that delivers short burst of light
  • [strobes] for studio units
  • [small-flash] [hotshoe-flash] for hotshoe-mounted, battery powered stuff, which we'd call [speedlights] or [speedlites] in case we wanted to talk about specific brand
  • +1 - but personally I think I would suggest [hotshoe-flash] over [small-flash] or [speedlight]/[speedlite]. "Hotshoe" is brand neutral, and there are small units intended for studio use (such as small slave units and such), so "small" might not quite hit the target. Jul 28, 2010 at 9:27
  • I guess preference for "small flash" comes from Strobist where it's more common, maybe different resources tend to call them "hotshoe": googlefight.com/…
    – che
    Jul 28, 2010 at 10:27
  • 2
    As a non-strobist, "small-flash" is not as obviously referring to all flashguns as "hotshoe-flash", which is pretty immediately obvious to me. E.g., Contax TLA200: small flash. Canon 580: not small flash. (Aside: is the distinction on strobist maybe down to the emphasis on off-camera use of these flashes?)
    – ex-ms
    Jul 28, 2010 at 20:06
  • It could be because of that. Changed to hotshoe, then.
    – che
    Jul 29, 2010 at 7:16

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