Profoto recently announced the first ever monolight to its A-series system— the Profoto A2. This new light weighs only 500g and is approximately the same size as a soda can, making it the ultimate light to take on location. We decided to test the Profoto A2 for ourselves and took some urban portraits downtown Salt Lake City.
Made to Last
Our lighting setup consisted of one Profoto A2, the Connect Pro, the Profoto Clic Softbox and a light stand. As for first impressions, to start off, it’s small. This light is something every photographer will have no problem adding to their gear bag. Not to mention, it lives up to the quality and caliber of the Profoto brand in terms of fit and finish. It’s built super solid and you can tell it’s made to last.
The Profoto A2 is built off of the new Clic system and the front ring on the light is magnetic, making it easy to attach gels, grids and modifiers like the Clic softbox. All are also compatible with the A1 and A10 speedlights. Since it is a newer system, we should see more of these Clic modifiers in the future.
The flash also comes with a tilt bracket that screws into the bottom of the unit and is reversible so you can have the tilting knob on the left or the right. Plus, it comes with an umbrella port for easy umbrella access, adding to the functionality. This light is a wedding photographer’s dream light. There is no doubt this is a professional tool and will be invaluable to photographers.
Ease of Use
We can honestly say that the Profoto A2 is up to par when it comes to the Profoto standard of user interfaces. The large display and simple menu setup are a huge plus. The last thing you want to be doing is trying to figure out your light and troubleshooting your flash’s menu system while on a shoot.
Bluetooth and Mobile Connection
The Profoto A2 is bluetooth enabled and pairs well with the new Connect Pro trigger. A new feature that was highly requested is the ability to see power settings on both the Connect Pro and the A2. Just having that reference point alone is a massive upgrade.
With it being compatible with Profoto AirX, the Profoto A2 can be controlled with your phone. Even with a multiple light setup, each light can be managed by using the Profoto Control App. Another feature of the mobile app is the ability for instant firmware updates. The process is extremely simple and only takes about two minutes to update.
You can even use the Profoto A2 with your phone’s camera by using the Profoto Camera App, which with social media so prevalent, gives content creator’s an upgrade. Users can trigger the light with their phone’s camera or they can trigger their phone with the light itself.
The Profoto A2 comes with 100Ws and 10 f-stops. The battery is the same battery used in the A10 and A1 systems and is cross-compatible. The A2 battery sustains up to 400 full-power (100w) flashes, although, power capacity decreases when used with previous A10 or A1 batteries. As for the battery charge time, it takes 115 minutes.
This light has a fast recycle rate at 0.05-1.3 seconds. Whether you’re an event or portrait photographer, being able to have a fast recycle rate will ensure you don’t miss a shot.
Price and Dependability
One thing that might be hard to swallow is the price, now $995. Keep in mind you are buying into an ecosystem of highly reliable gear. Profoto is known for their dependability and it's worth having peace of mind knowing your light will work each time you need it.
Taking this light out for an urban portrait session was a breeze. It was extremely easy to travel with, and was seamless to use with the Profoto Clic softbox. Our recommendation for any wedding, portrait, event, or product photographer? Invest in the Profoto A2, it's worth it.