Bowens launches new Generation X series of flashes: Powerful, fast flash on the go or in the studio


posted Thursday, October 6, 2016 at 12:44 PM EDT


Manfrotto, the exclusive distributor of Bowens products in the United States, has announced the launch of Bowens' new Generation X flash range. The flash units will debut at PhotoPlus in New York City later this month, but the line is available for preorder now.

Generation X includes two new flash systems, the XMT and the XMS. Of Generation X, marketing manager David Hollingsworth says, "Generation X is just the first step in relaunching Bowens to the imaging world. These barrier-breaking new products combine state-of-the-art technology and cutting-edge design and are the result of many months of very intense market research and product development. They will be the vanguard of our plans for ongoing and regular new unit roll-outs in coming months and years. We believe these are simply the best lights in their class available on the market today." That's a big claim, but the XMT and XMS flashes hope to back it up. The XMT flash system is an all-in-one flash unit for location work and the XMS is aimed at studio photographers who demand a "function-rich and completely reliable flash."

Bowens XMT 500 Pro Traveler Monolight

Taking a closer look at the XMT, which is being launched with a single product, the XMT 500 Pro Traveler Monolight, this all-in-one flash unit packs 500 watt-seconds (Ws) of power and TTL functionality. As users of artificial lighting know, it's not simply about power, but speed is also of great concern. The XMT 500 has speed in spades with high speed functionality up to 1/8000s (compatible with Canon, Nikon and Sony cameras). The flash offers nine stops of flash power adjustment and has flash durations as short as 1/10309s. The flash recycles very quickly, in as little as 0.01s. You'll be able to get creative with rear curtain sync, sync delay and strobe flash modes for up to 500 full power flashes. When the battery is depleted, you're able to easily swap out the XMT's lithium-ion battery. You can preorder the XMT 500 monolight now for US$1,799.99.

Bowens XMT 500

Bowens XMS 500, 750 and 1000 Pro Studio Monolights 

The XMS flash system is being released with three models, all varying in power but otherwise offering the same performance. The XMS 500, 750 and 1000 Pro Studio monolights are all fully compatible with the new XMSR 2.4 Ghz radio control and trigger (more on that shortly) and offer fast recycling times and flash durations. The XMS units are fully digital, meaning that they are reported to offer very accurate flash power and color temperatures. The digital control panel provides a precise, fast way to adjust settings, including choosing the power level from the XMS series' eight-stop power range. When shooting at wide apertures, you need to be able to use flash at low power, and the XMS allows you to dial power down to a mere 5Ws. Regarding the reliability of the XMS series, Hollingsworth remarked, "We tested the XMS at full power every five seconds over consecutive days and we couldn't force the product to overheat." It sounds like these flashes should be highly reliable and durable. The XMS 500, 750 and 1000 WS models are all available for preorder and cost just under $1,100, $1,300 and $1,500 respectively.

Bowens XMS 1000

XMSR Remote Trigger for XMS monolights


XMSR Remote Trigger (for XMS series) 

What about the new XMSR Remote Trigger for the XMS series? This 2.4GHz radio trigger allows you to remotely adjust and trigger all of your XMS units. The controller includes a display, eight-way controller and control dial. The XMSR Remote Trigger is available for preorder and costs around $290.

Additional Information and Ordering 

To learn more about the new products, visit Manfrotto's Bowens website. Considering the breadth of products being simultaneously announced, it's safe to say that Bowens is very committed to the new Generation X series and that these new products are laying the groundwork for future development. You can preorder the new flashes from our trusted affiliate, B&H, below and help support our site. 

Bowens XMT 500 •

• Bowens XMS: 500Ws, 750Ws and 1000Ws •