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11-04-2014, 07:21 AM   #1
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External flash

Is any one of the Pentax external (or camera mounted) flash units to be recommended over any other for building interior and group shots? Reviewers seem disappointed with build quality on some models.

BG

11-04-2014, 07:49 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bill G Quote
Is any one of the Pentax external (or camera mounted) flash units to be recommended over any other for building interior and group shots? Reviewers seem disappointed with build quality on some models.

BG
Building interior: You'll want a bunch of cheap manual flashes with radio triggers.

Group Shots: (I'm guessing people?) You'll want a high power studio strobe with some modifiers like a large softbox.
11-04-2014, 09:36 AM   #3
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If you're looking to stick with a Pentax branded flash, your choices are AF360FGZ II and AF540FGZ II (and their earlier counterparts without the II designation).
The 540 is more powerful than the 360, and more expensive. Otherwise, their features are similar.
The newer FGZ II models feature rotating swivel head, LED video/modeling light, and WR sealing. Older versions do not swivel around; they only pivot up and down.
I have the older AF360FGZ and find it does pretty much everything I need it to do, on camera and off.

There are lots of inexpensive manual and/or slave flashes out there. I recommend getting one of these two Pentax branded flashes for its feature compatibilities on and off your camera, then adding on slave flashes and other equipment (adapters, sync cables, wireless triggers) as necessary. A light stand with reflector and diffuser (soft box) are quite useful.

There are a couple of brands that claim compatibility with Pentax P-TTL and other features. I have not tried any of them.
11-04-2014, 10:55 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by AquaDome Quote
Older versions do not swivel around; they only pivot up and down.
Not so, the AF540FGZ has swivel, the AF360FGZ does not.

PENTAX AF 540FGZ reviews - Pentax Camera Accessory Review Database
Yes, tilt and swivel

And thread moved to proper area of forum.


Last edited by photolady95; 11-04-2014 at 10:57 AM. Reason: fixed typo
11-04-2014, 11:01 AM   #5
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I found a cheap Metz 58 af-1 that worked like a champ after a firmware upgrade on a k30

Metz Mecablitz 58 AF-1 Digital - Pentax P-TTL Flash Comparison

This is a good starting point:

The Definitive Guide - Pentax P-TTL Flash Comparison

daniel

Last edited by danielblues; 11-04-2014 at 11:02 AM. Reason: typo
11-04-2014, 11:02 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by photolady95 Quote
Not so, the AF540FGZ has swivel, the AF360FGZ does not.

PENTAX AF 540FGZ reviews - Pentax Camera Accessory Review Database
Yes, tilt and swivel
There you go - that makes the 540FGZ the best option if you don't want to pay current prices for the current II version.. Lack of a swivel is the only complaint I've ever had about the 360FGZ, so I use it off-camera mostly.
11-04-2014, 11:12 AM   #7
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KEH has the AF540FGZ for less than $220. KEH is a good place to buy used Pentax gear. They have excellent customer service and a hugh warranty, 6 months.
11-07-2014, 04:18 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by photolady95 Quote
KEH has the AF540FGZ for less than $220. KEH is a good place to buy used Pentax gear. They have excellent customer service and a hugh warranty, 6 months.
+1... I bought two of them from Keh and they work like a charm.

Another downside with the Af 360fgz (not the ll) is that is doesn't have the disable auto shut off feature which can make off camera use more of a pain than the AF 540fgz.

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