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09-06-2016, 07:50 PM   #1
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Vivitar Flash?

Found this out of storage, and test fired it, working fine. Can I use this on my Pentax K-S2 or Sears KSX-P (I've heard about high trigger voltages damaging cameras, so I am a bit worried)?

Sincerely







Sent from my Android phone, please forgive any possible typos.

09-06-2016, 08:34 PM   #2
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It is safe on your Sears, but probably (almost assuredly) not on your K-S2.


Steve
09-06-2016, 08:46 PM - 1 Like   #3
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It's listed as between 10 and 15 volts on this trigger voltage list with a "your call" verdict.

Personally I think it's highly unlikely it would hurt either camera, as the dangerous voltages on some flashes are quite a bit higher, some in the hundreds of volts, but it's still your risk. You might find this thread instructive: Pentax DSLRs should be able to handle quite a bit higher than 15 volts, but if you find out otherwise, or if your sample of the Viv 2500 isn't internally the same model as the one measured for the list and actually triggers at 300 volts, then you're out of luck.

If you want a good inexpensive flash with a lot of control and a known safe trigger, I recommend scouting around for a Sunpak 383, typically in the $20-$50 range at auction.
09-07-2016, 03:21 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sluggo Quote
It's listed as between 10 and 15 volts on this trigger voltage list with a "your call" verdict.

Personally I think it's highly unlikely it would hurt either camera, as the dangerous voltages on some flashes are quite a bit higher, some in the hundreds of volts, but it's still your risk. You might find this thread instructive: Pentax DSLRs should be able to handle quite a bit higher than 15 volts, but if you find out otherwise, or if your sample of the Viv 2500 isn't internally the same model as the one measured for the list and actually triggers at 300 volts, then you're out of luck.

If you want a good inexpensive flash with a lot of control and a known safe trigger, I recommend scouting around for a Sunpak 383, typically in the $20-$50 range at auction.
Sent an e-mail to Vivitar and see what they replies (though I doubt if they still have records for such an old flash).

---------- Post added 09-07-16 at 03:24 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
It is safe on your Sears, but probably (almost assuredly) not on your K-S2.


Steve
So I did a test of this flash on my old Olympus E-PM1 body and it fired without destroying the Oly, however I can't find anything about the triggering voltage information on this Oly body. I guess should wait for Vivitar to reply or try to borrow a voltage meter from my college's lab.


Last edited by butangmucat; 09-07-2016 at 04:47 AM.
09-07-2016, 04:29 AM   #5
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well I used old Pentax AF280T + AF200T on the latest Pentax DSLR's with no problems
kind regards
jack
09-07-2016, 08:56 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by i_trax Quote
well I used old Pentax AF280T + AF200T on the latest Pentax DSLR's with no problems
kind regards
jack
Yep...Pentax-brand flashes are forward and backward voltage compatible.


Steve
09-07-2016, 09:00 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sluggo Quote
It's listed as between 10 and 15 volts on this trigger voltage list with a "your call" verdict.

Personally I think it's highly unlikely it would hurt either camera, as the dangerous voltages on some flashes are quite a bit higher, some in the hundreds of volts, but it's still your risk. You might find this thread instructive: Pentax DSLRs should be able to handle quite a bit higher than 15 volts, but if you find out otherwise, or if your sample of the Viv 2500 isn't internally the same model as the one measured for the list and actually triggers at 300 volts, then you're out of luck.

If you want a good inexpensive flash with a lot of control and a known safe trigger, I recommend scouting around for a Sunpak 383, typically in the $20-$50 range at auction.
Thanks for doing the lookup. As you noted, the online list is generally pretty dependable and the listed voltage is probably safe with a Pentax dSLR. OTOH, Vivitar was notorious for inconsistent internals in its flashes. A little time with a voltmeter should be in order.


Steve

09-07-2016, 09:05 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Thanks for doing the lookup. As you noted, the online list is generally pretty dependable and the listed voltage is probably safe with a Pentax dSLR. OTOH, Vivitar was notorious for inconsistent internals in its flashes. A little time with a voltmeter should be in order.


Steve
Well I just risked my new K-S2 by putting this flash on, and it fired without any problems. But I do wonder if the voltage is slightly higher, will it damage the camera in the long run?

---------- Post added 09-07-16 at 09:09 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Vivitar was notorious for inconsistent internals in its flashes.
But isn't Vivitar always inconsistent in their products? Just like all the different versions of their lenses.

---------- Post added 09-07-16 at 09:25 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Sluggo Quote
I recommend scouting around for a Sunpak 383
Got one for $25 on eBay including shipping, just wondering do I still need a Wein safe sync hotshoe voltage regulator for this flash?

Sincerely
09-07-2016, 10:09 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sluggo Quote
It's listed as between 10 and 15 volts on this trigger voltage list with a "your call" verdict.
This post mentioned that Pentax is ISO 10330:2002 compliant and I have triggered the Vivitar once without frying my Olympus E-PM1 and my Pentax K-S2, does this mean it is safe for long term use?
09-07-2016, 10:29 AM - 1 Like   #10
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I shoot a lot of film so I have a lot of older electronic flash units from lots of manufacturers. Impossible to keep them all straight and know their trigger voltages.

I use the Wein safe synch whenever I use an older flash on my digital bodies. Very inexpensive insurance in my mind. The older flashes may work just fine for awhile but there is no guarantee they will continue that way since there was never anything built into them to prevent spikes. It only takes one out of compliance zap and your camera is fried.
09-07-2016, 10:42 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pioneer Quote
I shoot a lot of film so I have a lot of older electronic flash units from lots of manufacturers. Impossible to keep them all straight and know their trigger voltages.

I use the Wein safe synch whenever I use an older flash on my digital bodies. Very inexpensive insurance in my mind. The older flashes may work just fine for awhile but there is no guarantee they will continue that way since there was never anything built into them to prevent spikes. It only takes one out of compliance zap and your camera is fried.
I just bought a SMDV Hot Shoe Safe Sync Adapter SM-512 for Pentax *ist DS, DS2, D, DL, DL2, K10D, K20D, K100D, K110D, K200D, K100D Super, K-5, K-7, K-30, K-r, K-x, K-m, (K-m A.K.A. K2000), K-01, Hotshoe just to add some extra protection (unlike the Wein is that this one will prevent any flash with a trigger voltage higher than 60V from working).

P.S. found this from https://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3457010 which explains why SMDV adapter is cheaper while being equally good.

QuoteQuote:
I like the idea that this SMDV unit uses an opto isolator circuit with only 3v going to the camera circuitry. The more expensive Wein units still have electrical connectivity from the flash to the camera, which is fine until a surge fries one of the components.
09-07-2016, 03:36 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by butangmucat:
Got one [Sunpak 383] for $25 on eBay including shipping, just wondering do I still need a Wein safe sync hotshoe voltage regulator for this flash?

Sincerely
I can only say I've used my 383 repeatedly with several Pentax bodies, and no extra regulator. Never had a problem.
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