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02-08-2019, 08:23 AM   #1
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Pentax flashes versus 3rd party

I need to buy a flash that has P-TTL capability for using on-camera while shooting events, mainly will be used in bounce but definitely want P-TTL.

I'm wondering if there is a big difference between getting one of the Pentax flashes (probably the AF 540) versus a 3rd party flash such as the Yongnuo YN585EX.

Given that P-TTL is done in the camera, does that mean that the output in terms of lighting accuracy will be similar between any P-TTL capable flash? Or is there going to be better accuracy or reliablity from the Pentax flash?

Right now the Yongnuo is less than a quarter/fifth of the price of the bigger Pentax flash. That said I'm not someone who likes to buy cheap gear only to have it fail on me /be useless after a year.

I don't think this flash will get a lot of use as I seldom shoot events, though when I do it's commercial so I don't want to fuss around with poor performance or blind guests for unusable shots, so overall performance is important.

Any one with experience using both of these flashes for similar applications?

02-08-2019, 09:02 AM   #2
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I've had no problems with my YN585EX since purchase over a year ago. If all you want is P-TTL, it seems a no-brainer with a $79 price tag compared to the AF540FGZ II at a price of $450 or $500. On the other hand, I doubt that there's much of a warranty except possibly through a seller like Adorama or B&H if there happens to be a problem.

What the YN585EX doesn't do is High Speed Sync, nor can it act as a Master or Controller for another YN585EX being used off-camera. You are able, however, to use it off camera in P-TTL mode if your camera has a built-in flash that has the Master/Controller function, or if you have an AF360FGZ or AF540FGZ, or one the newer versions of these two flashes. I have an AF540FGZ II and have used it in conjunction with the YN585EX off camera, and I've no problems there either.
02-08-2019, 09:31 AM   #3
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I have 2 YN585EXs and have been using them for a few months now with no problems. had to return 1 for some random triggering issue but a replacement is working fine. If you don't care for HSS and Weather sealing then the YN585EXs are so much better for the price.. that I would not bother getting AF540FGZii (I have both AF540FGZii, AF360FGZii and AF540FGZ, the old version).
I don't particularly like the missing bounce card on the new Pentax FGZii versions. So more often I prefer using the 585EXs and older FGZ for this reason alone.
02-08-2019, 10:47 AM   #4
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It's always difficult to answer this kind of question as there's no universal good or bad answer... Others have pointed out some differences between both flashes. I will also add than brand name flashes are the only ones assuring you perfect compatibility will all camera bodies, present and future.

Or you can also go middle of the road with something like a Metz 52. Which has all the features of the Pentax (but not WR) and even maybe a few more, is very high quality, while being much more affordable.

So, in the end, it really depends on what you need and how much are willing to pay...

02-08-2019, 02:02 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by CarlJF Quote
It's always difficult to answer this kind of question as there's no universal good or bad answer... Others have pointed out some differences between both flashes. I will also add than brand name flashes are the only ones assuring you perfect compatibility will all camera bodies, present and future.

Or you can also go middle of the road with something like a Metz 52. Which has all the features of the Pentax (but not WR) and even maybe a few more, is very high quality, while being much more affordable.

So, in the end, it really depends on what you need and how much are willing to pay...
I have a studio lighting system that covers most applications, including HSS, off-camera etc.

I think that at this stage my sole requirement is a flash for events with P-TTL. Metz 52 is interesting, but around triple the price of the Yongnuo, which sells on Amazon for a bit more than 70 euros.
02-08-2019, 03:14 PM   #6
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The flash needs to have pptl function. If you intend to use it, get a HSS version. When I grap the flash, I don't want to think if I can use the lenses wide open or not. Same for the Power. We live in the 21st century. Also great on the Metz 64 is the touch menue. A flash has a large number of useful options. The touch function makes it easy to access. Again, 21st century! I also hope that radio trigger will become standard in cameras and flashes. Your Pentax flashes are not so different in prize.
02-08-2019, 03:38 PM - 1 Like   #7
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The Metz 52 AF-1 is a good, though not cheap, fully featured option. It also has user applicable firmware updates, which is nice.

Have you looked at Godox, which has P-TTL now, as well as wireless support if you need it? From B&H at $85:

With full support for Pentax TTL, including high-speed sync, and a built-in 2.4GHz radio system, the compact Godox TT350P Mini Thinklite TTL Flash is an excellent everyday companion for your camera. With a lightweight design and guide number of 118' at ISO 100 and 105mm, the TT350P is useful for both on-camera and off-camera operation. Users can also use it as an optical slave in addition to use as a radio TTL master/slave unit. It is versatile as well with the ability to tilt from -7 to 90 and rotate 270.
02-08-2019, 08:31 PM   #8
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I have three Pentax AF360FGZ flashes. I also have a Yongnuo YN585EX. The Pentax flashes have always been reliable and the YN585EX also does a wonderful job. The YN585EX comes with a nice case, the P-TTL feature does an excellent job, it has a nice build/design, and the flash head swivels and tilts.

02-09-2019, 07:03 AM   #9
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I prefer the Pentax 540FGZII and also have Godox units and the X1Pro P controller. The Yongnuo are dirt cheap, and you get what you pay for. The battery doors seem a bit flimsy to me. The Pentax is a bit expensive; the Godox have been really good, and I love their strobes (have a 200 and pro 400 600 ones).
02-10-2019, 02:55 PM   #10
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The Yongnuo YN585EX is an excellent P-TTL flash. It does not have HSS.
02-12-2019, 11:11 AM   #11
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You should also consider the Shanny SN600FGZ Had one 2 years now well built no problems P-TTL HSS
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