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07-17-2014, 08:52 AM   #1
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Still no external manual flash triggering with adapted lenses?

Hi all,

With the pricing on the Q7 coming down and the official Pentax K to Q mount adapter also now slightly less expensive, and because a Q macro lens seems to be in the works too, I am considering the possibility of purchasing a Q7 for (extreme) macro shooting. However, this phrase from the Definitive manual external flash guidance thread has me a bit bewildered:
QuoteQuote:
When using a fully manual, no electrical contact lens in front of the Q, I cannot find a way to get my external manual flash to fire at any shutter speed.
Is this still the case? It is impossible to use my Yongnuo YN560-III plus wireless trigger along with a macro adapted K-mount lens on a Q7? Even if I use the official Pentax K to Q adapter? If true, that's pretty much a show-stopper for me... Can anyone confirm this?

07-18-2014, 11:04 AM   #2
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Really? No one can tell me whether a Q/Q10/Q7 can fire a manual flash when mounted with an adapted K-mount lens?
07-18-2014, 11:27 AM - 1 Like   #3
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I will check this for you (with original Q). As I recall, you do have to turn off the built-in flash to get the hot shoe to work -- don't remember about adapted lenses. Using an optical slave switch would be an option in some cases...
07-18-2014, 01:44 PM - 1 Like   #4
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Ahh...I remember now. This is a leaf shutter issue, not an adapted lenses issue -- i.e. your lens or adapter must have a mechanical shutter. So the hotshoe will activate if shutter speed is 1/160s or slower if on-board flash is set to OFF and lens/adapter has shutter. So it works with the genuine K-Q adapter, but not third-party adapters. But note it also doesn't work with the native Q toy lenses or the fisheye because they don't have a leaf shutter.

I have just confirmed all that is true with my Q and Cactus V5 trigger on the hotshoe.

07-18-2014, 03:42 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Doundounba Quote
Hi all,

With the pricing on the Q7 coming down and the official Pentax K to Q mount adapter also now slightly less expensive, and because a Q macro lens seems to be in the works too, I am considering the possibility of purchasing a Q7 for (extreme) macro shooting. However, this phrase from the Definitive manual external flash guidance thread has me a bit bewildered:


Is this still the case? It is impossible to use my Yongnuo YN560-III plus wireless trigger along with a macro adapted K-mount lens on a Q7? Even if I use the official Pentax K to Q adapter? If true, that's pretty much a show-stopper for me... Can anyone confirm this?
I have not been able to get my ringflashes to work with Kmount lens on the Q and it is very dissappointing. And I think using an optical slave to trigger the ring is tricked by the in-body flashes preflash. (so prematurely fires).
May be it is a factor of the electronic shutter that in the time it takes to scan the image there is no point that the entire sensor is receptive to the extremely short duration of an electronic flash. (that is the sync point of a curtain shutter).
In other words it may be an impossibility rather than a software upgrade.
07-18-2014, 04:39 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by GUB Quote
I have not been able to get my ringflashes to work with Kmount lens on the Q and it is very dissappointing. And I think using an optical slave to trigger the ring is tricked by the in-body flashes preflash. (so prematurely fires).
May be it is a factor of the electronic shutter that in the time it takes to scan the image there is no point that the entire sensor is receptive to the extremely short duration of an electronic flash. (that is the sync point of a curtain shutter).
In other words it may be an impossibility rather than a software upgrade.
Yes, that is why it is a shutter issue -- with the electronic shutter it takes 1/13s to scan all the lines (no matter what the shutter speed is set at) and you'll get flash exposed only on part of the image. (If you choose 1/125s with the electronic shutter, it exposes one line at a time at that speed, scans the data, next line, scans the data, etc...which takes 1/13s even though each line was exposed for only 1/125s). With the leaf shutter, the whole sensor is exposed at once like normal, and then scanned afterward (which still takes 1/13s, but occurs after the exposure). So with the leaf shutter, flash can work as normal.

So your ring flash ought to work if you use the Pentax K-Q adapter and trigger it off the hot shoe (if thats possible) or with a pair of wireless triggers like the Cactus...

Last edited by vonBaloney; 07-18-2014 at 08:42 PM.
07-18-2014, 07:28 PM   #7
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Thanks vonBaloney! It all makes sense. Q7 + official adapter + K-mount macro + manual flash should work then! That's pretty cool. Even at 1:1, that sensor is so small and packed with pixels that if you can shoot at low iso, you should get some pretty spectacular results, no? Maybe dynamic range is lacking? I did find one Q7 user with some pretty nice "maqros" (check it out). I think it might be forum member pinholecam.... You need the official adapter, which makes it not cheap, but I am definitely interested. The Q7's sensor is just 7.6mm wide right? I need to reach something like 3:1 to get a frame that wide on the K-01...
07-25-2014, 09:03 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by vonBaloney Quote
Yes, that is why it is a shutter issue -- with the electronic shutter it takes 1/13s to scan all the lines (no matter what the shutter speed is set at) and you'll get flash exposed only on part of the image
Hang on a minute!! just tested it and the Qs own flash works fine with an aftermarket adapter--- there must be a point when all the sensor is synched -- na sorry but this is looking like a situation where pentax is holding us to ransom to get an official adapter.

07-25-2014, 09:39 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by GUB Quote
Hang on a minute!! just tested it and the Qs own flash works fine with an aftermarket adapter--- there must be a point when all the sensor is synched -- na sorry but this is looking like a situation where pentax is holding us to ransom to get an official adapter.
Only at 1/13s or slower, though right? I don't think the hot shoe will activate on any shutter speed (without a leaf shutter), but the on-board will fire at 1/13s or slower...
07-25-2014, 10:14 PM   #10
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Agreed. But there doesn't seem to be any acceptable explanation why the hot shoe could not be enabled.
07-26-2014, 06:33 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by GUB Quote
Agreed. But there doesn't seem to be any acceptable explanation why the hot shoe could not be enabled.
If I understand correctly, this would not help much. If you're using the electronic shutter, since it takes 1/13s to expose the whole frame, even at say a "shutter speed" of 1/125s, you wouldn't get a good, properly exposed frame unless your flash burst lasts more than 1/13s and the subject and camera are still enough for a 1/13s shutter speed to produce an acceptable result...
07-26-2014, 07:05 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Doundounba Quote
If I understand correctly, this would not help much. If you're using the electronic shutter, since it takes 1/13s to expose the whole frame, even at say a "shutter speed" of 1/125s, you wouldn't get a good, properly exposed frame unless your flash burst lasts more than 1/13s and the subject and camera are still enough for a 1/13s shutter speed to produce an acceptable result...
Yes, that's the explanation, because it wouldn't work. As far as the on-board firing at those slow speeds of 1/13s or slower, maybe the camera is able to control the duration of the flash (or doing some sort of imperceptible sync pulse) so that the sensor is still catching the light over the whole area while scanning. (The images do look fine when using the on-board flash with a third-party adapter at slow shutter.) Which would be a capability not guaranteed to work with whatever you hooked up the hotshoe.
07-27-2014, 11:07 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by GUB Quote
Agreed. But there doesn't seem to be any acceptable explanation why the hot shoe could not be enabled.
Yes I also believe that firmware could sort out the inability to fire manual flash on the hot shoe without contacts, but note this applies to non pttl flashes only.

If you use a pttl flash on the shoe such as a Pentax 540 it does fire with no lens or a 3rd party adapter attached, at 1/13 max shutter.
07-28-2014, 02:22 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by crewl1 Quote
Yes I also believe that firmware could sort out the inability to fire manual flash on the hot shoe without contacts, but note this applies to non pttl flashes only. If you use a pttl flash on the shoe such as a Pentax 540 it does fire with no lens or a 3rd party adapter attached, at 1/13 max shutter.
I don't know a lot about flash terminolgy as I just use them on manual for macro but I think my Pentax AF080C is ttl rather than pttl and will not fire under any setting on the Q.

Maybe doundounba is right that the inboard flash has special properties. I have tried to trick the camera by using an optical slave to fire the ring. I hold my finger over the q flash and slip it off between the first and second flash so the second flash fires the ring but the image is still not illuminated.

EDIT -- I have spent a little more time doing the setup above and am now successfully getting the ring flash to illuminate the image (ie it is synched) What I did is changed the flash setting to red eye. This extended the gap between preflash and main flash making it easier for me to get my finger off the q flash in time. I think maybe the q uses the red eye flash to meter and thus the exposure one is a simple flash allowing the optical slave to get it right.
Anyway even though this is not a practical set up I feel it proves beyond doubt that powering the hot shoe should be a simple and successful firmware update.

I gather there are optical slaves that ignore the preflash? That would be another workaround.

Last edited by GUB; 07-28-2014 at 05:10 AM. Reason: Done more homework
07-28-2014, 04:51 AM   #15
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For macro work would it be worth trying one of the LED ring lights (like this one)? Should help with focussing too.
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