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01-26-2015, 07:14 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by panoguy Quote
With Cactus V6 triggers, you can even "fool" the camera into allowing off-camera HSS with non-Pentax flashes. Google around for that info.
I was looking into this for a long time and did not find anything. The only way I found is to use Aokatec AK-TTL Triggers. I did not order them yet as I was researching more on HSS and Pentax, but if you can be more precise on this that will be helpful.

01-27-2015, 04:39 AM - 1 Like   #17
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I think the trick is a Cactus V6 trigger on the camera hotshoe with a Pentax flash (or Metz) that has HSS mode on top. Shoot the flash in HSS mode and have Cactus triggers on your other off camera flashes. The HSS capable flash lets the camera shoot in HSS mode while the Cactus triggers let you trigger and set power levels on the other off camera flashes.

I'll try it one day but I have to buy the Cactus V6's first, whenever that may be.

Howie B
01-27-2015, 07:56 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by RAART Quote
I was looking into this for a long time and did not find anything. The only way I found is to use Aokatec AK-TTL Triggers. I did not order them yet as I was researching more on HSS and Pentax, but if you can be more precise on this that will be helpful.
Howie is pretty much correct. This post explains the basic Cactus V6/ Pentax HSS thing from a technical aspect.

There is also info in this great review of the Cactus V6 units. The two keys are "P-TTL pass through mode" and "HSS Sympathy mode." Cactus triggers do not transmit P-TTL data wirelessly like the Aokatec are supposed to (honestly never heard of anyone successfully using those), but they have a mode that delays the wireless triggering to avoid the pre-flash of the P-TTL flash (in the hotshoe) and pulses the other strobes.
01-27-2015, 01:54 PM   #19
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Thanks! I even responded to that thread but didn't explore it further... I responded while I emailed Cactus in regards of support for Metz 52.

I have only Metz 52 as dedicated Pentax flash and some other (few Nikon and one Olympus FL36R) flashes...


@Panoguy - Do you have and use Cactus V6 triggers? Did you try this what Howie explained?

01-27-2015, 04:30 PM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by RAART Quote
@Panoguy - Do you have and use Cactus V6 triggers? Did you try this what Howie explained?



Yes, and yes, I've had it working up to 1/1000 with the AF-540FGZ on pass-through triggering the Metz 48, and after that I think I didn't get the delay (or lack of) right. Apparently there was a firmware update (for the V6) that improved this, but I was testing in the early days of last summer.

FYI, the other Metz (little 36-AF4) doesn't support HSS, nor does the all-manual Yongnuo. Not shown is the Cactus RF-60, which does support HSS via the "sympathy mode," which also allows less than full-power bursts for an extended time.

Edit: Also read this for a trick to get HSS with non-Pentax flashes and V6 triggers (using the same trigger system for shutter and flash).

Last edited by panoguy; 01-27-2015 at 06:12 PM.
01-28-2015, 07:55 AM   #21
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I should have invested in Cactus triggers it looks like. Because I went back and tried HSS with my AF540FGZ mounted and it worked just fine. Then I threw my Yongnuo YN-622 kit on the K3 and nothing, nada, not even below flash sync speeds. Granted it's a Nikon configuration trigger...but my SB700 and SB910 units fire just fine on the K3 (center pin fire only). So instead I hooked up the flash sync cable and ran that way, but still couldn't get over 1/180". Lost my sync cable port cover now though.

The downfall of those Cactus triggers are the lack of hyper sync from what I can see. Outdoors with fill flash I'm usually around 1/3200" -1/4000" when shooting around 2.8-3.2
01-28-2015, 09:00 AM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wired Quote
The downfall of those Cactus triggers are the lack of hyper sync from what I can see. Outdoors with fill flash I'm usually around 1/3200" -1/4000" when shooting around 2.8-3.2
Well, the Cactus triggers don't transmit TTL information, so of course they lack hypersync. As this article mentions, the "HSS hack" that the Cactus V6 does allow (millisecond delay times) will have varied results, based on the camera's shutter response and speed. (Great illustration as you scroll down, showing the exposure difference between the shutters of a 5Dmk2 and 1D4!)

Pentax doesn't have the 3rd party (or even OEM) support for flash photography that Canon and Nikon have, so doing anything exotic with Pentax flash is going to require a "hack" and some persistence and patience. That's just the reality of being a niche brand (ask Fuji shooters about flash!). Still, I found it interesting that that Pocketwizard article suggests that full-frame cameras have a disadvantage to smaller sensors (with mechanically smaller shutters) when it comes to HSS or hypersync flash work...
01-28-2015, 09:34 AM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by panoguy Quote
Well, the Cactus triggers don't transmit TTL information, so of course they lack hypersync. As this article mentions, the "HSS hack" that the Cactus V6 does allow (millisecond delay times) will have varied results, based on the camera's shutter response and speed. (Great illustration as you scroll down, showing the exposure difference between the shutters of a 5Dmk2 and 1D4!)

Pentax doesn't have the 3rd party (or even OEM) support for flash photography that Canon and Nikon have, so doing anything exotic with Pentax flash is going to require a "hack" and some persistence and patience. That's just the reality of being a niche brand (ask Fuji shooters about flash!). Still, I found it interesting that that Pocketwizard article suggests that full-frame cameras have a disadvantage to smaller sensors (with mechanically smaller shutters) when it comes to HSS or hypersync flash work...
Obvious inexperience with the science...I just shoot and try stuff, if it works, viola, no problem... but what would TTL have to do with sync speeds? I run my flashes in manual mode.

02-02-2015, 12:52 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wired Quote
Obvious inexperience with the science...I just shoot and try stuff, if it works, viola, no problem... but what would TTL have to do with sync speeds? I run my flashes in manual mode.


There is the standard flash sync speed which on the K-3 is 1/180th of a second which almost any flash unit will work with, and then if you run a TTL flash that supports the feature there is "hyper" sync speeds or High Speed Sync (HSS) which syncs at almost any shutter speed. But you need a TTL flash that supports the feature. It's more of a flash feature than a camera feature. That's why your Pentax AF540 works.


Now taking that off camera is another kettle of fish. You need to have a TTL off camera setup. Wired is easier to do than wireless. You can definitely do it with Canikon for $$$$$$$. You probably can do it with Pentax and maybe cheaper. I'd be looking at the Pocket Wizards and Metz flash units. 3rd party stuff that is up to Canikon flash levels of sophistication.

Last edited by Qwntm; 02-02-2015 at 12:53 PM. Reason: typoes
04-17-2015, 08:01 AM   #25
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So to further help out with hanging up my D800....

I did two sessions back to back this week. My D800 for my engagement session, then just a fun session with the sister of the bride to be a day later. I grabbed my K3 for the second session and we went out and shot.

I don't know, maybe I got too hung up on the "35mm" format feel, and maybe I'm over it. but I got far better results from my K3.








Issues? Reds on the D800 and just color reproduction in general is just not as nice.

The D800 one took quite a bit of color correction work from the native RAW file, and thats all I've done is play with the WB sliders and basic tone sliders. the K3 is right out of camera with a crop.
04-17-2015, 09:25 AM   #26
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What's keeping you from using just the K-3?

That first one would have been perfect if the focus was on her eyes. Maybe that's why you need Nikon, Pentax AF not so good/reliable?
04-17-2015, 09:45 AM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChristianRock Quote
What's keeping you from using just the K-3?

That first one would have been perfect if the focus was on her eyes. Maybe that's why you need Nikon, Pentax AF not so good/reliable?
Pentax could use more AF points for sure. I also had it setup for SEL3 mode and forgot to change it back which hurt the image. Good enough for web and 8x10 print, but yea, anything bigger and that will be noticeable to the trained eye for sure.



I use the D800 primarily because of the low noise at high ISO. I feel comfortable shooting upto 6400 and still deliver a pretty decent print size. Part of that is down scaling from the high resolution sensor as it covers that up. Then there is the AF system which is much faster because of the lenses, not to mention more AF points to select from. Just wish they would cover more of the frame.


The other part is the flash system. The triggers and lights I've bought into don't really support Pentax too much. If I want to take full advantage of my Profoto B1 for example, I need my Nikon as the HSS/TTL trigger does not work with the Pentax system.

Then there is the lenses. I finally get it after arguing against the point for years. It's not the holes in the lineup, as that doesn't bother me, I'm quite happy with the focal lengths I have. It's the designs themselves. the DA*16-50 for example isn't overly impressive, while the Nikon 24-70 blows me away every time I use it. I prefer the look of the images I create with the Pentax DA*50-135, but the AF speed of the Nikon 70-200 f2.8 VRII is mind boggling near instantaneous. Then the DA*55 is just a gem, but it's painfully slow to focus.


If Pentax makes the splash we are all hoping and there is enough push maybe these companies like Profoto, Sigma, Elinchrom, etc. will all add Pentax compatibility. but I'm not holding my breath.


I'm taking my K3, DA*16-50, DA*55, DA*50-135, DA40, and FA77 along with my Profoto B1 with me to McBride BC in a couple of weeks to shoot in the rain forest there with some models, do an editorial I plan on submitting to a few magazines. Mostly taking the Pentax kit because of the huge weight advantage. I don't even want to know how my back would feel with the B1, D800, 24-70, 70-200, 50 Art, and 135 f2.0 DC on my back for a 1.3 hour hike each way. not to mention carrying a light stand, water bottle, and snacks.

oi-vie.



So right now it's a great complimentary system.



EDIT: Reasons for still loving my Pentax:

better weather sealing
FA Limiteds are made from the ashes of Zeus and Hades
DA*50-135 is possibly the most under-rated lens
huge size and weight advantage
less intimidating with models
I feel more relaxed shooting with it

Last edited by Wired; 04-17-2015 at 10:17 AM.
04-17-2015, 10:25 AM - 1 Like   #28
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Interesting to read your perspective, Luke. Thanks

With the new FF, the new 70-200, 24-70, 15-30 AND the ability to use the FA Limiteds (plus the 40 and 70 Limiteds as well as the DFA 100 Macro) might make a fantastic case for a pro system - IF, as you said, they get the AF and the flash support right.
The downside is, it will still be as heavy as a D800 setup, probably. So there is actually still a case for a great k-3II. Exciting times ahead!
04-17-2015, 10:37 AM   #29
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChristianRock Quote
Interesting to read your perspective, Luke. Thanks

With the new FF, the new 70-200, 24-70, 15-30 AND the ability to use the FA Limiteds (plus the 40 and 70 Limiteds as well as the DFA 100 Macro) might make a fantastic case for a pro system - IF, as you said, they get the AF and the flash support right.
The downside is, it will still be as heavy as a D800 setup, probably. So there is actually still a case for a great k-3II. Exciting times ahead!


If the new FF allows a useful 16mp aps-c crop (Like Nikon D810) so that all the lenses are still useful, then it's a winner and worth adding to the bag. If it does a 10mp crop (Like Nikon D750) and makes the aps-c lenses less useful, Pentax shot themselves in the foot. JMHO.
04-17-2015, 11:30 AM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by Qwntm Quote
If the new FF allows a useful 16mp aps-c crop (Like Nikon D810) so that all the lenses are still useful, then it's a winner and worth adding to the bag. If it does a 10mp crop (Like Nikon D750) and makes the aps-c lenses less useful, Pentax shot themselves in the foot. JMHO.
I don't think thats going to be as big a deal in practice.

pixel count is such a trivial thing. I would have been more than happy with my D600 if it weren't for the god awful ergonomics. Aside from a Canon 7D, that had to be the worst laid out camera I've ever used. Granted, 10 years of Pentax use has spoiled the living crap out of me. The D800 is close enough to Pentax ergonomics that I traded "up". But I really hate the super hi-resolution as there is no need for 36mp files! I think 24mp is the sweet spot. IMHO.

I think for transitioning the crop feature is going to be helpful, but it's only there for transitioning from ASPC to FF.

As @ChristianRock stated, the size/weight advantage of a 35mm camera goes away as soon as you mount up a modern 35mm lens! So the K3 will still have a huge advantage.

I was shooting Western Canadian Fashion Week earlier this month. 3 hours holding up my D800 w/grip and 70-200 f2.8. I was in so much pain by day 3. but my K3 was out for CLA. Wish I had my 50-135 and K3. I couldn't see the Pentax FF and the 70-200 giving me much reprieve.

So it depends on your "upgrade path". If you plan on selling your previous K-mount camera to finance the new one, then yes. the crop mode will be important. But if your like me, who will keep their previous APS-C camera and use it alongside the new FF, then the crop mode means nothing.


This is one reason why I don't think the Sony A7 makes much sense if Sony originally designed it to be a full system mirorless setup using their own lenses. The camera can be the size of a Q, but the minute you throw a 35mm lens with all the new coatings and internal motors...then you just gave all that size advantage up. I would rather have a more balanced system with a slightly heavier/bulkier body .
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