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05-04-2021, 12:03 PM   #1
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How to configure camera + flash for continuous fast shooting with flash

I am looking for some quick tips as I need to take some effect pictures withint the next 2 hours. I googled and searched the forum here, but had no luck.

What I want to achieve: I want to pour a liquid and catch it as it free-flows through the air. This is a one-time thing, I cannot repeat it.

Now if I set my camera to single-shot (on a timer), this may be a hit-or-miss. Therefore, I want to try doing this with a continuous drive mode (high setting), and use a Flash. The flash should help with catching the fluid in a "frozen" state instead of getting a blurring effect that I'd have without the flash.

Now, here's the problem (I can use either a K-5, K-3 or K-1 II with a AF-540 or a Metz 48 AF-1):

If I enable drive mode on the camera, focus a fairly bright wall at arm's length, I'd expect that the flash would only use a small amount of its charge. Meaning I should be able to shoot 10 or more shots, each with with the flash lighting up. I did set the shooting mode to either X or P or A and chose the widest aperture (2.8). I tried a low (100) and high ISO (3200).

However, the effect is more like this:

The first 3-4 shots come with the flash, but at a rather slow rate (like 3 shots per second instead of the intended 8). And after that, the camera does a few shots without the flash, before it works again (even though I have set the "shutter release while flash is charging" to 1, i.e. off).

The flash is in the prism socket and uses P-TTL.

Any suggestions which settings I may be missing to get this working so that I get a high shooting frequency with the flash? Do I need to tell the flash to use less power somehow?

Actually: I just changed the flash to use A instead of TTL mode (and camera to X). Now, it does what I wanted. But why isn't this working with TTL? Is using A the "right way" to achieve this, or are there other ways, too?


Last edited by tempelorg; 05-04-2021 at 12:22 PM.
05-04-2021, 01:07 PM - 1 Like   #2
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Never tried it myself, but from what I understand one way of achieving this is to use high ISO, set the flash (in manual) for low power, which 'should' mean it will re-cycle faster. HTH - good luck
05-04-2021, 01:54 PM   #3
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I did it. And it came out perfectly.

I had set the flash (AF-540) to A (focal at 34mm f/8, 200 ISO). I set it up on a tripod, and pointed the tripod to the (white) ceiling to get less direct light, and I also put the milky plastic diffusor onto it. "A" mode means that the flash uses its own sensor to decide when it's enough light. Since it was in a small room, and since the flash itself was thinking it was looking straight (I didn't twist its swivel), it would measure the reflected light (i.e. the ceiling) and shut off very soon, not draining its power too much.

The camera (K-3) was set to X, f/8 and ISO 800 in order to compensate for the reduced lighting due to the flash lighting the ceiling instead of the object directly.

With this setup, I was able to take about 17 shots at the highest shot frequency of the K-3 (8 per sec), all with the flash lighting up. After that, it kept going to shoot at the high rate, but only every 2nd shot did shoot the flash (the others were very dark because of the fixed X setting). I then stopped shooting because I was done (i.e. it might be that the flash could have kept going for longer at the reduced rate of 4 per sec).

I am very happy with the results.
05-04-2021, 01:59 PM - 1 Like   #4
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well, let us see the results !

05-04-2021, 02:13 PM   #5
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Well, they're NSFW, so no. Sorrry
05-04-2021, 07:21 PM   #6
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Nsfw ?
05-04-2021, 07:24 PM   #7
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Shooting with flash High power takes longer to recycle/refresh. If you want to shoot bang, bang bang you will eventually get black images because the flash isnt charged.

Shooting in lower power to permit the rapid succession of discharge will mean you will need to boost iso and aperture, but you might struggle balancing ambient.

Expecting fast recycle.. you'd best look to a high watt strobe - where you can shoot like a pro.


Angry photographer is not for everyone, but I think he is speaking to your concern...

2 Days Ago   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by DonV Quote
Nsfw ?
Not safe for work so probaby nudes. Tasteful ones, I'm thinking but I won't judge

1 Day Ago   #9
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NSFW- yes, I gave up and found it online- really makes no sense- I mean the acronym itself !

First time in over 70 years I have seen it used- but then I'm an "analog" kind of guy; a lot of the "text" acronyms make no sense to me.
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