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04-04-2010, 10:01 AM   #1
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Using Nikon SB-400 or SB-800 Flash.

I understand that the Nikon Flash (SB-400 or SB-800) could be used on the Pentax K10D as a generic flash either in the hot shoe or remotely. Anybody know about this or actually done it?

Much appreciate any input as I do own the above equipment.

04-04-2010, 11:13 AM   #2
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I don't know ANYTHING about the SB400 but i have used the SB800 (on a D200) so i'll take a stab at this.

OLD flashes experienced very high voltages at the hot shoe (up to 200v) which could burn out your camera. Newer flashes are almost all in the 6v range so they are usually safe to use on any camera

Although i have never fired the Sb800 off any other camera - I do own both Pentax and Canon systems and I fire all those flashes (Canon 580exII and 430exII and Pentax 360 and 540) across platform all the time. They all have the same center pin location regardless of the other fancy communication terminals so they will all fire. The flash will not work in any sort of ttl mode so you will have to shoot the flash in manual mode but it should work just fine. Just double check the voltages if you can to make sure you won't damage the camera but I can't see it being a problem.
04-04-2010, 12:27 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevewig Quote
I understand that the Nikon Flash (SB-400 or SB-800) could be used on the Pentax K10D as a generic flash either in the hot shoe or remotely. Anybody know about this or actually done it?
I don't have the current SB flash guns.

But I've been using an old SB-25 for the last few years with K10D and K7. It is still my "go to" hot shoe flash. I actually prefer it over my Pentax 540 because I don't use p-TTL. The 540 is ALWAYS in p-TTL mode when turned on, which is very annoying. The SB-25 when turned on has the same settings as when turned off last time
04-04-2010, 02:29 PM   #4
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Of course, with a simple PC connector and hotshoe you can use just about any flash in manual or automatic sensor settings (autoflash from the sensor on the flash, that is). Manual mode is often preferable when shooting digital for tabletop photography for excellent repeatability between shots.

Off camera, the Nikon SB800 also happens to be terrific used as a TTL remote in SU4 mode. It has an optical TTL slaving capability that many of the Pentax flashes lack--and many of the Nikon ones, too. I will mention though that this won't work with the newer Pentax digital protocol unless you can somehow cancel pre-flashes. But it does also work in conjunction with stepping up or stepping down the output of manual flashes in the hotshoe. Works perfectly with the older analog TTL protocol of Pentax flashes. I use it with my P645N or LX, in combination with one of the older analog Pentax flashes in the hotshoe (AF200T, AF280T) or a Sunpak 422D with the appropriate PT2D module.

I also use SB-800 with a Yongnuo RF602 wireless flash trigger in the Pentax hotshoe (get the Nikon-pinned set) and my P645D works great to wake-up the SB800, though it's not TTL in this case, only manual. (The PZ-1 doesn't play nice with this setup, however).

The standalone Nikon SU4 device also has this capability with the Sunpak 422s using an NE2D module. These have an auto-off feature that are a PITA to use remotely unless jumpered, but since these are about $20 used I have a bunch and I've jumpered all of them to defeat the auto-off.

04-05-2010, 12:04 PM   #5
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Many thanks each of you guys that responded - much appreciated.
04-05-2010, 05:43 PM   #6
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Well, in case anybody else is interested in this thread, I did successfully use the SB-800 on my K10D (in the hot shoe) and I didn't fry anything. Everything worked according to plan.

For some strange reason, which I haven't figured out yet the SB-400 does not work in the hot shoe .....................
05-10-2010, 07:33 PM   #7
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05-11-2010, 11:51 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by spystyle Quote
I think an SB-400 needs a hotshoe to PC socket adapter to work on anything other than intended Nikon bodies*, also it has no manual mode so I would imagine it fires at full power for every shot.

I'm planning on using my SB-400 off camera and through an umbrella

Have fun!
Craig
Hey Craig,
Exactly how do you use this device?
I see that it has a PC sync connector - are you supposed to use this to connect the SB-400, or will it fire without the PC sync connection?

05-11-2010, 12:39 PM   #9
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01-14-2011, 07:44 PM   #10
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Update, SB-400 can not be used in any strobist application, as far as I can tell.

Sell it to a Nikon user
04-09-2013, 10:23 PM   #11
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Even though this thread is old, a Google search led me here, so I just wanted to ad my experience for the next seeker of knowledge that passes this way. Anyway, I can confirm that a Nikon SB-400 flash will not do anything on a K-30. Pitty, since it's such a nice little unit. It's really small but recycles quickly and the head swivels vertically to bounce the flash off the ceiling. I wish Pentax would make something similar.

Here's a test shot I took on a D7000 with the flash pointing forward, and then a second picture taken seconds later with the flash pointing at the ceiling. Big difference!



04-10-2013, 07:11 AM   #12
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Bounce flash and off camera flash is the ticket for sure

I found a $25 alternative to the SB-400 called Sunpak Quantaray QF30, it's a similar shape and power. It doesn't recycle fast enough for weddings ect, but it's fine for the home shooter. I use it on a Nikon D3100, it's TTL. I bet they make a Pentax version too.

For about the same price, I've had good luck with Sunpak 933. It's fully manual and can bounce and rotate completely. It's like a cheaper alternative to the Yongnuo YN40. The only difference is, the latter has adjustable power.

An awesome video that shows how to do off camera flash is called OneLight by Zach Arias. I found it via torrent.

David Hobby's 2nd video is a good follow up to that course, it's called Lighting in Layers.

Here Ken Rockwell shows how you can use direct TTL flash to fix shadows in high contrast daylight scenes :

Fill Flash

Cheers,
Craig from Maine
04-10-2013, 07:38 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by spystyle Quote
Bounce flash and off camera flash is the ticket for sure

I found a $25 alternative to the SB-400 called Sunpak Quantaray QF30, it's a similar shape and power. It doesn't recycle fast enough for weddings ect, but it's fine for the home shooter. I use it on a Nikon D3100, it's TTL. I bet they make a Pentax version too.
Doing a quick Google search, I've only been able to find Nikon and Canon versions of the QF30. It looks like an interesting little flash, but the few reviews I found of it complain about prolonged recycle times. But as you said, it's probably best suited for casual home use.

QuoteOriginally posted by spystyle Quote
For about the same price, I've had good luck with Sunpak 933. It's fully manual and can bounce and rotate completely. It's like a cheaper alternative to the Yongnuo YN40. The only difference is, the latter has adjustable power.
I just bought a Yongnuo YN-560 II on eBay a few days ago. I had a $50 eBay coupon, so I got the flash for $24.99 shipped. It should arrive in a couple days, and I'm excited to start using it. It's basically a knock-off of the Canon 580EX II, with some corners cut here and there. Not quite the quality of the Canon, but in some ways it is actually better. Most notably, it recycles significantly faster. It's full manual, but that's fine with me.

QuoteOriginally posted by spystyle Quote
An awesome video that shows how to do off camera flash is called OneLight by Zach Arias. I found it via torrent.

David Hobby's 2nd video is a good follow up to that course, it's called Lighting in Layers.

Here Ken Rockwell shows how you can use direct TTL flash to fix shadows in high contrast daylight scenes :

Fill Flash
Thanks for the resources, I'll check them out.
04-10-2013, 10:08 AM   #14
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Blimey! Ken Rockwell in useful article shock!
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