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01-25-2012, 09:12 PM   #1
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What is X shutter mode?

Trying to figure out what 'X' shutter mode is on my 645N. Sorry if this is obvious but have had no luck searching forums or the google.

01-25-2012, 09:26 PM   #2
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Hi A:

How's things in the great white north?

The "X" mode is for electronic flash. In the good ol' days of film, as electronic flash was becoming more common, but flash bulbs were still common, cameras had both an "M" connection for the flash (flash bulb) and an "X" connection for the electronic flash. The M connection actually trips the flash a fraction of a second sooner than that of the electronic flash (X) connection, as the metal fibers, or other media making the flash light, took time to light up, actually burn. The electronic flash, for all intensive purposes, trips instantaneously.

Now with only electronic flash being available, camera manufacturers have dropped the M flash connection. So the X is a hold over from film days. When you put the camera in the X mode, you may find the shutter speed cannot be adjusted at all or can only be adjusted to a certain shutter speed (maybe 1/125 to 1/250 sec.), though you may be able to adjust it lower than that highest speed (the highest speed would be the cameras flash sync speed).

Regards,

Last edited by BigDave; 01-25-2012 at 09:42 PM.
01-25-2012, 09:27 PM   #3
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Flash Sync Mode on most other models, locks shutter speed at 180.
01-25-2012, 09:27 PM   #4
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Not 100% sure, but think it is flash synch, ie t=1/180s or less. Shutter curtain also fully open for part of exposure period, unlike higher shutter speeds when opening of the curtain only partially open at any time, so if flash fires only a portion of image is exposed.

01-25-2012, 10:56 PM   #5
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On the 645N, the sync speed is 1/60s. It generally didn't increase much until the digital era.

With special "Leaf Shutter"(LS) lenses you can achieve a sync speed of up to 1/500s, though.

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01-25-2012, 11:07 PM   #6
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Thanks everyone, that makes sense. 645N max sync speed is 1/60 and when I just tried that mode that is where it set the shutter. I'll leave it for now... Hoping to try off-camera flash -- any flash at all, really-- sometime this year but will be learning on the digital before I start trying it on film.
01-25-2012, 11:23 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by adelorenzo Quote
Thanks everyone, that makes sense. 645N max sync speed is 1/60 and when I just tried that mode that is where it set the shutter. I'll leave it for now... Hoping to try off-camera flash -- any flash at all, really-- sometime this year but will be learning on the digital before I start trying it on film.
I think you'll like it a lot. It is inexpensive (in the grand scheme of things) to get started. It's also much easier on digital than film, because your LCD screen and histogram take the guesswork out of getting the exposure you're looking for. Of course, the alternative to the guesswork would be to buy a flash meter, which will cost more.

Midwest Photo Exchange (Midwest Photo Exchange Home page) offers some great, low-cost, completely customizable "Strobist" packages, which they have developed in collaboration with the Strobist (Strobist). You can build packages using one flash, two, or more.

Good luck, and I hope you keep us posted.
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