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Which Pentax DSLRs Support TTL Flash?
Posted By: Adam, 01-15-2007, 08:10 PM

Here's a summary of what we've finally concluded about TTL support on Pentax DSLRs:
  • Pentax *ist D: Full TTL support for the internal flash and any external TTL flash used with any lens
  • Pentax *ist DS/DS2: TTL support for external TTL flashes only (Must be in M mode for manual lenses or when away from "A." Extremely fast apertures cannot be used)
  • Pentax *ist DL/DL2: No TTL support
  • All newer DSLRs (K100D, K10D, K20D, K200D, K-x, K-5, K-3, K-30, etc.): No TTL support
Sadly, even though the DS/DS2's both have the TTL sensor, TTL support for the built-in flash seems to have been disabled via firmware. Also, if P-TTL is available on the external flash, it will be used over TTL.

More clarification for DS/DS2 users:
-TTL features are identical in both models
-To obtain TTL with M, K, or M42 lenses (or when using extension tubes), the mode dial must be set to M.
-The built-in flash only supports P-TTL and therefore cannot be used with M, K, or M42 lenses.

Quick Definitions:
-TTL uses a real-time sensor to control lighting during exposure. This sensor is only avaiable in the *ist D, DS, and DS2 DSLRs.
-P-TTL calculates lighting before exposure using a preflash shot and does not function if the aperture value is unknown.
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05-24-2007, 08:46 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by MEtoK110D Quote
Is P-TTL, which I think I now understand having read this page, really an advantage? Does anyone have any useful suggestions or comments, apart from "Buy a new flash?" Have Pentax done the dirty on us by removing TTL or is there a good reason?
The removal of TTL in the recent SLRs is a huge blow for manual lens users, especially those who enjoy macro photography with extension tubes. P-TTL is arguably slightly more accurate than TTL, but it's restriced to auto-aperture lenses only. TTL flash can work with absolutely any lens.

If you want to use your old flash on the K110D, you'll have to set it to manual mode and use tables containing aperture/shutter speed combos (that are probably located on the back of the flash).


Adam
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05-26-2007, 09:21 PM - 1 Like   #17
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Or we could just head over to Strobist.com and learn how to manually use flashes off camera and get breathtaking results!
07-23-2007, 01:54 AM   #18
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A glimmer of illumination dawns....

My *istDS talks with my Sigma EF-430ST just fine. Easy to get good exposures with bounce or whatever. It was about to go on ebay - but now maybe not.

My new K10D appears to be largely illiterate flashwise. So OK, the K10D lacks a TTL sensor, which I guess explains the symptoms.

Which leads me to the following questions - which I guess may have wide interest:
A) Anyone care to venture why Pentax would do that? In the bad old days I had a calculator to sort guide number, distance apeture etc. I could go back to that, but why have a camera that can AF but not sort out the flash setting? I'd rather twiddle the focus ring than work out flash settings.
B) Are the Pentax AF360 and AF540 flashes my only choices for TTL (and P-TTL at that) with the K10D?
C) Surely P-TTL is a waste of battery power, irritating in many circumstances and a source of shutter delay? OK as an option perhaps, but what is wrong with TTL?

Do the wise and all-knowing have any wisdom to share?

Regards

Lawrence
07-23-2007, 06:42 AM   #19
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Full answers to your questions

Full answers to your questions:-

P-TTL Vs TTL


QuoteOriginally posted by nzfinescale Quote
A glimmer of illumination dawns....

My *istDS talks with my Sigma EF-430ST just fine. Easy to get good exposures with bounce or whatever. It was about to go on ebay - but now maybe not.

My new K10D appears to be largely illiterate flashwise. So OK, the K10D lacks a TTL sensor, which I guess explains the symptoms.

Which leads me to the following questions - which I guess may have wide interest:
A) Anyone care to venture why Pentax would do that? In the bad old days I had a calculator to sort guide number, distance apeture etc. I could go back to that, but why have a camera that can AF but not sort out the flash setting? I'd rather twiddle the focus ring than work out flash settings.
B) Are the Pentax AF360 and AF540 flashes my only choices for TTL (and P-TTL at that) with the K10D?
C) Surely P-TTL is a waste of battery power, irritating in many circumstances and a source of shutter delay? OK as an option perhaps, but what is wrong with TTL?

Do the wise and all-knowing have any wisdom to share?

Regards

Lawrence


07-23-2007, 07:12 AM   #20
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Curious??

Two things,

1. Recently I was advised by a friend that the Pentax K10D in wireless mode activates the following flashes:

Channel 1 Pentax and Sigma Flashes
Channel 2 Metz MZ70, 74 and 75 Flashes
Channel 3 Bowens Late Model Sudio Flashes.

2. Considering that the K10D doesn't have a TTL sensor (I wouldn't even know what to look for if I went looking) I was surprised when the same friend used the Macro Ring flash on his K10D in P mode and it worked perfectly.

I raised the same argument and he advised that SOME K10's do and SOME don't work with the TTL Macro Ring Flash.

I don't doubt him, he's a registered Pentax repairer and professional Pentax Photographer.

Anyone else out there got a Metz flash to test or a Ring Flash to test the K10D in P mode??
07-23-2007, 08:38 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by crashman Quote
Two things,
2. Considering that the K10D doesn't have a TTL sensor (I wouldn't even know what to look for if I went looking) I was surprised when the same friend used the Macro Ring flash on his K10D in P mode and it worked perfectly.
The TTL flash sensor is located under the mirror. It is designed to collect reflected flash light from the "film" *during* exposure. When exposure is enough, it just the flash output.

QuoteQuote:
I raised the same argument and he advised that SOME K10's do and SOME don't work with the TTL Macro Ring Flash.
I am sure that he must be kidding. Putting aside minor revision which only Pentax knows, all K10D has the same design and has the same spec.

QuoteQuote:
I don't doubt him, he's a registered Pentax repairer and professional Pentax Photographer.

Anyone else out there got a Metz flash to test or a Ring Flash to test the K10D in P mode??
I am sure that he is wrong again. No one on Earth can have a TTL auto DSLR without a TTL flash sensor in it! Ring flash has weak power and for macro works the aperture set is usually small. Coincidently, one might have somehow correct exposure within tolerance, maybe just brighter or lighter and this is regardless of which mode he used indeed. I did have used the RTF for macro photog by just viewing the histogram and then tried with the f-stop setting, and everything was just right (despite that at such close distance, it did exceed the closet range, so the only control is the aperture. Also, I did use some kind of white paper as reflectors, too, to avoid vignetting of the flash light).
07-23-2007, 10:19 AM   #22
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Haha Thats why I wasn't getting any "autoness" when trying out the Pentax AF400.
The GX-1L was totally deaf to TTL.
05-12-2009, 06:51 PM   #23
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To RiceHigh and all of you guys:

I own a Pentax AF 280 T TTL flash unit that I have used with Pentax LX and ZX-L 35mm film SLR cameras. I'm planning to get either a Pentax K100D Super, K10D or K20D Digital SLR camera body. Will this flash operate in either TTL, Red or Green, MS Hi or Low or al least Manual modes?

07-10-2009, 05:07 AM   #24
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Can anyone please advise whether my Nissin Pz401 flash purchased for my MZ50 SLR will work with a K10D
01-24-2014, 04:33 PM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
On the DS/DS2, TTL only works when mode dial is set to "M"....
I realize that this is an old thread, so sorry if I'm reviving it needlessly, but I was confused by the above. I think that on the DS2, TTL works when the mode dial is set to P, Av, or Tv, the lens is set to A, and the AF280T is set to TTL mode. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

Thanks,

Mark
01-24-2014, 04:41 PM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mark DeB Quote
I realize that this is an old thread, so sorry if I'm reviving it needlessly, but I was confused by the above. I think that on the DS2, TTL works when the mode dial is set to P, Av, or Tv, the lens is set to A, and the AF280T is set to TTL mode. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

Thanks,

Mark
Yup. As per the first post in this thread, you only need to be in M mode when the aperture ring isn't set to A. So when it is set to A, you should be in one of the other three modes as you said.

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01-24-2014, 06:14 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
Yup. As per the first post in this thread, you only need to be in M mode when the aperture ring isn't set to A. So when it is set to A, you should be in one of the other three modes as you said.
Yes, or M. M will work too, in those conditions.

Incidentally, it seemed to me that there was some overexposure at f1.7. So it does not work perfectly. Just to confirm what (I think) others have reported.

Thanks for a great forum, by the way (these are my first posts). I have looked here often for information!

Best,

Mark
01-31-2014, 05:05 AM   #28
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I have the *istD. For this camera, the flash logic is as follows.

for the internal flash, it works in TTL mode if and only if a lens is NOT in A, I.e. If you have an A lens in the A position the camera runs in P-TTL mode. legacy lenses the camera works in TTL mode

For an external TTL flash like the AF500FTZ the camera supports this flash fully, and works in TTL mode regardless of lens selected, or position of the Aperture (A or manual)

For an external P-TTL and TTL capable flash like the AF540FGZ, for lenses set in the A position the flash always works in P-TTL mode but if you take the lens out of A position, or use a legacy lens the flash reverts to TTL (I.e the flash behaves just like the internal one)
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