Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
12-04-2011, 08:32 PM   #1
Senior Member
bluebronco's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Iowa
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 170
Really easy flash question

I have two cheap manual flashes that I use with Cactus wireless triggers.

Does the AF540FGZ basically do the same as wireless triggers? Can you control the power of the flash from the camera?

Thanks

(I use a K20D)

12-04-2011, 09:17 PM   #2
Pentaxian
philbaum's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Port Townsend, Washington State, USA
Posts: 3,659
The Cactus is a radio trigger. The Pentax flash can operate as a manual flash with the Cactus trigger, or it can operate as a PTTL flash with the body onboard flash as an optical trigger. The 2 cheap manual flashes cannot be used as PTTL flashes. Cactus radio triggers cannot do PTTL power adjustment. Hope that helps.
12-05-2011, 09:39 AM   #3
Senior Member
bluebronco's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Iowa
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 170
Original Poster
Thanks for the response, another quick one.

If I get rid of the manual flashes and cactus triggers, will the Pentax flashes wirelessly work (one on camera or both off camera)?
If that is case, then can I control the power of the flashes through the camera either by flash compensation or actually dialing the power back through the camera?


Thanks
12-05-2011, 10:50 AM   #4
Site Supporter




Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Charleston, SC
Photos: Albums
Posts: 350
My personal experience is that the optical sensors never work when you need them to! :-p

12-05-2011, 02:22 PM   #5
Senior Member
bluebronco's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Iowa
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 170
Original Poster
So are the Pentax flashes only optical wireless not rf?
12-05-2011, 04:05 PM   #6
Pentaxian
Just1MoreDave's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Aurora, CO
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 4,859
Yes, and that's the drawback. With my K-7 and one AF540FGZ, I can use the flash off camera, and use the camera to control flash power with flash exposure compensation. The zoom setting on the flash doesn't change, like it would if the flash was on the hot shoe. The manual suggests a distance limit of 4 meters. The popup flash acts as a controller, and sometimes its controller flash affects exposure (very low light). I don't use it enough to really know how it works or compare it to other options.
12-05-2011, 04:11 PM   #7
Senior Member
bluebronco's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Iowa
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 170
Original Poster
That kind of sucks I was looking to downsize equipment and carry just the flash. I was watching a Kelby training video and the guy was using a Nikon with two off camera flashes. He could control flash output, sync etc all from the camera. Another thing Pentax has to catch up with.
12-07-2011, 05:14 PM   #8
Pentaxian
philbaum's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Port Townsend, Washington State, USA
Posts: 3,659
QuoteOriginally posted by bluebronco Quote
That kind of sucks I was looking to downsize equipment and carry just the flash. I was watching a Kelby training video and the guy was using a Nikon with two off camera flashes. He could control flash output, sync etc all from the camera. Another thing Pentax has to catch up with.
It kinda sucks, but not that bad . Nikon appears to be in the lead on flash equipment and functionality. But if you think about it, remote flashes cannot be adjusted for their height or for their direction from the camera - just their power. You can also adjust lighting power, to a degree, from a Pentax camera by adjusting speed, aperture and/or iso. I saw a Nikon demonstration by some pro a few months back, and he was not using the camera adjustments, just on flash adjustments, so don't know what that is all about.

A lot of studio equipment like monopods used to be all manual, not sure if that is the case today. The downside of the Nikon flashes is that they are expensive. I dropped one of my full power YongNuo manual flashes on concrete and it stopped working. Total cost: $45 (YN460-II). A friend of mine in our camera club had to stop suddenly with her car, she had laid her Nikon flash on the seat next to her in the car, it slid onto the floor and broke. Total cost to her for a new Nikon Flash: $450.

I have one pttl flash, and 3 manual flashes with Cactus radio triggers. I rarely use pttl flashes and use the manual mode for my strobist type stuff and they work fine. You get used to working with manual. If you really want to use that pttl in power mode
a. use the camera onboard flash in commander pttl mode
b. use the Pentax flash in pttl mode and put it in the primary position
c. use the manual flashes to trigger off the Pentax flash. The YongNuo manual flashes have very sensitive light sensors and you can set them in the S1 or S2 position, the first is for firing at the first flash, the second is to inhibit firing on the ttl pulse and firing on the second or main flash. Not sure about other manual flashes but there are devices that attach to manual flashes to fire on a flash signal.

That way you can mix manual and pttl flashes. you have more flexibility than you imagine since your pttl flash can also be used in manual mode or Auto mode.

Here's some manual flash work that was pretty easy to do with a Cactus radio trigger:















With manual flashes and radio triggers, you are only limited by your imagination, IMO.

Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
camera, flash, pentax help, photography, triggers
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Pentax 540 Flash Easy question njpentax Flashes, Lighting, and Studio 4 08-22-2011 06:51 AM
Easy Pentax newbie question gjtoth Pentax K-r 7 04-28-2011 03:58 PM
Easy Question - Raw/Fx button pmastello Pentax K-5 6 04-28-2011 08:14 AM
Easy question Stephensong Photographic Technique 4 12-31-2008 07:20 AM
Quick & Easy Wireless Flash Question neil Flashes, Lighting, and Studio 7 03-24-2008 08:17 AM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:56 PM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top