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11-26-2014, 05:48 PM   #76
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QuoteOriginally posted by Digitalis Quote
well my AF160FC doesn't have the issues you people are reporting on, though I don't have a K-01. In any case I certainly wouldn't use it for macro work - the K5IIs with liveview does the job well enough for me.
We, the people already know that your made in Japan AF160 FC flash is superior in this regard.. Funny how dismissive sounds what you just wrote - why am I having a deja-vu ? Oh - I know, the Ricoh's so-called 'Technical Support' was displaying basically the same attitude ...

Is it really too difficult to comprehend that there MIGHT be a problem with this flash from certain production batch and in certain conjunctions with specific cameras ? The irony isn't helping at all... Is it that your remarks supposed to out-weight somehow the seriousness of this issue ?

11-27-2014, 08:57 AM   #77
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QuoteOriginally posted by manntax Quote
s it really too difficult to comprehend that there MIGHT be a problem with this flash from certain production batch and in certain conjunctions with specific cameras ?
the only way to 100% identify there is an issue with the electronics on our end would be to pull a japanese and a chinese AF160fc flash unit apart and compare the circuitry - personally I wouldn't want to to this, as the the 120mm flash heads are bigger than some studio flash heads and that indicates to me that there is a significant amount of energy needed to create an arc through them - and all that energy is waiting to come back at you, if you are careless with a screwdriver.

The only other thing I can think of that could case this issue is user error, the AF160FC is a very powerful ringflash. It has greater light output than the sigma, metz, Canon or Nikon ringflash units. It is clearly designed to be used on longer lenses like the FA*200mm f/4 ED macro or D-FA 100mm f/2.8 lenses. 50mm and wider macro lenses have working distances that are very short and this makes the use of ringflash difficult, if not impossible. If you cannot get the exposure right manually, the P-TTL system hasn't a much of a chance either.
11-27-2014, 09:54 AM   #78
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QuoteOriginally posted by Digitalis Quote
the only way to 100% identify there is an issue with the electronics on our end would be to pull a japanese and a chinese AF160fc flash unit apart and compare the circuitry - personally I wouldn't want to to this, as the the 120mm flash heads are bigger than some studio flash heads and that indicates to me that there is a significant amount of energy needed to create an arc through them - and all that energy is waiting to come back at you, if you are careless with a screwdriver. The only other thing I can think of that could case this issue is user error, the AF160FC is a very powerful ringflash. It has greater light output than the sigma, metz, Canon or Nikon ringflash units. It is clearly designed to be used on longer lenses like the FA*200mm f/4 ED macro or D-FA 100mm f/2.8 lenses. 50mm and wider macro lenses have working distances that are very short and this makes the use of ringflash difficult, if not impossible.
All these could be correct if not the simple fact that I DO KNOW how to use my flashes and I did run extensive tests in order to rule out any issues with the flash itself!
Sadly your reasoning isn't justified also because my complaint you are addressing is preceded by 5 pages of tests and evidence about this problem.

QuoteOriginally posted by Digitalis Quote
If you cannot get the exposure right manually, the P-TTL system hasn't a much of a chance either.
Wrong! You have very limited ability to change the power of this flash with minimum setting that is 1/16th - where in P-TTL mode flash goes as low (or maybe lower than that? ) as 1/64th - that can result in at least 2 stops of overexposure in M mode and proper exposure in P-TTL mode !! (in my case only with K10D - but that should be the norm).

Imagine a tripod set in the same position for both cameras, with ambient light exactly the same - as well as the subject and the distance to it from the sensor plane.

Now add to that EXACTLY the same settings on both cameras - both K10D and K-01 had precisely the same settings, distance, subject , light and what else you can think of.

Do you see the problem ?

Both cameras will produce DIFFERENT results - with K10D fairly well exposed shot, K-01 will totally overexpose it - just firing at full power instead of going the P-TTL route (as K10D did !!). Now -even from Ricoh response you should clearly see that they DID see different results when they tested - only K3 in theirs case produced well exposed shot, with K10D slightly underexposing and K-01 totally OVEREXPOSING. Now their logic is that it all is NORMAL.

To me only a madman would draw this sort of conclusion from the results both myself and the Ricoh 'so-called technical-support' team had.



Bottom line is this :
The way that this issue has been handled by the Ricoh is simple ignorant and insulting to both myself and others who spent substantial amount of money on the equipment that supposed to be COMPATIBLE. I've run out of ideas what to say and to who to get them listen. I really don't like the way I am being treated as a long term customer - fortunetly I waited with buying K3 until this issue was resolved.. not sure if I want to buy another camera just to find that some of my equipment isn't working the way it should.. later to be insulted by telling me how I cannot read and follow simple instructions on how to use the camera and flash.. :: sigh
12-03-2014, 03:37 AM   #79
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QuoteOriginally posted by Digitalis Quote
It is clearly designed to be used on longer lenses like the FA*200mm f/4 ED macro or D-FA 100mm f/2.8 lenses. 50mm and wider macro lenses have working distances that are very short and this makes the use of ringflash difficult, if not impossible.
I forget to refer to this - you see I did tests with both SMC-F 100mm f2.8 and 50mm f2.8 macro flashes - in both cases K10D works just fine, and K-01 simple blows everything out.

Anyway I have writtent a complaint letter to Ricoh in the response to their nonsense quoted few posts above. Just got their reply saying that this issue will be escalated!! Hooray ) - hopefully to a somebody who can exhibit the level of sanity required to perform and to analyse their own tests with the expected accuracy and consistency. So far very disappointed with their dismissive attitude.. hopefully this time will all be different.. will report back!

12-09-2014, 08:36 AM   #80
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For those who might be interested in how this issue plays out , I was contacted by Ricoh rep just before the weekend and after around 15 minutes over the phone I was assured that they are going to try and replicate the problem. Person also apologized for the insulting comments previous rep had made in their last reply. I had the impression of taking the issue seriously and person I spoke to shown some real concern and took personal approach when communicating. It was very nice being listened to for a change! He said that they are going to get one unit made in Japan and compare them side by side with all cameras. Hopefully we are getting somewhere with this problem.
12-10-2014, 10:19 PM   #81
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Meanwhile, nearly 3 years later...
Has this progressed?
Other pertinent new threads perhaps?
12-10-2014, 11:57 PM   #82
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QuoteOriginally posted by BETLOG Quote
Meanwhile, nearly 3 years later... Has this progressed? Other pertinent new threads perhaps?
Well I know nothing about 3 years .. the thread was going since 3 months perhaps. Did you run into this issue earlier ? For me it really started when I got my K-01 last year, but I got really worried after I saw this thread - the fact that issue is still popping up with newest cameras is quite concerning. So far the progress is that I've reported above - it will take some time until they get both Japan and China manufactured units and compare them side by side. I don't expect to hear back from them until the next year.. BUT perhaps Ricoh/Pentax guys will this time surprise us all
12-11-2014, 06:25 AM   #83
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Because my test results were different depending on the camera body used (the 160 worked perfectly on a K20, but not on either a K5 or K3) I still maintain the problem is in the camera firmware, not the flash regardless of where it is manufactured. I'll predict that Ricoh-Pentax will find that 160 units from Japan & China function identically in all tests they run.

12-11-2014, 08:49 AM   #84
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QuoteOriginally posted by WPRESTO Quote
Because my test results were different depending on the camera body used (the 160 worked perfectly on a K20, but not on either a K5 or K3) I still maintain the problem is in the camera firmware, not the flash regardless of where it is manufactured. I'll predict that Ricoh-Pentax will find that 160 units from Japan & China function identically in all tests they run.
But Digitalis already confirmed that his made in Japan unit works fine with his cameras - including K3 - which means that more likely the communication between flash and some models is affected, rather than whole range of cameras across the board.. even more so that we get this inconsistency of some K3 working some not, same as K5 ( from what I remember ) - YET all K10D and K20D that I know of are perfectly fine with this flash ( regardless where it was manufactured ).
12-12-2014, 12:56 AM   #85
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QuoteOriginally posted by manntax Quote
3 years
I think I was just exercising my right to be stupid, and thought the last posters join date was the thread start date. *shrug* My bad.

I have the AF160FC made in china, which I recently got second hand from a japanese ebay seller.
It's been decades since I have used a flash at all, and I have not tested this one in the field at all yet, but I am noticing that it does seem to have exposure issues.
After reading that (iirc) the K3 has more exposure issues I have so far only had the flash on a K5 with FA 50mm/2.8 macro, but could test on K3 or K5 if becomes known as more reliable or has firmware fixes.

More pressing for me however is the way when I turn the flash on, it may not begin charging. SOmeonetimes I have to turn it off and on again at least once. Also it will often audibly begin charging, but the ready light won't come on, and modeling lights cant be used... as if the flash was off. However it seems to always work after cycling power the second time.
I'm guessing this is one of the reasons the seller was selling it. I guess I could return it, but that's always annoying....and not what this thread is about
12-12-2014, 01:02 AM   #86
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Not really related, but pertinent none the less: I made a phone-screen friendly form or the exposure guides.. becasue it's been so long since I used a flash I figure it'll be useful to have on hand for a while, and the converted PDF versions never display well on small screens.
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12-12-2014, 03:55 AM   #87
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QuoteOriginally posted by BETLOG Quote
I think I was just exercising my right to be stupid, and thought the last posters join date was the thread start date. *shrug* My bad.
we all do time to time ;-)

QuoteOriginally posted by BETLOG Quote
I have the AF160FC made in china, which I recently got second hand from a japanese ebay seller.
It's been decades since I have used a flash at all, and I have not tested this one in the field at all yet, but I am noticing that it does seem to have exposure issues.
After reading that (iirc) the K3 has more exposure issues I have so far only had the flash on a K5 with FA 50mm/2.8 macro, but could test on K3 or K5 if becomes known as more reliable or has firmware fixes.

More pressing for me however is the way when I turn the flash on, it may not begin charging. SOmeonetimes I have to turn it off and on again at least once. Also it will often audibly begin charging, but the ready light won't come on, and modeling lights cant be used... as if the flash was off. However it seems to always work after cycling power the second time.
I'm guessing this is one of the reasons the seller was selling it. I guess I could return it, but that's always annoying....and not what this thread is about
From what I recall my flash doesn't do that - might check later but I think I would notice . My unit was bought new from EU retailer so I expect it would rather be ok. Your used unit might have some issues- I would definitely check and if so - then return it by no means ! This flash supposed to work after all - and it is far from being cheap so don't tough it out but do some tests, use fresh batteries ( try new alkalines , instead of rechargeables which might have issue ) . If this not charging occurs with fresh set of batteries , with contacts wiped with alcohol - I would definitely return this flash. It is far better for you to deal with it now than later when it might stop working at all.

Oh and it would be good if you can test your flash (while you have it ) - with all possible cameras. That would be a nice contribution. Just use AUTo on flash (which forces P-TTL) and use M on camera with aperture set on body and shutter speed 1/180s. ISO 100 . Try with each camera the same target at macro distances ( magnification more than 1:2 ) - that will be enough to see permanent overexposure if there is any. Report back of course

QuoteOriginally posted by BETLOG Quote
Not really related, but pertinent none the less: I made a phone-screen friendly form or the exposure guides.. becasue it's been so long since I used a flash I figure it'll be useful to have on hand for a while, and the converted PDF versions never display well on small screens.
Cool tables !! Very clean and easy to read - I think it could be even posted in macro sub-forum via separate thread. Thank you for sharing!
01-09-2015, 03:12 AM   #88
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My normally excellent experiences with buying lenses from japanese ebay sellers is waning after buying and returning *two* of these "new" flash units with identical issues.
Observe:

Last edited by BETLOG; 01-09-2015 at 03:20 AM.
01-09-2015, 11:28 AM   #89
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I can confirm that my AF160FC works well on my K5 with my 50mm SMCA 1.4 at its closest focus.
01-09-2015, 12:27 PM   #90
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QuoteOriginally posted by BETLOG Quote
My normally excellent experiences with buying lenses from japanese ebay sellers is waning after buying and returning *two* of these "new" flash units with identical issues.
Observe:
That's unfortunate - but I have to say your batteries might have been really too weak in that video. It took ages to charge that flash - it happens with mine when my batteries are weak. Of course other symptoms are more worrying... sorry for your trouble, although they have little to do with what this thread is about.


QuoteOriginally posted by aoeu Quote
I can confirm that my AF160FC works well on my K5 with my 50mm SMCA 1.4 at its closest focus.
Which is about 45cm - right? Now how about checking with a true macro lens and go down as close as 10cm ? I am not saying your flash would malfunction - I just say that mine is giving me issues in close macro distances, and at normal distances flash works close to what you'd normally expect.
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