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10-13-2016, 02:04 PM   #1
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High Speed Flash Sync w/K10d

I just purchased a ProMaster FL-160 to use with my Pentax K10d. This is the first flash I've had that is capable of HSS.

I have set the flash to HSS mode by pressing the mode switch until a small H appears on the flash's LCD panel. According to the manual, this is the indicator for HSS.

Since I've never used HSS before, I pulled out the PDF copy of the manual for my camera. It seems to indicate that, to use HSS, I simply set the camera to M or Tv modes, and set the flash to HSS (I've already done that). The manual, of course, only refers to the Pentax brand flashes, AF540FGZ and AF360FGZ.

However, the camera will not let me set the shutter speed faster than 1/180 sec. So, no HSS.

Is there anything else I need to do to enable HSS on my camera.

This is a nice little flash and I got a really good price on it. Its brand new in the box.

The camera firmware is version 1.31, the latest.

Thanks for any help.

10-13-2016, 02:22 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by noblepa Quote
I just purchased a ProMaster FL-160 to use with my Pentax K10d. This is the first flash I've had that is capable of HSS.

I have set the flash to HSS mode by pressing the mode switch until a small H appears on the flash's LCD panel. According to the manual, this is the indicator for HSS.

Since I've never used HSS before, I pulled out the PDF copy of the manual for my camera. It seems to indicate that, to use HSS, I simply set the camera to M or Tv modes, and set the flash to HSS (I've already done that). The manual, of course, only refers to the Pentax brand flashes, AF540FGZ and AF360FGZ.

However, the camera will not let me set the shutter speed faster than 1/180 sec. So, no HSS.

Is there anything else I need to do to enable HSS on my camera.

This is a nice little flash and I got a really good price on it. Its brand new in the box.

The camera firmware is version 1.31, the latest.

Thanks for any help.
I don't see a ton of info about that flash, but it looks like maybe its TTL only and not P-TTL capable and I don't think the K-10D supports TTL
10-13-2016, 02:22 PM   #3
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@mcgregni

I am unsure but the person above may have the answer.
10-13-2016, 02:37 PM - 1 Like   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by enoeske Quote
I don't see a ton of info about that flash, but it looks like maybe its TTL only and not P-TTL capable and I don't think the K-10D supports TTL
Thanks for your replies.

The answer, as is often the case, was RTFM (read the ****ing manual).

A little further reading of the manual revealed that there is an additional step. I pressed the MODE button to select HSS, but I did not press the +/- button to toggle the feature on/off.

When I did that, it worked as expected. I was able to set the shutter speed as high as I liked.

Mea culpa.

So far, this seems like a nice little flash. Some of its features:

GN 158/48 (ft/m) at 105mm
Optical slave (with option to ignore 1, 2 or 3 preflashes)
Front/rear curtain sync.
High Speed Sync
Tilt/swivel
Seven manual power levels (1/1, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/16, 1/32, 1/64)
Focus assist beam
Slow speed sync
Auto Power zoom (24-105mm)

Again, thanks for your replies.

10-13-2016, 03:36 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by noblepa Quote
Thanks for your replies.

The answer, as is often the case, was RTFM (read the ****ing manual).

A little further reading of the manual revealed that there is an additional step. I pressed the MODE button to select HSS, but I did not press the +/- button to toggle the feature on/off.

When I did that, it worked as expected. I was able to set the shutter speed as high as I liked.

Mea culpa.

So far, this seems like a nice little flash. Some of its features:

GN 158/48 (ft/m) at 105mm
Optical slave (with option to ignore 1, 2 or 3 preflashes)
Front/rear curtain sync.
High Speed Sync
Tilt/swivel
Seven manual power levels (1/1, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/16, 1/32, 1/64)
Focus assist beam
Slow speed sync
Auto Power zoom (24-105mm)

Again, thanks for your replies.
That was nice of you to post the entire solution. Someone else may have the same issue and find this thread. I'm glad it worked out.
10-13-2016, 05:17 PM   #6
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So how high can you get the shutter speed? I am not familiar with the technology. Does this work with all cameras?
10-13-2016, 05:37 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by ChristianRock Quote
So how high can you get the shutter speed? I am not familiar with the technology. Does this work with all cameras?
As high as the camera is capable, CR, with a cost in output power, obviously.
10-13-2016, 05:46 PM   #8
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ProMaster FL160 TTL Flash - For Pentax #5048 - Flashes and Speedlights - Spec Sheet
To my untutored eye, that looks quite a bargain for (on-camera) HSS, compared to say a Metz 48 or Pentax 360.

10-13-2016, 07:09 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by UncleVanya Quote
@mcgregni

I am unsure but the person above may have the answer.
I didn't, he seemed to have done it all right, but that little extra setting step would catch out plenty I'm sure!

Sounds like a well specified flash .... Am I right to think that the Promaster is a rebadged Tumax model?
10-14-2016, 01:38 PM - 2 Likes   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by mcgregni Quote
I didn't, he seemed to have done it all right, but that little extra setting step would catch out plenty I'm sure!

Sounds like a well specified flash .... Am I right to think that the Promaster is a rebadged Tumax model?

I'm not sure who actually makes this flash. I do know that Promaster is not a manufacturer. They buy products from other manufacturers and put their name on them, just as Vivitar does. It very well could be made by Tumax.

So far, I like it. The only significant feature is seems to be lacking is wireless flash control. I have seen nothing in the manual about that.

For the earlier poster who was not familiar with HSS, it is a technique that allows flash pictures to be taken with the shutter speed faster than the camera's "synch" speed. On a Pentax dslr, that speed is 1/180 second. That is the fastest speed at which the shutter is completely open. At faster speeds, the trailing curtain begins to close before the leading curtain has finished its run. This results in a moving slit across the image sensor.

An ordinary flash fires once (aside from the exposure-control pre-flash) at the instant the shutter is fully open. HSS mode allows the flash to fire multiple times, as the shutter traverses the image sensor. The cost is flash intensity. An HSS flash is not as bright as an ordinary flash.

It also has less motion-stopping power. An ordinary flash may have a duration as short as 1/50,000 second. I think it is 1/20,000 on my Promaster flash. That will stop a bullet in flight. In HSS mode, the motion stopping ability is that of the physical shutter, which on most cameras is 1/4,000 or 1/8,000 second.

Someone on a forum somewhere did an experiment to demonstrate this. He shot a tabletop fan (the kind used to provide a breeze in a hot room). with an ordinary flash exposure, the fan blades were perfectly frozen. In HSS mode, the fan blades were completely blurred.

HSS is particularly effective as a fill flash in bright sunlight, to compensate for shadows that may fall across the face of your subject. In bright sunlight, a shutter speed of 1/180, even with an aperture of f/16 or f/22, may still be enough to overexpose the picture. By raising the shutter speed, you can control the exposure caused by the ambient light, while using the flash to fill in the faces of your subject.
10-14-2016, 03:46 PM   #11
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That's as lucid an explanation of HSS as I've read since, well, @mcgregni (That's meant as high praise to both.)
10-14-2016, 04:12 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by mcgregni Quote
I didn't, he seemed to have done it all right, but that little extra setting step would catch out plenty I'm sure!

Sounds like a well specified flash .... Am I right to think that the Promaster is a rebadged Tumax model?
I'm not sure if it is a Tumax. My only Tumax that I owned ever was not HSS capable that I can tell. I still have the manual and even looked.
10-15-2016, 12:16 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by Des Quote
That's as lucid an explanation of HSS as I've read since, well, @mcgregni (That's meant as high praise to both.)
Thanks, and yes, a good description above! I'm wondering one thing though, about the motion freezing effect off HSS .... Would it be the actual time value setting (eg 1/2000th, 1/4000th) or is it the same as the mac sync speed (180th) which is the time it takes for the ' moving slit ' to travel across the whole frame ....?
10-15-2016, 03:49 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by mcgregni Quote
I'm wondering one thing though, about the motion freezing effect off HSS .... Would it be the actual time value setting (eg 1/2000th, 1/4000th) or is it the same as the mac sync speed (180th) which is the time it takes for the ' moving slit ' to travel across the whole frame ....?
This is probably a dumb question, but wouldn't any freezing of motion with HSS come mainly from the faster shutter speed? If I take a photo at 1/500th second using HSS flash, the flash will fire a series of very short bursts (of diminishing intensity?) over the course of the duration of the exposure, each of which will illuminate the subject in whatever position it is in. The subject will be illuminated (to some extent) at intervals over the course of the exposure. So I'm counting more on the short duration of the exposure than the short duration of illumination in order to freeze motion. Isn't that what @noblepa means in saying this?
"In HSS mode, the motion stopping ability is that of the physical shutter, which on most cameras is 1/4,000 or 1/8,000 second"


Last edited by Des; 10-15-2016 at 04:42 PM.
10-15-2016, 04:24 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Des Quote
This is probably a dumb question, but wouldn't any freezing of motion with HSS come mainly from the faster shutter speed? If I take a photo at 1/500th second using HSS flash, the flash will fire a series of very short bursts (of diminishing intensity?) over the course of the duration of the exposure, each of which will illumate the subject in whatever position it is in. The subject will be illuminated (to some extent) at intervals over the course of the exposure. So I'm counting more on the short duration of the exposure than the short duration of illumination in order to freeze motion. Isn't that what @noblepa means in saying this?
"In HSS mode, the motion stopping ability is that of the physical shutter, which on most cameras is 1/4,000 or 1/8,000 second"

That is my understanding. In HSS mode, it is the physical shutter speed that stops motion, not the flash. So, if your shutter is set at 1/1000 second, it will have the same motion stopping ability as if you were shooting without a flash, in broad daylight.

I don't think that the bursts diminish in intensity. That would result in an uneven exposure across the image. Not a good thing. They are at REDUCED intensity, at least as compared to the normal non-HSS flash. But I think that all the bursts would have to be the same intensity and/or duration.

But then, I could be wrong... It wouldn't be the first time.
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