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06-30-2011, 07:35 AM   #1
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Wireless TTL

I have to have the capability of wireless off camera flash and want to control the flash 'through the lens' in camera. I was told this is not possible, even by Pentax! Can anyone help me befor I switch breands, which will break my heart! Why do we not have pocket wizards, Radio popper capabilities?

06-30-2011, 07:51 AM   #2
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Moved to DSLR discussion as the site help forum is only for site-related matters.

TTL flash is a thing of the past for Pentax. Their current system is marketed as P-TTL, and it by all means supports wireless flash.

Simply go into the flash mode on your camera and you should see a wireless icon. You can then trigger an external flash wirelessly

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06-30-2011, 08:12 AM   #3
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You can use any wireless p-ttl capable flash off camera and control it using the onboard pop-up flash.

When you take a shot, the onboard flash will strobe lightly, telling the wireless flash to pre-flash. Using this light from the pre-flash, the camera will determine the correct exposure for the wireless flash. The on camera pop-up flash will strobe again transmitting this information, and the wireless flash will pop during the exposure.

So A tells B, B pre-flashes, A tells B again, B flashes for real

And we do have pocket wizards, Radio popper capabilities. Or cactus v5 or any other wireless radio trigger. You will, however, have to set your flash power manually (as you have to do with almost every other brand).

Some of the newer radio triggers can transmit ttl data, thereby taking the variability of the pop-up flash out of the equation.
06-30-2011, 08:26 AM   #4
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Thank you both! Now...The 'newer radio triggers'? Can you help me there? Eliminating the pop up is exactly what I am trying to do. With this will I have full control in camera of the flash? (flash compensation)? I work alone most of the time and do not have the option of going back and forth. The light that I am looking for will not be facing the camera for the 'eye'. Will I be able to use a soft box?

06-30-2011, 08:50 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by jpmorgan007 Quote
Thank you both! Now...The 'newer radio triggers'? Can you help me there? Eliminating the pop up is exactly what I am trying to do. With this will I have full control in camera of the flash? (flash compensation)? I work alone most of the time and do not have the option of going back and forth. The light that I am looking for will not be facing the camera for the 'eye'. Will I be able to use a soft box?
The ttl-capable radio trigger I have seen are very expensive and only for Canon/Nikon. And they don't let you control the flash in the way you are thinking. TTL is like putting the camera in auto mode -- it does its own thing and you don't control it. I think Nikon CLS (using the pop up flash) can do manual control of wireless flashes, but I'm not sure.

If you pick up some cheap cactus v5 triggers, you set one on the camera hot-shoe, and the other on the flash hot-shoe. When you shoot, it triggers the flash. No pop-up flash involved.

But, like real studio strobes, you have to set the power yourself on the flash head. You can either chimp the lighting or use a light meter to nail it the first time. I prefer the first method.

Take a reading with your camera in matrix mode to figure out the ambient, underexpose it by a stop or 2. Turn on your flash and raise the power up until you get the look you want. Then have your model step in, crank out a couple shots and call it a day.

If you haven't read through Strobist 101 and 102, you really should.
06-30-2011, 08:58 AM   #6
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thanks for the info. Going to strobist now. Have a great day!
06-30-2011, 09:28 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by enoeske Quote
I think Nikon CLS (using the pop up flash) can do manual control of wireless flashes, but I'm not sure.
Yes it can, you can adjust two different flash groups to set them manually (each group, not each flash IN a group) or set them by group to Auto Aperture or I-TTL (Nikon equivalent of P-TTL).

Using the radio units (the expensive ones!) you could set all that remotely from the camera without worrying about the problems that optical wireless control can give you.
07-04-2011, 11:51 AM   #8
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By jove I think we've got it. I want to control the flash through the camera. Are you saying this is possible? I can not always go back and forth from camera to flash, nor do I want to! And 'the expensive ones'??? Which ones are those?

07-04-2011, 12:32 PM   #9
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The Pentax optical wireless system does not allow you to control flash manually from the camera. It will trigger a remote Pentax or compatible flash (Metz) using the P-TTL mode or you can trigger a flash using manual power if the remote flash ignores the P-TTL pre-flash on the camera, you still have to set the power manually. The Pentax system still requires the built in flash to optically (using flashes from the build-in flash) communication with the remote flash.

The Nikon system does allow you to control several flash power settings remotely, however, you need either Nikon or Nikon compatible flashes (Metz) along with a Nikon camera. This system also uses optical wireless using the built-in Nikon flash but you can also purchase third-party radio systems (Radio Poppers is one that comes to mind) that will send all the control information to the remote flash using radio.

I believe Canon also has a system like this but I know nothing about their system.

Note: Although I mention Metz as the compatible flash this is only because I use them both in the Pentax and Nikon systems.
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