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06-15-2015, 01:14 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kozlok Quote
Will the KS2 wirelessly trigger an external flash with a "real" flash on the hotshoe?
That is the bigger question. The answer, of course, is yes. Acting as a "master" or "controller" is a flash feature and Pentax P-TTL flashes that support those features will work just fine. The fact that the on-board flash does not is sort of a pain.


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06-15-2015, 09:01 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
That is the bigger question. The answer, of course, is yes. Acting as a "master" or "controller" is a flash feature and Pentax P-TTL flashes that support those features will work just fine. The fact that the on-board flash does not is sort of a pain.Steve

I went ahead and got the K-S2. Truthfully, most of the time I use off-camera flash, I use a wire because I don't like even the little bit of fill from the onboard. I'd probably be best off with a P-TTL radio trigger.
06-15-2015, 11:47 PM   #18
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I've found that generally a small amount of front fill from the pop-up helps to even out contrast on a side lit subject, and it's controllable down to -2.0 stops .... Choosing the off option in the menu will cut it further still.

I appreciate that it may be an annoyance for particular creative effects when you need to retain deep shadows.

Overall I think the benefits of wireless P-TTL are a little unsung .... Apart from the obvious auto-exposure aspect, which can speed things up at times, it is great to effectively have some manual control over your flash exposure right from your camera controls (with the camera flash compensation setting). I find this a great benefit by not having to leave the camera position.

Of course we only have (apart from the K3 which has more I think) a 3 stop range with camera FC, but adding in an additional amount of FC from the flash control can move this range up and down quite significantly, giving extra flexibility.

I'm curious to know about the K-S2 flash mode options ...... So the pop-up can't act as trigger. Does that mean it loses the 'wireless' flash mode ? And if so, does that imply that the camera wireless flash mode is not required for using an on-camera flashgun as master or controller? Would the triggering option be set simply on the flashgun so ( ie master/control on the camera, 'slave' off camera), and the flash 'wireless' mode option not have any effect in this situation .....?
06-16-2015, 09:25 AM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by mcgregni Quote
Does that mean it loses the 'wireless' flash mode ?
Yes, as far as the on-board flash is concerned.

QuoteOriginally posted by mcgregni Quote
And if so, does that imply that the camera wireless flash mode is not required for using an on-camera flashgun as master or controller?
That is inferred, though I don't have a K-S2 or the multiple P-TTL flash kit needed to actually test. I do know that arrangement works with previous Pentax P-TTL cameras and is documented in the flash manuals. I can't think of any reason it should not work.

The K-S2 flash options are detailed in the user guide. You can dive deeper by consulting the manuals for compatible flashes. Here are a few bullet points that pertain to all Pentax P-TTL bodies:
  • Flash settings on the camera relate to the on-board flash only
  • When using the hot shoe, settings are managed through the flash unit itself
  • Sync through the PC, for cameras having such, is simple on/off with no P-TTL
There may be exceptions to the first two points, but I cannot think of any right off.


Steve


Last edited by stevebrot; 06-16-2015 at 09:37 AM.
06-16-2015, 09:43 AM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
That is inferred, though I don't have a K-S2 or the multiple P-TTL flash kit needed to actually test.
Found it! In the specifications section of the K-S2 user manual (p. 125 under external flash), "Wireless Sync * Available with 2 dedicated external flashes".


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06-16-2015, 12:22 PM   #21
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Thanks Steve, some good points and clarification of the wireless triggering on the K-S2. Unfortunately I think Pentax have lost some potential customers there, although as I've said earlier it's probably about market positioning and wanting to have higher end choices for the flagship models, to distinguish them. (But they hardly market the flash capabilities of the cameras at all!).



Regarding camera flash settings, the only exception with the modes I can think of would be the two Red-Eye Reduction options ... No flash gun setting for this, so if available with a flashgun then presumably has to be activated in the camera flash mode screen?



Then again, I've never tried Red-Eye Reduction with my flashgun .....a bit pointless really anyway when bouncing would be a better choice .... !
06-16-2015, 06:17 PM   #22
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While it is a tangent -- I have had great luck here with the yongnuo yn560iii (now iv) flashes and the yn-560tx remote that came out for them a little ways back that lets you set the flash power and modes remotely. If you're comfortable with dialing your light in manually, they are awesome and make your light irrelevant to your camera model. If you're trying to stick with pentax in-camera/pttl stuff though, I think you're going to be stuck with the af560 series or maybe mecablitzes?
06-16-2015, 08:46 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by mcgregni Quote
Thanks Steve, some good points and clarification of the wireless triggering on the K-S2. Unfortunately I think Pentax have lost some potential customers there...
Perhaps, though to be honest, you have to ask what market segment would be using the wireless P-TTL feature with the K-S2. I own a compatible flash, but have never used the feature except to confirm that it works. If were to start doing multiple flash photography, I would likely do so with available speed lights and skip the wireless P-TTL route completely despite already owning one compatible flash and having on-board flash that can act as controller. If I were a strobist on a budget wanting to work within the Pentax system, the K-S2 and K-50 would definitely be on my radar as potential bodies, though my choice of tech would still be other than Pentax P-TTL. Kain's post above is a good example of that way of thinking.

On the other hand, if a person was shopping mostly on the basis of a feature matrix and/or a numeric score and the in-store availability at Costco, the K-S2 might show rather poorly in comparison to whatever similarly-priced "Rebel" model is currently on the market. For many potential buyers, it appears to be useful and desirable feature and may very well be a deal breaker.


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06-17-2015, 11:21 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote
Yes, as far as the on-board flash is concerned.



That is inferred, though I don't have a K-S2 or the multiple P-TTL flash kit needed to actually test. I do know that arrangement works with previous Pentax P-TTL cameras and is documented in the flash manuals. I can't think of any reason it should not work.

The K-S2 flash options are detailed in the user guide. You can dive deeper by consulting the manuals for compatible flashes. Here are a few bullet points that pertain to all Pentax P-TTL bodies:
  • Flash settings on the camera relate to the on-board flash only
  • When using the hot shoe, settings are managed through the flash unit itself
  • Sync through the PC, for cameras having such, is simple on/off with no P-TTL
There may be exceptions to the first two points, but I cannot think of any right off.


Steve
Depending on how far back you want to go, there is an exception to the third point, as well. The LX has an interesting dedicated screw-in PC that provides for (real) TTL sync. A very secure system. Of course, it doesn't support the preflash protocol.
06-18-2015, 05:48 PM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by ScooterMaxi Jim Quote
The LX has an interesting dedicated screw-in PC that provides for (real) TTL sync.


Thanks for the reminder! The LX had a companion true TTL "potato masher" flash (AF400T) that attached to the side of the camera and sync'd using the proprietary "4P" cable to a combination PC/4P connector (standard PC with external screw collar and two additional contacts) on the front of the camera. To the best of knowledge, the AF400T was the only Pentax 4P flash.


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06-19-2015, 10:35 AM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by stevebrot Quote


Thanks for the reminder! The LX had a companion true TTL "potato masher" flash (AF400T) that attached to the side of the camera and sync'd using the proprietary "4P" cable to a combination PC/4P connector (standard PC with external screw collar and two additional contacts) on the front of the camera. To the best of knowledge, the AF400T was the only Pentax 4P flash.


Steve
I'm thinking that it wasn't the only 4P flash. I say that because I have the dedicated LX contraption (don't know the proper name for it) that provides you an L-bracket with hot shoe on top and the dedicated cord connects it through the PC. If I recall correctly (decades since I used it, and then only sparingly), it provided a form of additional functionality - possibly it was the only way to achieve slow-speed sync in TTL.

As it was, that initial TTL design was difficult because the flash would not trigger unless ambient was at least about 1.5 stops underexposure. Yes, TTL was frustrating back then too. That problem pretty much disappeared by the time of the *istD (which supported real TTL).
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