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12-03-2008, 09:48 PM   #16
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 239
I have used wireless flash with the *ist-D, K10D, and K20D. Unfortunately, Pentax took a step backwards in flash technology after the *ist-D.

The *ist-D allows the built-in flash to trigger an external flash in high-speed wireless mode. That's a very useful feature. When the K10D first came out, it couldn't use the built-in flash as a wireless trigger at all (even at the regular sync speed). This was fixed with a firmware upgrade, but the new firmware did not allow for high-speed wireless sync (with the built-in flash as a trigger). The instructions that came with the upgrade were very clear about this point. The K20D simply carries forward the capabilities provided by the K10D upgrade, although the manual is not as clear as the K10D upgrade instructions. I doubt very much that it can be fixed via a change to the firmware, although I would be happy to be proven wrong.

Another way in which the *ist-D flash technology is superior is in its ability to use TTL flash with K- and M-series lenses. Older lenses work great with the built-in flash of the *ist-D. I was a bit shocked when I first tried to take a flash picture using my lovely K 30/2.8 with the K10D. It doesn't work any better on the K20D. Unfortunately, this is not as easily fixed as the metering problem with older lenses. (Using the LL-60 screen fixes that problem.) There is no fix for the flash issue if you want to use the built-in flash with older lenses.

Don't get me wrong--on the whole, the K20D is a superior camera. I like it much better than both the *ist-D and the K10D. Having recently purchased a K20D, my only regret is that I didn't buy one sooner. But the flash capabilities of the *ist-D are unmatched.



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