Help: Radio Control flash triggers

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by illstudio, Jul 3, 2009.

  1. illstudio

    illstudio TPF Noob!

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    Im trying to do some more complicated flash photography.
    So I did buy the (Chinese) RC flash triggers. There are no instructions.
    I tried testing the setup and the flashes wont trigger. I guess Im at a loss how to use them..
    Phoshot 4 Channel Flash Trigger + 3 Receiver PT-04 V2s - eBay (item 140303850143 end time Jul-24-09 19:14:17 PDT)
    Any ideas? The seller is no help.
    I have an Olympus E-Volt 520 DSLR, a Nikon SB-24 flash and an Olympus FL-39 flash. The triggers say they work with both flashes.
    What settings do I put on the flashes and the camera? :confused:
     
  2. paulk_68

    paulk_68 TPF Noob!

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    Are your receivers set to the same channel as your transmitter/trigger? Just starting with the obvious, please do not think I am trying to insult your intelligence.
     
  3. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    First thing, check to see if the batteries have a plastic cover (that one got me). I'd also suggest getting new/fresh batteries as well. You never know how old these batteries are, they are often close to dead by the time you get them.

    Once the batteries are in order, make sure the transmitter and the receiver are on the same channel (little switches in the same positions). Then you should be able to test fire the flash with a button on the sending unit. Once that works, you can put the transmitter on the camera and start using it.

    When using this type of off-camera flash, the camera and the flash should be in Manual mode. The shutter speed should be below the max sync speed of your camera. I'd suggest trying 1/125 or 1/60 to be safe. Then you can adjust your aperture and/or the flash's power setting until you get the exposure you want.
     
  4. illstudio

    illstudio TPF Noob!

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    Yes they are.
     
  5. illstudio

    illstudio TPF Noob!

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    The transmitter appears sealed. The receiver(s) takes 2 AAA bats. The channels are the same. Pressing the test button gets no response from the flashes, HOWEVER I do see a small light flash/blink on the receivers when I do press the test button on the transmitter. So it must be getting the transmit signal???. Thats why Im stumped. Flashes are powered up fine. I tried other channels too.
    Other ideas?
     
  6. Samanax

    Samanax TPF Noob!

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    Yes, the receivers are getting the fire flash signal.
    How do you have the flash connected to the receivers? Is the flash mounted to the hot shoe on the top of the receiver or are you using that short sync cord?
     
  7. DeadEye

    DeadEye TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    Well if you press the test button on the transmitter and a little led blinks on the receiver then the fire signal is good. You can rule out transmitter and channel as problem. Take a close took at the pin contacts between the receiver ans flash.

    In a similar case I had same problem with Pocket Wizards. Press test on transmitter and get blinky on receiver but no flash on old vivitar flash. Worked well with newer flash though. Turned out to be contact delay time to short. In other words you have to short the center pin to ground for like more than 5 milliseconds in order to fire the flash. Modern units only need a few milliseconds and that is all you get from the receiver. On the pocket wizard multi max unit you can program the contact delay to what ever you want but it is a very expensive transceiver.
     
  8. Don Kondra

    Don Kondra Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Can't help with the flashes themselves, I use strobes, but...

    On the camera, turn on the menu and go down to the fourth submenu. There you will find the setting for camera sync speed. This is totally different than pressing the top button and setting the cameras flash settings. As a matter of fact, you can set the on board flash to off. That setting has nothing to do with sending a signal to the receivers.

    HTH,

    Cheers, Don
     
  9. illstudio

    illstudio TPF Noob!

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    Thanks. There is an "RC" screen on the camera. I enabled it. I'm a step further, thanks! LOL
    Ok, now, how do I set the camera for proper exposure? What do I set the mode dial at for?
    If I have a subject at, say, 12 feet away from the remote flash. How would I set the camera and flash (O FP-39)?
     
  10. illstudio

    illstudio TPF Noob!

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    The transmitter is on the cameras Hot shoe. No cords.
     
  11. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Camera will have to be in Manual mode. The shutter speed will have to be below the max sync speed of your camera. You can then use the aperture and the flash power setting to control the exposure from the flash.

    But how is the flash connected to the receiver? It it's just sitting in the hot shoe of the receiver, make sure it's well seated as that could easily be your problem.
     
  12. Don Kondra

    Don Kondra Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    It's a matter of balancing what f number you want to use against the power/distance to subject of the flash.

    Oh, in manual mode.... start with say f 8 and work from there. The sync speed is 1/180 all the time :)

    In very simple terms, if the image is overexposed, up the f number or turn down the flash power.

    Play with it and post examples.

    Cheers, Don
     

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