Im wanting a Flash

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by JayClark79, Sep 15, 2009.

  1. JayClark79

    JayClark79 TPF Noob!

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    Iv been very interested in getting flash lately and im not 100% sure what i need or what I should get... I would some day like to have mulitiple flashes for off camera set ups... and i understand ill need a master flash to do that so I was considering just getting the 580ex ii now... my question is are there cheaper flashes then the 430ex that can be used as a slave flash?

    Also if I buy the 580ex ii can my camera control just that 1 flash (off camera) with out any other kind of transmitters or anything like that? I have the Canon 500D.
     
  2. Village Idiot

    Village Idiot No longer a newbie, moving up!

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  3. Big Mike

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

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    No, so far the only Canon camera that can do that, is the 7D which was just released. This is probably something that will appear in newer models though.

    Not really. Only the 580EX or older 550EX can be master or slave and the 430EX or older 420EX are the only ones that can be a slave only. Actually, I think there are some off-brand flashes that are compatible with the Canon system, Sigma for example.

    To take things in a different direction...you don't need to have a bunch of Canon flashes to have an off-camera flash set up. You can use just about any flash...but you would need to find a different way to trigger it (many people use radio triggers, which us better than the communication system used by Canon). With simple radio triggers, you don't get the auto (TTL) flash metering that you get with the Canon system...but that still doesn't stop most of use from using radio triggers.

    MPEX Strobist Kits
     
  4. JayClark79

    JayClark79 TPF Noob!

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    OK so i can control the 580ex ii off camera with a wireless transmitter.. are these the cactus things and V2's i keep hearing about... which is better?

    Will the 580ex ii run other flashes wirelessly? Would the other flashes just need to have a transmitter of some sort on it? I would think not all flashes have the ability to be wireless... in which case i would need either a transmitter? or PC cord?
     
  5. Big Mike

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

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    Depends what you mean by 'control'. You can use a simple radio trigger system (like the Cactus ones) to FIRE a 580EX...but not control the power or use E-TTL flash metering. So you would just have to set the power manually (not a big deal once you know what you are doing).


    The 580EX can be a 'master' within the Canon system. Meaning that it uses light pulses (not radio waves) to communicate with 'slave' units. Slave units could be other 580EX flashes or 430EX flashes. With this system, you can control the power of the remote flashes and have the benefits of E-TTL metering. However, the communication isn't as reliable as radio triggers...especially when used outside.
    The 580/430 units have built-in ability to be a slave to a master unit. No extra pieces required. But these flashes are fairly expensive themselves.

    Now, if you can live with manual flash control and without E-TTL, then you can get any flash and use radio triggers. For more info....see here Strobist: Lighting 101

    I should also mention that there are new products that do have the advantage of radio communication and the benefits of the Canon system. They aren't cheap though. Wireless transmitters and receivers - Pocketwizard®
     

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