Canon 350d flash speed.


TPF Noob!
May 7, 2006
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Hi, I'm a total newbie to photography, and have just got a 350d. I intend on doing some sports shots, but the standard flash on the camera will only operate up to 1/200 shutter speed. Would a hotshoe flash work at higher speeds. Any suggestions as to which ones?
Welcome to the forum.

No, a typical hot-shoe flash will not work at higher speeds because that is a limitation of the camera.

There is a feature called high-speed-sync, where the flash fires several pulses of flash, which does allow flash at higher speeds but I'm not sure if that is a feature of the camera or flash or both. Have a look at the Canon 420/430 EX and 550/580 EX.

Also, keep in mind that typically, flash will freeze the subject. The actual flash burst is much faster than the shutter, so even with a shutter speed of 1/30, you can freeze the action with flash. However, you might also get some exposure from ambient light, which would be blurry at slower you will actually get two exposures, one from flash and one from ambient light. You can use the shutter speed to control how much ambient exposure you get.

Flash is typically not used in sports photography. Either the flash is too far away or it will distract the athletes. A better way to go, is a fast lens (big maximum aperture) and fast film/high ISO. Try setting your camera to AV, use the widest aperture (low F-number) and crank the ISO setting up.

If you only have the 18-55 kit lens, consider getting a faster lens. The 50mm F1.8 is the best bang-for-your-buck at less than $100.
Thanks mate. I've been looking at the 50mm 1.8 lens, seems like a good option, as the standard will only open to f3.5.
So basically, use the largest aperture I can use, the slowest shutter speed that i can get away with for the chosen sport, and from then it's just adjusting the ISO to suit.
Well it depends on the light that you have.

Yes, use the largest aperture. Yes, use the highest ISO that will work for you (higher ISO means more grain/noise). If that combination gives you a fast enough shutter speed, then you are good. If you really need a faster shutter speed, then you could make it a little faster, thereby underexposing the photo, and then try to bring it back with image software (Photoshop).

Also, there are ways to get great sports shots without having the fastest shutter speeds.
1. Get shots when the action is not at it's fastest, or when players are stationary.
2. Try to catch that magic moment at the peak of movement. Like a basket ball player at the peak of a jump.
3. Try panning the camera with the moving subject. You don't even need a super fast shutter speed but it takes practice to get it right.

There are more, but you get the point.
I used to have the Canon 350D, you are limited to 1/200 shutter speed inless you purchase a Canon 430EX or 580EX FlashGun as with these you can get all shutter speeds. It is just a gimick from Canon so you buy the best, I would admit the Canon FlashGuns are worth every single penny u spend on them.

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