How to get Nikon D5200 trigger with multiple external flashes?

tibutzu

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I have a Nikon D5200 which is not a high-end camera, I know. It does not have the menu settings for channels & groups of external flashes. So in such conditions how can I use the Nikon D5200 with multiple external flashes? Say I want to create a scene with 3 or 4 flashes (a key light + main + background light)....how can I do that?
 

tirediron

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The best way would be radio triggers; there are many inexpensive consumer-grade triggers available (eBay, Amazon) which will work well for casual use. You can also use optical triggers, using your pop-up flash as the main trigger, but these impose a (somewhat) line-of-sight restriction. Lastly would be PC-Sync cords, using a hot-shoe PC adaptor, but this is messy and unreliable.
 
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tibutzu

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The best way would be radio triggers; there are many inexpensive consumer-grade triggers available (eBay, Amazon) which will work well for casual use. You can also use optical triggers, using your pop-up flash as the main trigger, but these impose a (somewhat) line-of-sight restriction. Lastly would be PC-Sync cords, using a hot-shoe PC adaptor, but this is messy and unreliable.
Thanks a lot. I thought a trigger would do it, but I'm not sure I can pick one myself. Can you please share a linnk to 1 or 2 models, please?
 

MartinCrabtree

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I have been using the Cowboy Studio NPT-04 triggers for a couple years off and on w/o issue. The only camera they haven't worked on was my AE-1. Works with all my flashes including an old Canon 199A Speedlite.
 

cgw

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Just keep in mind that basic triggers don't provide any sort of flash control aside from a "fire" signal. You'll need a flash meter or a lot of trial and error work to balance your set-up.
 

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cgw said:
Just keep in mind that basic triggers don't provide any sort of flash control aside from a "fire" signal. You'll need a flash meter or a lot of trial and error work to balance your set-up.

Yes...with three or four lights, it helps to have all the lights be of the same general power at Maximum level, like say, four identical speedlights, or four identical monolights. Using IDENTICAL lights you can pretty easily use distance to make one light the main, the second the fill light, one the hair light, and one the background light. Identical lights will allow you to learn how one model of light performs, so your learning curve will be efficient.

A hair light or a separation light or kicker light, or an accent light, all of those three types of lights generally do not need to be very powerful in comparison to the other lights.

Manual-controlled lights, ones with a click-stopped slider, or rotating dial, or LCD readouts that give you Full, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8,1/16,and 1/32 power settings will make it easier to figure out what light needs to be set at what power level. Don't waste money paying extra for TTL control lights when you're using a multi-light setup. Ally you need is MANUAL power control, and the dumber the lights are, the better; nothing is a bigger PITA than some light unit that "went to sleep" to save 1/100th of a penny's worth of battery power.
 

beachrat

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TTL sucks.
Maybe not all the time,but usually.
 

Derrel

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[QUOTE="KmH]Only because the camera is a stupid machine running a rote, jack-of-all-trades, master-of-none program written by a committee of Nikon camera engineers.[/QUOTE]

Kind of like auto-pilot on commercial jet aircraft. Utterly useless, right?
 

beachrat

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Obviously not utterly useless,but
I don't know how guys like Mcnally and Neil V get it to work all the time.
I can't get consistent results out of it.
 

MartinCrabtree

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I picked up a Quantum Calcu-Flash cheap. It's off one stop but consistently one stop. Or I just like my photos BRIGHT.
 

Derrel

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MartinCrabtree said:
I picked up a Quantum Calcu-Flash cheap. It's off one stop but consistently one stop. Or I just like my photos BRIGHT.

I remember those things! It has been a while since I saw one. Does it have any kind of a calibration screw? If it's off a stop consistently, I supposed you could double the ISO value to get those BRIGHT photos looking more normal. If you were shooting color negative film, that one-stop too bright bias would be a good thing.
 

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