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Old Jul 1, 2009, 4:50 AM   #11
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I recently acquired a D50 body to use with my F401 lenses - all work fine.

Also have Kalimar external flash unit (model AFZ 2020) from the F401. I am somewhat reluctant to try it on the D50 in case it damages the camera. Is this a possibility?

Thanks, Tony
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Old Jul 1, 2009, 9:19 AM   #12
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Please excuse me for perhaps answering my own question. I found this article:-


From which I think that I understand that all I need to do is charge up the flash unit with some new batteries in it and measure the voltage between the centre pin on the Kalimar flash unit and the outer connector (under the locking thumbwheel) with a multimeter.

There are all sorts of WARNINGS around of how you can kill yourself with high voltages from charged up capacitors in things like flash units - I was fairly careful and have survived.

The trigger voltage on my flash apears to be 6 volts and therefore safe to use with the Nikon D50. I just need to pluck up courage to try it now.

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Old Jul 1, 2009, 9:25 AM   #13
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Any TTL functions are probably not going to work with digital (that flash is going to be too old to understand the commands needed for a metering preflash, etc.)

So, you'll likely need to shoot in manual exposure, using a non-TTL mode on the flash, trying to set the camera and flash to match for ISO speed and aperture, selecting a shutter speed that allows the desired amount of ambient light in the exposure. I haven't found much info on your flash, except that it might have manual and non-TTL Auto settings from some of the very brief descriptions I see in for sale listings for them.
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Old Jul 1, 2009, 3:31 PM   #14
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Thanks for your comment, Jim. You appear to be correct, the flash unit does not flash at all as the camera does not recognise that it is ready. The red focus light comes on but nothing more.
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Old Jul 16, 2009, 12:16 PM   #15
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I know it's a more than you want to spend, but the SB600 is an amazing flash. its reasonably small (compared to the 800/900), its good on batteries (i use a set of energizer NiMAH rechargables that cost me $15 and get 100-200 shots depending on the flash power). it swivels and tilts and the controls are easy to use.

If I were in your shoes, I'd save my pennies, and get that instead... perhaps you have a local store selling a used one, perhaps someone upgraded to a 900...
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Old Jul 17, 2009, 12:14 PM   #16
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Conor makes an excellent point. Brand dedicated flashes tend to both function better and last longer than third part flashes.

The Canon EX-420 flash that I purchased in 2003 to mount on my Canon G-1 camera is still working perfectly and is now being used on a Canon DSLR camera, the 20D.

The Nikon SB-800 flash that I purchased in 2006 to mount on my Nikon D-70, still works perfectly, and is now being used on a Nikon D-5000 camera.

The Nikon 400 that I purchased in 2007 to use with my Nikon D-40 is now being utilized on the D-5000, when I want a physically smaller flash to use.

So, in my opinion not only have the brand dedicated flashes been high performing, reliable, and dependable, but they are still in use on the newer models of the same camera brand name. Those advantages, at least in my opinion, make it well worth the extra money that you might have to pay initially, when viewed in the long term.

Sarah Joyce
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