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Old May 22, 2004, 8:35 AM   #1
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I'm looking for an external flash for my Coolpix 5400. In my local (small) photo shop, they had a couple of Metz (34CS2, 44AF3) and some Vivitars (730AF, 74AF, 820AF and DF200). Of these, only the DF200 was a good fit in the hot shoe on the camera, but this flash only works as a slave unit. The 850 seems a good flash, but was such a tight fit in the hot shoe that both I and the shop assistant were worried about breaking the camera trying to remove the flash.
I've seen recommendations for the Sunpak 5000 -- does anyone have any experience using this on a CP5400? How easilz does it slide in/out of the shoe, and how many features are useable?
Yes, I know I could just get a Nikon flash -- but it seems overkill to get say a 50DX which costs as much as the camera.
What I would really like to have in the flash is: autozoom, second curtain sync, guide number of at least 25 (metres, sorry -- I think that's about 100 in feet), vertical swivel head (horizontal is nice but not essential). Am I too optimistic?

John -- Arlon, Belgium
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Old May 28, 2004, 9:50 AM   #2
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I think that using a slave flash is a waste in your case. You can get a non-Nikon flash but dedicated for Nikon. How many features can be controlled by the camera, I don't know, but you will get exposure controlled by the camera at least (what people call TTL control of the flash).
Myself I use a non-Nikon flash with my CP950 and exposure is controlled by the camera, but not the AF assist. (It's a "TTL" Nikon-dedicated flash I used with my Nikon film camera.)

Beside, a too tight fit in the hot shoe means a poor construction quality, forget that flash.

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Old Jun 15, 2004, 9:21 AM   #3
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Just an update on this. I realised that autozoom was out of the question since the camera does not communicate much with the flash unit -- basically limiting the commands to on/off.

In the end, I found a second hand SB-80DX -- yes, overkill for the 5400, but who knows, perhaps one day I'll upgrade! And it "only" cost me half the price of the camera.

The flash unit fits perfectly, and works perfectly -- at least as far as I've been able to figure out so far.
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