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Old Sep 21, 2007, 3:47 PM   #1
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I'm looking for the trigger voltage for my Series 1 Vivitar 840 AF?? can't find it anywhere. I have a flash slave trigger (optical) and it will fire my Sunpak 433d but not the vivitar, how does that work? I also don't want to ruin my camera!!!
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Old Sep 22, 2007, 12:06 AM   #2
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http://www.botzilla.com/photo/strobeVolts.html
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Old Sep 22, 2007, 10:04 AM   #3
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I've checked there, the 840 AF isn't listed.
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Old Sep 22, 2007, 11:39 AM   #4
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I would measure it using a high impedence volt meter to find out what the trigger voltage is.

You'll find some instructions on this page:

http://www.botzilla.com/photo/g1strobe.html

Or, use a Wein Safe-Sync or similar device to reduce the trigger voltage to a safe level.

Or, just buy another flash with a known safe trigger voltage. ;-)

Many of the Sunpaks can be found at bargain prices on the used market. Just make sure you get a model with low trigger voltage if your camera has a limit on what you can use (and many do now). You can find a brand new Sunpak 383 Super for around $79 (less used).

For example, I got a Sunpak 333 Auto in 10 condition (as new in box) from the used department at B&H for $25 a while back. I got a Sunpak 222 Auto for $7 from the used department at keh.com (and they even threw in a nice coiled PC Sync Cord with it). I paid less for both flashes combined compared to what a Wein Safe Sync would have cost me.

I just gave away one old Vivitar a while back (because it had a very high trigger voltage). It was less expensive for me to buy different used flashes versus trying to get voltage protection for it.

I've read that some of the older Vivitars are a bit "finnicky" about being triggered, too (with some cameras, they don't even work in hotshoe adapters, even with voltage protection). That's probably because they're expecting a hard contact closure for a longer period of time than some modern digital cameras provide via electronics to fire them.

But, it's a good idea to measure any flash you want to try and use if you're not using any type of voltage protection.

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