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speaklightly Sep 7, 2005 7:39 PM

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I decided to begin this thread because I never hear slave flashes used directly with a digicam being mentioned. Using slave Flashes is a low cost way to very effectively extend your flash range with your digital camera.

Take a look at our sample photo. This would have been impossible to take with just the camera mounted flash which projects light out to just about 10 feet. However, by adding a simple slave flash, that digicam flash range was extended out to 25 feet!

Sarah Joyce

KCan Sep 7, 2005 10:29 PM

speaklightly wrote:

I decided to begin this thread because I never hear slave flashes used directly with a digicam being mentioned.
if you go through this forum, you will see that ~30-40% of discussions are about slave flash :-)

speaklightly Sep 7, 2005 10:51 PM


Yes, I read this folder regularly too. What I am wishing to discuss it a very simple slave flash add-on. I am not desiring to discuss light stand mounted slave strobes, slave strobes used in wedding photography, nor slave flashes used in a studio setup for portraits.

I guess you would call what I am wishing to discuss might be called "Using a Very Simple Slave Flash when taking Snapshots, a Cheap an Inexpensive Way to Considerably Extend the Range of your Digital Camera's Flash Range."

Sarah Joyce

nlp239 Sep 8, 2005 9:09 AM

I personally think it's a great subject especially since it's a new thread. It allows me to keep-up so to speak, instead of having to go thru the archives.

It seems it's aimed at the beginner, so go for it. I've hardly ever used flash and willing to learn so long as it uses the KISS technique.

Thanks Sarah, for bringing up the subject - it got my attention.

speaklightly Sep 8, 2005 2:24 PM

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Many thanks for your interest. What I am speaking about is using the flash on your digital camera to trigger a second flash, which is a slave flash.

It is inexpensive and quite easy. By combining the two flashes, you are able to extend your digital camera's normal falsh range of about 10 to 12 feet out to about 25 feet.

Attached is a photo of a typical slave flash. This slave flash measures 2" by 3 1/4", so it is quite compact and it can be mounted on a bracket or even hand held.

Sarah Joyce

speaklightly Sep 8, 2005 2:52 PM

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Using the slave flash in the shown in photo above, I took the attached photo at a distance of 28 feet. It give you an idea as to what a two flash system (on camera flash + a slave flash) can do.

The photo was hand held and naturally some zoom was used due to the 28 feet. However, the result is quite pleasing. It is a way of simply extending your flash range rather effectively.

Sarah Joyce

nlp239 Sep 8, 2005 4:22 PM

Thanks Sarah, call JC.

I always though a slave flash was something else. I thought it was something which was enabled by the main flash in a kind of switch.

The first 2 questions which come to mind are:

1. Can it be off camera or does it have to be on a bracket?
2. Where does it get it's power from.
3. You said it was cheaper, isn't it just another flash then.

Glad there's someone around ready to answer simple, beginer's questions.

speaklightly Sep 8, 2005 5:42 PM

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Yes, the slave flash is essentially just another flash. It is powered by its own self contained AA batteries. It can be on a bracket like a strobo frame, but I prefer to handhold it in my left hand as high as I can. It will work quite effectively on either the bracket or by being hand held.

I found this particular slave flash on E-bay at a cost of $48. Here is a sample with the flash on a bracket. Notice the wide very even light distribution.

Sarah Joyce

stnkline Sep 9, 2005 2:31 PM

At times when I use my slave flash I put a piece of fully expos rd 35mm film placed over the camera's flash when I do not want the camera flash to light the subject.


A-lex Sep 10, 2005 4:50 AM

I've had good idea - pick some miner's headlight mount, and mount your slave flash there. You'll get your hand free.

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