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Old Jan 15, 2006, 12:29 AM   #1
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Sunpak 383 Does the slides on the back of the flash do anything or are the just a guide? I am having problems getting a good exposure with mine on my Panasonic FZ 20. I was taking pictures inside the house and noticed the pictures seem to be yellow or under exposed. Anyone know anything about this flash. Any suggestions would be very helpful.



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Old Jan 17, 2006, 11:37 AM   #2
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I have an FZ20, and use the 383 in the "manual" mode, so I can tell you what the slider does for that. First, of course, you need to place the vertical slider in the "manual" position and the ISO rating sliderto the ISO value you have set in the camera.Then, the power switch changes the light output as indicated on the horizontal sllider -- full power, half power, etc. The important thing is the table shown, which changes as you move the power slider position. It indicates what the appropriate f-stop is for a given distance at the indicated power position. The "automatic" positions are too crude to get decent exposure control to my way of thinking. The manual controls are quite reliable. Just make sure the sliders are properly positioned. The biggest weakness I find in the 383 is that there is no positive detent for the various positions. It's quite easy to leave the slider between two positions, which gives uncertain results. Also, I tend to use a rule of thumb where I double the distances when I bounce the flash or when I usemy diffuser. Depending on the ceiling and angle, you may need to adjust a bit on those values, but they generally work out well enough for me. After all, you're just eyeballing the distance in the first place, so all your settings have some "windage" in them.

By the way, I set the FZ20 to manual mode, too. I use the Aperture priority setting to allow me to set the f-stop as required. I use ISO 100 for just about everything, including flash. The main "gotcha" is that you need to set the shutter speed by going to shutter priority or manual settings before you begin using the aperture priority setting. The reason you can't do all this on the manual setting is because of a stupid design flaw in the FZ20, where the LCD and EVF will not gain up when you use the Manual setting, but they will if you use Aperture priority. Go figure.


ETA: If you insist on using the FZ20's "PRESET" mode, you can only control the exposure value by using the power slider. The camera will always be set to f 2.8, shutter speed 1/100, and ISO 100 in that mode. So your only degree of freedom is with the power setting on the flash. Moving the "Automatic" sliderfor a camera set to f/4.0 doesn't change the setting on the camera. It just ocurred to me that that may be the mistake you're making. FWIW
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Old Jan 17, 2006, 1:14 PM   #3
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Thanks for the help.

I found that the problem I was having was the settings were not getting to the right stop. So it was stuck in the middle. Poor results. Great now.



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