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Old Jan 23, 2006, 3:45 PM   #1
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I HATE flash pictures, they look terrible. At least mine do, I have seen others post pretty good looking pictures with flash. I keep reading about the wonderful qualities of bounce flash, and started shopping to see how much an external unit would cost.

Whoa, I wasnt ready for the $400 price tag of the minolta 5600 wonder, and I don't have any idea why I would need such a complicated looking device. I have a 5D and tried the tip I found to cut a translucent white film canister and slip it over the built in flash, but by the time I had a good exposure (what a pain!) it didnt look any better than before, only warmer.

There are a bunch of options I found, but other than wireless capability which sounds like a lot of fun to expieriment with I don't know why I should prefer one over the other. Is there a cheap (<$50) option? I havent been able to find one. I can't tell if the cheaper sigma even works with the 5d, or if it allows wireless. The Super model seems to.

The 2500 tilts up, and thats about it. $100
3600HS-D contorts like a circus freak, wireless plus laundry list of features $150
5600HS-D more controlls than the camera! $300
Sigma EF-500-DG-ST (Any more letters?) Looks like the 3600 $140
Sigma EF-500-DG-Super Looks like the 5600 $220

Can anyone summarize what the heck all these expensive flashes do, generally? I'd like to expieriment a little, I could use a flash if I can get decent results. Wireless could be useful and fun, but wouldnt a generic slave do about the same thing? Is there a Flashes for Dummies guide someplace?
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Old Jan 23, 2006, 6:24 PM   #2
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tmoreau wrote:
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Wireless could be useful and fun, but wouldnt a generic slave do about the same thing?
Yeap - but a compatible wireless flash system is much easier
FYI: http://www.friedmanarchives.com/flash.htm




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Can anyone summarize what the heck all these expensive flashes do, generally?
3600 -> GN is 36 in meter with 'idiot' lights
5600 -> GN is 56 in meter with comprehensive LCD panel
Ef-500 DG Super -> GN is 50 in meter comprehensive LCD panel
Ef-500 ST -> GN is 50 in meter without the wireless and stroboscopic modes (detuned DG Super)

I have both the 5600HS(D) and the EF-500 DG Super (but my Sigma is for Canon)... believe it or not but the Sigma has more features than the 5600HS - i.e. it can sync as a dumb slave as well
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Old Jan 23, 2006, 7:53 PM   #3
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Great info, thanks! It looks like the wireless capability is certainly worth having. It seems like the Sigma Super is the best deal, but what about the 3600? Lower power and you cant play video games on it?

Does the Sigma allow HSS like the 5600?


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Old Jan 23, 2006, 8:28 PM   #4
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This is just incredible info:

"[1] The 'traveling slit' describes the camera's shutter when you're shooting above the camera's X-sync speed. Below the X-sync speed the shutter normally opens all the way, the flash fires, and then the 2nd shutter curtain closes. Above X-sync the 2nd curtain is dispatched before the first curtain clears the shutter window all the way, so what the film "sees" is a virtual slit which traverses the shutter window. A flash that goes off during this time will normally only expose the area of the film where the slit is rather than the whole frame. HSS was designed to eliminate this problem by providing low-level flash illumination for a very long time by flash standards - as long as 1/200th of a second."

I kept wondering about how that worked.
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Old Jan 24, 2006, 10:10 AM   #5
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tmoreau wrote:
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Does the Sigma allow HSS like the 5600?
Yes - http://www.sigma-photo.co.jp/english..._500dg_sup.htm

Why get the 3600 when you can get the Sigma for approximately the same price? :idea:
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Old Jan 24, 2006, 12:49 PM   #6
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Unless you're intending to buy brand flash+stay in same camera brand forever Metz is much better than Sigma because by changing adapter it can can be fitted to cameras with standard shoe or other proprietary shoes. (+it has secondary reflector and wide angle diffuser for 20mm coverage)

http://www.metz.de/en/photo_electron..._MZ-4.171.html
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