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Old Jun 7, 2008, 7:44 AM   #1
TDN
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Hi,

Some friends of mine asked if I would do a shoot with them in a few weeks. I'm enthusiastic about the idea, so I'm looking into some new gear to add some flexibility to my portrait setup.

Lenses are no problem, got enough of those, but flashes, that's something else.

So what I really want to know is: Has anyone used the Cactus V2s wireless flash trigger/recievers on a Pentax?
The ones that gadgetinfinity offers on ebay are supposed to be of decent quality, but I only know CaNikonians that use them.

Any experiences with these?

I figure that with a set of 1 trigger, two recievers, a couple of lightstands and umbrellas would get me pretty far.
A used SB-24 flash should get me well underway aswell.
Add to that some homemade snoots, grids and what not, and I think I'll get something more than everyday ambient light shots.


Thanks, and any tips are of course welcome.

Tom
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Old Jun 7, 2008, 8:24 AM   #2
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I have one transmitter and three receivers, only problem is that the receivers need to be a couple of meters apart or they interfere with each other (not really a problem).

I recently did two spring prom shoots for a local company that had overbooked and needed another photographer and camera. They gave me some old studio strobes with stands and umbrellas an a nice background to use but I was afraid the trigger voltage would be to high. I put the receiver on one of the strobes, set the other for slave and attached the transmitter to my hot shoe, they worked flawlessly, two none fires out of over 300 pictures and they were because I had accidently knocked the transmitter out of position when I moved the camera.

They are no pocket wizards but they will serve me fine.

Ira
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Old Jun 7, 2008, 9:47 AM   #3
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Thanks Ira, glad to hear that they work on the Pentax DSLR system.


Did you get them from gadgetinfinity?
I'm ordering a set after the weekend.

Tom
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Old Jun 7, 2008, 4:44 PM   #4
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TDN wrote:
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Thanks Ira, glad to hear that they work on the Pentax DSLR system.


Did you get them from gadgetinfinity?
I'm ordering a set after the weekend.

Tom
Mine work on the DL, DS and K10D. I got mine from a Chinese vendor on ebay. Total cost was only about $60 including shipping. They first forgot to send one of the receivers but I got it two weeks later.

Ira
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Old Jun 7, 2008, 10:17 PM   #5
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Hello fellow Strobist!

I own a set of poverty wizards as well (1 transmitter, 2 receivers). I plugged the transmitter into the hotshoe of my Pentax K100D. I have used a Metz 48 AF-1 and a Sunpak 422D with this system. I'm no advanced lighting user, but it works for my needs. Granted, I'm limited to the 1/180 sync speed, but I usually don't need to go faster anyway.

I don't have any umbrellas yet, but I plan to, as I already bought some light stands on eBay. With the Cactus triggers, the flash ends up a bit too high to properly position the light on the center of the umbrella. Therefore, if you're going to use a flash wirelessly on an umbrella, either get a flash with a sync port, or get a TTL hotshoe cable (the Pentax flash extension adapters/cables work as well).

In terms of range, your mileage WILL vary. My units are decent; I can trigger flashes located downstairs while upstairs across the room. Others won't be as lucky. To improve performance, others have performed antenna mods that have improved the reception range to Pocket Wizard ranges.

- Jason
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Old Jun 8, 2008, 3:01 AM   #6
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Illuminati wrote:
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In terms of range, your mileage WILL vary. My units are decent; I can trigger flashes located downstairs while upstairs across the room. Others won't be as lucky. To improve performance, others have performed antenna mods that have improved the reception range to Pocket Wizard ranges.

- Jason
Thanks Jason, another confirmation for me to click that order button

Yes I heard about that mod, seems interesting with just an antenna.
The good thing is that I have acces to the right tools (and a small army of engineers) at my university, so I might look into that.

It seems most reliable if you use a standard 433 Mhz antenna found on wireless routers.
A tutorial: http://jeremykuster.blogspot.com/200...-tutorial.html

Tom
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Old Jun 8, 2008, 10:44 AM   #7
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Yep, that mod by Jeremy was the one I was referring to. It'd be more effective with a full-wave antenna, but it does the job.

As for me, I don't need extreme distances, so the Cactus triggers are fine as-is.

- Jason
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