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Old Dec 15, 2006, 10:33 PM   #11
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I just spend too much time in forums. ;-)

I see a lot of posts from other users and try to keep up with what works and what doesn't for cameras I'm interested in. That doesn't mean that my opinion is any better than someone elses (especially since I'm just looking at works for others in most cases versus gear that I've bought for myself).

So, make sure to form your own opinions as to what's important to you when deciding on gear. No once choice is going to be just right for everyone, and different people are going to value different things. Any opinion you see is likely biased, including mine.


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Old Dec 15, 2006, 10:43 PM   #12
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Jim's a wealth of info!

I've used a Vivitar 285HV for years from an Olympus C2100 to my 7D (it'll give monster light)! The trick is finding a way to trigger a flash. I use a Patterson Interfit infrared trigger & a Wein slave to trigger it (although I've also used a PC Synch cord directly too......
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Old Dec 15, 2006, 11:05 PM   #13
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I've got one Vivitar left that I've had for years (it's an older 273). I gave another one to my brother-in-law recently. But, I wouldn't trust trying to use it on a my 5D (at least not via the hotshoe without a wein safe sync).

It just might toast the electronics it's trigger voltage is so high. :-)

On a 7D via the PC Sync Port it would probably be fine (the 7D sync port is rated up to 400 volts). But, the 5D and DSLR-A100 don't have one and I'd be careful about trigger voltage via their hotshoes using an adapter.

The trigger voltage from the newer 285HV is not supposed to be as high.

I think I'd prefer to use the Sunpaks though (I hate to give up the swivel that I have with my newer (used) Sunpak 333 Auto, since it makes it easier to bounce a flash from portrait position if you don't want to use a flash bracket or use the flash off camera for snapshots at family gatherings). For only $25 in like new condition, the Sunpak works for me (and yep, I'm cheap). lol


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Old Dec 15, 2006, 11:19 PM   #14
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You have given me so much to think about that my head spins. And I know you are just telling me what you have found that works and I have to make my own decisions.

But, you have taught me so much! I know next to nothing about flash. Lens I'm half way knowledgable about. I just am now getting into trying to use flash so that I can learn more about portrait photos.

Now if I had the room to use and 85 that would be the ideal situation I wouldn't have to use a flash
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Old Dec 15, 2006, 11:53 PM   #15
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Kalypso is the lighting expert. Look at some of the portraits he has around in the forums. I'm more of a snap shooter. lol

But, Auto Thryistor flashes like we're discussing have been around a long time.

You don't need a dedicated strobe to get good results if you don't mind using manual exposure and setting the flash and camera to match. A dedicated strobe is more convenient. But, they also have some drawbacks. With a digital camera, they are reliant on a preflash to help judge exposure (since the sensors are too reflective to measure light from during a flash exposure).

With an Auto Thyristor type flash (like the non-dedicated Sunpaks and Vivitars we've mentioned) no preflash is needed, since these flashes have a built in sensor designed to measure reflected light during the exposure, terminating their output when they see enough light for the selected Auto Range.

There are pros and cons to both approaches.

P.S.

And don't get me wrong... the more automated the solution, the less time you spend worrying about camera settings, and the more time you can spend worrying about the important stuff (like composition and making sure you're not chopping off heads and feet, etc.). lol So, auto can be good, provided the solution gives you the results you want, depending on the conditions you're shooting in.

Given an unlimited budget, I'd probably be using a higher end Metz strobe, giving me the best of both flash types.

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Old Dec 16, 2006, 12:14 AM   #16
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Thank you! I'm going to read some more learn more and then make a decisison. Every time I make one decision 10 minutes later I change it.

And you truly have helped me so much!

I want to be a good ametuer I want to be able to take pictures for friends and family. I'm learning and getting better and lets face it, it's fun to play!
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Old Dec 16, 2006, 3:28 PM   #17
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While digging through my old stuff I found an old 2800 Minolta flash so I ordered the adapter so that I could try to use it! I may be getting off even cheaper
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Old Dec 16, 2006, 4:10 PM   #18
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It will probably only fire at full power (or max power for the hi or low positions).

That's the typical symptoms you'll have from an incompatible dedicated flash.

This is not an Auto Thyristor flash, and it's not designed to allow you to control power manually either. The scales on the back are only designed to let you know if the aperture selected is OK for the range you're shooting within. It expects to see communication from the camera (using OTF metering for flash), which you won't have with a KM DSLR trying to use one.

IOW, it is probably going to be more trouble than it's worth trying to get anything close to accurate exposure. You'd need to try and calculate your distance to subject, assuming max power from the flash, then stop down the aperture enough to try and avoid overexposure for the distance you're shooting at.


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Old Dec 16, 2006, 4:29 PM   #19
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I'll play a little and then I'll see if maybe I want to get one of the flashes from the HK vendor.
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