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Old Dec 14, 2006, 3:00 PM   #1
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Sunpak Digital Flash (PZ40MSFLASH) Does anyone know if this will work on the Sony A100?
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Old Dec 14, 2006, 6:41 PM   #2
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I assume that's a model number you got from a vendor's site somewhere

From what I can find out, the Sunpak PZ40x is supposed to be compatible with KM DSLR models (a rare find in third party strobes).

See this chart:

http://www.sunpak.jp/e/products/pz40...#Compatibility

Also, see Sunpak's guide to finding a flash that shows the 7D as being compatible:

http://www.sunpak.jp/e/s_navi/index.html

So, this strobe would "probably" work on an A100, too. This one appears to be one with the same x designation:

Sunpak PZ40x II AF TTL Flash at B&H

I did some digging through the forums, and found one A100 user on another forum that said "my sunpak pz40x works perfectly with the a100"

But, that was one post, from one user, with no details or sample images (and I've seen mistakes about strobes made before, just because someone happened to be at exactly the right range for flash exposure to work out OK).

I also found some posts from KM DSLR owners regarding needing to use Exposure Compensation using non-D lenses with some of the other PZ series Sunpaks (PZ4000AF). I don't know how much these strobes share in the way of compatibility.

IOW, not many people appear to have tried them and you'd be taking your chances. If you get one, update everyone on how well it works (or doesn't). You won't have HSS or Wireless (and the A100 does not allow manual power settings for flash). But, *if* it works OK, it would be a slightly less alternative compared to some of the other strobes available if you don't mind losing features like HSS and Wireless.


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Old Dec 14, 2006, 6:47 PM   #3
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Jim you are so awesome!!!!! Thank you thank you! I'm going to take another look at this one it's in my budget range. And the place I found it has a great return policy!

Thank you!!!!

Oh and thanks for the link! I never even thought about seeing if Sunpak had a web site DUH!
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Old Dec 14, 2006, 7:04 PM   #4
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It's outside of mine. lol

I spent a total of $48 for the flash system I use on my Maxxum 5D, and that included two strobes. lol

When I use a flash (not very often), I mostly use a Sunpak 333 Auto via third party adapter (FS-1100 equivalent). I paid $25 for a Sunpak 333 Auto in 10 (as new in box) condition from the used department at B&H. I've got a smaller Sunpak 222 Auto I bought for $7 from KEH, and I got my FS-1100 equivalent adapter for $16 from a vendor in Hong Kong.

Of course, I have to use manual exposure on the camera (setting it to match the Auto Aperture Range of the flash). But, it's not that big of a deal to me to use one that way. It's a lot cheaper (and it also eliminates the preflash you have with a dedicated strobe). :-)

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Old Dec 15, 2006, 6:59 AM   #5
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Hmmmmm I shoot a lot in manual and getting better and better at that. I may have to look into what you are doing! I am trying so hard to become a better photographer. There is so much to learn.



But, I've already went from a full auto to ap priority to a lot of manual stuff. I even figured out how to shoot my Christmas tree this yr with all the lights off and my 50 f1.7 on my Sony in total manual so I've come a long way.



Now if I could just learn more about shooting people.



Thank you so much for all of the help you have given me. You are always here to give everyone a hand up!
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Old Dec 15, 2006, 3:53 PM   #6
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Jim:::: Is this the adapter you use?
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Old Dec 15, 2006, 4:05 PM   #7
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Yep. That's the one I have.

Just keep in mind that you do lose a bit of flexibility going with an Auto Thryistor type flash if you want to try that route.

Most of the common ones have 3 Auto Aperture Ranges (although my smaller Sunpak 222 Auto only has 2 Auto Ranges).

So, with most of the less expensive ones, you're limited as the the aperture you can use for a given ISO speed and distance range (and the middle range on one would typically run around 4 to 30 feet at ISO 200 and f/5.6) So, you'd need to change your ISO speed to use a different aperture within the same Auto Range. You'd have 3 different ranges on most (and most also give you manual power settings if the Auto Ranges are not what you want).

You also wouldn't have the AF Assist lamp on the flash, and you'd give up HSS and Wireless like you would have with a KM 3600HS (D), 5600HS(D), or Sony equivalent models (but, you wouldn't have HSS or Wireless on the Sunpak you're looking at anyway).

I don't use a flash a whole lot. So, this kind of solution (adapter with Auto Thyristor Flash) is fine for my limited needs.

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Old Dec 15, 2006, 8:20 PM   #8
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Hmmm My best friend has the 5600 and I love it. I have to use a flash when I'm doing group photos at home. There isn't enough light in my house or my mom's.

Here is an example of what I did with my friends 5600.



I want to be able to get this!
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Old Dec 15, 2006, 9:17 PM   #9
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Very nice... no ugly shadows, so you must have bounced it, and the exposure looks fine. You could have done the same thing with just about any of them in the same conditons if you don't mind using manual exposure and setting the camera and flash to match.

If I were going to spend that much on a dedicated flash, I'd probably go with a Metz instead, though (54MZ3, 54MZ4 or 54MZ4i with the latest SCA3302M7 foot). That way, I wouldn't have to worry about any blinkers from a preflash in darker environments). It doesn't happen very often (I've only had it happen with two people so far). But, some people will always blink with one.

A flash with a built in sensor like the Metz (or even the cheap auto thyristor flashes that I have) don't need a preflash. The Metz has an Auto mode that is aware of the camera settings being used (so, you wouldn't need to worry about using manual exposure on the camera and setting the flash and camera to match for aperture and iso speed).

It's my understanding that the SCA3302M7 foot (which has better compatiblity with the DSLR-A100) is a bit tough to come by right now though. I've seen reports of some compatibility quirks using the M6 foot with the new Sony DSLR (TTL modes not working right, although the Auto mode appears to be fine, which is the way I'd be using one anyway if I got one). The new M7 foot is supposed to solve the issues with the DSLR-A100.

BTW, there are more options, too. For example, Metz made a 40MZ3 that can use the SCA3302 foot (and you'd want the latest M7 version if possible) that you sometimes see at bargain prices on the used market. Like the more expensive 54MZ4, it's aware of the camera settings being used with the correct foot using it's Auto mode (where the built in sensor in the flash measures reflected light during the exposure to eliminate the need for a preflash).

You could probably find one at a decent price on the used market with an ISO Standard Foot and use it via an adapter (manual exposure on the camera, setting the camera and flash to match for aperture and ISO speed). Then, buy the newer SCA3302M7 foot later when it's more readily available and eliminate the need to use manual exposure and an adapter. It does not have HSS though (the more expensive Metz 54MZ4 does).

There is no one right solution.

I went cheap, since I don't use a flash that often. Try find a dedicated flash for $25 that gives you multiple auto ranges with no preflash, a GN of 120 Ft at ISO 100, Tilt, Swivel, a Manual Zoom Head and manual power settings (full, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8 and 1/16). If I were using one more often, I'd probably "bite the bullet" and buy a Metz. ;-)

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Old Dec 15, 2006, 9:23 PM   #10
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Wow you have given me so much to think on! Thank you so much for taking the time. I'm truly trying to learn and I've taken a ton of notes on everything you have told me.

You have been so awesome answering all my questions and I hope that what you have told me helps others!

Thank you so much!
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