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Old Sep 18, 2007, 2:21 AM   #11
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I have the Sunpak PZ5000AF for almost a year, it's a great flash and only cost half of the 5600HS, but the wireless function is hard to work with my 5D, hope it will be ok with the A700. I just ordered the 5600HS from B&H today.
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Old Sep 18, 2007, 8:59 AM   #12
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FrankD...

I've heard of the lazy eye issue do to the pre-flash, but haven't experienced any problems with it. I almost never use a direct flash, I prefer to bounce it when possible. Is this why I haven't had those issues? What does the Metz do differently than the Minolta (or Sony) to avoid it?

I'm thinking of getting a second flash to go with the 3600 I already have. I thought the 5600 would be the obvious choice, but if the Metz can do everything the 5600 does, maybe I should consider it. But what about wireless capability? Actually, that would be my main reason for two flashes, so they would all have to be wireless capable. Any thoughts?
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Old Sep 18, 2007, 10:09 AM   #13
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DrChris wrote:
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Is this why I haven't had those issues? What does the Metz do differently than the Minolta (or Sony) to avoid it?
Not everyone is sensitive to a preflash. I've got a niece that is if I'm shooting in darker surroundings. You'll find that animals are sometimes more sensitive to a preflash, too.

Metz has an Auto mode available that uses a built in sensor to measure reflected light during the exposure, terminating the flash output when it sees enough light for the camera settings being used.

That Auto mode works similar to using an older Auto Thyristor type flash. Only with an older non-dedicated flash like that, you have to set the camera and flash to match for Aperture and ISO speed.

That's what I do. I use older Sunpak models as my flash system. I got a Sunpak 333 Auto from the used department at B&H for $25 (as new in box in 10 condition). It's got tilt, swivel, zoom head, multiple auto ranges, multiple manual power settings, and more. :-)

I also bought a smaller Sunpak 222 Auto (tilt but no swivel or zoom head) from keh.com for $7 (and they even threw in a nice coiled PC Sync cord with it).

Those work just fine for my limited needs. I just set the flash and camera to match for Aperture and ISO speed and let the flash control it's own ouptut (thanks to the built in sensor measuring it during an exposure).

I can even use them both at the same time. The adapter I bought will let me put the Sunpak 333 Auto in the hotshoe and attach the Sunpak 222 Auto via the adapter's built in PC Sync Port (or vice-versa). Both flashes will fire either way (either in an ISO standard hotshoe or via PC Sync Cord).

This is the adapter:

http://www.gadgetinfinity.com/produc...275&page=1

Stick to models with lower trigger voltages. See this thread about it:

Trigger Voltage Limits with Modern Digital Cameras

If you wanted to use Sunpaks like mine or a new Sunpak 383 Super (about $79 at places like B&H), get the adapter and set the camera and flash to match for aperture and ISO speed.

The Metz MZ series models have the same type of Auto mode. But, with the correct foot on these Metz models, you don't need an adapter, and they are aware of the Camera Settings being used. So, you don't have to use manual exposure and set the camera and flash to match.

If you go with a flash like the Metz 54MZ4, just make sure you get the latest SCA3302M7 foot if possible for best compatibility (the M7 is the firmware version). But, Metz can upgrade an older foot (they can upgrade the SCA3302M3 or higher). Bogen Imaging does the foot upgrades for them in the U.S.

Quote:
I'm thinking of getting a second flash to go with the 3600 I already have. I thought the 5600 would be the obvious choice, but if the Metz can do everything the 5600 does, maybe I should consider it. But what about wireless capability? Actually, that would be my main reason for two flashes, so they would all have to be wireless capable. Any thoughts?
I don't think the Metz will do wireless HSS. But, wireless works, or HSS works. You just can't combine them (no wireless HSS).

You can see some user reviews of the Metz 54MZ4 at dyxum. They should give you some pros and cons of this model.

http://www.dyxum.com/reviews/flash/r...sp?IDFlash=178

If I were going to decide between a Sony HVL-56AM and the Metz 54MZ4, I'd go with the Metz to get the Auto mode. Everyone I've seen comment on it that has both a Metz 54MZ series flash, as well as a KM 5600HS (D) or Sony HVL-56AM (rebranded 5600), prefers the Metz.

It will also work pre-flash TTL like the Sony/KM flashes work. But, the Auto mode in the Metz eliminates the need for a metering preflash (which KM or Sony flash models will always use, causing some people to blink just before the main flash, resulting in closed or partially closed eyes).

Most people don't notice the metering preflash (since it's very short flash that happens about 100ms before the main flash). But, a small percentage of the population is sensitive to it, and a Metz MZ series flash solution with the correct SCA3302 foot for the camera model you're using eliminates that issue.

Another advantage of the Metz, is that you can replace the foot and use it on another camera brand (and you could buy more than one foot for that purpose and share a flash system between different cameras).

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Old Sep 18, 2007, 1:03 PM   #14
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Thank you JimC for the excellent explanation.

DrChris wrote:
Quote:
I've heard of the lazy eye issue do to the pre-flash, but haven't experienced any problems with it. I almost never use a direct flash, I prefer to bounce it when possible. Is this why I haven't had those issues? What does the Metz do differently than the Minolta (or Sony) to avoid it?
I often encounter the lazy eye problem when using either flash unit to lighten shadows on outdoor backlit shots. For these the flash is typically mounted on the camera hit shoe.

When using the flash units indoors they are either set up for bounce flash or located off the camera and used in wireless mode. With these setups lazy eye is rarely a problem.

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Old Sep 18, 2007, 2:05 PM   #15
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Thanks to FrankD for your experience, that really helps me a lot. Thanks to JimC for your usual insightful explanation. And thanks to ellenphoto for asking the question. Like you said JimC, the only stupid question is the one not asked!
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