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Old Apr 24, 2008, 4:10 PM   #1
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For years I have held off buying a dedicated flash for my KM 5D, and have since mastered using the Sunpak 433D Auto Thyristor flash successfully. With the Sto-fen bounce flash attachment facing up at 75 degree angle, manual settings atISO 200, 1/125th and f5.6, I have been getting very consistent, warm exposure results. But I finally got a good deal on the Minolta 3600HS flash, and I was looking forward to the convenience of just popping it on, setting the camera to P and not worrying about exposure settings. However, I find that the results are a lot more inconsistent, and I get too many washed out over-exposed shots with blown highlights. Here is an example of my son graduating from Kindergarten this morning. What a waste. Anybody had similar results? I am about to get rid of this flash and go back to my Sunpak.


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Old Apr 24, 2008, 6:29 PM   #2
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Take a look http://www.photoclubalpha.com/2007/0...e-alpha-dslrs/
"From the start, there have been issues with brand new 5600 HS(D) flashguns giving under or over exposure with different Konica Minolta 7D and 5D bodies. The correct procedure, if your flash consistently gives poor exposure in straightforward situations, is to have the flashgun and camera calibrated together by JP Service Solutions, the official repair facility in the UK, or your regional Sony authorized repair shop for KM products.

Fewer cases of the 3600 HS(D) producing poor exposure have been noted, and the pop-up flash generally produces good results."
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Old Apr 25, 2008, 7:44 AM   #3
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The camera's matrix metering system will tend to weight your focus point more for flash exposure (using what it sees in that area of the return from the preflash).

My guess is that you were focused on the black chalkboard (one of my EXIF readers is reporting the center focus point was used). If you focus on something darker, the camera is probably going to try and brighten it towards mid gray with a longer flash burst, overexposing the photo.

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Old Apr 25, 2008, 11:34 AM   #4
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Thanks for the info, Jim. That helps.
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Old Apr 28, 2008, 10:55 PM   #5
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There is a definite problem with the communication between the camera and the flash. Direct flash seems to be pretty accurate, but bouncing the flash off the ceiling uniformly results in overexposure.

Now, here is something interesting I noticed. This weekend I brought a 35 mm SLR (the Maxxum 50) to my oldest son't birthday party, just to shoot film again for fun. Interestingly, when I attached the 3600HS, the green "Auto" light came on, which has never been lit when the flash was on my KM5D. Sure enough, the exposure with the film camera was perfect while the KM5D overexposed. Here are samples. Thiswas shot with the Maxxum 50, bounce flash in P mode. (The Rite Aid film scanner is pretty lousy, the print came out beautifully though.)
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Old Apr 28, 2008, 10:58 PM   #6
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...and here a shot with KM5D, bounce flash in P Mode. Again, the "Auto" LED did not come on...overexposed, blown hightlights.
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Old Apr 28, 2008, 11:00 PM   #7
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This reminds me that I had a lot of trouble with the Sigma EF-500 DG SUPER Flash which was supposedly compatible with my KM5D, but I could not get it to expose right. Maybe the problem wasn't the flash, but the camera. Has there been a reported problem with early 5D's flash compatibility?
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Old Apr 29, 2008, 7:38 AM   #8
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What kind of lens are you using (D or non-D)? Did you try setting the camera to both ADI and Preflash-TTL to see if there is any difference?

I'd just set your Exposure Compensation to a -EV value if it overexposes consistently (and I think Exposure Compensation settings default to controlling Ambient and Flash combined, but you may want to go through the available options).

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Old Apr 29, 2008, 10:48 AM   #9
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My father has my old KM5D and was complaining to me of a similar issue a while ago. I checked out the settings and he was on ADI but using a non D lens, a quick switch to Pre TTL and all the problems went away so hopefully that solves it.
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