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Old Dec 26, 2006, 8:58 PM   #1
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My Sony DSC-H1 flash:| is very slow at crucial times, such as weddings, family portaits?

It doesn't matter what setting I have it on either... Auto, Red-eye Reduction, Fill-in and Slow-sync. There is too long of a wait, (sometimes seconds) before it flashes. I've used primarly auto. Is P, S, A, or M settings better for flash?

I missed some great shots at a wedding recently because the flash took too long to go off. And shooting family portraits they start fidgeting waiting for the flash.

I want the flash to go OFF when I push the button, not seconds later!

What am I doing wrong, (settings) or is this normal for this camera? Maybe the camera is faulty?
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Old Dec 26, 2006, 11:32 PM   #2
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Its normal.

The camera uses only 2 batteries and has a very very powerful flash and slow recharge of the flash is the penalty.

Personally I don't use red eye reduction, for the reason it annoys people, rarely works well, wastes some power, and software can be used later to correct in post processing.

Pay attention to the flash recharge light, if its blinking you can't shoot.

Try reducing the flash to minus " - " , and maybe boost the ISO a little, note I think you may have to be out of auto mode to adjust flash, try Program Auto or whatever mode you like the best.

The higher the ISO the faster the flash can recharge, since less power is needed to light the scene correctly.

The H1 doesn't have a lot of leeway in ISO settings unlike the newer H2 and H5, stay away from ISO 400 if you can, so try 100 (vs the standard 64) that should cut the time a little, or try ISO 200 for a major cut in the recharge time.

Take some test shots and depending on how you post process or the size of the prints you might find the noise perfectly acceptable at ISO 200.

Since flash can be harsh you may like to use some kind of diffuser so soften the light, though this may cut down the flash power slightly thus costing a little extra recharge time ( since the flash has to pump up its power to compensate )

A white film canister cut in half, a white ping pong ball cut open or even a hanky or piece of white tissue are cheap and cheerful ways to quickly soften the flash.

Or $10-$20 or so gets a more professional looking lumiquest soft screen from ebay, amazon etc.

http://search.ebay.com/search/search...st+soft+screen

http://www.amazon.com/LumiQuest-Inst...806240-4823310

Oh and obviously make sure the batteries you are using are as fully charged as possible, as the power fades the flash recharge time will lengthen.



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Old Mar 15, 2007, 6:49 PM   #3
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Excellent tips!!!

I have my H1 on the NW Craiglist for sale right now.

I'm goin to buy the new H5.

Cheers
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Old Mar 16, 2007, 5:53 PM   #4
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Be careful. I have an H5. I love it, but the flash recharge is also very slow. I actually posted a thread on it recently here.
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Old Mar 17, 2007, 2:07 AM   #5
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Please remember that the distance you are shooting has a great impact on the power needed for the flash to use. try experimenting, shoot at least a meter with flash, it recharges quickly and you can shot again in a second. but try to shoot 5-7meters away from your subject and you will end up waiting for a complete recharge.

Perhaps Sony's H7 & H9 can solve this limitations because of the higher ISO of 3200.

I suggest to wait for it that buying H5.
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Old Mar 17, 2007, 8:49 AM   #6
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Well Sony have moved away from the AA batteries to lithium-ion so that should (hopefully) cure the slow flash recharge, thoughthat now makes us use an expensive to buy , underpowered battery giving a stated less than 300 shots...

I would prefer AAs myself, since they are cheap, easily bought anywhere, and a good set of 2700/2900mah set can give 400-500+ shots on the big screen H5 anyway.

Sure the flash recharge is slow, but the H2 and H5 have a useable ISO 400 so flash recharge time is very speedy.

I assume the main complaints about flash are from those who stick to ISO 80 and 100.

If they set the ISO to 200 or even 400 they would see a much faster recharging flash.
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