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Peculiarity With My Flash (Sunpak 383)

Started Feb 12, 2008 | Discussions thread
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Peculiarity With My Flash (Sunpak 383)
Feb 12, 2008

This one has me perplexed.

I bought my first flash not too long ago, and really used it for the first time yesterday, when I did a shoot with my girlfriend. I am using a Sunpak 383 with my Canon G7. Surprisingly, I had a really hard time getting the flash to do what I wanted it to do (fill flash, in a room lit from indoor lighting and window light).

Although I'm new to flash, I'm not the average newbie with no clue about how to use it. I was at least six feet away for most of the shots, and bouncing it off the white ceiling. However, at ISO 200, 1/100 or so shutter speed, and an aperture of around 3-4, with flash setting of manual at the lowest power setting of 1/16 (and the iso slider set to 200), every single image I took was extremely overexposed to the point of having to delete them. With the added distance incurred by bouncing, it doesn't quite match the number offered by the sliding calculator (11 feet) but it's close enough that it shouldn't matter much!

After MUCH frustration, the only remedy I found was to decrease my shutter speed to 1/1000 and set the aperture to f8! Only then did I get properly exposed images - still at 6 feet straight line distance, bouncing the flash, and still using low power settings in manual mode.

By the way, the camera was in manual mode the entire time, as well. I know it isn't compatible with the Sunpak in certain modes, so that's not the issue.

What gives?! Is this 'normal' or should I purchase a 430EX? I have two upcoming weddings in the spring and I need something dependable.

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