SM Flashwaves - Cheap alternative to Pocke Wizard

Started Jan 28, 2008 | Discussions thread
P Hartung
P Hartung Regular Member • Posts: 323
Re: Got mine today

My FlashWaves arrived yesterday (1 transmitter + 2 receivers), and I immediately tried them out around our place.

Since we mainly use wireless triggers to enhance certain location portraiture with flash augment, the tests I performed at fairly close distances were flawless (45 ft range & 1/250th sync). My main concern was to squeeze out as much sync speed as possible, and I consistently achieved 1/250th without misfire or delay in curtain. Regardless of the further tests I'll do, at the very least these fit perfectly for our regular needs.

This morning, in my zeal to check the range/sync maximums, I was a bit surprised that I couldn't get out to the 50-60 meter maximum with consistency (clear line of sight). In terms of weather, it's cloudy and 40 degrees farenheit so this may have been a factor. The battery issue has got me thinking, since I did use freshly charged NIMH AAA's in the receivers but the transmitter was only using the supplied A23 from Korea.

I'll withhold judgment on the range/sync issue until I can get a fresh A23 for the transmitter.

Basically, my initial tests showed the following:

Nikon D300, shutter priority set to 1/250th, comp to minus 3 1/3rd (so as to see more of the flash environment rather than pure light), 70-200mm VR, Sigma EF500 DG Super mounted on lightstand w/ adjustable bracket set to 1/2 power manual, and the FlashWave receivers mounted horizontally (like Gene's initial test image shows). All of my distances were measure to the inch for precision using a 100 ft. scrolling tape measure.

50 feet = flawless consistency

100 feet = 4/4 shots were spot on

150 feet = 3/4 shots successful

200 feet = 0/4 shots made

180 feet = 2/4 shots made

165 feet = 3/4 shots made

At this point, I pivoted the flash bracket so that the flash was horizontal while the receiver/antannae would be vertical. After going back to the 200 foot mark with no success in this configuration, I basically paced my self closer until the results matched those of the first series and got the same results.

The vertical vs. horizontal receiver issue seems interesting to me, and I'll revisit this when I get a fresh A23 for the transmitter. I'll try to perform the other tests I mentioned before and post again.

Overall, so far, I'm both gratified that good triggers can be had (that easily attach to the flash wirelessly) for a decent price, and yet surprised that clear line of sight range was spotty past 125 feet...

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“The worth and excellency of a soul is to be measured by the object of its love”
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 P Hartung's gear list:P Hartung's gear list
Nikon D800 Nikon AF-S Nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VR Nikon AF-S Nikkor 28-70mm f/2.8 ED-IF Nikon AF Micro-Nikkor 60mm f/2.8D Tokina AT-X Pro 100mm f/2.8 Macro +2 more
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