Success PC Port output on HVL-F7S (Sony NEX) without PREFLASH!!!

Started May 21, 2012 | Discussions thread
OP fabianbono Regular Member • Posts: 190
Re: fabian does your mod suppress Sony flash output?

Hi Russel, my comments here

RussellInCincinnati wrote:

A few details from fabianbono to pin down.

Firstly, does this convert-Sony-Shutter-Sync-to-standard-hot-shoe-flash-trigger-signal modification suppress the Sony flash output, even when the Sony flash is raised to active position? To be specific, does it suppress the preflash when the Sony flash is raised to "on" position?

The Sony Flash works totally independent of this mod.

It continue working same as original. The mod don't suppress it and normal working is not affected.
Sony flash continue firing preflash.

Separate question, does it suppress the main flash? The latter question relates to a sizable savings of camera battery power, and also perhaps eliminating the need to put a piece of tape over the Sony flash tube if you want to suppress its light.

The mod don't suppress the main flash.
But you can still firing external flash with Sony flash in off position (down).
So it will save battery since no flash firing on camera.

Secondly, while I understand that the fabianbono mod will send out a trigger signal whether the Sony flash is raised or lowered, under what conditions if any does the wonderful Sony feature of brightening the viewfinder still function?

This is the weak point of the mod.
With Sony flash down (off) you will not get the LCD screen brighten up.

This also could affect your AF function, even with AF illumination assistance light.

Issue is to operate the camera on a very dark condition (or no light at all), then I rise up the Sony Flash (to brighten the LCD screen), half press the shutter button to get the AF make focus, then while maintain the half pressed shutter button, down the Sony Flash and then shoot the picture.

On this condition, the only restriction is that you will have available only the value settings of speed and aperture for Sony Flash. Camera will reduce your value available ranges.

I.e. are my assumptions correct, that (a) you don't get viewfinder auto-brightening when the Sony flash is lowered and (b) you do get preview auto-brightening when the Sony flash is raised to traditional "on" position?

(a) your are right, no auto-brightening when the Sony flash is lowered
(b) you are right too.

Thirdly, how long would it take you now to disassemble the little Sony flash, solder in the 2 wires needed, and then put the flash back together?

With the materials, will not take more than one or two hours.

It took me whole afternoon because I need to search components in my house, actually finally I took them from an old scrap IR TV remote control.

Fourthly, do you even think you absolutely need the entire Sony flash unit to wire up a trigger? Wonder what would happen if you had a little chunk of circuit board with "fingers" disconnected (except for the 2 connection fingers that have the wires soldered to them, plus the resistors and transistor you need), that you plugged into the Sony flash connector slot. Could that little circuit board if it was somehow insertable and removable still function as a flash trigger? Or does the entire flash need to be plugged in, in order to convince the Nex camera that it's time to send out signals to the top port.

Because the size of the Sony slot connector, it is almost impossible to replace by a home made printed circuit board, and for sure will not have the same contact precision than a connector.

And I think this is a proprietary connector, really I didn´t research if exist this option.

What you say is what Shadow hot shoe does, they built this connector replacement.

But I will add something to this issue.
With my mod, you can continue using on camera flash.

Suppose you want to use external flash for side lighting, and on camera flash for main portrait flash with some diffuser, then you need both.

Thanks in advance.

Now I continue my plan, I´m already working in V2!!
I will purchase this cheap Hot Shoe Pixel TF-321

Then will modify the base (remove it and make the base flat) and fix it at top of Sony Flash cover.
Then I will get a Hot Shoe connection plus PC Sync port and no external cables.

For sure on this shoe I ONLY will use a Wireless Trigger (I´m buying a couple of Yongnuo RF603) since this configuration can´t support the weight of a full flash.

Same as Shadow shoe, I think if you attach a big flash there, the camera connector can suffer some problem.
Sony Flash is cheap to replace, but the camera is not.

Thanks for all your comments, I think this will help and encourage other guys to do this mod.

 fabianbono's gear list:fabianbono's gear list
Sony Alpha NEX-C3 Nikon D5200 Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR Nikon AF-S DX Nikkor 35mm F1.8G Sony E 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 OSS +8 more
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