What's the secret for getting the 5DII and the 580exII to work together?

Started Mar 11, 2013 | Questions thread
sacentre Senior Member • Posts: 1,763
Re: What's the secret for getting the 5DII and the 580exII to work together?

This is not a direct answer to your concerns - just an additional phenomenon to be aware of with Canon ETTL.

If you use any kind of flash modifier or diffuser on the flash with the flash head in its horizontal position and pointing directly forward, the flash will NOT calculate the distance information it gets from the lens correctly and will underexpose the shot. Once the flash is off the horizontal or at an angle say, if you are bouncing off a wall or ceiling, then it will calculate the exposure correctly.

It doesn't matter whether the flash is on camera or off camera connected with a Canon OC-E3 cable.

When I tried out a small DIY beauty dish fitted to my 580 EXII the shots were consistently underexposed and started a very long thread about in May 2011 which attracted a huge amount of informative input from people far more expert than me.


See especially this reply for a detailed explanation


Just something to be aware of when working with Canon's ETTL system which works fine within its design parameters for situations where you need quick results on the go.

For studio or fixed situations, I was inevitably drawn to the conclusion that any pro will tell you, that the way to go with flash is all manual if you want to learn about controlling and shaping light.

Just my ten cents


jezsik wrote:

To keep things easy, I set the camera to Program mode. When I set the flash to TTL, the closer subjects in a picture are blown out because the strobe goes at nearly full power. (Multi seems to work better, but it's still unpredictable.)

If I adjust the flash to -1 or -2, I still have the same problem. If I adjust the camera settings to set the flash to -1 or -2, it changes nothing. I just want to use the flash for fill light. Is there a surefire setting I can use?

I swear, my old 283 does a better job lighting a scene.

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