Bronica Zenza SQ-A flash?

Started 4 months ago | Discussions thread
Horiz Opposed
Horiz Opposed Contributing Member • Posts: 601
Re: Bronica Zenza SQ-A flash?

Ric_01 wrote:

Thank you,

So are you saying I can stay with 125th second and the camera will adjust to the aperture?

I'd use a mid aperture, F4 - F5.6, according to the Centon guide.

All I want is for some help from the flash to avoid camera-shake / blur, so I'm looking for a rough guide. Indoor subjects.

The photography is experimental, so I am not asking for exact settings for any one situation, please.

The camera won’t adjust anything unless you are using a TTL set up, if it is even capable of such.

Again, this is a very complicated subject to try to drill into in detail here. One reason is that the answer you want depends on what sort of look you are after.

Simply, you can use any shutter speed on a leaf shutter, and the flash exposure will be the same in all. Why? Because the flash itself is going off in about 1/8000 of a second so the shutter at 1/500 is still open long enough to capture the full frame, unlike a focal plane shutter which is only fully open at its sync speed.

(FOCAL PLANE- above sync speed, the first curtain has left the gate and before it gets to the other side, the second curtain has begun to follow it, meaning only that slit is open when a flash fires)

But here is the thing, your ambient light exposure will be affected as you slow or speed up the shutter, and affected by the aperture you pick. And that is where the answer you want gets hard to provide. Personally, I think the best event photos are ones where the lighting used is so well blended that the viewer isn’t aware of them, a nice balance between the flash exposure, and the ambient. Others like what I call the black cave look, where the subjects who are lit by the flash look great, but the rest of the scene is too dark to see.

Anything above 1/60, combined with the flash stopping the motion, should be safe, and in such a use* as here, with the flash on the orange setting, you would set the shutter to 1/60, and the lens to between f/8-11. Or, for more ambient exposure you would use the blue setting, and open up to between f/4 and 5.6, leaving the shutter speed where it is.
But how much ambient you get with that setting can’t be known here because it will vary based on what the general light level is in that usage. Is it daytime, with lots of windows, or evening with only room lights?

That flash is the old style “auto”, meaning it uses a small window in itself to measure and control the amount of light. There are settings on the back that tell you what aperture to use, and you decide based on how far you are going to be from your subjects (generally) and how much dof you want.

*You set the guide to the ISO your are using, and pick the color f-stop the corresponds to that, as shown here. In this example, if you had selected the orange setting on the front, you would set the aperture to halfway between f/8 and f/11.

I hesitate to mention it, but there is a technique called dragging the shutter. I have never used it with medium format, but use it all the time with FF digital. The goal of such is to get enough ambient exposure that the rest of the room is opened up like we see it with our eyes. To do such, I start with a flash setting of about f/4-5.6, and set the shutter at 1/30-1/60. As I said in an earlier reply, the flash will freeze movement on anything it hits, and if you are careful the other things in the frame will be ok at that shutter speed. I have never used anything slower than 1/15 because then I think you will get unacceptable motion in the rest of the room.

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