S5 hot shoe - use any flash?

Started Jun 25, 2007 | Discussions
DaddyK Forum Member • Posts: 86
S5 hot shoe - use any flash?

I am using my S5 with an old flash mounted on the hot shoe. It's not a Canon speedlite. It seems to work fine and gives good strong lighting (as it did on my trusty old 35mm film camera). I dont understand the comments that the S5 hot shoe only works with the Canon speedlite flash. I'm sure I'm missing something, like maybe the S5 works with most all flashes, but has some kind of camera exposure control of flash intensity on the Speedlites. Can anyone speak to this?

Thanks

Greg Gebhardt
Greg Gebhardt Forum Pro • Posts: 25,485
Re: S5 hot shoe - use any flash?

DaddyK wrote:

I am using my S5 with an old flash mounted on the hot shoe. It's
not a Canon speedlite. It seems to work fine and gives good strong
lighting (as it did on my trusty old 35mm film camera). I dont
understand the comments that the S5 hot shoe only works with the
Canon speedlite flash. I'm sure I'm missing something, like maybe
the S5 works with most all flashes, but has some kind of camera
exposure control of flash intensity on the Speedlites. Can anyone
speak to this?

Thanks

Most flashes would work, even a minolta or Nikon flash should work but it would not use the auto funtions that the Canon flash has to offer.

Also you say "old flash".

How old. Some of the older flashes use a very high trigger voltage. If too high it could/will burn out the electronics in the camera. Modern cameras are not designed to use high trigger violtages. It may work for a while but if the trigger voltage is too high it will fry the camera. This is fact
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OP DaddyK Forum Member • Posts: 86
Re: S5 hot shoe - use any flash?

How old. Some of the older flashes use a very high trigger
voltage. If too high it could/will burn out the electronics in the
camera. Modern cameras are not designed to use high trigger
violtages. It may work for a while but if the trigger voltage is
too high it will fry the camera. This is fact

Its a 20 year old Vivitar flash -- and have you ever got my attention. Is there any way to tell? I'd rather replace the old, cheap flash than fry my shiny new S5! Your making me really appreciate your reply and the value of this forum. I would never have guessed.

Ken

nc4z Regular Member • Posts: 195
Re: S5 hot shoe - use any flash?

Trigger voltage chart. http://www.botzilla.com/photo/strobeVolts.html
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Kuppenbender
Kuppenbender Senior Member • Posts: 2,099
No, only use newer (compatible) third-party, or Canon Speedlites!

Canon EOS/Powershot cameras work on 6v or less. Many older flashes have an ignition voltage of about 20v or so. Enough to fry your flash circuits over a period of time. You won't know it's happening until one fine day, no flashes will trigger from the hotshoe, not even Speedlites. Others have trigger voltages of 100v or higher, which presumably have more instant affects.

Check out this website: http://www.botzilla.com/photo/G1strobe.html and then get hold of a voltmeter to check your vivitar. There's a list of different flashes and there voltages, ( http://www.botzilla.com/photo/strobeVolts.html ) but apparently different versions of the same model may vary, so it's best to check your own flash with a voltmeter.

Then tell all your friends

I think Canon are going to get a lot of S5's in for repair in the very near future. The advice to use Speedlites in the manual (if it's the same as the G7) isn't very specific about the dangers.

It's also highly likely some customers will be a bit p* d off about having to buy an expensive Speedlite.

Of course they're great flashes, and DSLR owners would probably expect to buy one. I can't complain too much about being 'pushed' into buying one. It has a faster recycling time, and is more powerful than my old Yashica, as well as the benefits of ETTL. However, many Powershot owners (G7 and S5) with older flashes might not be so thrilled. System price being a major factor in the decision to purchase one over a DSLR 'system'.
--
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OP DaddyK Forum Member • Posts: 86
Re: No, only use newer (compatible) third-party, or Canon Speedlites!

http://www.botzilla.com/photo/strobeVolts.html

Check out this website: http://www.botzilla.com/photo/G1strobe.html

Both of these sites were great! One with a long list of flashes and the other with a long and helpful explanation of the issues.

My flash is listed (Vivitar 3500) at around 6v, a kinda uncomfortable gray area.

Also, as the G1strobe sight explained, the extra pin on the bottom of my flash might also cause problems or damage (be wary of more than one pin)

I think Canon are going to get a lot of S5's in for repair in the
very near future. The advice to use Speedlites in the manual (if
it's the same as the G7) isn't very specific about the dangers.

Thanks to you guys I wont be one of them And, I'll start looking into newer alternatives. Any recommendations at the inexpensive end of the spectrum?

Ken

dhcalva New Member • Posts: 5
Re: No, only use newer (compatible) third-party, or Canon Speedlites!

Do you guys think it would be okay to use a Minolta 5600HS flash with the S5?

I'm giving serious thought to selling my old Minolta Maxxim 5 setup and Sony H5 and picking one of these cameras up.

Kuppenbender
Kuppenbender Senior Member • Posts: 2,099
Re: No, only use newer (compatible) third-party, or Canon Speedlites!

DaddyK wrote:

Also, as the G1strobe sight explained, the extra pin on the bottom of
my flash might also cause problems or damage (be wary of more than
one pin)

While I was saving up for the 430ex, I used an old Yashica flash, also in the 'gray area' voltage-wise, and also with an extra pin.

It wasn't that hard to unscrew the hotshoe and remove the extra pin. You could just tape it, but you might not notice if the tape came off.

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