Q/Q7: Can't trigger flash via hotshoe?

Started Feb 1, 2014 | Questions
philzucker
philzucker Veteran Member • Posts: 9,173
Q/Q7: Can't trigger flash via hotshoe?

A few days ago I wanted to  see how my Q/Q7 performs in a studio environment with remotely triggered flashes. I used a simple wireless remote trigger for this that fits on a standard hotshoe and has only one contact at the bottom - the big middle one.

Curiously enough neither the Q nor the Q7 could trigger the flashes with the hotshoe remote device. I of course tested it with other cameras - it performed flawlessly on a K-01, K5-II and even on a small Panasonic LX3 - no problems there. I checked every flash settings nested in the menus, tried a lot of different flash modes - to no avail.

It states in the manual that the internal flash won't discharge if a remote flash is connected - but with the remote trigger connected the internal flash does discharge.

I then tried a small Metz flash 20 BC-6 - it didn't want to fire on both Q/Q7 either, and again I had no problems using it with the other cameras mentioned.

I finally used a Metz 32 MZ-3 - looking quite ridiculous and huge on the Q - with a dedicated Pentax SCA 3702 adapter - no success again. But curiously enough on the Q7 the same instantly worked!

For a last try I switched the SCA 3702 for a standard SCA 300 foot (which has only the one main pin in the middle) on the Metz 32 - now it didn't work on the Q7, and of course still not on the Q.

What's up here? Why have Q and Q7 a standard hotshoe, but won't be bothered to trigger standard flash guns - or even simple remote triggers? Am I doing something wrong?

That the Q7 could fire the Metz equipped with the SCA 3072 indicates that maybe the Q/Q7 accepts dedicated flashes only - but this doesn't explain why the Q7 can, and the Q can't trigger even a dedicated flash gun.

What are your experiences with external flashes - both Pentax and non Pentax - or with remote triggers on the Q/Q7 hotshoes? And again: am I doing something wrong here?

Phil

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Pentax K-01 Pentax K-5 Pentax Q7
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sillyconguru Veteran Member • Posts: 3,057
Re: Q/Q7: Can't trigger flash via hotshoe?

I've used a hot-shoe mounted flash on my Q. I can't quite remember, but I think you need to disable the (built-in) flash then the hot-shoe works.

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philzucker
OP philzucker Veteran Member • Posts: 9,173
Re: Q/Q7: Can't trigger flash via hotshoe?

sillyconguru wrote:

I've used a hot-shoe mounted flash on my Q. I can't quite remember, but I think you need to disable the (built-in) flash then the hot-shoe works.

Thanks very much for the quick help! Setting the internal flash to "off" solved the problem immediately. Beats me why I didn't find this in the manual ... 

Phil

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philzucker
OP philzucker Veteran Member • Posts: 9,173
Re: Q/Q7: Can't trigger flash via hotshoe?

philzucker wrote:

sillyconguru wrote:

I've used a hot-shoe mounted flash on my Q. I can't quite remember, but I think you need to disable the (built-in) flash then the hot-shoe works.

Thanks very much for the quick help! Setting the internal flash to "off" solved the problem immediately. Beats me why I didn't find this in the manual ...

One additional info: Seems to work only with lenses attached that have a leaf shutter (like 01/02). Tried it with a 04 - hot-shoe didn't trigger anything on both Q/Q7. Seems that if electronic shutter is used hot-shoe won't work.

Phil

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JNR
JNR Veteran Member • Posts: 4,076
Re: Q/Q7: Can't trigger flash via hotshoe?

philzucker wrote:

philzucker wrote:

sillyconguru wrote:

I've used a hot-shoe mounted flash on my Q. I can't quite remember, but I think you need to disable the (built-in) flash then the hot-shoe works.

Thanks very much for the quick help! Setting the internal flash to "off" solved the problem immediately. Beats me why I didn't find this in the manual ...

One additional info: Seems to work only with lenses attached that have a leaf shutter (like 01/02). Tried it with a 04 - hot-shoe didn't trigger anything on both Q/Q7. Seems that if electronic shutter is used hot-shoe won't work.

Phil

All lenses will work if you mount a pTTL flash. If relying on the camera shutter (lenses other than the 01, 02, 06, 08) internal scan rate limits sync to 1/13 on Q, and 1/30 on Q7, Q10.

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JNR
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philzucker
OP philzucker Veteran Member • Posts: 9,173
Re: Q/Q7: Can't trigger flash via hotshoe?

JNR wrote:

All lenses will work if you mount a pTTL flash. If relying on the camera shutter (lenses other than the 01, 02, 06, 08) internal scan rate limits sync to 1/13 on Q, and 1/30 on Q7, Q10.

It's a bit crazy though that you can fire non-pTTL flashes with the leaf shutter lenses only. Don't have a real pTTL flash - my Metz with SCA 3702 Pentax adapter comes nearest, and at least it communicates a bit with the Q7 - I didn't have to turn off internal flash to use it successfully.

But even with that flash I tried shutter speeds as low as 1/8s on the Q7 with 04 lens attached. Nothing fired - neither a flash nor a remote trigger, regardless of the shutter speed used. With the 02 no problems, everything was triggered up to 1/250s.

Phil

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JNR
JNR Veteran Member • Posts: 4,076
Re: Q/Q7: Can't trigger flash via hotshoe?

philzucker wrote:

JNR wrote:

All lenses will work if you mount a pTTL flash. If relying on the camera shutter (lenses other than the 01, 02, 06, 08) internal scan rate limits sync to 1/13 on Q, and 1/30 on Q7, Q10.

It's a bit crazy though that you can fire non-pTTL flashes with the leaf shutter lenses only. Don't have a real pTTL flash - my Metz with SCA 3702 Pentax adapter comes nearest, and at least it communicates a bit with the Q7 - I didn't have to turn off internal flash to use it successfully.

Phil

Not sure of the engineering issues requiring the limitation, but there are small, cheap pTTL units that allow the maximum integration. This one from Opteka for $30 works just fine and isn't too heavy:

http://opteka.com/ef750pentax.aspx

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philzucker
OP philzucker Veteran Member • Posts: 9,173
Re: Q/Q7: Can't trigger flash via hotshoe?

JNR wrote:

Not sure of the engineering issues requiring the limitation, but there are small, cheap pTTL units that allow the maximum integration. This one from Opteka for $30 works just fine and isn't too heavy:

http://opteka.com/ef750pentax.aspx

Thanks for the info, James! Good to know that there are alternatives out there - even if this particular flash doesn't seem to be available in Germany (a quick search gave no results), but I think others like it should be.

Anyway I'm not really planning to fit a flash on the Q; my aim was to try it out with studio flashes using a wireless trigger mounted on the hot-shoe. I just wondered if the 05 would make a nice, soft portrait lens, that's all. So sadly the wireless trigger won't work with it now.

I've found a workaround meanwhile that allows me to use at least one external flash: I got myself a SCA 3083 digital - a slave adapter that allows for pre-flash suppression - and now can use the internal flash of Q (dialed down -2) for triggering the external one. Works good, and should be enough for some test shoots. And if results are promising, I might shop for an extra 3083!

On additional thing, though - not only the Q, also the Q7 limits itself to a sync speed of 1/13s if it uses the internal flash with a toy lens. It automatically defaults to that value even in M mode after the internal flash is charged and ready for action.

Phil

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JNR
JNR Veteran Member • Posts: 4,076
Re: Q/Q7: Can't trigger flash via hotshoe?

philzucker wrote:

JNR wrote:

Not sure of the engineering issues requiring the limitation, but there are small, cheap pTTL units that allow the maximum integration. This one from Opteka for $30 works just fine and isn't too heavy:

http://opteka.com/ef750pentax.aspx

Thanks for the info, James! Good to know that there are alternatives out there - even if this particular flash doesn't seem to be available in Germany (a quick search gave no results), but I think others like it should be.

Anyway I'm not really planning to fit a flash on the Q; my aim was to try it out with studio flashes using a wireless trigger mounted on the hot-shoe. I just wondered if the 05 would make a nice, soft portrait lens, that's all. So sadly the wireless trigger won't work with it now.

I've found a workaround meanwhile that allows me to use at least one external flash: I got myself a SCA 3083 digital - a slave adapter that allows for pre-flash suppression - and now can use the internal flash of Q (dialed down -2) for triggering the external one. Works good, and should be enough for some test shoots. And if results are promising, I might shop for an extra 3083!

On additional thing, though - not only the Q, also the Q7 limits itself to a sync speed of 1/13s if it uses the internal flash with a toy lens. It automatically defaults to that value even in M mode after the internal flash is charged and ready for action.

Phil

Those are good wireless solutions.

Possibly only the Q10 can sustain the 1/30th sync due to scan rate. Perhaps the larger sensor on the Q7 pushes the sync back to 1/13th. In my experience, the jello effect problem on the Q only comes into play past about 100mm lens length.

Nice gallery, by the way.

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Jack Simpson
Jack Simpson Forum Pro • Posts: 11,800
Re: Q/Q7: Can't trigger flash via hotshoe?

philzucker wrote:

sillyconguru wrote:

I've used a hot-shoe mounted flash on my Q. I can't quite remember, but I think you need to disable the (built-in) flash then the hot-shoe works.

Thanks very much for the quick help! Setting the internal flash to "off" solved the problem immediately. Beats me why I didn't find this in the manual ...

Difference between Japanese translation and German translation, perhaps, Phil

Cheers,

Jack

Phil

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