G1 Flash Photograph 101

Started May 21, 2001 | Discussions
Michael w Regular Member • Posts: 487
G1 Flash Photograph 101

Evidently many people still don't understand the issues about manual flash that Peter T., myself and a few others tried to explain in the "Canon's attitude" thread. This post is dedicated to EXPLAIN the situation. If you know for fact anything I say is technically wrong then correct me. I'm not solicity opinion on this thread. If after reading this you want to further express you opinion on the issue then please go to the "Canon's Attitude" thread. I'm going to get pretty basic, so don't feel insulted if some of the things I say are too fundamental. Thank you very much.

1. Universal Manual Flash Basic:
To set exposure for a manual direct flash, one typically use the basic rule:

a. Set shutter at or slower than maximum synch speed supported by the camera. G1 manual specifies 1/125 second.

b. Set apperture to: Ap = GN / distance. For example to shoot an object at 30 ft away at ISO 50 using a flash with Guide Number of 80 ft @ ISO 50, set apperture to 4.0. Note that guide number is dependent on ISO setting, so you must ensure to use the correct GN. In manual flash the camera does not attempt to adjust intensity of the flash, it simply tells the flash to fire at full strength. A manual flash rated at 120 ft GN if set at 1/4 power ratio will act like a a 60 ft GN flash.

c. Both ambience light and the flash light will affect the exposure. It is the photographer's responsibility to account for ambience light and make adjustment to get perfect exposure.

d. Adjustment rule: higher apperture number will reduce the exposure of both flash light and ambience light, thus at f5.6 you would expect the picture to be 1 stop DARKER than at f4.0 and so on so forth. Adjustment of speed (within specified maximum synch) only affect the ambience light and not the flash light because the entire flash duration always occurs while the camera aperture is open at the specified setting. Flash duration is typically between 1ms to 2 ms (1/1000 to 1/500 seconds).

c. Bounce flash is less straight forward, but the same rule of adjustment is the same: f5.6 is to be darker than f4.0, f4.0 is to be dark0er than f2.8, so on so forth.

2. What Happens to Manual Flash with G1?

If you shoot with a Canon 420EX or 550EX, everything happens as described above. When you put ANY standard non-Canon strobe on it this happens: the flash will fire shortly BEFORE the aperture stabilizes at the intended aperture. For example, if you set the camera to f5.6 at 1/125 the actual aperture goes through a very brief transition phase before the aperture actually stabilizes at f5.6. During this transition phase the aperture can be any value, be it f2.0 or whatever. What happens is that the G1 will fire your non-Canon flash during this transition phase in stead of waiting until the aperture reaches the intended value. Yet, somehow it manages to do the right thing whenever an EX flash is mounted on. Selective wrong doing!

3. E-TTL and Standard 3rd-party Flashes

E-TTL does not support 3rd-party flashes. The G1 and other Canon cameras are designed to NEVER activate E-TTL unless an EX flash is detected. So no relationship exists between E-TTL and standard manual flashes. No photographer in the right mind would expect the camera to adjust exposure for him/her while taking a manual flash shot with a manual flash unit.

4. G1 Supports E-TTL, why bother with manual flashes?

E-TTL is simply a form of automatic exposure in flash mode. As with any automatic exposure system, it cannot produce good results in all lighting conditions such as shooting against back-lit scenes and difficult flash fill situations. For some one who don't want to deal with the complexity of manual flash photography it E-TTL makes perfect sense. But if one know enough about flash photography that he/she can consistently achieve better results using manual flash techniques, why bother?

5. The 380EX and 420EX will fire in manual mode, why not use it?

Neither of these allows ratio down, making manual flash impractical. A good manual flash would allow ratio down to 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/16, etc.

6. 550EX fully supports manual flash, why not use it?

If the price is the same as my Sunpak 383 ($69), this would have been a valid question.

Michael
--Michael

OP Michael w Regular Member • Posts: 487
Re: G1 Flash Photograph 101

Oops, excuse my typing, I meant to type 20 ft and not 30 ft.

Michael

Michael W. wrote:

Evidently many people still don't understand the issues about
manual flash that Peter T., myself and a few others tried to
explain in the "Canon's attitude" thread. This post is dedicated
to EXPLAIN the situation. If you know for fact anything I say is
technically wrong then correct me. I'm not solicity opinion on
this thread. If after reading this you want to further express you
opinion on the issue then please go to the "Canon's Attitude"
thread. I'm going to get pretty basic, so don't feel insulted if
some of the things I say are too fundamental. Thank you very much.

1. Universal Manual Flash Basic:
To set exposure for a manual direct flash, one typically use the
basic rule:

a. Set shutter at or slower than maximum synch speed supported by
the camera. G1 manual specifies 1/125 second.

b. Set apperture to: Ap = GN / distance. For example to shoot an
object at 30 ft away at ISO 50 using a flash with Guide Number of
80 ft @ ISO 50, set apperture to 4.0. Note that guide number is
dependent on ISO setting, so you must ensure to use the correct GN.
In manual flash the camera does not attempt to adjust intensity of
the flash, it simply tells the flash to fire at full strength. A
manual flash rated at 120 ft GN if set at 1/4 power ratio will act
like a a 60 ft GN flash.

c. Both ambience light and the flash light will affect the
exposure. It is the photographer's responsibility to account for
ambience light and make adjustment to get perfect exposure.

d. Adjustment rule: higher apperture number will reduce the
exposure of both flash light and ambience light, thus at f5.6 you
would expect the picture to be 1 stop DARKER than at f4.0 and so on
so forth. Adjustment of speed (within specified maximum synch)
only affect the ambience light and not the flash light because the
entire flash duration always occurs while the camera aperture is
open at the specified setting. Flash duration is typically between
1ms to 2 ms (1/1000 to 1/500 seconds).

c. Bounce flash is less straight forward, but the same rule of
adjustment is the same: f5.6 is to be darker than f4.0, f4.0 is to
be dark0er than f2.8, so on so forth.

2. What Happens to Manual Flash with G1?
If you shoot with a Canon 420EX or 550EX, everything happens as
described above. When you put ANY standard non-Canon strobe on it
this happens: the flash will fire shortly BEFORE the aperture
stabilizes at the intended aperture. For example, if you set the
camera to f5.6 at 1/125 the actual aperture goes through a very
brief transition phase before the aperture actually stabilizes at
f5.6. During this transition phase the aperture can be any value,
be it f2.0 or whatever. What happens is that the G1 will fire your
non-Canon flash during this transition phase in stead of waiting
until the aperture reaches the intended value. Yet, somehow it
manages to do the right thing whenever an EX flash is mounted on.
Selective wrong doing!

3. E-TTL and Standard 3rd-party Flashes
E-TTL does not support 3rd-party flashes. The G1 and other Canon
cameras are designed to NEVER activate E-TTL unless an EX flash is
detected. So no relationship exists between E-TTL and standard
manual flashes. No photographer in the right mind would expect the
camera to adjust exposure for him/her while taking a manual flash
shot with a manual flash unit.

4. G1 Supports E-TTL, why bother with manual flashes?
E-TTL is simply a form of automatic exposure in flash mode. As
with any automatic exposure system, it cannot produce good results
in all lighting conditions such as shooting against back-lit scenes
and difficult flash fill situations. For some one who don't want
to deal with the complexity of manual flash photography it E-TTL
makes perfect sense. But if one know enough about flash
photography that he/she can consistently achieve better results
using manual flash techniques, why bother?

5. The 380EX and 420EX will fire in manual mode, why not use it?
Neither of these allows ratio down, making manual flash
impractical. A good manual flash would allow ratio down to 1/2,
1/4, 1/8, 1/16, etc.

6. 550EX fully supports manual flash, why not use it?
If the price is the same as my Sunpak 383 ($69), this would have
been a valid question.

Michael

-- hide signature --

Michael

euthon New Member • Posts: 21
Re: G1 Flash Photograph 101

When you put ANY standard non-Canon strobe on it
this happens: the flash will fire shortly BEFORE the aperture
stabilizes at the intended aperture. For example, if you set the
camera to f5.6 at 1/125 the actual aperture goes through a very
brief transition phase before the aperture actually stabilizes at
f5.6. During this transition phase the aperture can be any value,
be it f2.0 or whatever. What happens is that the G1 will fire your
non-Canon flash during this transition phase in stead of waiting
until the aperture reaches the intended value. Yet, somehow it
manages to do the right thing whenever an EX flash is mounted on.
Selective wrong doing!

My experience is different from yours. So, either not all G1's exhibit this behavior or not all manual flashes are equal.

I just run a quick and dirty test and here are the results:

Equipment:

  • Flash: Spectrum 370T Auto flash in manual mode, bounced off the ceilling to prevent gross overexposure, plugged into the hot shoe.

  • Camera: Canon Powershot G1, updated firmware, zoom set at its longest, 1/125 shutter speed, manual focus, on a tripod, ISO 50, RAW mode.

  • Target: 8x10" gray card, about 4 feet from the camera.

I shot the card at f/2.8, 4.0, 5.6, 8.0 and exported images into Photoshop. Below are averaged RGB values for each shot:

f/2.8 -- R: 199, G: 190, B: 172
f/4.0 -- R: 125, G: 117, B: 103
f/5.6 -- R: 111, G: 106, B: 92
f/8.0 -- R: 23, G: 22, B: 20

White balance was set to "flash".

I repeated the test several times and the results were pretty consistent.

I can definitely see the problem you describe around f/4 - f/5.6, but it's not nearly as bad as in your case. The problem can be solved easily and cheaply: slave your manual flashes optically.

euthon

Peter T Senior Member • Posts: 1,272
Re: G1 Flash Photograph 101

I can't translate your numbers into anything I understand. You say you see the problem but it's not that bad. How bad is it?

What method do you suggest for optical slaving?

euthon New Member • Posts: 21
Explanation

Peter T wrote:

I can't translate your numbers into anything I understand.

The numbers suggest that stopping the aperture down from f/4.0 to f/5.6 has no effect on the exposure. Other aperture settings work as expected.

You say you see the problem but it's not that bad. How bad is it?

It depends. It is bad enough to make flashmeters unusable. On the other hand, if you are using a G1 in a studio and judge the results by histograms -- you may not notice it.

What method do you suggest for optical slaving?

Cheap optical slaves are available for under $25, trigger them with the built-in flash.

euthon

Peter T Senior Member • Posts: 1,272
Re: Explanation

Cheap optical slaves are available for under $25, trigger them with
the built-in flash.

My flash has a built-in optical slave. But triggering it with the built-in flash at full-strength is not feasible. If you could reduce the output of the flash it might be ok, but you can't do that in manual mode.

Wein makes a product that fits over the camera's flash. It blocks the flash light from influencing your exposure and uses the flash as a trigger. If this was connected to a sync cord it would be a great solution. But it's meant to work with their wireless slave system, so the total solution ends up costing at least $300.

euthon New Member • Posts: 21
Re: Explanation

For $300 i can think of a better solution: get a 550EX and use it just to trigger your slaves.

On a more serious note, just cover that built-in flash with an IR filter. Only invisible IR light will get through and trip the slaves. A piece of unexposed, but developed slide film will do just fine.

euthon

Peter T Senior Member • Posts: 1,272
Re: Explanation

Interesting. So I would buy a roll of slide film and just have it processed without shooting it? I guess I would have to tell the processor not to mount the slides?

For anyone reading this thread that doesn't have a flash with a built-in optical salve, Wein makes a Peanut slave that sells for about $15.

Shaam Shilome Regular Member • Posts: 150
Re: G1 Flash Photograph 101

I have a quick but may sound like a dumb question.....Is there any other way to tell if a G1 is overexposed or underexposed other than just looking at the picture?....How does one really know for sure what the real sweet spot of a perfectly exposed picture?...whether it be a portrait, a landscape...ect.?

Other than just visualizing it ...what other ways can I determine whether or not an image is correctly exposed....I'm not just reffering to Flash shots but mainly outdoor shots.....I'm sorry if this sounds like a dumb question but i am finally venturing out of full auto mode on my G1 and want to try manual mode.

thanks!

euthon wrote:

When you put ANY standard non-Canon strobe on it
this happens: the flash will fire shortly BEFORE the aperture
stabilizes at the intended aperture. For example, if you set the
camera to f5.6 at 1/125 the actual aperture goes through a very
brief transition phase before the aperture actually stabilizes at
f5.6. During this transition phase the aperture can be any value,
be it f2.0 or whatever. What happens is that the G1 will fire your
non-Canon flash during this transition phase in stead of waiting
until the aperture reaches the intended value. Yet, somehow it
manages to do the right thing whenever an EX flash is mounted on.
Selective wrong doing!

My experience is different from yours. So, either not all G1's
exhibit this behavior or not all manual flashes are equal.

I just run a quick and dirty test and here are the results:

Equipment:

  • Flash: Spectrum 370T Auto flash in manual mode, bounced off the

ceilling to prevent gross overexposure, plugged into the hot shoe.

  • Camera: Canon Powershot G1, updated firmware, zoom set at its

longest, 1/125 shutter speed, manual focus, on a tripod, ISO 50,
RAW mode.

  • Target: 8x10" gray card, about 4 feet from the camera.

I shot the card at f/2.8, 4.0, 5.6, 8.0 and exported images into
Photoshop. Below are averaged RGB values for each shot:

f/2.8 -- R: 199, G: 190, B: 172
f/4.0 -- R: 125, G: 117, B: 103
f/5.6 -- R: 111, G: 106, B: 92
f/8.0 -- R: 23, G: 22, B: 20

White balance was set to "flash".

I repeated the test several times and the results were pretty
consistent.

I can definitely see the problem you describe around f/4 - f/5.6,
but it's not nearly as bad as in your case. The problem can be
solved easily and cheaply: slave your manual flashes optically.

euthon

euthon New Member • Posts: 21
Re: G1 Flash Photograph 101

...what other ways can I determine whether or not an image is correctly > exposed....

You'll need to export the picture into Photoshop (or other editor) and look at the histogram. It will tell you the whole story. Search for a tutorial on histograms.

Unfortunately, the G1 (unlike the CP990) cannot dispaly histograms on its own.

euthon

kevin Regular Member • Posts: 166
Re: G1 Flash Photograph 101

so, i can't afford the 550ex, but, i can get roughly the equivalent (from a G1 perspective) functionality from a 420ex + a Sunpak 383?

.kevin

http://www01.bhphotovideo.com/default.sph/FrameWork.class?FNC=ProductActivator__Aproductlist_html___52799___SU383S___REG___SID=E6D308FA630

Michael W. wrote:

6. 550EX fully supports manual flash, why not use it?
If the price is the same as my Sunpak 383 ($69), this would have
been a valid question.

Michael

-- hide signature --

Michael

BryanS Veteran Member • Posts: 4,104
This rant isn't logical

I'm seriously trying to be patient with this rant, but it always falls apart on me when I try to think it out logically.

You buy a new digicam for nearly $900 (or $800 if you manage a good deal). Add another $100 at least for a decent compact flash or maybe $400-500 for a microdrive. Spend some other bucks for maybe the LensMate and some filters.

And we're quibbling because we can't add a $50 flash?

Funny... just for kicks, I bought the little Sunpak digicam flash with the built in slave for maybe $35 (even came with a little tripod), though I have the 420EX. It has a built in slave, and I set the G1 for flash compensation to the absolute lowest setting (just enough to fire the slave). This combination works perfectly for me, but maybe I'm doing something wrong.

I guess I should be stomping my feet and shaking my finger at Canon. Silly me for being busy taking pictures instead.

Bryan

Michael W. wrote:

Evidently many people still don't understand the issues about
manual flash that Peter T., myself and a few others tried to
explain in the "Canon's attitude" thread. This post is dedicated
to EXPLAIN the situation. If you know for fact anything I say is
technically wrong then correct me. I'm not solicity opinion on
this thread. If after reading this you want to further express you
opinion on the issue then please go to the "Canon's Attitude"
thread. I'm going to get pretty basic, so don't feel insulted if
some of the things I say are too fundamental. Thank you very much.

1. Universal Manual Flash Basic:
To set exposure for a manual direct flash, one typically use the
basic rule:

a. Set shutter at or slower than maximum synch speed supported by
the camera. G1 manual specifies 1/125 second.

b. Set apperture to: Ap = GN / distance. For example to shoot an
object at 30 ft away at ISO 50 using a flash with Guide Number of
80 ft @ ISO 50, set apperture to 4.0. Note that guide number is
dependent on ISO setting, so you must ensure to use the correct GN.
In manual flash the camera does not attempt to adjust intensity of
the flash, it simply tells the flash to fire at full strength. A
manual flash rated at 120 ft GN if set at 1/4 power ratio will act
like a a 60 ft GN flash.

c. Both ambience light and the flash light will affect the
exposure. It is the photographer's responsibility to account for
ambience light and make adjustment to get perfect exposure.

d. Adjustment rule: higher apperture number will reduce the
exposure of both flash light and ambience light, thus at f5.6 you
would expect the picture to be 1 stop DARKER than at f4.0 and so on
so forth. Adjustment of speed (within specified maximum synch)
only affect the ambience light and not the flash light because the
entire flash duration always occurs while the camera aperture is
open at the specified setting. Flash duration is typically between
1ms to 2 ms (1/1000 to 1/500 seconds).

c. Bounce flash is less straight forward, but the same rule of
adjustment is the same: f5.6 is to be darker than f4.0, f4.0 is to
be dark0er than f2.8, so on so forth.

2. What Happens to Manual Flash with G1?
If you shoot with a Canon 420EX or 550EX, everything happens as
described above. When you put ANY standard non-Canon strobe on it
this happens: the flash will fire shortly BEFORE the aperture
stabilizes at the intended aperture. For example, if you set the
camera to f5.6 at 1/125 the actual aperture goes through a very
brief transition phase before the aperture actually stabilizes at
f5.6. During this transition phase the aperture can be any value,
be it f2.0 or whatever. What happens is that the G1 will fire your
non-Canon flash during this transition phase in stead of waiting
until the aperture reaches the intended value. Yet, somehow it
manages to do the right thing whenever an EX flash is mounted on.
Selective wrong doing!

3. E-TTL and Standard 3rd-party Flashes
E-TTL does not support 3rd-party flashes. The G1 and other Canon
cameras are designed to NEVER activate E-TTL unless an EX flash is
detected. So no relationship exists between E-TTL and standard
manual flashes. No photographer in the right mind would expect the
camera to adjust exposure for him/her while taking a manual flash
shot with a manual flash unit.

4. G1 Supports E-TTL, why bother with manual flashes?
E-TTL is simply a form of automatic exposure in flash mode. As
with any automatic exposure system, it cannot produce good results
in all lighting conditions such as shooting against back-lit scenes
and difficult flash fill situations. For some one who don't want
to deal with the complexity of manual flash photography it E-TTL
makes perfect sense. But if one know enough about flash
photography that he/she can consistently achieve better results
using manual flash techniques, why bother?

5. The 380EX and 420EX will fire in manual mode, why not use it?
Neither of these allows ratio down, making manual flash
impractical. A good manual flash would allow ratio down to 1/2,
1/4, 1/8, 1/16, etc.

6. 550EX fully supports manual flash, why not use it?
If the price is the same as my Sunpak 383 ($69), this would have
been a valid question.

Michael

-- hide signature --

Michael

Richard Contributing Member • Posts: 924
Re: Explanation

Peter,

Does the Wein Peanut fire on the first or second flash? If it fires on the first flash it would not be suitable for use with digital cameras, or any other camera that adjusts it's final flash output on the measurement of a pre-exposure flash. This would solve a number of problems for me if it works...

-- hide signature --

rhb

Peter T wrote:

Interesting. So I would buy a roll of slide film and just have it
processed without shooting it? I guess I would have to tell the
processor not to mount the slides?

For anyone reading this thread that doesn't have a flash with a
built-in optical salve, Wein makes a Peanut slave that sells for
about $15.

euthon New Member • Posts: 21
Re: Explanation

There is no preflash in manual mode.

euthon

Richard Contributing Member • Posts: 924
Re: This rant isn't logical

Bryan,

Where did you buy the Sunpak? And what model is it? I have a "scrim" panel from my old theater days that I would like to use as a diffusion panel for a slave flash, and this sounds like something I could really use.

-- hide signature --

rhb

Bryan Siverly wrote:
Funny... just for kicks, I bought the little Sunpak digicam flash
with the built in slave for maybe $35 (even came with a little
tripod), though I have the 420EX. It has a built in slave, and I
set the G1 for flash compensation to the absolute lowest setting
(just enough to fire the slave). This combination works perfectly
for me, but maybe I'm doing something wrong.

Richard Contributing Member • Posts: 924
Re: Explanation

Thanks for replying, Euthon--

I know this-- I'm working in other modes as well, so the Wein Peanut would be useful for me if it works with a pre-flash...

-- hide signature --

rhb

euthon wrote:

There is no preflash in manual mode.

euthon

Peter T Senior Member • Posts: 1,272
Re: G1 Flash Photograph 101
BryanS Veteran Member • Posts: 4,104
Re: This rant isn't logical

There was some special when I bought mine, so it's a tad more expensive now. But here's where I got mine:

http://www.wolfcamera.com/1-800-643-9653/home_product.asp?menu=search&ProductID=61235

Enjoy!

Bryan

Richard wrote:
Bryan,
Where did you buy the Sunpak? And what model is it? I have a
"scrim" panel from my old theater days that I would like to use as
a diffusion panel for a slave flash, and this sounds like something
I could really use.

-- hide signature --

rhb

Bryan Siverly wrote:
Funny... just for kicks, I bought the little Sunpak digicam flash
with the built in slave for maybe $35 (even came with a little
tripod), though I have the 420EX. It has a built in slave, and I
set the G1 for flash compensation to the absolute lowest setting
(just enough to fire the slave). This combination works perfectly
for me, but maybe I'm doing something wrong.

Phil H Junior Member • Posts: 46
I prefer to call it a logical complaint

Bryan,

This is an acceptable work-around for use with off-camera flash - I've used it many times myself. It doesn't solve the problem for portable on-camera flash use. The point is that the problem needs a cure, not a band aid.

Phil H

Bryan Siverly wrote:
I'm seriously trying to be patient with this rant, but it always
falls apart on me when I try to think it out logically.

You buy a new digicam for nearly $900 (or $800 if you manage a good
deal). Add another $100 at least for a decent compact flash or
maybe $400-500 for a microdrive. Spend some other bucks for maybe
the LensMate and some filters.

And we're quibbling because we can't add a $50 flash?

Funny... just for kicks, I bought the little Sunpak digicam flash
with the built in slave for maybe $35 (even came with a little
tripod), though I have the 420EX. It has a built in slave, and I
set the G1 for flash compensation to the absolute lowest setting
(just enough to fire the slave). This combination works perfectly
for me, but maybe I'm doing something wrong.

I guess I should be stomping my feet and shaking my finger at
Canon. Silly me for being busy taking pictures instead.

Bryan

Michael W. wrote:

Evidently many people still don't understand the issues about
manual flash that Peter T., myself and a few others tried to
explain in the "Canon's attitude" thread. This post is dedicated
to EXPLAIN the situation. If you know for fact anything I say is
technically wrong then correct me. I'm not solicity opinion on
this thread. If after reading this you want to further express you
opinion on the issue then please go to the "Canon's Attitude"
thread. I'm going to get pretty basic, so don't feel insulted if
some of the things I say are too fundamental. Thank you very much.

1. Universal Manual Flash Basic:
To set exposure for a manual direct flash, one typically use the
basic rule:

a. Set shutter at or slower than maximum synch speed supported by
the camera. G1 manual specifies 1/125 second.

b. Set apperture to: Ap = GN / distance. For example to shoot an
object at 30 ft away at ISO 50 using a flash with Guide Number of
80 ft @ ISO 50, set apperture to 4.0. Note that guide number is
dependent on ISO setting, so you must ensure to use the correct GN.
In manual flash the camera does not attempt to adjust intensity of
the flash, it simply tells the flash to fire at full strength. A
manual flash rated at 120 ft GN if set at 1/4 power ratio will act
like a a 60 ft GN flash.

c. Both ambience light and the flash light will affect the
exposure. It is the photographer's responsibility to account for
ambience light and make adjustment to get perfect exposure.

d. Adjustment rule: higher apperture number will reduce the
exposure of both flash light and ambience light, thus at f5.6 you
would expect the picture to be 1 stop DARKER than at f4.0 and so on
so forth. Adjustment of speed (within specified maximum synch)
only affect the ambience light and not the flash light because the
entire flash duration always occurs while the camera aperture is
open at the specified setting. Flash duration is typically between
1ms to 2 ms (1/1000 to 1/500 seconds).

c. Bounce flash is less straight forward, but the same rule of
adjustment is the same: f5.6 is to be darker than f4.0, f4.0 is to
be dark0er than f2.8, so on so forth.

2. What Happens to Manual Flash with G1?
If you shoot with a Canon 420EX or 550EX, everything happens as
described above. When you put ANY standard non-Canon strobe on it
this happens: the flash will fire shortly BEFORE the aperture
stabilizes at the intended aperture. For example, if you set the
camera to f5.6 at 1/125 the actual aperture goes through a very
brief transition phase before the aperture actually stabilizes at
f5.6. During this transition phase the aperture can be any value,
be it f2.0 or whatever. What happens is that the G1 will fire your
non-Canon flash during this transition phase in stead of waiting
until the aperture reaches the intended value. Yet, somehow it
manages to do the right thing whenever an EX flash is mounted on.
Selective wrong doing!

3. E-TTL and Standard 3rd-party Flashes
E-TTL does not support 3rd-party flashes. The G1 and other Canon
cameras are designed to NEVER activate E-TTL unless an EX flash is
detected. So no relationship exists between E-TTL and standard
manual flashes. No photographer in the right mind would expect the
camera to adjust exposure for him/her while taking a manual flash
shot with a manual flash unit.

4. G1 Supports E-TTL, why bother with manual flashes?
E-TTL is simply a form of automatic exposure in flash mode. As
with any automatic exposure system, it cannot produce good results
in all lighting conditions such as shooting against back-lit scenes
and difficult flash fill situations. For some one who don't want
to deal with the complexity of manual flash photography it E-TTL
makes perfect sense. But if one know enough about flash
photography that he/she can consistently achieve better results
using manual flash techniques, why bother?

5. The 380EX and 420EX will fire in manual mode, why not use it?
Neither of these allows ratio down, making manual flash
impractical. A good manual flash would allow ratio down to 1/2,
1/4, 1/8, 1/16, etc.

6. 550EX fully supports manual flash, why not use it?
If the price is the same as my Sunpak 383 ($69), this would have
been a valid question.

Michael

-- hide signature --

Michael

Richard Contributing Member • Posts: 924
Re: This rant isn't logical

Thanks, Bryan-- I'll order pretty soon. My goal is to use the ST-E2 trigger to set off the 420 EX and have it set off a slave on the other side or behind the subject, cranked down to 1/2 or 1/4 strength. I'll tell you how it goes...

-- hide signature --

rhb

Bryan Siverly wrote:
There was some special when I bought mine, so it's a tad more
expensive now. But here's where I got mine:

http://www.wolfcamera.com/1-800-643-9653/home_product.asp?menu=search&ProductID=61235

Enjoy!

Bryan

Richard wrote:
Bryan,
Where did you buy the Sunpak? And what model is it? I have a
"scrim" panel from my old theater days that I would like to use as
a diffusion panel for a slave flash, and this sounds like something
I could really use.

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rhb

Bryan Siverly wrote:
Funny... just for kicks, I bought the little Sunpak digicam flash
with the built in slave for maybe $35 (even came with a little
tripod), though I have the 420EX. It has a built in slave, and I
set the G1 for flash compensation to the absolute lowest setting
(just enough to fire the slave). This combination works perfectly
for me, but maybe I'm doing something wrong.

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