Confused on Sony Alpha and Home Studio set-up

Discussion in 'Sony' started by JaffaB, Dec 2, 2006.

  1. JaffaB

    JaffaB Guest


    I recently purchased a Jessops external flash home studio system for
    use with my Sony Alpha. The master flash head connects via a sync
    cable, but the only connector that Jessops had was a "Minolta
    dynax" hotshoe adaptor. This should have worked, as the Dynax is
    compatible with the Sony Alpha.

    However, when I connect it all, the camera does not seem to recognise
    the flash unit.

    The flash heads (master and slave) fire, but the camera does not show a
    flash icon in the view finder. Also, it is not setting the exposure
    for the flash, which means that I am going to always have to manually
    set the exposure. If I don't do this, the exposure is trying to set
    (in auto mode) for a 6 second exposure so everything is very badly over

    Is this correct? I would have thought that it should recognise that
    the flash is charged, and therefore set the exposure automatically. Or
    am I asking too much. I am new to home studio/portrait so getting my
    feet wet.

    JaffaB, Dec 2, 2006
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  2. You'll need to set everything manually if you are using a standard pc
    synch wire. For studio work it's preferable anyhow. Do the flash heads
    have a dial or buttons to stop them down?
    John McWilliams, Dec 2, 2006
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  3. With external flash that is not either the camera manufacturer's flash
    system or a similar system the connection to the flash just triggers the
    flash, that is all. There is no back communication with the camera. You
    you need to manually set your shutter speed to whatever you wish to use
    up to the fastest normal flash sync speed of the camera (it will be in
    the manual and will be somewhere from 1/60 sec to 1/250 sec, probably
    1/60) and set the aperture manually. You may need an external flash
    meter you you do not wish to gradually dial the right exposure in each
    time you setup by taking test shots and using the histogram display on
    the camera.

    Hope that helps,

    Wayne J. Cosshall, Dec 2, 2006
  4. JaffaB

    Alan Browne Guest

    The camera has no idea that a flash is connected to sync, only to the
    Minolta "hot shoe" and only then if it is a Minolta compliant flash.

    You need to be in manual mode. In auto, in poor light, it's opening up
    the time for an ambeint light shot. Set it to 1/125 or 1/160 at some
    appropriate aperture (say f/5.6 to start). Shoot a test frame. Look at
    the histogram and open up/close down (or adjust ISO or flash power
    setting if there is one) appropriately. Unfortunately as you change
    flash to subject distance the exposure will change too.

    Get an incident flash meter or do test shots as described above.

    Alan Browne, Dec 2, 2006
  5. OT part: both your and Wayne's post were quite similar to mine, many
    hours earlier. Is there that much of a lag among news servers, or do you
    choose to post that way for other reasons?
    John McWilliams, Dec 3, 2006
  6. Actually I though I had a bit more to say than yours, that's why I posted.

    And yes there sometimes can be time delays on news servers, but that was
    not the case with me at least here.

    Why the concern?


    Wayne J. Cosshall, Dec 3, 2006
  7. JaffaB

    Alan Browne Guest

    I saw your post and thought a little more detail was warranted.

    But in any case, I often reply to posts where there appear to be no
    replies only to find other earlier replies get posted much later.
    Alan Browne, Dec 3, 2006
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