Quest for a small flash for Nikon *and* Canon :-)

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by ThomasH, Dec 10, 2003.

  1. ThomasH

    ThomasH Guest

    For a long time I have ignored these little pesky build-in flash
    devices, but as I see many users here report that they work with
    such devices even for a serious photography to earn money.
    Sometimes I really miss a small flash to lighten up shadows
    and faces in daylight...

    I begun to look into getting a small flash for F90/F100 and
    for EOS-3. Nikon has their lovely small sb-30, Canon is a bit
    terse with their 200E and the 220EX is a bit 'biggish' already...

    Are 3rd party flash devices recommended in lieu of the brand
    flashes (Metz or Sunpak for example?)

    Are some of these devices compatible across different manufacturers,
    by any chance, capable of running with either a Nikon or a Canon?
    So far my impression is they every such device is like a lens,
    compatible to only one flash shoe and signals... You need one
    separate device per camera system.

    ThomasH, Dec 10, 2003
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  2. ThomasH

    Bill Hilton Guest

    From: ThomasH
    Sure, Sunpack or Metz or Vivitar flashes will work fine for what you describe.
    Yes, there are generic flashes. BUT ... big but ... you lose TTL and E-TTL
    compatibility. I have a couple of old Vivitars (273, 283) for example that I
    still occasionally use with medium format. You have to set a couple of windows
    and dials for aperture, ISO and distance on the flash to get it in the proper
    range, then the sensor measures the reflected flash and cuts it off for a
    proper exposure.

    Compare this to any of the Canon EX or even EZ flashes and you'll quickly see
    how much easier the Canon (and Nikon too, I just happen to use Canon) flashes
    are to use since they do all the calculations for you automagically. Note also
    if you use a filter the dedicated flashes compensate for this since they are
    reading the reflected light off the film plane, while the older flashes require
    you to adjust manually for any filter factors or other reductions in light
    (like extending a macro lens for example).

    There are a lot of advantages to using the full featured flashes from the
    manufacturer :)
    Nope. Get a small Sunpack or Metz or Vivitar and they work fine, just be
    prepared to do extra work using them. Try B&H (, go to
    camera gear > flashes > non-dedicated and there are two pages of these flashes.

    Bill Hilton, Dec 11, 2003
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  3. ThomasH

    Olaf Ulrich Guest

    Not true! With modern 3rd-party flash units, you
    can have the best of both worlds, including TTL
    control, with Nikon *and* Canon cameras (not
    sure about E-TTL) ... and other brands' cameras
    as well. I'd recommend a Metz flash and the two
    appropriate adapters for Canon and Nikon from
    the SCA 3000 system.

    Olaf Ulrich, Dec 11, 2003
  4. ThomasH

    Bill Hilton Guest

    Hi Olaf,

    I knew there were 3rd party flashes fully compatible with either Canon or Nikon
    (or others) but didn't know that you could buy a single flash that supports
    both. I thought the interfaces were different enough to keep this from

    My mistake, I guess I should have said "lose E-TTL but can keep TTL"?

    Bill Hilton, Dec 11, 2003
  5. ThomasH

    ThomasH Guest

    Everything is in flux and changes! Users of more than one
    system are anyway in a minority! Thanks for the hints!

    ThomasH, Dec 11, 2003
  6. ThomasH

    Deathwalker Guest

    jessops sell jessop guns each dedicated to a certain camera (not a one size
    fits all model) they also sell centon ones. Has anyone out there tried one.

    A guy came in wanting e-ttl but and a large guide no but only wanted to pay
    £29.99. Not only that but the little oik i work with was arguing that the
    flash gun marked 'automatic' was dedicated. So i had to explain dedication
    versus auto to both of them.
    Deathwalker, Dec 14, 2003
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