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Thread: Which flash cable for M8 and SF24D

  1. #1
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    Which flash cable for M8 and SF24D

    I know some of you guys are using the SF24D off camera with a Nikon or other cable.

    Which cable works with the M8 / SF24D and allows all functions.

    I tried my Nikon SC-28 but it does not seem to allow me to adjust EV comp on the flash.

    Thanks,

    Ray

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    Re: Which flash cable for M8 and SF24D

    I have the old SC-17 (there is a new model the superseded it) and haven't used it much. That was the cable that was recommended to me.

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    Re: Which flash cable for M8 and SF24D

    Terry,

    If you want to dial down the flash (on the flash) with a - 1 1/3 EV does that actually do anything with your cable?

    When I do that with my cable, there is no difference in the output of the flash as seen in the photo.

    If I mount the flash on camera, it works as it should and has reduced the power.

    Best,

    Ray

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    Re: Which flash cable for M8 and SF24D

    Ray, I can try it out tomorrow AM. In the meante someone else might post. This is also a question you may want to also post on LUF

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    Re: Which flash cable for M8 and SF24D

    OK, this is wierd.

    Flash is set to TTL.

    If I run the flash off camera on the SC-28 pointing at the subject, EV comp on the flash works just as if the flash was mounted on the camera.

    When I have the flash off camera on the SC-28 but pointed at the ceiling, EV comp on the flash makes no difference. I can put it at +3 or -3 and see the impact. The end result is a perfectly exposed image.

    The flash in all cases is set on the correct f stop, is receiving ISO information from the camera, and my fingers are NOT covering the sensor on the flash.

    What the #$%%^.

    Is this because I should be using a different Nikon cable? I thought these cables were just a straight run of 4 wires connecting the same contacts on each end.

    Ray
    Last edited by harmsr; 14th June 2008 at 20:54.

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    Re: Which flash cable for M8 and SF24D

    Ray,
    I have the SC17 and did have the SF-24D. I could adjust the flash off camera. I sold the flash recently, so I guess I can't be any more help than that, but I used to use mine at events with the flash on a bracket. I put the SF-24D in M mode and dialed down the EV for fill.

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    Re: Which flash cable for M8 and SF24D

    Quote Originally Posted by harmsr View Post
    OK, this is wierd.

    Flash is set to TTL.

    If I run the flash off camera on the SC-28 pointing at the subject, EV comp on the flash works just as if the flash was mounted on the camera.

    When I have the flash off camera on the SC-28 but pointed at the ceiling, EV comp on the flash makes no difference. I can put it at +3 or -3 and see the impact. The end result is a perfectly exposed image.

    The flash in all cases is set on the correct f stop, is receiving ISO information from the camera, and my fingers are NOT covering the sensor on the flash.

    What the #$%%^.

    Is this because I should be using a different Nikon cable? I thought these cables were just a straight run of 4 wires connecting the same contacts on each end.

    Ray
    you are not going crazy...what you are seeing is how limited the sf-24D is

    I have the sc-17 cord, I also have another cord from pentax that works with a small modification to the shoe, trimming off a tab allows the contacts to align.

    I tested both and also with the flash on camera.

    It can deliver acceptably exposed frames somewhat consistently on camera and on cord. Dialing in exp comp may or may not work, I had hit and miss results "hand holding" the camera and flash in direct and in bounce situations. Considering the low power of the unit it does an ok job in many situations, but you have to respect the power limits of the flash. The range of adjustment at 2.8 and the range of adjustment at f11 across all ISO's is 10 ev or more. The flash can only compensate so far.

    I say "hand holding" because then I took all the sensor variables out and tripod mounted the camera and put the flash on stand. Then the exp comp worked consistently, within the limits of its adjustibility. It offers +-3ev but this is restricted to the ultimate power of the flash at a certain distance and f stop. So within narrow boundaries it will offer +-3ev, however, if you exceed either the max power or the minimum duration limits it will crap out, although you will often get a good exposure. It worked in direct and in bounce mode too. Just don't expect canon-nikon results for 5000$

    It is actually much more reliable in A mode with respect to ev comp because the on flash sensor does a good job, although obviously not in bounce mode.

    I use the cord sometimes so that I can put the light where I want it. If I want point and shoot I have found setting the camera to f11 on a wide and using the A-mode to be much more reliable, more like the old M6+sf20, just point and fire. Everything is exposed and in focus, and it looks great in bw.

    Considering its size it works pretty well. Had Leica made a swivel head instead of a fixed head, just a hinge really, it would be more effective.

    On-camera flash really is more about a creative choice than supplemental lighting. Where there is ample light but fill is needed it works very well and is mostly invisible. When there is no light it becomes dominant and I think you either have to go with it totally or reject it because there is no hiding it. But let me try fill flash indoors with the noct first at f1.0 1/15th and I'll report back

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    Re: Which flash cable for M8 and SF24D

    Robert,

    Thanks for the disappointing news.

    I am trying to draft the M8 into a roll that I have not used it for before, since I sold all my Nikon gear in the move to medium format. The M8 is going to get some use in event work with flash now and I wanted to be able to use off camera flash & EV comp. SILLY ME, HUH!!!!!

    I do have an SCA 3502 for my Metz 54 MZ -4i. Setting the shoe to the flash comp on, the flash to A mode, it seems to work perfectly.

    With the Metz flash, ISO & focal length come through the cord or work on camera. Aperture obviously is manually set. EV comp on the flash works when the flash is on the cord or camera, in either straight or bounce modes.

    Trying a few more trials with the SF24D on the cable, EV comp works in bounce mode depending on how effective the bounce is. So you seem to be absolutely correct, that the issue is really how limited the SF24D is.

    Thanks for the response. At least now, I don't think that I'm crazy.

    I guess if I am going to take the time to do off camera flash with a cable, then I just need to use the Metz.

    Thanks,

    Ray


    PS. (PLEASE don't mention the Nocti anymore. I have been able to resist so far and don't want to succumb at these new prices. )

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    Re: Which flash cable for M8 and SF24D

    well for event work you would have needed the metz anyway, the sf24 does not have enough umpfh to bounce in a large room..

    otoh, if you had the canon or nikon equivalent, it is just as big as the M8+metz potato masher combo anyway. so it is a wash.

    if you want another alternative why not put the metz on its own stand with an umbrella and use a pocket wizard to trigger it? Then the M8 is back to being svelt, and the light is better to begin with. On camera bounce to me looks just as bad as direct, the ceiling is overlit, the top half of the frame is lighter than the bottom, it does get away from hard shadows, but as they say, "shadows in life..."

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    Re: Which flash cable for M8 and SF24D

    Robert,

    The Metz & M8 are for when I don't want to carry lighting and stands, etc... I completely understand the difference in quality of light.

    If I am going to bring a stand, modifier, and lights, etc... , then I'll grab the ProPhoto AcuteB 600R s that I have and the MF gear.

    You know something funny. You mention that the size difference is not that much between the Nikon/Canon options and the M8+Metz combo. This is somewhat true. The funny part, was that my Nikon D3 and 24-70 is not really different in size compared to my MF gear.

    Best,

    Ray

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    Re: Which flash cable for M8 and SF24D

    yes the funny part is that we all bootstrap ourselves up to having back injuries...

    I have been redesigning how I shoot around limited budgets that won't pay for me carrying my broncolors around town. In some ways it is liberating to find ways to use portable flash to get results that are in league with studio units.

    I have a kit that fits into a small tripod bag and has two stands, two umbrellas, two chimeras and two canon ez580 flashes plus pocket wizards. It is pretty flexible. It also does not kill me to carry it around.

    The choice for me has become either only natural light, or light with this kit on the M8.

    Anything else and it is back to the full kit.

    If I get some sort of evening party thing I do my best Larry Fink with on camera direct flash or use the cord. If you can't make it good make it dark

  12. #12
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    Re: Which flash cable for M8 and SF24D

    Ray:

    Are you referring to using the flash in GNC mode or the Auto mode? In GNC mode, there is no exposure compensation available.

    Robert

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    Re: Which flash cable for M8 and SF24D

    Hey Rob,

    The flash is in TTL/GNC switch mode. When the flash is on camera the EV comp works. When the flash is off camera and pointed directly at the subject from the side, EV comp works. When the flash is off camera and pointed for bounce, EV comp does nothing. (I'm talking EV comp on the flash and not the camera.)

    Ray

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    Re: Which flash cable for M8 and SF24D

    With the Metz flashes and I am pretty sure with the SF-24, there is no EV comp in GNC mode. Are you sure you are getting into GNC mode? The camera usually needs to be on/awake before turning on the flash for the flash to recognize the camera is capable of GNC mode.

    Robert

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