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Thread: M8 and Fill Flash...any new solutions?

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    Workshop Member glenerrolrd's Avatar
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    M8 and Fill Flash...any new solutions?

    Every 4th of July I kick myself for not mastering fill flash with my M8s . The venues offer a once a year "free pass" for street shooters. Everybody "gets it" and you can shoot almost anyone and get a smile. But its so contrasty!

    Backlighting with a little Fill Flash would go a long way to getting consistent exposures.

    TTL at minus 1 1/3 is what I need but its only available with a leica or some metz flashes .........and I want something small like the new flash for the EP-1 .

    I have a Sf-24 which works pretty well but is taller than I want(probably produces better results but for fill I don t need much). Everything else looks way too big. Some of the newer flash like the Canon 580II can be shot on flash "auto" ....so the flash is independent of the camera exposure . But I understand that the Nikon Sb-400 which looks great requires the TTL connection .

    I might even be able to go totally manual but flash automatic would be better. Any working solutions out there?

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    Re: M8 and Fill Flash...any new solutions?

    Roger,

    The Leica SF58 works perfectly, and is much more instantaneous in TTL than the SF24D. Bounce capability is great and the power range is excellent. OF course, it is huge on an M8. For the last two Photokinas (06 & 08) I've spoken to both Leica and Metz about making a smaller, bounce capable TTL flash for the M8. The SF58 is (sort of) a step in the right direction, but it is obviously made to go with the S2 (big, pro-size). I'd love to see them make something like the Metz 36 in a Leica version.

    Your Nikon SB-800/900 will work very well in A mode, as will the Metz 58 AF-1N, but really, if going for this size, the SF58 is much simpler.

    I agree with you that an SB-400 with limited bounce capability and low profile would be great if it had A or M mode (which it doesn't). I guess that Leica hasn't really made a serious move with flash because most M users just don't use flash.

    David
    David Farkas
    Leica Store Miami

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    Workshop Member glenerrolrd's Avatar
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    Re: M8 and Fill Flash...any new solutions?

    David

    My findings exactly. I have an easy solution with my D700 and this may be my strong summer light solution. The D700 can use a gary fong "puffer" diffuser that fits in the hot shoe and adds only minimally to the height . That with a Zeiss 28/2 is a nice combination for street work.

    If I wanted "perfect" then the D3 with the sb-900,diffuser and RRS bracket..AV at -1 1/3
    but for a parade ?

    I need to find a small flash that has "A" mode without TTL.....maybe something out of production.

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    wilsonlaidlaw
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    Re: M8 and Fill Flash...any new solutions?

    A Sto-Fen diffusor fits very nicely on the SF58-D head (the same on one as for the Metz 58MZ). This makes it into a great fill in flash for people on less than sunny days. Used together with the fill in flash on reduced power for front highlighting it is a big (very BIG, unfortunately) advance on the SF24.

    Wilson

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    Workshop Member glenerrolrd's Avatar
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    Re: M8 and Fill Flash...any new solutions?

    Quote Originally Posted by wilsonlaidlaw View Post
    A Sto-Fen diffusor fits very nicely on the SF58-D head (the same on one as for the Metz 58MZ). This makes it into a great fill in flash for people on less than sunny days. Used together with the fill in flash on reduced power for front highlighting it is a big (very BIG, unfortunately) advance on the SF24.

    Wilson
    I found a used Sf-58 at a very low price and its on the way. So I will have a good solution.....but what I am missing is really an alternative to a popup flash on a DSLR. I am finding that with the D700 its just enough fill to help cut the contrast on back lit shots and brighten the eyes.

    I think I am beginning to appreciate the trade offs and maybe the sf-24D is the best I am going to do for a small M flash.

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    Re: M8 and Fill Flash...any new solutions?

    Roger:

    There are also some mini LED lighting panels that mount in the hot shoe. Jamie Roberts had mentioned using one for low light wedding receptions.

    Robert

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    Workshop Member glenerrolrd's Avatar
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    Re: M8 and Fill Flash...any new solutions?

    Quote Originally Posted by robsteve View Post
    Roger:

    There are also some mini LED lighting panels that mount in the hot shoe. Jamie Roberts had mentioned using one for low light wedding receptions.

    Robert
    Thanks Rob ..I will look into that. Whats missing in my kit is a really small flash that can be included in my M8 bag. Something to replicate what you get with a pop up on say a D700. Most street shooting you can t really use fill flash unless you know the subject (or are a risk taker). But sometimes you get an opportunity where everyone is shooting(like the 4th of July celebrations). A small amount of fill would have really improved the images ..but not at the expense of handling a full size flash . The model would be like the Olympus E-P1 flash ..wimpy for anything but a little punch and fill.

    I have the sf-24 which is clumsy to use but works and soon a sf-58 that does the job correctly. But routinely I will have neither with me on the street. May just have to go with the sf-24..size seems to be relative to what you are used to using.

    Roger

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    Re: M8 and Fill Flash...any new solutions?

    Try the Nikon SB-800. Use the A setting and experiment. It works well for me. It also has a diffuser that works when the flash is used with the Voigtlander 15mm lens.

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    Workshop Member glenerrolrd's Avatar
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    Re: M8 and Fill Flash...any new solutions?

    Quote Originally Posted by hdrmd View Post
    Try the Nikon SB-800. Use the A setting and experiment. It works well for me. It also has a diffuser that works when the flash is used with the Voigtlander 15mm lens.
    Thanks but too big for my intentions. I will have the sf58 which is similar and does TTL ...I need something smaller than the sf-24D. I may find that anything smaller just doesn t have the juice to cover with a diffuser. Sometimes you get those opportunities to take a shot of 2-3 people and you just need a touch of fill..stuff that a pop up does. I may have to experiment more with what I have.

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    Re: M8 and Fill Flash...any new solutions?

    Roger there is a thread on the LUF about some who have used the Olympus FL-36 with a lot of success. It is a bit larger than the sf-24D but offers bounce capability and swivel ability with diffuser. It is rather inexpensive compared to some. I have settled on the Nikon SB-30 which is very small and puts out quite a bit of light however no bounce. I picked one up on e-bay for about $30 new. Only about three inches tall and two and a quarter wide. Very easy to use in Auto or manual and the light output is quite adjustable. Easily fits in a shirt pocket. Another fellow on this forum uses that little Canon flash that came out a while back with a bounce head. That one runs about $150 from Amazon. Supposed to work on the M8 in Manual mode. Never actually seen one of those however.

  11. #11
    wilsonlaidlaw
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    Re: M8 and Fill Flash...any new solutions?

    When I want a tiny shirt pocket sized flash, I use this Minox 8 x 11 flash on a Minox ME-2 adapter. It is manual but I have a ready reckoner stuck to the side. The picture makes it look bigger than it is due to perspective. It is just over 1/2 inch wide and 4 1/2 inches tall. It splits into three bits (the flash, the 8 x 11 adapter and the ME-2 adapter) if you need it even smaller.

    Wilson

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