EM-5 mk III - TTL flash with FL-900R through cable FL-CB05?

PeterA

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Hello,

I have been on this forum since I got the original EM-5 back in 2012 but I regrettably haven't posted much. I just bought the EM-5 Mk III and the FL-900 flash. I want to use the latter off camera, through a cable. I ordered the FL-CB05, which I read in a post on dpreview is "the official cable for off camera flash on any Olympus digital".

I haven't received the cables (I actually bought two for extended length) yet but I can see from a photo of the box that it is "for E-series (hot shoe supported) only".

My question: will I be able to retain full TTL capability with the above setup?

Thank you very much in advance.

Peter
 

exakta

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Jun 2, 2015
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Should work fine. m43 uses the same system as 43 E-series, except that some recent cameras (like the E-m5 III) have a fourth pin for powering small flashes like the LM-3. I used a Promaster flash for a while that was labeled "for E-series" and predated the first m43 cameras. It worked perfectly with my E-M10.

For some reason, third party cords for m43 TTL are nonexistent and the Olympus cable is $$$$...but you've ordered them and it will work. Many of us use cords for Canon TTL because the pins are in the same place (they also work for Fuji X series).
 

PeterA

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Many thanks for your reply. That is positive news. So, the fourth pin on the EM-5 mk III replaces what was a special connector on the EM-5 mk I to power the LM-2, while the Olympus TTL system as such relies on three pins?

I have to say that the LM-3 used to trigger the 900R in "wireless" mode also works really well. It is just annoying that you will always have some on-camera light in this setup, even in situations where you only want light coming from the side.

I have seen that the Olympus cable is indeed very expensive in some eBay offerings but I was able to buy the two I got for 28$ each. There is some cost for shipping and import duties to Europe but nothing prohibitive I'd say.

Thanks again for taking the time to write.
 

Mack

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Don't know if applies, but I bought one cable that had the three small pins and the one larger one and it did not work. Olympus seems to work well with the Canon cable that has four pins and the one large one. Might be why Olympus discontinued it (i.e. FL-CB05) as the B&H Photo's website says "No Longer Available."

I bought the Vello copy of the FL-CB05 cable that has the three small pins and the one large one. It didn't work.

Next I borrowed a Canon cable and it worked well so that may be an answer.

But a problem happened when I next bought the cheaper Vello one made for Canon. It didn't work either as the pins were recessed a bit too much for the ones on the bottom of the Olympus flash to make a connection. Looking at the 3 pin+1 large pin Vello made for Olympus I saw the pins were not as deep. Since I now had two Vello cables, I took the one with the four male-pin end and took off the other end. It had the extra wire for a fourth pin so I took the shallow 3 pin Vello and drilled a small hole for a small brad a the fourth missing pin location and soldered the fourth wire from the four-pin male cable end onto it. That works, but it took a lot of work for an extension cable (Try a Canon made 4+1 pin if you can at a store.).

The tiny flash that came with the Pen-F and E-M1 II doesn't have that larger center pin we are familiar with on the underside so they are using some other pin in their triggering. Don't know why they haven't upgraded their own cable either.

Added:
I did a write-up of it on here along with the photos of the bastardized cables: https://www.mu-43.com/threads/olympus-and-godox-flash-and-kelvin-issues.98875/#post-1168873

I eventually got tired of cables and went to the wireless Godox system. Less messy, and their radio trigger costs about as much as an extension cable too.
 
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PeterA

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Thanks, Mack! Well, if the original (discontinued) FL-CB05 cables don’t work in my setup, could that be because they don’t make the contact properly with the newer Olympus flash units, like in your experience with the Vello cord?

This would seem to indicate that Olympus did not fundamentally change the layout of pins, right?
I used a Promaster flash for a while that was labeled "for E-series" and predated the first m43 cameras. It worked perfectly with my E-M10.
I believe that I do have a Canon cord (original) somewhere. I could try that. while waiting for the Olympus cables to arrive. I don’t think I have the courage to start tinkering with cables and soldering myself, however, but I am glad to see that you made it work.

I can totally see the advantage of working with radio triggers. Do you get TTL operation from your Godox triggers too?
 

exakta

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Yes, the Godox system supports both TTL and HSS. But you have to use all Godox gear...it won't interoperate with any Oly or Panny flashes.

I bought my Lumix FL360L (same as Oly FL600R) before Godox offered m43 TTL and I paid more for that single flash than it would have cost to buy two shoe mount Godox flashes and a trigger :dash2:

No idea about EU prices, but in the USA triggers are $50-60 and TTL flashes start around $100 each for shoe-mount units.

P.S. Godox also has flashes and triggers that are not TTL and units that don't have the radio receiver built-in, so make sure whatever you buy has both.
 

PeterA

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Thanks, I should definitely have asked some of you knowledgeable people in here for information before rushing out to buy that flash unit, but I will say in my defence that I got a good deal at my local camera shop where they had decided to include it in their January sales. Still, from what you explain, exakta, Godox TTL flashes and triggers would have been a good solution, I think

If anything, I should maybe have bought the FL-700WR. If I'm not mistaken, this unit can be radio triggered directly from the EM-5 mk III? Having said this, I am actually happy with the FL-900R, which is relatively powerful and as I have said above, it works fine off-camera when triggered with the LM-3 unit that came with the camera.

This article seems to indicate that the Cactus V6II triggers have the best compatibility for the OM-D system. I suppose they'd also give TTL with Olympus/Panasonic's own flash units?
 
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