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Legacy flash on an OM D EM5

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by MrFizzbin, Dec 19, 2012.

  1. MrFizzbin

    MrFizzbin New to Mu-43

    2
    Dec 18, 2012
    Greetings everyone. I have a bit of a technical question that is somewhat off the beaten track. I have an Olympus e-510 in which I have been able to use an old Minolta 360PX flash. I could do that because the strobe trigger voltage was not an issue for the e-510. The trigger voltage on the Minolta is 5.24v (information obtained from hxxp://www.botzilla.com/photo/strobeVolts.html). So, my question is, does anyone know if the Olympus OM D EM5 would be compatible with this flash?
     
  2. Mikefellh

    Mikefellh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    939
    Jun 7, 2012
    Toronto, Canada
    My concern is if the flash TTL contact connects to the Oly TTL contact, even if the flash is in M or Auto fmodes. I'm not familiar with the old style Minolta connector, before they came up with their own proprietary flash shoe.
     
  3. FrayAdjacent

    FrayAdjacent Mu-43 Regular

    183
    Dec 5, 2012
    Austin, TX
    M@
    I tried an old vivitar manual flash unit my father used on Minolta SLRs on my EM-5, and it fired when I set the camera to 'manual' mode.
     
  4. vchaney

    vchaney Mu-43 Regular

    33
    Sep 22, 2010
    The OMD and E510 flash systems are the same so it should be fine.
     
  5. jziegler

    jziegler Mu-43 Veteran

    261
    Dec 15, 2012
    Salem County, New Jersey
    James
    It should work in manual mode. I've used an old Vivitar 285HV on my E-PL1 and it worked fine. I've used a couple other legacy flashes successfully with radio triggers. 5.24V is low enough to be safe with pretty much all cameras out there.
     
  6. HarryS

    HarryS Mu-43 Top Veteran

    919
    Jun 23, 2012
    Midwest, USA
    You need to be careful here. Many old units exceed the hotshoe ratings on modern digital cameras. Worst case, they pop the electronics used to fire the strobe .My old Vivitar 283 can put out 290 volts on its hot shoe contacts, as will my old SunPak.

    For example, the Olympus E1 and my E300 DSLR were rated for 250 volts, but this had been lowered to 6 volts for the E-410.

    Here is a list of user supplied voltages on old flashes.
    Photo Strobe Trigger Voltages

    Do not trust it as gospel. Users make mistakes. When I first checked my Vivitar for my E300, I got under 200 volts, so I used it, but that was with old batteries.
     
  7. Mikefellh

    Mikefellh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    939
    Jun 7, 2012
    Toronto, Canada
    Those who said it should work fine because your Vivitar worked missed what I said above about TTL FLASHES!

    If a TTL contact on the flash connect to the camera's TTL contact, it may damage the camera and or flash, regardless of the trigger voltage!
     
  8. jziegler

    jziegler Mu-43 Veteran

    261
    Dec 15, 2012
    Salem County, New Jersey
    James
    Seeing that the E-510 has the same TTL system as the E-M5, it's probably still alright. TTL is much less likely to have damaging high voltages than the sync terminal. To be safe, you could put electrical tape on the other connection points, or use an adapter like the following:

    Interfit STR115 Hot Shoe Adapter - Standard, with PC STR115 B&H
     
  9. Mikefellh

    Mikefellh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    939
    Jun 7, 2012
    Toronto, Canada
    TTL can be just as bad as you can have a negative voltage (in respect to ground when only positive voltages are expected) or you can have two outputs connected together.
     
  10. MrFizzbin

    MrFizzbin New to Mu-43

    2
    Dec 18, 2012
    I think I will stick to the EM-5's kit flash..Lol Recycling a 40 year old flash isn't worth risking a $1,000. camera!
     
  11. Mikefellh

    Mikefellh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    939
    Jun 7, 2012
    Toronto, Canada
    You can buy cheaper manual flashes with lots of power, like the Yongnuo.

    I admit I still use flashes from the 80's (Vivitar 285HVs), but I fire them every few months to keep the capacitors in good shape (if you don't fire them once in a while the high voltage capacitors can deteriorate, and not hold a charge, or blow up).