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Olympus Flash as a system

Discussion in 'Accessories' started by ashburtononline, May 19, 2016.

  1. ashburtononline

    ashburtononline Mu-43 Veteran

    388
    Jan 21, 2015
    New Zealand
    I think that Olympus needs to really sort out the current flash system as it needs serious attention. The FL600 is a bit of a toy and I'm forced to use older four thirds FL50's which are no longer being made. The current flash system is not a patch on the old OM TTL flash system that was a joy to use.

    Olympus, the system will never be taken seriously by professionals without more powerful flash with external battery packs. These don't need to cost a fortune as loading one with 12 AA's would work....

    and yes! .... I know there are other flashes that will work but I'm referring to Olympus building their own professional system.
     
  2. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    I wonder why they didn't just rebadge the Panasonic FL580L? The FL-600R is just a rebadge of the Panasonic FL360L after all.

    The thing I miss is the IR AF illuminator grid. The new ones just turn their LED modelling light on which is pathetically useless and annoyingly distracting.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  3. MichaelSewell

    MichaelSewell Mu-43 Top Veteran

    507
    Sep 1, 2015
    Burnley, UK
    Michael A. Sewell
    I wouldn't necessarily expect a professional to purchase a system to the exclusion of everything else.
    If Olympus created a stonking speedlight with a battery port and a good Li-ion battery pack, then it would sell well. But if Metz or Nissin created one with marginally better output, or longer lasting battery pack or a quicker recycling time, the pros would buy that in a heart beat.
    It tends to be more about what gets the job done, rather than the brand.
     
  4. MichaelSewell

    MichaelSewell Mu-43 Top Veteran

    507
    Sep 1, 2015
    Burnley, UK
    Michael A. Sewell
    But I do agree with your point.

    Olympus flash system tends to suck big time!
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  5. Ross the fiddler

    Ross the fiddler Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    So how well does the Panasonic FL580L flash work on the Olympus (OM-D) bodies?
    Is it better than the Olympus FL50R? Obviously the LED has to make it better there.
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2016
    • Like Like x 1
  6. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    AFAIK it's just a giant FL360L/FL-600R. I have the suspicion it doesn't take external power, just AAs, so not as good as FL-50R in that respect. There's one review on Amazon where somebody actually used it on an OM-D... information is pretty sparce.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  7. barry13

    barry13 Super Moderator; Photon Wrangler

    Mar 7, 2014
    Southern California
    Barry
    Olympus & Panasonic 4/3 and mu43 flashes are interchangeable, except for a couple of the ones included with camera bodies.
     
  8. ashburtononline

    ashburtononline Mu-43 Veteran

    388
    Jan 21, 2015
    New Zealand
    I was just referring to the fact that the system is very lacking. I have used Metz flashes in the past and will again too .... far better value too and equally as good. Was just referring to the fact that the overall OMD system is growing nicely but not the flash side of things.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  9. MichaelSewell

    MichaelSewell Mu-43 Top Veteran

    507
    Sep 1, 2015
    Burnley, UK
    Michael A. Sewell
    And I whole heartedly agree
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. Gary5

    Gary5 Mu-43 Veteran

    310
    Jan 15, 2014
    Someone commented once that the FL580 doesn't fully support RC mode on his E-M1. I tried pretty hard to follow up, but couldn't get answers even from Panasonic or Olympus. I think he probably meant it doesn't work as a commander.
     
  11. Ross the fiddler

    Ross the fiddler Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    It does work fully in RC Mode but not as a commander.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  12. zensu

    zensu An Old Fool

    Aug 8, 2012
    Southeastern USA
    Bobby
    Olympus is changing their cameras' Hot Shoe. The newer EM5mkII and PenF have an extra contact pin in the new hot shoe compared to my EM1. Maybe after they have upgraded all their camera lines Hot Shoes they will introduce a better flash system?
    PS, I ordered the new flash that's included in the EM5mkII box because it has bounce and swivel options the one that came with my EM1 doesn't. The new Olympus EM5mkII included flash will not work on either my EM1 or EP5 but does work with a friends Panasonic GM5?
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2016
    • Like Like x 1
  13. Ross the fiddler

    Ross the fiddler Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    It's good to know that Panasonic are staying with the universal approach still then. Whether the main flashes utilise this extra pin remains to be seen though since it was added to supply power for the included flash where the Accessories Port previously did & would not be needed for larger flashes that have a large power drain & therefore use their own power source (4 X AA batteries).
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  14. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    The Metz 64 AF-1 seems pretty impressive on paper... TTL, Super FP, RC master/slave, external power pack, PC sync, 24-200 mm equivalent zoom, GN64 at 200mm but still GN52 at 85mm (FL-50R is GN50 at same settings). It's also got an interesting controllable front flash tube for fill if you're bouncing the main head.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  15. Levster

    Levster Mu-43 Top Veteran

    My Panasonic GX8 includes this extra pin. Based on your GM5 comment I'd guess that the G7 and GX85 would also include the extra pin.
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
  16. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer

  17. zensu

    zensu An Old Fool

    Aug 8, 2012
    Southeastern USA
    Bobby
    You nailed it when you brought up the APS Port. Olympus added the extra pin to power their bundled/come with camera flashes because they have eliminated the APS Port (on all newer cameras) which used to supply power to these little/battery free flashes. The APS also powered other accessories such as the EVFs' for the all the Pens'. It might look odd but I've used my VF4 EVF mounted on the Hot Shoe of my EM1, it takes over as the EVF and can be swiveled up 90° in bright sun so you can compose that little critter without getting on the ground. Getting down on the ground is easy, it's the getting up that's hard!
    PS, I sold that little Olympus Flash to my friend with the GM5, He loves it on his GM5!
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2016
    • Like Like x 1
  18. spdavies

    spdavies Mu-43 Top Veteran

    960
    Apr 9, 2013
    Hawaii
    Stephen
    I tried the little Oly EM5.II flash on both my GX85 and my G7. For some reason, the cameras do not recognize that it is mounted and won't fire it. Anybody know the secret?
     
  19. zensu

    zensu An Old Fool

    Aug 8, 2012
    Southeastern USA
    Bobby
    The EM5mkII bundled flash has a mounting foot that is a hair longer than the hot shoe of Panasonic cameras so you will need to file down about 1/32" or so to insure contacts with the Panasonic cameras hot shoe. I don't have any idea why this is so?
    I just used a fingernail file to slowly file down the front part of the foot (it's plastic) so the foot would slide forward a hair farther to contact the hot shoe pins on the Panasonic m43s' cameras.
    I'm sure if you do an internet search you'll find more info about this minor annoyance. Maybe this: Olympus FL-LM3 flash works with Panasonic GM5 (most likley LX100 too): Micro Four Thirds Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review
    Bobby
    PS, when the foot clicks into the cameras' hot shoe you'll know you've filed it far enough.
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2016
    • Appreciate Appreciate x 1
  20. zensu

    zensu An Old Fool

    Aug 8, 2012
    Southeastern USA
    Bobby
    Forgot to mention, my little flash would not work at all on the Panasonic GM5 until I filed down this plastic lip.
    Bobby