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Panasonic DMW-FL360 flash?

Discussion in 'Accessories' started by noelh, May 22, 2011.

  1. Lack of understanding & experience with proper use with the GF-1 built in flash has me a bit frustrated. Seems a bit too weak for much more than close ups, bit of a pain with determining the proper flash compensation to deal with the harshness of the direct flash and totally messing up on decent exposure when imaging extreme contrast subjects. So far have found it more or less limited to a fill in flash.

    Would the FL360 along with when needed a diffuser deal with my issues? On paper it's a stronger flash than the builit-in, bounce option, designed to work with the G line of Lumix cameras.

    B&H site notes not to use lithium batteries. Couple reviewers noted using the Energizer brand of lithium. Faster recycle times (+7sec for alkaline vs ~1sec for the lithium). Any long term negative effects of using these specific lithium battery.
     
  2. Bokeh Diem

    Bokeh Diem Mu-43 Top Veteran

    655
    Mar 14, 2010
    Toronto
    Go get horsepower... the 500. You will never regret it.... you can always dial it down. But, you cannot dial up something you don't have.

    Bokeh D
     
  3. sprinke

    sprinke Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 5, 2011
    Pasadena, CA
    Debi
    On a related note: I read a review for the DMW-FL500 on Amazon that said that only the Panasonic flashes will allow you to do high-speed sync (FP mode). Is this true?
     
  4. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    Yes, it absolutely will. The FL360 is a normal flash gun with a protruding head which you can mount any kind of diffuser on. Anything less and you will not be able to modify your light properly.

    The suggestion of the FL500 is also a good one. The biggest difference you'll find is the faster recycle time from using 4 batteries instead of 2.
     
  5. Stephen Geis

    Stephen Geis Mu-43 Top Veteran

    538
    May 13, 2010
    Charlotte, NC
    I'm a relative newcomer to off camera flash and picked up the FL36r (Olympus version - identical to the Pannasonic except for the addition of the wireless capability that can be used with certain Olympus bodies.

    Here are a couple of examples of what can be done with this flash.

    From today (GF1 and Summicron 40mm):

    My dog is looking at my left hand which was holding the flash as I took the photo with camera in my right hand:

    <table style="width:auto;"><tr><td><a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/mtuoMjMDIkYzBdV60LbXVg?feat=embedwebsite">https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/_8rsKLcUXdBs/TdmlEOEGAbI/AAAAAAAAFoY/3JttTRS0JHA/s640/P1330399.JPG" height="640" width="640" /></a></td></tr><tr><td style="font-family:arial,sans-serif; font-size:11px; text-align:right">From <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/StephenAGeis/BaileySBirthday?feat=embedwebsite">Bailey's Birthday</a></td></tr></table>

    Also from today - same set up - using the "invisible black backdrop" concept mentioned in another thread in this forum:

    <table style="width:auto;"><tr><td><a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/RpPB_dwyIJcxOn9kL9un3w?feat=embedwebsite">[img]https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/_8rsKLcUXdBs/Tdmno2Y8e6I/AAAAAAAAFoo/rGxt4YTXCWc/s640/P1330423.JPG" height="640" width="640" /></a></td></tr><tr><td style="font-family:arial,sans-serif; font-size:11px; text-align:right">From <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/StephenAGeis/BaileySBirthday?feat=embedwebsite">Bailey's Birthday</a></td></tr></table>

    <table style="width:auto;"><tr><td><a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/7RkYSapSKnEZUyWZjTF-BQ?feat=embedwebsite">[img]https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/_8rsKLcUXdBs/Tdmn27-ogcI/AAAAAAAAFos/hrgwg84pKZg/s640/P1330424.JPG" height="428" width="640" /></a></td></tr><tr><td style="font-family:arial,sans-serif; font-size:11px; text-align:right">From <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/StephenAGeis/BaileySBirthday?feat=embedwebsite">Bailey's Birthday</a></td></tr></table>

    My first addiction - coffee ...

    <table style="width:auto;"><tr><td><a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/IcEvTGcNvqfD3O3p9_KSGA?feat=embedwebsite">[img]https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/_8rsKLcUXdBs/TdmqJhdKIBI/AAAAAAAAFpE/xeNCcw7HaOg/s640/P1330490.JPG" height="640" width="640" /></a></td></tr><tr><td style="font-family:arial,sans-serif; font-size:11px; text-align:right">From <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/StephenAGeis/BaileySBirthday?feat=embedwebsite">Bailey's Birthday</a></td></tr></table>

    Combined with my second addiction:

    <table style="width:auto;"><tr><td><a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/W-oFpapR76jhad03n-sGjQ?feat=embedwebsite">[img]https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/_8rsKLcUXdBs/Tdmp4sIzjBI/AAAAAAAAFo8/wv0QFM10cuI/s640/P1330511.JPG" height="428" width="640" /></a></td></tr><tr><td style="font-family:arial,sans-serif; font-size:11px; text-align:right">From <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/StephenAGeis/BaileySBirthday?feat=embedwebsite">Bailey's Birthday</a></td></tr></table>

    And playing with it on my patio this afternoon:

    <table style="width:auto;"><tr><td><a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/nBYX4qwDbsiXEybUso25UA?feat=embedwebsite">[img]https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/_8rsKLcUXdBs/TdmqPzuUKQI/AAAAAAAAFpI/Qz4jhkF35IM/s640/P1330472.JPG" height="640" width="428" /></a></td></tr><tr><td style="font-family:arial,sans-serif; font-size:11px; text-align:right">From <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/StephenAGeis/BaileySBirthday?feat=embedwebsite">Bailey's Birthday</a></td></tr></table>

    All from today and all triggered with my pop-up flash dialed down to lowest setting (and pop up redirected away from subject with an index card.

    Here's two from the last month:

    <table style="width:auto;"><tr><td><a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/xuFxERdOxcXh9Vtm00ajkQ?feat=embedwebsite">[img]https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/_8rsKLcUXdBs/TdHUp2C6DMI/AAAAAAAAFgo/F6LidGaGsSE/s640/038.JPG" height="640" width="638" /></a></td></tr><tr><td style="font-family:arial,sans-serif; font-size:11px; text-align:right">From <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/StephenAGeis/Move?feat=embedwebsite">Move</a></td></tr></table>

    <table style="width:auto;"><tr><td><a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/Uc3h3--XbRp3OnXt_8phAQ?feat=embedwebsite">[img]https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/_8rsKLcUXdBs/TbIWoyDya3I/AAAAAAAAE7w/1Nn7nfiXRBY/s640/P1300638.JPG" height="640" width="640" /></a></td></tr><tr><td style="font-family:arial,sans-serif; font-size:11px; text-align:right">From <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/StephenAGeis/SpringHasSprung?feat=embedwebsite">Spring has sprung</a></td></tr></table>

    Bokeh's probably right - but as a newcomer to off-camera flash, I've found this versitile and relatively compact ... and what's more - fun!
     
    • Like Like x 2
  6. Pelao

    Pelao Mu-43 Top Veteran

    959
    Feb 3, 2010
    Ontario, Canada
    Stephen: some nice stuff. Thanks for sharing.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. Stephen Geis

    Stephen Geis Mu-43 Top Veteran

    538
    May 13, 2010
    Charlotte, NC
    Pelao - appreciate the feedback.

    Should reiterate that these are all off-camera flash photographs with the fl36r. Given it's large relative size (same size as most standard flash units), I find it a little off-balanced on my m4/3 bodies, but have used it on camera too with the TTL function.
     
  8. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    Just as an extra side note, the FL-36R has wireless TTL capabilities that work with any Olympus body equipped with a Remote Commander, but it also includes a basic optical slave sensor so it can be triggered manually by ANY flash from any camera, including pop-up flash (best done at 1/64th power if using it to trigger slaves). So if you have a Panasonic body, you might want to consider getting the Olympus -R series flashes (FL-36R or FL-50R) in place of the Panasonic versions (FL360 and FL500). They will operate the same as when mounted on the hotshoe, but the Olympus flashes can also operate as wireless slaves. I don't know about the faked High Speed Sync though.

    Excellent photos by the way, Stephen! I use and love many FL-36R flashes, myself... as well as FL-50Rs. :) The FL-36Rs are so compact and pack plenty of power for their size, but the fast refresh rate of the FL-50R's are so welcome on many shoots. As long as I keep fresh batteries though, both perform quite well.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Thanks for the feedback.

    Considering now a 3rd option for the GF-1 & G2. Metz 50 AF-1. Pricing is similar to the Oly/pan 36 versions, but a bit more power plus built in diffuser and reflector. A bit more bulky (4AA batteries) but shorter recycle times. Firmware update via usb.

    At the metz webpage they note: "With built-in camera flash, wireless applications are available in servo mode (only Canon, Nikon and Olympus/Panasonic version)." Servo function without preflash is std feature.
    What do they mean by "servo mode"?

    Any Metz users feedback would be appreciated.
     
  10. sprinke

    sprinke Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 5, 2011
    Pasadena, CA
    Debi
    Maybe this will help illuminate (pun intended):
    Enabling "Servo" mode on Metz 48 AF-1.... - PentaxForums.com
     
    • Like Like x 1
  11. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    The Metz is an awesome choice for Four-Thirds. It does all the same things as the Olympus -R series flashes (which has more wireless capabilities than the Panasonic versions or the old Olympus versions), and are more comparable to the FL-50R than the FL-36R in performance (more batteries, faster recycle times). It even has the added ability of making one of the flashes a Master/Remote Commander (servo mode), instead of having to use the pop-up flash for Wireless TTL on an Olympus body. I think that will give you wireless TTL on a Panasonic body, but somebody will have to correct me if not.
     
    • Like Like x 1